Archive for May, 2010

‘Shrek’ beats ‘Sex And The City 2’ at US box office

Sunday, May 30th, 2010
Shrek in Shrek Forever After
Shrek Forever After has remained at the top of the US box office for a second week.

The animated feature has beaten Sex And The City 2 during the Memorial Day weekend with $43 million, while Sarah Jessica Parker’s highly-anticipated sequel pulled in $32 million.

The $200 million-budgeted Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, debuts at number three with a mere $30 million.

Iron Man 2 slips to fourth place with $16 million, followed by Robin Hood at number five with $10.3 million and Letters To Juliet in sixth place with $5.9 million.

Finally, How To Train Your Dragon decends to number ten with $1 million.

The US box office top ten in full:

1. (1) Shrek Forever After – $43,345,000
2. (-) Sex And The City 2 – $32,125,000
3. (-) Prince Of Persia: The Sands Of Time – $30,170,000
4. (2) Iron Man 2 – $16,035,000
5. (3) Robin Hood – $10,305,000
6. (4) Letters To Juliet – $5,900,000
7. (5) Just Wright – $2,200,000
8. (7) Date Night – $1,750,000
9. (6) MacGruber – $1,477,000
10. (9) How To Train Your Dragon – $1,025,000

Dennis Hopper dies, aged 74

Saturday, May 29th, 2010
Dennis Hopper
Actor Dennis Hopper has died at the age of 74 after a long battle with prostate cancer.

BBC News reports that Hopper passed away on Saturday morning surrounded by friends and family at his home in Venice, California.

The award-winning star, who was diagnosed with the illness last year, was last seen in public in March after being honoured on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.

In a career spanning 55 years, the Kansas-born actor was best known for co-writing, directing and starring in cult movie Easy Rider in 1969, for which he received an Academy Award nomination for ‘Best Original Screenplay’.

His first film appearances on the big screen saw him appear alongside the legendary James Dean in Rebel Without A Cause in 1955 and Giant a year later.

After a quiet period, Hopper won attention for the acclaimed Apocalypse Now in 1979, and garnered another Oscar nomination for ‘Best Supporting Actor’ in 1986 basketball film Hoosiers. His last role was in drama Crash on the Starz network.

Gary Coleman dies, aged 42

Saturday, May 29th, 2010

Actor Gary Coleman has died at the age of 42, it has been confirmed.

The star – best known for his role in the ’80s comedy Diff’rent Strokes – was hospitalised in Utah on Wednesday after suffering an intracranial hemorrhage caused by a fall.

Coleman slipped into a coma on Thursday and was taken off life support Friday morning. His wife Shannon Price and her father, as well as close friends and family, were at his bedside when he died.

Coleman’s growth was hampered from a young age by a kidney disease that meant he never grew beyond 4’8″ and required daily dialysis.

As the main star of Strokes, which ran from 1978 to 1986, Coleman played precocious child Arnold, becoming famous for his catchphrase “whatchu talkin’ ’bout Willis?”

Co-star Dana Plato committed suicide by drugs overdose in 1999. Her son Tyler Lambert fatally shot himself in the head earlier this month.

24.2m watch ‘American Idol’ climax

Friday, May 28th, 2010
Simon Cowell
Fox’s American Idol ended its ninth season on a slightly damp note, early viewing figures indicate.

On Wednesday night, Lee De Wyze’s win, and judge Simon Cowell’s ultimate farewell, won 23.15m between 8pm and 10pm.

However, the figures represent the show’s least-watched finale since its opening season in 2002, and an approximate 4.4m drop on last year’s audience. Furthermore, the talent contest’s 8.2 rating with adults 18-49 was its lowest ever. Nevertheless, Idol still saw off competition and was primetime’s most-watched program.

Elsewhere, the fifth season of Criminal Minds finished with 12.81m on CBS in the 9pm hour, signalling only a modest 300k drop in the face of heavy competition. At 10pm, CSI: NY climbed 600k to reach a slot-winning 11.9m for its respective sixth season close. Earlier at 8pm, a repeat of this year’s Superbowl lead-out – Undercover Boss – fetched 6.13m.

On NBC, a double bill of Minute To Win It repeats at 8pm and 9pm could only muster 3.29m and 2.64m, after which a rerun of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit scored 3.86m.

Meanwhile, ABC’s movie Transformers took 4.81m between 8pm and 11pm, while 1.38m tuned in for two America’s Next Top Model catch-ups on The CW for two hours from 8pm.

US ‘Being Human’ will be ‘different’

Thursday, May 27th, 2010
The cast of Being Human season 2
Details of the American remake of Being Human have been revealed.

Broadcast reports that the show, which was first ordered by Syfy in October, will be set in Boston.

Meanwhile, executive producer Rob Pursey revealed that although the show will keep the original’s “chemistry”, the characters will be changed slightly.

Pursey explained that the werewolf George will be renamed Josh, while the vampire Mitchell will be Jewish.

“Without letting go of the DNA of the original, it is evolving into quite a different show,” he said. “It will be pacier and the characters’ hinterlands are broader. So with Josh you get to see another aspect of how he copes with being the outsider.”

Pursey added: “Syfy is very keen to take the humour and humanity rather than just the vampires. They want it to push the channel more mainstream.”

The script is being penned by Everwood and Privileged writer Anna Fricke and Supernatural scribe Jeremy Carver. The show, which is currently being cast, is expected to go into pre-production next month and is scheduled to air in 2011.

The second season of the UK Being Human will premiere in the US on July 24 on BBC America.

Emmys change rules for ‘Lost’ finale

Thursday, May 27th, 2010
The cast of Lost season 6
The finale of Lost may be considered for an Emmy Award thanks to a recent change in nomination rules.

The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences has announced via its website that under the new regime the show’s extended conclusion will be considered for the 2010 Primetime Emmy Awards.

In previous years, extended episodes would not be considered if they ran longer than twice their usual length.

However, the Academy’s board of governors has now voted to update the rules, meaning the two and a half hour Lost finale will be submitted for award consideration.

Brendan Fraser backs out of ‘Journey’ sequel?

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010
Brendan Fraser and Maria Bello at 'The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon  Emperor' film photocall
Brad Peyton is reportedly in talks to direct a Journey to the Center of the Earth sequel without Brendan Fraser attached to star.

Actor Josh Hutcherson, 17, will take the lead role in the follow-up, reports Deadline.

Hutcherson played the protagonist’s nephew in the original 2008 movie.

It has been reported that Fraser is opting out of the film because original helmer Eric Brevig will not be available to direct.

Fraser could still make a deal with backers New Line and Walden Media to star, but sources have suggested that such a deal is unlikely.

The studios are eyeing a fall 2011 release date for the picture.

‘Shrek Forever After’ bags US Box Office lead

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010
Shrek in Shrek Forever After
Shrek Forever After has taken pole position at the US box office.

The fourth film in the animated comedy series nets $70 million, besting blockbusters Iron Man 2 and Robin Hood to emerge as the top movie Stateside over the weekend.

Letters To Juliet and Just Wright complete the top five, while Saturday Night Live spinoff MacGruber is at number six.

Elsewhere, Bollywood production Kites opens at number ten.

The US box office top ten in full:

1. (-) Shrek Forever After – $70,838,207
2. (1) Iron Man 2 – $26,361,258
3. (2) Robin Hood – $18,769,220
4. (3) Letters To Juliet – $9,006,266
5. (4) Just Wright – $4,290,431
6. (-) MacGruber – $4,043,495
7. (7) Date Night – $2,913,504
8. (6) A Nightmare On Elm Street – $2,321,388
9. (5) How To Train Your Dragon – $1,901,211
10. (-) Kites – $958,673

Brittany Murphy’s husband found dead

Monday, May 24th, 2010
Simon Monjack
Brittany Murphy’s husband Simon Monjack has been found dead at his Hollywood Hills home.

Los Angeles police sergeant Louie Lozano confirmed that Monjack had passed away, only five months after his wife died from pneumonia.

Early reports claim that Murphy’s mother-in-law found Monjack unconscious in his bedroom at 9.30pm. Paramedics attempted to resuscitate the 40-year-old, but he was pronounced dead from cardiac arrest last night.

“We have detectives at the scene. They are conducting their investigation. Once we have further information, we will provide it,” said sergeant Lozano.

8 Mile star Murphy died on December 20, 2009. The cause of death was a combination of pneumonia, an iron deficiency and multiple drug intoxication. The drugs involved were legal and used to treat a respiratory infection, according to an autopsy.

Monjack, who was a screenwriter and producer on the films Factory Girl and Two Days, Nine Lives, blamed Hollywood for his partner’s passing, claiming that the movie industry had “blood on their hands”.

‘Uncle Boonmee’ wins Cannes Palm d’Or

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives still

Thai film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives has won the Palm d’Or prize at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival.

Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s feature, about a dying man who is visited by the spirits of his death wife and son, was awarded the in competition section’s top prize tonight by the Tim Burton-led Cannes jury.

Taking to the stage to accept the accolade, Weerasethakul dedicated the honour to his fellow countrymen and used the platform to criticise Thailand’s rigid rules on censorship.

“I’d like to thank the jury, particularly Tim Burton, whose haircut I really like,” Weerasethakul said during his acceptance speech. “I’d like to send a message home: this prize is for you.”

Xavier Beauvois’s drama Of Gods And Men, which centres on Christian monks living in a monastery in Algeria, won the ‘Grand Prix’ gong.

In the acting categories, Javier Bardem and Elio Germano shared the ‘Best Actor’ prize for their respective roles in Biutiful and La Nostra Vita. Juliette Binoche scooped the ‘Best Actress’ award for Copie Conforme.

Kirsten Dunst presented France’s Mathieu Amalric with the directorial gong for his burlesque comedy-drama Tournee, and the screenplay prize went to South Korea’s Lee Chang-dong for Poetry.

The Jury Prize was awarded to A Screaming Man, the first ever Chadian entry at Cannes, while Michael Rowe’s Leap Year took home the Camera d’Or, the top award handed out to first-time directors.