For the first part of The Borgias Season 3, it seemed like Rome was doomed. Caterina Sforza (Gina McKee) seemed to be building alliances that threated the very existence of The Borgia Pope (Jeremy Irons), Rodrigo Borgia's dynasty. And with Juan Borgia dead at the end of Season 2, the Pope's army was basically destroyed. But, the pope's other son, Cesare Borgia (Francois Arnaud), has made it his mission this summer to take control and get Rome back on her feet.
After last week's episode, it was clear that the tides are shifting and that Cesare's plan to build a massive army is in action. But, the episode did leave some questions. Is Cesare building an army to support his father or to take his own power over Italy?
Until those questions are answered, here is the status on the two opposing armies in Italy at this point in the season.
Rome and Her Allies:
Leader: Pope Alexander, Rodrigo Borgia
Army's Commander: Cesare Borgia is the Pope's son.
Allies: 1. Michelleto (Sean Harris): Cesare's manservant who executes all of Cesare's evil plans. He is now watching over Cesare's sister-lover, Lucrezia Borgia (Holliday Grainger), in Naples.2. France: Cesare went to France and annulled the French King's marriage. In return, he got a French bride and a French army.3. Band of Italy's Bastard Sons: The second and illegitimate sons of Italy's greatest families have sided with Cesare instead of Caterina Sforza.
Lost Allies:Rome has the advantage right now.
Key Tactics and Advantages:1. Cesare won France to Rome's side. This means that he has to give them Milan and Naples, though.2. Cesare has also stolen the band of Italy's bastard sons from the enemy.
Disadvantages:1. It almost seems like Cesare is trying to build an army to support himself and not his father. This could create a division within Rome.
Leader: Caterina Sforza (Gina McKee)
Army's Commander: Rufio (Thure Lindhardt) is Caterina's lackey.
Allies: 1. No new allies at this point.
Lost Allies:1. Italy's wealthy families are now supporting Cesare.2. The King of Naples is now dead.
Key Tactics and Advantages:1. Leaving Milan's doors open to Cesare's army and leaving the city empty of defense.
Disadvantages:1. Lost alliances.
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
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We are about to be three episodes deep into Season 3 of the Showtime series The Borgias and so far, it's clear that the world is against Rome. At the end of Season 2, we were left wondering if the Borgia Pope's enemies had succeeded in killing him. But during Episode 1 of this season, we learned that like a cockroach, the Pope can survive just about anything. He even came back to life after facing one of the deadliest poisons known at the time. But just because he is alive and now well doesn't mean that his enemies have given up the plan to take his life. In fact, this season, it seems like even more enemies have ganged up against Rodrigo Borgia and his unholy ways.
At the end of Episode 2, it was clear that Rome is heading towards war. But who is on whose side this week? Because The Borgias' shifting alliances always leave you scratching your heads, we're here to help you track where the battle lines are drawn. Who hates who? And what should their strategies be? Read on to find out!
Rome and Her Allies:
Leader: Pope Alexander, Rodrigo Borgia (Jeremy Irons): The Borgia pope is hated in the Roman Empire for his greed and the use of God to promote his illegitimate family.
Army's Commander: Cesare Borgia (Francois Arnaud) is the Pope's son and a former Cardinal who is now in charge of the Papal army.
Allies: 1. Michelleto (Sean Harris): Cesare's manservant who executes all of Cesare's evil plans.2. Cardinal Sforza (Peter Sullivan): He switched to the Pope's side when the Pope lived after being poisoned. The Pope has used this cardinal to help eliminate the enemy cardinals.3. Possible: Cardinal Farneze: We have yet to meet this character, but since the Pope's affair with Giulia Farneze has come to an end, she has asked him to make her brother a Cardinal — and Giulia and the Pope ended their affair on good terms.4. Possible: France: Unlike last season, France is in bed with the Pope. A new king rules France and is stuck in a marriage to a quite undesirable woman. When the French Ambassador asked the Pope to dissolve the King's marriage, Borgia saw this as an opportunity to create a new allie. Now, he plans on marrying Cesare to a French woman to build the alliance.
Lost Allies:1. Prince Alfonso (Augustus Prew): Alfonso refused to bed Lucrezia Borgia (Holliday Grainger) on their wedding night because he felt jaded by her family's intentions for the union. Alfonso instead spent their wedding night alone and crying as Lucrezia gave herself to her brother Cesare.
Key Tactics and Advantages:1. The Pope plans to pin Juan Borgias' (Rodrigo's second son who Cesare actually killed during Season 2) murder on Caterina. 2. The Pope eliminated the cardinals in the conclave who did not support the Borgia initiative. This was done by stripping them of their titles, riches, and property.
Disadvantages:1. The Papal army is defunct and not well manned.
Leader: Caterina Sforza (Gina McKee) and her family are openly against the Pope and his evil ways.
Army's Commander: Rufio (Thure Lindhardt) is Caterina's lackey who is in charge of building the Sforza alliances.
Allies: 1. Wealthy Families of Rome who hate the Borgias: Last week, Caterina assigned Rufio to start aligning the sons of Rome's prominent families to help her take down the Pope. The division was clearly shown at Lucrezia's wedding during Episode 2.2. King of Naples: Lucrezia's union with Alfonso was supposed to mean that Rome and Naples would be united, but because Lucrezia refused to part with her illegitimate son when she moved to Naples, Alfonso's uncle (the King of Naples) decided to pledge his allegiance to Caterina.
Lost Allies:1. Cardinal Orsini (David Dencik): After the Pope stripped him of his title, Orsini asked for a final confession. During this confession, he tried to kill the Pope. Instead, the Pope took out Orsini.
Key Tactics and Advantages:1. Create allies with all the forces in Rome that hate the Pope.2. By creating these alliances, it's clear that Caterina will have a larger and more dedicated army as opposed to the depleted papal forces.
Disadvantages:1. The Borgias never seem to die.
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
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Amy Brookheimer is going to have to take a break from helping Vice President Selena Meyer clean up all her messes because, well, she has a baby on the way. Okay, kind of... Anna Chlumsky, the actress who stars as Amy on the hit HBO comedic series, Veep, is expecting her first child with her husband Shaun Sho.
"I’m feeling pretty good so far," Chlumsky, 32, tells People. "I was really lucky — I did not have any morning sickness which was great because I was working."
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Chlumsky just finished wrapping the second season of Veep, and is getting ready to be a mother. The couple is "working on getting the nursery ready," she says. And, "I’m being judicious with which books I read because I don’t want to get overwhelmed. Most of the books have to do with how to have a worry-free pregnancy and keep the anxiety down."
Unfortunately, Chlumsky fans are going to have to wait and see if she has a little My Girl or not as Chlumsky and her husband — who tied the know in 2008 — have decided to keep the baby's gender a secret for now.
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
[Photo Credit: Joseph Marzullo/Wenn]
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Forget actors for once. Sunday night marked the night of awards season when we got to focus on the best musical artists of the year. That's right — it was the 55th annual Grammy Awards! And it was one hell of a show. From Adele to Mumford & Sons to Frank Ocean, the best of the best in the industry walked away with awards.
Check out the full list of winners below!
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Winners Announced Live:
1. Best Pop Solo Performance: "Set Fire To The Rain [Live]," Track from: Live At The Royal Albert Hall, Adele
2. Best Country Solo Performance: "Blown Away," Track from: Blown Away, Carrie Underwood
3. Song Of The Year: "We Are Young," Track from: Some Nights, Jack Antonoff, Jeff Bhasker, Andrew Dost, and Nate Ruess, songwriters (Fun. Featuring Janelle Monáe)
4. Best Urban Contemporary Album: Channel Orange, Frank Ocean
5. Best Rock Performance: "Lonely Boy," Track from: El Camino, The Black Keys
6. Best Pop Vocal Album: Stronger, Kelly Clarkson
7. Best Rap/Sung Collabortion: "No Church In The Wild," Track from: Watch The Throne, Jay-Z and Kanye West Featuring Frank Ocean and The-Dream
8. Best Country Album: Uncaged, Zac Brown Band
9. Best New Artist: fun.
10. Record Of The Year: "Somebody That I Used To Know," Track from: Making Mirrors, Gotye Featuring Kimbra
11. Album Of The Year: Babel, Mumford & Sons
1. Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: Gotye Featuring Kimbra, Track from: Making Mirrors
2. Best Pop Instrumental Album: Impressions, Chris Botti
3. Best Dance Recording: "Bangarang," Track from: Bangarang, Skrillrex Featuring Sirah
4. Best Dance/Electric Album: Bangarang, Skrillex
5. Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Kisses On The Bottom, Paul McCartney
6. Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance: "Love Bites (So Do I)," Track from: The Strange Case Of..., Halestorm
7. Best Rock Song: "Lonely Boy," Track from: El Camino, Dan Auerbach, Brian Burton, and Patrick Carney, songwriters (The Black Keys)
8. Best Rock Album: El Camino, The Black Keys
9. Best Alternative Music Album: Making Mirrors, Gotye
10. Best R&B Performance: "Climax," Track from: Looking 4 Myself, Usher
11. Best Traditional R&B Performance: "Love On Top," Track from: 4, Beyonce
12. Best R&B Song: "Adorn," Miguel Pimentel
13. Best R&B Album: Black Radio, Robert Glasper Experiment
14. Best Rap Performance: "N****s In Paris," Track from: Watch The Throne, Jay-Z and Kanye West
15. Best Rap Song: "N****s In Paris," Track from: Watch The Throne, Shawn Carter, Mike Dean, Chauncey Hollis, and Kanye West, songwriters (W.A. Donaldson, songwriter) (Jay-Z & Kanye West)
16. Best Rap Album: Take Care, Drake
17. Best Country Duo/Group Performance: "Pontoon," Little Big Town
18. Best Country Song: "Blown Away," Blown Away, Josh Kear and Chris Tompkins, songwriters (Carrie Underwood)
19. Best New Age Album: Echoes Of Love, Omar Akram
20. Best Improvised Jazz Solo: "Hot House," Track from: Hot House, Gary Burton and Chick Corea
21. Best Jazz Vocal Album: Radio Music Society, Esperanza Spalding
22. Best Jazz Instrumental Album: Unity Band, Pat Metheny Unity Band
23. Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album: Dear Diz (Everyday I Think Of You), Arturo Sandoval
24. Best Latin Jazz Album: ¡Ritmo!, The Clare Fischer Latin Jazz Big Band
25. Best Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance: "10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord," Track from: 10,000 Reasons, Matt Redman
26. Best Gospel Song: "Go Get It," Erica Campbell, Tina Campbell, and Warryn Campbell, songwriters (Mary Mary)
27. Best Contemporary Christian Music Song: "10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)," Track from: 10,000 Reasons, Jonas Myrin and Matt Redman, songwriters (Matt Redman)
28. Best Gospel Album: Gravity, Lecrae
29. Best Contemporary Christian Music Album: Eye On It, TobyMac
30. Best Latin Pop Album: MTV Unplugged Deluxe Edition, Juanes
31. Best Latin Album, Urban Or Alternative Album: Imaginaries, Quetzal
32. Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano): Pecados Y Milagros, Lila Downs
33. Best Tropical Latin Album: Retro, Marlow Rosado Y La Riquena
34. Best Americana Album: Slipstream, Bonnie Raitt
35. Best Bluegrass Album: Nobody Knows You, Steep Canyon Rangers
36. Best Blues Album: Locked Down, Dr. John
37. Best Folk Album: The Goat Rodeo Sessions, Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer, and Chris Thile
38. Best Regional Roots Music Album: The Band Courtbouillon, Wayne Toups, Steve Riley, and Wilson Savoy
39. Best Reggae Album: Rebirth, Jimmy Cliff
40. Best World Music Album: The Living Room Sessions Part 1, Ravi Shankar
41. Best Children's Album: Can You Canoe?, The Okee Dokee Brothers
42. Best Spoken World Album: Society's Child: My Autobiography, Janis Ian
43. Best Comedy Album: Blow Your Pants Off, Jimmy Fallon
44. Best Musical Theater Album: Once: A New Musical, Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti, principal soloists; Steven Epstein and Martin Lowe, producers (Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova, composers/lyricists) (Original Broadway Cast With Steve Kazee, Cristin Milioti, and Others)
45. Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media: Midnight In Paris, Various Artists
46. Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross, composers
47. Best Song Written For Visual Media: Safe & Sound (From The Hunger Games), T Bone Burnett, Taylor Swift, John Paul White, and Joy Williams, songwriters (Taylor Swift Featuring The Civil Wars)
48. Best Instrumental Composition: "Mozart Goes Dancing," Track from: Hot House, Chick Corea
49. Best Instrumental Arrangement: "How About You," Track from: Centennial - Newly Discovered Works Of Gil Evans, Gil Evans, arranger (Gil Evans Project)
50. Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s): "City Of Roses," Track from: Radio Music Society, Thara Memory and Esperanza Spalding, arrangers (Esperanza Spalding)
51. Best Recording Package: Biophilia, Michael Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak, art directors (Björk)
52. Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package: Woody At 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Collection, Fritz Klaetke, art director (Woody Guthrie)
53. Best Album Notes: Singular Genius: The Complete ABC Singles, Billy Vera, album notes writer (Ray Charles)
54. Best Historical Album: The Smile Sessions (Deluxe Box Set), Alan Boyd, Mark Linett, Brian Wilson, and Dennis Wolfe, compilation producers; Mark Linett, mastering engineer (The Beach Boys)
55. Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical: The Goat Rodeo Sessions, Richard King, engineer; Richard King, mastering engineer (Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer & Chris Thile)
56. Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical: Dan Auerbach, El Camino (The Black Keys), Locked Down (Dr. John), Savage (Hacienda), Shakedown (Hacienda)
57. Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical: "Promises (Skrillex & Nero Remix)," Skrillex, remixer (Nero), Joseph Ray, Skrillex, and Daniel Stephens, remixers
58. Best Surround Soung Album: Modern Cool, Jim Anderson, surround mix engineer; Darcy Proper, surround mastering engineer; Michael Friedman, surround producer (Patricia Barber)
59. Best Engineered Album, Classical: Life & Breath - Choral Works By René Clausen, Tom Caulfield and John Newton, engineers; Mark Donahue, mastering engineer (Charles Bruffy and Kansas City Chorale)
60. Producer Of The Year: Blanton Alspaugh, Chamber Symphonies (Gregory Wolynec & Gateway Chamber Orchestra), Davis: Río De Sangre (Joseph Rescigno, Vale Rideout, Ava Pine, John Duykers, Kerry Walsh, Guido LeBron, The Florentine Opera Company & Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra), Gjeilo: Northern Lights (Charles Bruffy & Phoenix Chorale), In Paradisum (Brian A. Schmidt & South Dakota Chorale), Life & Breath - Choral Works By René Clausen (Charles Bruffy & Kansas City Chorale), Music For A Time Of War (Carlos Kalmar & The Oregon Symphony, Musto: The Inspector (Glen Cortese & Wolf Trap Opera Company)
61. Best Orchestral Performance: "Adams: Harmonielehre & Short Ride In A Fast Machine," Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor (San Francisco Symphony)
62. Best Opera Recording: "Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen," James Levine and Fabio Luisi, conductors; Hans-Peter König, Jay Hunter Morris, Bryn Terfel and Deborah Voigt; Jay David Saks, producer (The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra; The Metropolitan Opera Chorus)
63. Best Choral Performance: "Life & Breath - Choral Works By René Clausen," Charles Bruffy, conductor (Matthew Gladden, Lindsey Lang, Rebecca Lloyd, Sarah Tannehill, and Pamela Williamson; Kansas City Chorale)
64. Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance: "Meanwhile," Eighth Blackbird
65. Best Classical Instrumental Solo: "Kurtág & Ligeti: Music For Viola," Kim Kashkashian
66. Best Classical Vocal Solo: "Poèmes," Renée Fleming (Alan Gilbert and Seiji Ozawa; Orchestre National De France & Orchestre Philharmonique De Radio France)
67. Best Classical Compendium: "Penderecki: Fonogrammi; Horn Concerto; Partita; The Awakening Of Jacob; Anaklasis," Antoni Wit, conductor; Aleksandra Nagórko and Andrzej Sasin, producers
68. Best Contemporary Classical Composition: "Hartke, Stephen: Meanwhile - Incidental Music To Imaginary Puppet Plays," Track from: Meanwhile, Stephen Hartke, composer (Eighth Blackbird)
69. Best Short Form Music Video: "We Found Love," Rihanna Featuring Calvin Harris
70. Best Long Form Music Video: "Big Easy Express," Mumford & Sons
Follow Lindsey on Twitter @LDiMat.
[Photo Credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]
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Americans went to the movies this weekend, handing out over $43 million worth of presidential pictures to see three new high profile films.
Driven by strong openings for 20th Century Fox and Regency Enterprises' Don't Say A Word, Paramount's Zoolander and Castle Rock and Warner Bros.' Hearts In Atlantis, ticket sales for key films soared about 34 percent over the previous weekend when no high profile films arrived.
Key films--those grossing $500,000 or more for the weekend--were up a healthy 24 percent versus the comparable weekend last year.
Insiders looking at Hollywood's advance radar screen had anticipated lively business this weekend thanks to the three major new arrivals, but they expected the youth appeal comedy Zoolander to finish first.
The inside word had been that Word's plot about a young child falling into the hands of some nasty kidnappers would hurt its ticket sales because adult women find such stories too frightening and audiences in general might not want to see a brutal gang of kidnappers in action so soon after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Clearly, moviegoers responded to Fox's strong marketing campaign for Word and to the Kopelson Entertainment production, itself. Word's word of mouth over the weekend was strong with the film's gross jumping about 29 percent from Friday to Saturday.
The weekend's other wide opening, Hearts, had been expected to do well, but not to open as strong as Zoolander because its primary appeal is to adults, who typically take longer than teens to make the time to see new movies.
THE TOP TEN
20th Century Fox's opening of Regency Enterprises and Village Roadshow Pictures' R rated edge-of-your-seat thriller Don't Say A Word easily captured first place with a sizzling ESTIMATED $18.0 million at 2,803 theaters ($6,422 per theater).
Word's average per theater was the highest for any film playing in wide release this weekend.
Directed by Gary Fleder and produced by Arnon Milchan, Arnold Kopelson and Anne Kopelson, Word stars Michael Douglas.
"I am really delighted," Fox distribution president Bruce Snyder said Sunday morning. "I was looking at $15 million and I would have been happy. $18 million is wonderful! What a weekend. Zoolander was great. Hearts In Atlantis is strong. Everything is very solid."
Snyder agreed that it appeared that Americans decided to go to the movies this weekend. "That's what it does look like," he said. "And I think it was about quality more than anything else."
Focusing on Word's weekend, Snyder pointed out, "It had a nice pop from Friday to Saturday. It was a strong Friday. We opened to $5.93 million. We've got Saturday at $7.47 million, up 26 percent. That's very nice for a big opener. Zoolander did the same (sort of increase), by the way. People are going back to the movies."
As for those who speculated that this was the wrong time to release an intense thriller like Word, Snyder observed, "I think quality won out in the end. I was concerned about all of those things that you just mentioned. I didn't know how it would play out and I am delighted to see that the American public said, 'We're going back to our lives.' And it's not just in Don't Say A Word, it's in the business being up (based on Fox's Sunday morning estimates) 20 percent from last year against a $20 million-plus opener (last year) in Remember the Titans. To have this going on is terrific. The public is saying, 'We're going to lead our lives.' If this is an indication of that, then that's wonderful for the country."
Of course, the fact that Word works as well as it does is an important factor in its success. "Quality came out," Snyder said. "I think it's definitely a good movie. I think Zoolander is something that people wanted to see to have laughs with. And I think quality also (was a factor with) Hearts In Atlantis. All three pictures seemed to find their own niche. But, first and foremost, I think Don't Say A Word is about quality. It's a tough subject matter."
Asked about Fox's exit polls, Snyder replied, "34 percent excellent and 41 percent very good overall. That's real solid--75 percent in the Top Two Boxes. Women under 25 seem to be the strongest audience for the picture. They were 85 percent in the Top Two Boxes and (accounted for) a quarter of the audience, which was a little bit surprising to me. I thought it might play a little older than that and it didn't. They (under-25 females) were 25 percent of the audience. So it played to everybody. A broad audience and young.
"What it says is Michael Douglas is still a movie star. At the end of the day, when we did what we did in the smallish towns I kept looking at those and going, 'Well, they're really good.' I think that is (because) he's a movie star."
Paramount and Village Roadshow Pictures' PG-13 youth appeal comedy Zoolander kicked off strongly in second place, laughing all the way to the bank with an ESTIMATED $15.7 million at 2,507 theaters ($6,262 per theater).
Directed by and starring Ben Stiller, it was produced by Scott Rudin, Ben Stiller and Stuart Cornfeld.
"Obviously, we're pleased with it," Paramount distribution president Wayne Lewellen said Sunday morning.
"We'd have liked to have been number one, but Don't Say A Word did better than we thought it was going to do. What we found was that our strength was in the bigger markets and their picture seemed to play better in smaller towns. I think that's probably where the difference is."
Reflecting on the upswing in ticket sales this weekend, Lewellen noted, "The market is up overall over last year 15-20 percent (depending on how you calculate comparisons). I think there was a lot of concern particularly with Don't Say A Word with the genre picture that it was--you know, a child in jeopardy--and would people want to go see that (in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks)."
The big jump for key films at the box office, he said, "is the result of the overall product, too--with Hardball holding well, The Others and so forth. I think people were sort of ready to go back to the theaters."
Warner Bros.' release of Castle Rock Entertainment's PG-13 rated drama Hearts In Atlantis opened solidly in third place to a hearty ESTIMATED $9.53 million at 1,751 theaters ($5,440 per theater).
Directed by Scott Hicks (Shine), it stars Anthony Hopkins.
"We're very pleased with that opening," Warner Bros. Distribution president Dan Fellman said Sunday morning. "It's an extremely competitive weekend. The box office was up (based on Warners' Sunday morning estimates) 20 percent over last year and about 35 percent over last week. We had two movies open extremely wide against us. I think we held our own. We had the largest percentage increase for Saturday over Friday of any (new) movie. I'm anticipating a strong Sunday and I expect this film to hold well in the marketplace. Word of mouth is good. Our audience reactions are excellent. So we're in pretty good shape right now."
Asked if Warners will go wider with Hearts, Fellman replied, "We're going to add a few hundred screens. I don't know many (yet, but) probably a couple of hundred this week."
For the most part, Hearts received favorable reviews. One glaring exception to that was a New York Times review last Friday that ripped the film to shreds. "The New York Times (review) was outrageous," Fellman said. "But, you know, nationally we were up 37 percent on Saturday night over Friday. In New York, the whole market was up 67 percent over Friday. Word of mouth took over in New York. We really did have very favorable reviews overall. We just got beat up pretty bad by the Times, which I thought was going to hurt us more. It hurt us on Friday night in New York. Then Saturday we just jumped right back. Friday we did $2.875 million and Saturday we did $3.95 million. I'm looking for a good Sunday (and am estimating) $3.27 million."
Asked who was there opening weekend, Fellman replied, "About 75 percent of the audience was over 25. It was very similar to our sneaks (the previous weekend)--about 55 percent female and 45 percent male."
Paramount's PG-13 rated urban appeal drama-comedy Hardball slid three pegs to fourth place in its third week with an okay ESTIMATED $5.2 million (-35%) at 2,218 theaters (+8 theaters; $2,344 per theater). Its cume is approximately $26.3 million, heading for $40 million.
Directed by Brian Robbins, it stars Keanu Reeves.
Dimension Films' hit PG-13 thriller The Others fell three rungs to fifth place in its eighth week, continuing to hold very well with an ESTIMATED $5.1 million (+1%) at 2,724 theaters (-77 theaters; $1,872 per theater). Others, which cost only $17 million to make, has a cume of approximately $87.0 million, heading for $100 million in domestic theaters.
Directed by Alejandro Amenabar, it stars Nicole Kidman.
"It's really surprised a lot of people just in terms of its word of mouth potential," David Kaminow, senior vice president, marketing for Dimension's parent company Miramax, said Sunday morning. "Audiences just keep coming back to it. It's obviously a very satisfying experience. It's held in the Top Five ever since it opened.
"The fact that audiences are loving it means it's obviously going to be a very profitable picture for us, having cost just $17 million to make--which is always a nice return on your investment."
New Line Cinema's PG-13 rated action comedy blockbuster sequel Rush Hour 2 slipped one notch to sixth place in its ninth week with an okay ESTIMATED $2.68 million (-24%) at 2,086 theaters (-43 theaters; $1,282 per theater). Its cume is approximately $219.4 million, heading for $225 million in domestic theaters.
Directed by Brett Ratner, it stars Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker.
Columbia's PG-13 rated suspense thriller The Glass House dropped four pegs to seventh place in its third week with a quiet ESTIMATED $2.1 million (-53%) at 1,601 theaters (+10 theaters; $1,290 per theater). Its cume is approximately $15.0 million, heading for $20 million.
Directed by Daniel Sackheim, it stars Leelee Sobieski, Diane Lane and Stellan Skarsgard.
Paramount's PG-13 comedy Rat Race fell one rung to eighth place in its seventh week with a slower ESTIMATED $1.76 million (-40%) at 2,024 theaters (-393 theaters; $867 per theater). Its cume is approximately $54.1 million, heading for $57-60 million.
Directed by Jerry Zucker, it stars Rowan Atkinson, John Cleese, Whoopi Goldberg, Cuba Gooding, Jr., Seth Green, Jon Lovitz, Breckin Meyer and Amy Smart.
Universal and Miramax's PG-13 rated action adventure acquisition The Musketeer dropped five pegs to ninth place in its fourth week with a less lively ESTIMATED $1.74 million (-51%) at 2,367 theaters (-133 theaters; $735 per theater). Musketeer, which Universal picked up for North America for only about $3.75 million, has a cume of approximately $25.5 million, heading for $30 million in domestic theaters.
Directed by Peter Hyams, it stars Catherine Deneuve, Mena Suvari, Stephen Rea, Tim Roth and Justin Chambers.
Rounding out the Top Ten was Sony's Screen Gems label's R rated urban appeal romantic comedy Two Can Play That Game, which was sixth last week, with a less engaging ESTIMATED $1.6 million (-50%) at 1,188 theaters (+11 theaters; $1,347 per theater). Made for only $6 million, its cume is approximately $20.6 million, heading for the mid-$20 millions in domestic theaters.
Written and directed by Mark Brown, it stars Vivica Fox and Anthony Anderson.
This weekend also saw the arrival of Providence Entertainment's PG rated action film ExtremeDays to a soft ESTIMATED $0.5 million at 351 theaters ($1,425 per theater).
Directed by Eric Hannah, it stars Dante Brasco.
MGM's release of United Artists' R rated romantic comedy Born Romantic opened quietly to an ESTIMATED $9,000 at 7 theaters ($1,295 per theater).
Directed by Michele Camarda, it stars Craig Ferguson, Ian Hart, Jane Horrocks, Adrian Lester, Catherine McCormack, Jimi Mistry, David Morrissey and Olivia Williams.
This weekend saw Miramax hold 1,250 well attended sneak previews Friday and Saturday night of its PG-13 rated romantic comedy Serendipity. The sneaks were held at theaters playing The Others.
Directed by Peter Chelsom, it stars John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale.
"They were extremely successful and we're just over the moon this morning," Miramax senior vice president, marketing David Kaminow, said Sunday morning. "We had a national average capacity of 80-90 percent. We had sell-outs in almost every single market and in some markets multiple sell-outs. I'm not just talking about New York or L.A. type markets. We had sell-outs in places like Franklin, Tennessee and Omaha, Nebraska and Birmingham, Alabama.
"So the movie played really, really deep, which is very exciting for us--to have the movie play as broadly as it did and get the reach of an audience that deep both on Friday and Saturday night. We know that the film is (its own) best friend. We love to show the movie to audiences because we know they're going to love it and get the word of mouth out there."
Asked about the film's audience, Kaminow replied, "Demographically we were about 60 percent female and 40 percent male, about 40 percent under 25. Our exit surveys--the ones that we've gotten back (as of early Sunday morning) from six or seven markets--on average we're looking at 80-90 percent in the Top Two Boxes (excellent and very good) and a 70s percent (range) definite recommend. So we feel we're in a great position (to open) this weekend.
"We're really the only romantic comedy in the marketplace right now. It is the perfect movie for the current climate of the country. You go and you feel good. It's 90 minutes of romance and humor. I think one of the things that also made the sneaks successful was getting the idea out there that it's not just John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale, who are of course wonderful actors and performers in their own right, but letting people know that we have Jeremy Piven and Molly Shannon and Eugene Levy in the cast for the comedy aspect of the film that might help it skew a little younger and a little more male, not just for women. So we got that message out there I'd say in the past week to 10 days to let everyone know that they were in the movie, as well. I think it's shaping up to, hopefully, be a big hit this weekend."
Serendipity opens Friday (Oct. 5) at between 2,200 and 2,400 theaters.
There was no significant action on the expansion front this weekend.
Universal International reported Sunday morning that its American Pie 2 opened last Thursday to record breaking first place grosses in Germany. The film's $5.9 million gross for Thursday through Saturday was the market's biggest opening weekend of the year and also included the year's biggest opening day. Universal said Pie 2's opening was 4 percent bigger than Pearl Harbor, 17 percent ahead of Hannibal, 23 percent bigger than The Mummy Returns, 31 percent larger than Jurassic Park III and 58 percent better than Planet Of The Apes.
Pie 2's opening in Austria also saw it hit first place with a very strong Friday-Saturday gross of about $555,000.
Universal's The Fast and the Furious kicked off in France, opening there in first place last Wednesday. The studio said grosses for the weekend would not be known until Monday. The picture began its release in Southeast Asia this weekend, opening in Singapore to a solid $170,000 at 29 screens. In Australia, Fast grossed $645,000 for its second weekend, bringing its cume there to $3 million.
In other territories, Fast took in $722,000 in the U.K. for Friday-Saturday, raising its cume after three weeks to $6.6 million. In Mexico, in its fourth week its two-day gross was $130,000 and its cume is $3 million.
Universal said Fast's international cume is now $18 million with 30 countries still to open. Domestically, the picture has done about $143.8 million through this weekend.
Universal also reported continuing strength for its release of Bridget Jones's Diary, which it co-financed with Miramax (which released it domestically). In its sixth weekend in Germany, Bridget ranked second (after Pie 2) with $420,000 for two days and a cume of $15.5 million. It opened in Japan to a very strong six day cume of $4.2 million, ranking second to the local Japanese hit Spirited Away.
Universal said Bridget's international cume is now an impressive $143 million with 10 countries still to open. Domestically via Miramax Bridget grossed a solid $71.5 million.
Key films--those grossing more than $500,000--took in approximately $71.08 million, up about 24.04 per cent from the comparable weekend last year when key films grossed $57.3 million.
This weekend's key film gross was up about 34.11 percent from last weekend of this year, when key films took in approximately $53.0 million.
Last year, Buena Vista's opening week of Remember the Titans was first with $20.91 million at 1,865 theaters ($11,210 per theater); and Warner Bros.' second week of its reissue of The Exorcist was second with $7.21 million at 1,150 theaters ($6,266 per theater). The top two films one year ago grossed $28.1 million. This year, the top two films grossed an ESTIMATED $33.7 million.