Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures/Screen Gems
It was probably a shock to the producers of the new Carrie movie: raking in only $17 million in its first weekend. This under-performance could be seen as puzzling, since it's a horror movie and the timing of its release should have made for a prime debut, what with Halloween being very close. Then again, this result is not entirely a surprise either.
Probably the most glaring reason this movie didn't open so well is that there was no need for the film to be remade at all. Sissy Spacek's version was fantastic and it didn't require any update. The current filmmakers were likely hoping to catch a generation of people who hadn't seen the original. Very few remakes, especially in the horror movie genre do very well, generally, anyhow. There is something almost intangible that is captured in the original film that no amount of mimicking and usage of the same shots can replicate. This appears to be another textbook case here. Audiences certainly seemed to know that, so who wants to pay for the theater tickets when they can instead wait to see it on Netflix or Amazon?
Sure, Chloe Moretz and Julianne Moore are both good actresses, but had they wanted to make a horror movie, they could have done something different instead of essentially attempting to breath life into something already living. The new movie did its best, however with the added technology and social media helping drive Carrie into even more angry isolation - a nice touch - but ultimately, this was not a movie that needed to be reimagined.
As Halloween gets even closer, the numbers may go up some, but it will still likely be seen as a big disappointment. Hopefully it can be a lesson to Hollywood producers in creating new ideas - not rehashing and reheating old ones, leaving them well enough alone.
British sculptor Sir Anthony Caro has died at the age of 89. The artist's family confirm he passed away after suffering a heart attack on Wednesday (23Oct13).
Caro abandoned his figurative work and started making large, modernist sculptures after working as an assistant to Henry Moore in the 1950s.
Widely regarded as the greatest british sculptor of his generation, he was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 1969 and was awarded a Knighthood in 1987 and an Order Of Merit (OM) in 2000. He won a number of artistic prizes during his career including 2008's Jack Goldhill Award for Sculpture, a $15,000 (£10,000) prize for 'an outstanding piece of sculpture'.
Caro had vowed to keep working until he was aged 100 and unveiled his latest exhibition at London's Gagosian Gallery in June (13).
Stars including Trace Adkins, Natalie Cole, Martina Mcbride and Don Was are set to salute veteran rocker Gregg Allman at a special tribute concert in Atlanta, Georgia next year (14). Train frontman Pat Monahan, Jackson Browne, Warren Haynes, John Hiatt, Sam Moore, Eric Church, Widespread Panic and the 65-year-old star's own The Allman Brothers Band will also perform in his honour at the All My Friends: Celebrating the Songs & Voice of Gregg Allman event.
Don Was and Haynes will serve as co-musical directors of the Fox Theatre concert, which will feature unique collaborations and surprise guests for one night only on 10 January (14).
Show organiser and producer Keith Wortman says, "I am honoured and humbled to produce a multi-media event of this magnitude."
Hollywood actress Julianne Moore hates watching her own movies. The Hunger Games star has revealed that she would much rather act in films without needing to examine the end result, and she avoids watching her work as much as possible.
She tells Britain's Daily Express newspaper, "I haven't seen any of my own movies... I can't sit there for a premiere or anything. I like being in the movie more than I like watching them. That's my big thrill, rather than seeing the finished product."
Darren Aronofsky is known for creating cinematic masterpieces such as his 2010 Oscar winning film, Black Swan. However, it looks like Aronofsky's latest venture, the biblical epic Noah, is doomed to fail. According to The Hollywood Reporter, screenings of the film have been met with generally unfavorable reactions, and now Paramount and New Regency (who are splitting the costs) are pressuring him to make changes. Aronofsky, who doesn't typically work with big studios, is refusing to make those changes, and is standing by the film he originally shot. In fact, THR spoke with a talent rep close to the project who said, "Darren is not made for studio films. He is very dismissive. He doesn't care about Paramount's opinion."
Unfortunately for Aronofsky, the director will most likely have to make a few changes since the studios have already invested at least $125 million in the project. Many are claiming the movie is facing these critical reactions due to an overuse of CGI effects. While the film obviously had to use these effects for the flood, Aronofsky also decided to use them for the animals as well, cutting out the use of real animals all together. He even altered some of them to create more fantastical creatures, making the film look unrealistic.
Other worries are plaguing the studios as Aronofsky is also receiving backlash from Christians who were offended by Aronofsky calling Noah "the first environmentalist." Among his critics is the Christian screenwriter Brian Godawa, who called the script "an uninteresting and unbiblical waste of $150 million that will ruin for decades the possibility of making a really great and entertaining movie …. This movie will be rejected by millions of devoted Bible readers worldwide because once again it subverts their own sacred narrative with a political agenda of pagan Earth religion that is offensive to their faith.”
While these rumors swirl, Paramount Vice Chairman Rob Moore says the film is going through the "normal preview process" which "…Darren is overseeing." Moore also explained that the studio "allowed for a very long post-production period, which allowed for a lot of test screenings.”
A spokesman for Aronofsky also commented; "This is a long and collaborative process, and Darren and the studio are working together to make the best version of his movie that they can. To comment on anonymous quotes only gives time and space to false rumors and gossip.”
Whether the film turns out to be an entertaining epic or a big-budget disaster, we'll have to wait and see. Noah, starring Russell Crowe, Anthony Hopkins, Emma Watson and Jennifer Connelly is set to be released March 28, 2014.
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Chloe Grace Moretz's mother found it difficult to watch the abuse suffered by her daughter's character in horror remake Carrie. Moretz plays the title character in the new version of the classic 1976 horror film, and the shy schoolgirl is not only bullied by her classmates but also smothered by her overbearing mum.
The actress' own mother insists she is nothing like Carrie's but admits she found it "difficult" to watch some of the scenes, branding them "psychologically disturbing".
Terri Moretz tells ABC's Nightline, "There are moments that you're like, 'Ooh, I can't watch,' but it's just so beautifully done. I saw the original one, and this one is really beautiful, but it's psychologically disturbing."
Hollywood actor Ewan Mcgregor is set to host a moneyspinning event for the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to raise cash for youngsters in Syria. The actor will be teaming up with stars including singer Robbie Williams, actor Sir Roger Moore, and model Claudia Schiffer for The Halloween Ball, an invitation-only event with a spooky twist.
The Moulin Rouge! star, who has supported UNICEF since 2004, insists the ball will play an important role in raising funds to provide essential supplies for children suffering in the war-torn country.
In an interview with Harper's Bazaar, he says, "As it stands today, there are more than one million child refugees and more than three million children needing urgent help inside Syria; the situation for them is critical. UNICEF is working day and night to provide clean water, vaccinations, education, and psychological support to those children.
"Once again, I find myself in absolute admiration hearing about incredibly courageous individuals, putting their lives at risk to help save the lives of children. However, the essential supplies are running low; the Halloween Ball will play a very important role in raising the vital missing funds UNICEF needs, and only with that support will UNICEF have a good chance of reaching every child."
The star has also taken to Twitter.com to share his excitement over the event, writing, "Looking forward to UNICEF U.K. Halloween Ball for Syria's children."
The ball will take place in London location on 31 October (13).
A mask worn by actor Clayton Moore when he played the Lone Ranger onscreen is to go up for auction. The eye covering was worn by the Wild West hero character during the TV show's heyday in the 1950s and was kept by the actor until his death in 1999.
Moore played the show's hero from its inception in 1949 until 1951, when he left over a pay dispute. He returned to the role in 1954 and remained until the programme ended in 1957.
The iconic piece of memorabilia is expected to fetch $60,000 (£40,000) when it is sold by Julien's Auctions in Los Angeles on 10 November (13).
Punk veteran Siouxsie Sioux has added her name to the list of celebrities urging bosses at a top British department store to stop selling foie gras. Fortnum & Mason chiefs are under increasing pressure to pull the product from its shelves following a People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) campaign backed by celebrities including Sir Roger Moore, Morrissey and Ralph Fiennes.
The Siouxsie and the Banshees frontwoman has penned a letter to the store's CEO Ewan Venters urging him to follow other leading department stores and abandon the controversial pate.
She writes, "Music, fashion and taste evolve. Other iconic British shops such as Selfridges and Harvey Nichols have listened to their customers and now realise that selling foie gras is a faux pas. So please Mr Venters, get with the times and take this vile product off your shelves."
Brian De Palma's adaptation of Carrie ranks as one of the best film versions of a Steven King story. But while the 1976 version created some fantastic moments of cinema history (the splitscreens, the slow motion, everything Piper Laurie) the remake coming out at the end of this week still has plenty of untouched source material to work with. Here are afew suggestions of things that director Kimberly Piece hopefully considered adding to her version of the high school horror tale.
1. Actual Teenagers: While Sissy Spacek's performance was perfect for De Palma's heightened, surreal atmosphere (and even earned her an Oscar nomination), if the new Carrie is looking to be more faithful to the book, one thing they can do is cast actual teenagers. Chloe Grace Moretz is actually 16, so we're off to a good start.
2. "Flexing:" Much is made in the book of how hard Carrie has to work to channel her powers. She practices every night, slowly working her way up to moving heavier, bigger things, until she can flip cars with ease. That's what makes the climax so terrifying — she's making the conscious choice to torture everyone, and since this new films looks to be more of a horror and less of a suspenseful drama, anything that makes Carrie White more evil in the final act is a good idea. This also adds to the whole arc of the story: Carrie is a put-upon girl who would have been able to be accepted if only people had listened and gotten out of her way.
3. People Vote for Carrie: In the 1976 film version, the evil girl Chris replaces all of the actual Prom King and Queen votes with ones for Carrie. In the book, sure, Chris is scheming, but the student body also just seems to get on board with Carrie, who actually proves herself at the prom and has a good time joking and hanging out. It makes the ending that much better, and this a story where everything is in the ending, right?
4. Childhood: One mistake audiences often make is that Carrie's powers are activated in the beginning of the movie. Instead, she's had them since childhood, and her mother's control actually stems equally from fear that they will return. The book has a fantastic story, told from the perspective of a neighbor, about a four-year-old Carrie bringing a rain of stones down on the house after her mother punishes her.
5. They Are Going to Laugh At You: In the 1976 version, Carrie just imagines the prom guests laughing at her, but in the book, such is that they can't help themselves and really do. Because, if we're being honest, high school is really, really embarrassing and awkward. And Chris is, in the end, pulling a prank. A cruel prank, but still. The slowly mounting horror is even better when offset because the characters just can't help but laugh... until it's too late.
6. Sue At Home: There's probably not much time in a feature film for nicest-of-the-mean-girls Sue's entire arc, which includes worries about college, a pregnancy scare, and falling in love with Brad (the sap who ends up taking Carrie to prom). But in the book, the only reason she isn't murdered by Carrie is that she chooses to stay home from the prom, giving us a window into what's happening in the rest of the town. Which leads to —
7. Get Rid of the Whole Damn Town: In the novel, the carnage goes far beyond just the school gymnasium, enough that the premise of the book is an exploration of one of the greatest American tragedies. Given that technology is no longer a hindrance, hopefully we'll get to see the full range of what Carrie can do.