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Escape Plan, the movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, remained stuck in prison, only raking in a measly $9.8 million in its opening weekend. Both actors probably used that for a weekend getaway in their heyday. But now, it just seems to show that the moviegoing public has had enough of these two former legends.
Let's face it: both Stallone and Schwarzenegger are in their mid-60s and we seem to be asking ourselves if we want to see these guys pummel each other and run around trying to be action heroes. If we wanted to watch old guys duel, we'd pop Grumpy Old Men into our DVD player. Chances would be higher of one of those guys possibly hurting themselves trying to throw a punch than actually landing one. Actually, both guys are in good enough shape to break my face with one punch, so let's just forget I said that...
Sure, Stallone can still get people to see movies that he's in, but only if he's playing the part of someone he first made much more iconic when he was younger: Rocky Balboa and John Rambo. I don't think he'll be bringing Cobra out of retirement or making Demolition Man II, though. Arnie looks like he might be going to not just one well (Terminator and Conan), but will be in the Twins sequel as well (Triplets). In that case, some might argue that Danny DeVito is more famous now because of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.
The two of them are actually much better in ensemble movies, which is why everyone loves The Expendables franchise. They should get more comfortable in doing things like that, because the 1980s and '90s are long, long gone (which the gray hair on my head attests). But both of them have enormous egos and we may even see another Rocky and Conan movie decades from now: Rocky and Conan in Their Nursing Homes.
We'd rather see them blend into other movies instead of fading away from the failure to accept what is happening to them.
When a highly-anticipated and heavily advertised movie hits the theaters and bombs, it's got to create a truly unusual feeling for all involved. It would have been interesting to be a fly on the wall for the reactions of Benedict Cumberbatch upon his learning that The Fifth Estate averaged $969 per theater over the opening weekend.
"Wow. That's marvelous. $969 thousand per theater? Excellent start!""... No, Benedict. That's dollars. Just dollars. $969. Nine-hundred sixty-nine." "I need to go for a walk. A very long walk."
Seeing that made me think of five other recent and historically bad openings:
Machete Kills (2013)
This was not a good year for openings. It's a bit of a surprise, since it's packed to the gills with stars and people seemed to love the first one. It pulled in $3.8 milllon, which was spread out over 2,500 theaters. This equals -- and please bear in mind, I was never good at math -- not a lot. I just hope Danny Trejo's Machete doesn't track down the people who didn't see this movie.
The subject matter was awesome: Steve Jobs! But people just couldn't get past the fact that it was Ashton Kutcher in the role. The other problem was that the movie only focused on a narrow slice of his life, and there was so much to his whole story. It opened to $6.8 million. That may have been lower than the amount Kutcher makes per episode on Two And A Half Men. Dude, you got Punk'd at the theater!
It's Pat (1994)
This movie, based around a person of ambigious sexuality played by Julia Sweeney on a series of Saturday Night Live skits, had a very limited theater run, and it's a good thing: It got terrible reviews and supposedly earned only around $60,000 TOTAL. It was unambiguously yanked out of the theaters very quickly.
Major League: Back To the Minors (1998)
Audience members sent this film back to the bush leagues, paying only a little over $2 million in its opening weekend. Of course, with no Charlie Sheen and Scott Bakula taking over the lead role, the lack of interest is understandable. Bakula probably said in his best Quantum Leap voice, "Ohhhh boy..." when he saw the numbers.
The Oogieloves in Big Balloon Adventures (2012)
This was supposed to be from a popular kids' series, but a movie that looked like the Teletubbies on acid only raked in $443,000 in its opening weekend. I'm sure that cast members like Cary Elwes and Christopher Lloyd called Cumberbatch to tell them that it could have been a LOT worse.
Actor Danny Dyer decided to accept a role in longrunning British soap opera Eastenders over fears his career had become a joke following a string of film flops. The Business star will join the beloved show at Christmas (13) after spending several years snubbing offers from BBC bosses to become a member of the cast.
Now he reveals his floundering film career pushed him to take the leap to the small screen, and he hopes he can turn his fortunes around like his idol Sir Michael Caine.
Dyer tells Britain's The Sun newspaper, "Back in the Eighties, Michael was known for making terrible films and now he's been knighted. I can hope!
"I did too many people favours (accepting film roles). I realised, 'F**king hell, I'm becoming a bit of a joke here.' I'm my own worst enemy. I don't blame anyone but myself."
Dyer's most recent big screen release, Run for Your Wife, which also features Ray Winstone and Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding, was deemed a massive failure after it earned just $963 (£602) from U.K. ticket sales in February (13).
Director Spike Lee is still keen to turn his hit film Do The Right Thing into a Broadway musical, but insists he will not appear on stage as he did in the movie. The filmmaker revealed last year he was in talks with theatre mogul and producer Sir James Nederlander and had big plans to take the cult 1989 movie, which earned him a Best Original Screenplay Oscar nod, to the stage.
Lee reveals he has started work on the project, but insists he will not be reprising his role as main character Mookie.
He tells U.S. breakfast show Good Morning America, "We might be doing a Broadway musical of Do The Right Thing. I'll just direct it. I'll write it and I'll direct it. I'm not in it, I'm too old to play Mookie."
The film, about racial tensions boiling over on a hot day in Brooklyn, New York, was written, produced and directed by Lee. It featured Danny Aiello, Samuel L. Jackson and Rosie Perez.
Actress Jessica Lowndes has split from her British beau Thom Evans, according to a U.K. report. The pair began dating after meeting in a coffee shop in Los Angeles earlier this year (13). Ironically, they were already linked through their exes - Lowndes has dated rugby star Danny Cipriani, who had a romance with Evans' former partner Kelly Brook.
However, after trying to balance a long distance romance with their careers, the couple has decided to call it a day.
A source tells Britain's Daily Mirror, "It was a mutual decision and Jessica and Thom have been on and off for quite a while now.
"Jessica works mostly in America while Thom's modelling work is in the U.K. They have realised it is totally unfeasible trying to maintain a relationship from different sides of The Pond."
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Only a week after Danny Boyle announced he would be shepharding a series to television, another filmmaker known for his eccentric visual style will be joining him. Tom Tykwer, of Cloud Atlas and Run Lola Run, will be adapting the Babylon Berlin series of novels to German television now that his next film has wrapped. Tykwer has been on a string of adaptations lately, from Cloud Atlas, to Dave Eggers' A Hologram for the King with Tom Hanks, and now to Babylon Berlin. The novels follow an Inspector who moves to Berlin in the 1920s, just in time to watch the rise of the Nazi party.
While the show obviously deals with difficult history, the overall move towards WWII will be slow, as the Inspector spends most of his time solving local crime as overall social and political changes happen around him. While there's more than enough detective procedurals out there, the regional and cultural specificity will hopefully distinguish Babylon Berlin from the pack. Tykwer's fellow producer, Stefan Arndt, hopes to imbue the series with a real sense of time and place: "We are aiming artistically and narratively for the top end of what is possible in German television [...] Berlin has such magnetic appeal internationally and so many people have been coming here in recent years that they want to see the city as it really was."
Now more than ever, there's exciting television happening overseas, and hopefully the series will quickly (and legally) make its way over to our shores before some American cable network announces a remake.
Shock rocker Marilyn Manson is set to put a creepy twist on U.S. fairy tale drama Once Upon A Time after signing up as an unlikely guest star. The Beautiful People hitmaker has agreed to lend his voice to the character of The Shadow in the third season.
In a statement to Rolling Stone magazine, creators Eddy Kitsis and Adam Horowitz write, "We've always been enormous fans of Marilyn Manson. We wanted to cast someone with the vocal ability to make our skin crawl."
The role will be Manson's second TV acting gig this year (13) - he recently shot a guest appearance on pal Danny McBride's U.S. comedy Eastbound & Down and unmasked his true identity on the small screen for the first time by appearing without his usual heavy white foundation and dark lipstick.
Actress Kaitlin Olson was recently hospitalised after injuring herself on the set of her hit TV comedy It'S Always Sunny In Philadelphia. Olson was filming a scene alongside her husband and co-creator of the series, Rob McElhenney, when she slipped and cut her leg open.
She says, "I got a big gash on my leg at work... we were shooting in this old abandoned warehouse, our characters are obsessed with Lethal Weapon, so this year we make Lethal Weapon 6.
"It was a scene between Rob, my husband, and myself, and I was playing a cop and Rob was playing (Roger) Murtaugh, who in the Lethal Weapon movies is played by Danny Glover... and I come running in and I'm supposed to stop and our first take I stop, and my leg goes through something and I'm on the ground and I look, and it's this metal grate that went in my leg. It was really bad, it sliced it open, so it was a 911 (emergency) situation."
However, paramedics who arrived on the scene were left confused as to where Olson was actually injured because the blood pack she was wearing for the shoot exploded and made it appear like she was bleeding from her stomach.
She continues, "They showed up and said, 'OK, what's the issue?' and I said, 'There's a giant hole in my leg, if you want to take a look at it, I don't want to look at it again.' They said, 'OK, well is there anything else?' I said, 'No... that's it,' and they said, 'Right, but is there anything else?' (I said), 'It's five inches long, you can see my bone, there doesn't need to be anything else, that's all there is.'
"So he said, 'What's going on with your stomach?' and I look down and I was wired with a blood pack... and it went off when I fell."
Shock rocker Marilyn Manson trashed a family hotel in North Carolina and left sex toys strewn around the room while shooting a cameo for TV comedy Eastbound & Down with pal Danny Mcbride. Funnyman McBride insists the Rock is Dead singer was the perfect gentleman on set and appeared to be enjoying his acting stint, so he was shocked when he received a call from the hotel's manager shortly after Manson checked out.
He says, "They were like, 'Manson trashed the room!' I was like, 'Really? That's odd'.
"The lady said there was a pizza on the ceiling, red liquid everywhere, there was broken glass and there were sex toys but she wouldn't describe exactly what they were."
McBride is convinced Manson felt the need to do something outrageous in his hotel room to make sure his hardcore image and bad reputation remained intact.
He adds, "He was so friendly and nice I was like, 'I wonder if there's a little element that he has to sort of portray that crazy edge?'
"I just imagine he was sitting in his hotel room reading his Kindle, catching up on Downton Abbey and check-out time comes and he pulls out all the Satan toys and destroys the room."
Bill Murray is in talks to join the cast of Cameron Crowe's new movie, according to TheWrap. If a deal is made, it would be the first time that Crowe and Murray have worked together.
The untitled comedy is rumored to be a re-working of a previous Crowe script, called Deep Tiki, about a defense contractor who has to oversee a satellite launch in Hawaii while dealing with his love life. Scott Rudin, who has worked with Murray on various Wes Anderson movies, is set to produce the film.
Other cast members include Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone, Rachel McAdams, Danny McBride, Alec Baldwin, and Jay Baruchel.
Sony plans to release the film sometime in 2014. For those of us who can't wait any longer for their next Murray-fix, Murray can be seen in the upcoming film The Monuments Men, which is set to hit theaters December 18.
More:Bradley Cooper in 'Guardians of the Galaxy?'Bill Murray Goes to Afghanistan in a Movie That Already Sounds TerrificGeorge Clooney, Matt Damon, Bill Murray & More Assemble for 'Monuments Men' Set Pic
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