Another body blow for "Rocky."
According to reports today, the hit-challenged Sylvester Stallone, who last year complained he was, yo, "a man without a country," is now minus a big-time deal with Universal Pictures that reportedly guaranteed him $20 mil per flick.
No word on when exactly the pact was terminated, or who did the terminating. (Stallone's camp issued a "no comment" on the Daily Variety report.) We only know this: Stallone hasn't had a certified hit since "Cliffhanger" and "Demolition Man," both released in 1993.
We also know this: The landmark $60 million, three-picture deal, between Universal and the middle-aged action star in August 1995, produced just one movie, the as-yet-unreleased thriller "D-Tox."
But all is not lost for our fiftysomething fellow. Lately, Stallone has been keeping busy with a remake of "Get Carter," the 1971 action film starring Michael Caine, for Warner Bros. That film is due out this fall. "D-Tox" is penciled in for a Sept. 1 release.
BRONTOSAURUS BURGER KING: The Flintstones are coming back just a little bit early, and their aim is to sell hamburgers.
According to Variety, Universal is moving the release date for "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas" up to April 28, two weeks earlier than originally planned, with an eye toward selling truckloads of ground beef in addition to movie tickets.
"We wanted to get it out early because it's a great film, and our tie-in with Burger King will be ready to go," Nikki Rocco, Universal's president of distribution, told Variety.
Certainly the competition also has something to do with it. The new release date pits "Viva Rock Vegas" as the lone comedy against a trio of dramas also opening that week.
Starring "The Full Monty's" Mark Addy as Fred and Stephen Baldwin as Barney, "Viva Rock Vegas" is the prequel to 1994's "The Flintstones," which featured John Goodman and Rick Moranis in those roles.
CURTAIN UP! Those movie industry mavericks and indie favorites at Miramax Films are embarking on a new venture: Broadway.
Variety reports that Miramax will co-finance the Tom Stoppard play "The Real Thing" for a 20-week run at the Barrymore Theatre starting April 17. The company is said to be considering co-financing other plays as well.
THE LAST LAUGH, ER, 'SCREAM': First "The Blair Witch Project," now "Scream 3." In what might be the first of several spoofs of the horror hit, Entertaindom.com has purchased the rights to "Scream 33 1/3," an eight-minute short film that can be viewed on the Entertaindom site. "Scream 33 1/3" was made by brothers Boaz and Tamir Halaban, whose previous credits include -- wouldn't you know it? -- a short called "The Making of the Blair Witch Project: The Blair Witch Project Project."