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25thframe.co.uk > Comedy | Drama > People

People

(2004 )

Director(s)
Fabien Onteniente
Stars
Jos� Garcia
Patrice Cols
Rossy de Palma
Ornella Muti
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News
It's the weekend of Independence Day in America which has historically been a strong weekend o#for new releases as people often have a longer weekend, but this year seems reletively week.

Heading the chart for a third weekend is Disney and Pixars Finding Dory which adds another $41 million to its now impressive total.

That total in America is $372.2 million and the film is proving to be another runnaway hit for Pixar and Disney, Diney dont seem to be able to hit a duff note at the moment!

Hihgest new film of hte week lands at number 2, The Legend of Tarzan, which looking at all the promo material is more about monkeys than tarzan, not suprising with the success of the recent Apes movies.

Tarzan debuts with a weekend gross of $38.1 million, a sign of a weaker debut showing than would normally be expected over the long weekend.

Also new this week are The Purge: Election Year which debuts at number 3 and surisingly, and from Disney is Spielbergs The BFG which debuts at number 4 with less than $20 million.

Highest total grossing film on the US chart this week, and by a massive margin is Finding Dory, longest runners are The Conjuring 2 The Enfield Project and Now You See Me 2 both on 4 weeks.

Its still unusual that a film will climb to the top of the box office, but this week with many people otherwise occupied with the start of the Euro 2016 championships Me Before You climbs to the top.

Last week the film entered at number 3 but this week manages to top the chart, and is the only film this week to take over £1 million in weekend grosses.

The film not has a total UK gross of £4.4 million and with the Euro's with us for the next 3 weeks who knows what could happen?

With a lot of studio's not willing to release new film at the moment the rest of the chart reads very similar to last week, the highest new film is the Melissa McCarthy vehicle at number 7 which manages just below £600,000 for the weekend.

Highest total grossing movie is The Jungle book which has taken £45.1 million after 10 weeks and longest run on the chart is 11 weeks for Zootopia.

Worthy or not this week is that this week's cinema had the lowest total take of 2016 and the lowest since September last year.

Historical charts

A year ago
Jurassic world made its debut at the top of the box office knocking Spy down to number 2.

Five years ago
Kung Fu Panda 2 swung into the top giving The Hangover Part 2 the shove down to 2nd place.

Ten years ago
The Omen remake made its debut at the top of the box office knocking X-Men The Last Stand down to 2.

Fifteen years ago
Pearl Harbour stayed at the top for a second weekend leaving highest new entry Get Over It to land at number 3.

Twenty years ago
The mighty Toy Story was unmovable at the top while Now and Then entered highest at number 2.

Twenty Five years ago
The Silence of The Lambs went on limited release for the weekend but still managed to make its debut at the top leaving Problem Child to fall to number 5.

Last week Captain America kick started the summer box office in the UK, and this weekend the sun actually showed its face making people forget about the cinema for the weekend.

With the sun shining the box office saw a massive drop in taking and Captain America: Civil War war a 60%+ drop in taking to £4.06 million.

This brings the films total takings to £27.3 million on its second weekend of release, although this is still better than the previous 2 film at the same point in their release.

Highest new film of the week is Bad Neighbours 2 at number 3 which debuts with £1.69 million.

With the sun out this is way lower than the original 2014 film which scored an £8 million plus opening.

Also new this week are Florence Foster Jenkins at number 4, Robinson Crusoe at number 5 and 24 at number 10.

Historical charts

A year ago
Avengers Age of Ultron stayed at the top of the box office leaving [spooks] The Greater Good to land at number 2.

Five years ago
A fairly static chart saw Thor stay at the top with Water For Elephants the top new film at number 4.

Ten years ago
Mission:Impossible III kicked off the summer season with a number 1 debut while Ice Age: The Meltdown fell to number 3.

Fifteen years ago
Bridget Jones's Diary stayed put at the top with Captain Corelli's Mandolin landing new at number 2.

Twenty years ago
Toy Story was still reigning at the top of the UK box office, highest new film was right down at number 5 in the shape of Things to Do In Denver When Your Dead.

Twenty five years ago
Predator 2 made its debut at the top of the chart with The Doors falling down to number 2.

The week between Christmas and New Year is a quiet one with many people taking a break from work which gives them time to catch up with films at the cinema, but nothing new was released so older film did well.

Still at the top is Star Wars: The Force Awakens which this week is only $20 million away from becoming the top grossing film in the US ever, beating Avatar.

This weekend the film made another $88 million, the highest 3rd weekend ever, to bring its total to $740.2 million after 17 days of release.

Biggest impact on the chart is The Hateful Eight which after an initial quiet release, to make it eligible for Oscar, it increases its release and makes $16.2 million bringing its total to $29.5 million.

A full release schedule this Friday should see more movement in the US box office next weekend as the world returns to normal after Christmas.

This week Jurassic World lost its 2 week hold at the top of the UK box office and made way for those little yellow people as Minions makes its debut.

Taking over the number 1 spot with a very good weekend gross of £11.5 million and it is clearly looking to repeat the success of Despicable me 2 for which the Minions became famous.

Despicable Me 2 was released at about the same time in 2013 and took £14 million on it's opening weekend, it did become the top grossing film of that year.

Jurassic World fell a single place on it's third weekend of release but the film is still going great guns and is now the top grossing film of the year with £48.9 million.

Other new films this week are Knock Knock from Eli Routh at number 7 and Slow West at number 10.

Historical Charts

A year ago
Mrs. Brown's Boys D'Movie made it's debut on the box office at the top of the chart and knocked The Fault In Our Stars to number 2 after only a week at the top.

Five years ago
Get Him to The Greek entered at the top of the box office while Killers fell from the top into number 2 after a week.

Ten years ago
Batman Begins held its place at the top of the box office for a second week while the top new film was Kung Fu Hustle at number 4.

Fifteen years ago
There was no shifting Gladiator as it spent yet another week at the top of the box office, Big Mommas House made it's debut at number 2.

Twenty years ago
Bad Boys held on the top spot for a second week while the top new film was Tank Girl which made its debut at number 3.

Despite it being Halloween new horror film Ouija could not make it's way to the top of the UK box office and instead the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles went back to the top in their third week of release.

Taking nearly £1.5 million for the weekend the Turtles have now spent 3 weeks on release and have taken a total of £11.7 million. The return of the Turtles for a new generation has been a massive success and has so far taken $434.5 million across the world.

Highest new film this week is Ouija which has taken £1.4 million, arguably because of the Halloween weekend and people looking for a fright, the film could disappear quite quickly.

Last weeks top film, Fury, falls to number 3 this week with £1.2 million. It was in reality a very tight top 3 this week with only about £200,000 separating the top films.

Historical charts

A year ago
Thor: The Dark World took the top spot on it's opening weekend knocking Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 into the runner up spot.

Five years ago
In the wake of his death the documentary about Michael Jacksons concerts that never happend This Is It took the top spot knocking Pixars Up down the two.

Ten years ago
Shark Tale hung onto the top spot for a second week with the highest new film coming in at 4 in the shape of Finding Neverland.

Fifteen years ago
Halloween took the box office by storm with The Blair Witch Project climbing to the top spot on it's second week of release, the highest new film was Vampires right down in seventh place.

The US box office this week suffered it's quietest weekend in 13 years, little in the way of new releases and mainly older films at the box office kept people in America at home.

Staying at the top was Guardians of the Galaxy which now spends it's 4th week at the top and 6th week on release, it gave 2 weeks to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Guardians takes $10.3 million for the weekend bringing it's total US gross to $294.7 million and it is now stretching out to be the biggest film of the year in America.

There were no new releases on the top 10 this week, you had to go right down to number 12 to find a new release in the shape of The Identical.

Check out the full American top 12.

A number of new releases are out this week, it's almost as if the studios predicted that most British people would loose interest in the Wold Cup by this point!

Leading the way is The Fault in Our Stars a romantic comedy/tragedy where the romance can only have one inevitable end.

The film didn't do as well as expected in the US, which could have an impact here, but in the UK there has been a heavy media buzz and positive reviews which could see this take over at the top this weekend, I expect a number 1 debut.

Based on the Stage show of the same name, Clint Eastwood directs the screen version of Jersey Boys, the story of how the The Four Seasons came together.

A massive hit on the stage but can it translate to the screen? Reviews have been mixed but with Eastwood at the helm this could have a top 3 entry easily.

Kevin Costner returns after his successful turn as Superman's dad in this action drama 3 Days to Kill. A Dying CIA agent is given a miracle drug in exchange for one last assignment, This might well go top 5 on it's debut.

Other new films this week
The Art of the Steal
Lilting

Its already been announced that Godzilla director Gareth Edwards will direct the first of the stand alone star films, and now the announcement comes that Josh Trank who directed Chronicle fron 2012 will direct another.

The stand alone films will be origin stories from characters from the Star Wars universe, Yoda and Bobba Fett and hot favourites of fans, that will be released between the sage episodes 7 - 9.

Although the films wont be directly related to the core saga they will inevitable have links to the series.

JJ Abrams is currently filming Episode VII at Pinewood Studios in England, and today posted an amusing tweet asking people not to post leaked pictures!

No release date so far for the splinter films but 2016 is most likely for the first.

From the Press release on starwars.com

"JOSH TRANK TO DIRECT STAND-ALONE STAR WARS FILM
June 04, 2014

In addition to the episodes of a new Star Wars trilogy, Lucasfilm and Disney continue development of multiple stand-alone movies that will offer new stories beyond the core Saga. The newest director to come on board is Josh Trank.

"We're thrilled to welcome Josh into the family," says Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy. "He is such an incredible talent and has a great imagination and sense of innovation. That makes him perfectly suited to Star Wars, and for this new slate of movies that reach beyond the core characters and storylines of Episodes I through IX."

Trank states, "The magic of the Star Wars Universe defined my entire childhood. The opportunity to expand on that experience for future generations is the most incredible dream of all time."

Trank captured imaginations worldwide with his critically lauded directorial debut Chronicle, a fresh and engaging take on the superhero genre. Trank is currently at work on Fantastic Four for 20th Century Fox."

This week there wasn't too much of a surprise to see The Amazing Spider-Man 2 enter the box office at the very top after a much hyped and anticipated release.

A sequel to the 2012 re-boot franchise, a new generation of people have now accepted this take on the webbed hero in contrast to Sam Raimi and Toby Maguire's 2002 - 2007 series of films.

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 enteres the box office with a weekend gross of £9 million, not quite enough to put it among the greats.

With only enough room for one superhero last weeks top film, Captain America: The Winter Soldier falls to four this week.

Other new films
The Love Punch
Locke
2 States

This time last year Olympus Has Fallen took over from Tom Cruise in Oblivion to become the top film on it's debut.

Five years ago Monsters Vs. Aliens was still holding the top spot with the highest new film coming from I Love You Man at four.

Ten years ago it was still Scooby Doo 2 Monsters Unleashed at the top with the highest new film The Butterfly Effect coming in at five.

Fifteen years ago saw The Faculty climb to the top knocking The Rugrats Movie down to two while the highest new film was An Ideal Husband at three.

It's been 10 years since 25thframe.co.uk started, it's been hard keeping up with everything in the film world in that time, especially as all the people who have been involved over the years have all had full time jobs as well, but we've tried our best.

2014 will be a time for change and I intend to keep the site more up to date, bring regular reviews and chart news to you and best of all start a podcast, look out for it soon.

If your interested in helping out with the site, reviews, views, news, podcasting, let me know at editor@25thframe.co.uk, lets start something big.

Another slow week at the UK box office as the British bask in the summer sun which resulted in small box office takings and Monsters University retaining the top spot.

10 days on release and a second weekend as the number one film in Great Britain Monsters University takes £2.7 million pushing it's total UK gross to £8.6 million.

Highest new film of the weekend is The Worlds End, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost on a bender that sees the world end, directed by long time collaborator Edgar Wright.

The Worlds end took £2.1 million at the box office, much lower that I would have expected for an anticipated film, but like last weekend the weather has clearly kept people outside.

In accordance with my expectations The Worlds End didn't take the top spot from Monsters University, it was way off by nearly £700,000 and also the box office taking stayed quite stagnant, although with the summer holidays now upon us next week could be different.

Last year at this time The Dark Knight Rises took the box office by storm taking £14.3 million on it's opening weekend, knocking Ice Age Continental Drift from the top and also becoming the highest new film of the week.

Five years ago Mamma Mia was still at the top slowly raking in the money, and also keeping Wall-E from debuting at the top, the Pixar film has to settle for number 2.

Ten years ago The Hulk starring Eric Bana and directed by Ang Lee debuted at the top knocking Charlie's Angels Full Throttle down to number 3.

Fifteen years ago Godzilla took the top spot on it's debut weekend from Six Days Seven Knights.

Released this week at UK cinemas, Brad Pitt is fighting Zombies in World Was Z, an apocalyptic set movie based on the novel by Max Brooks.

There has been some buzz surrounding this film in the run up to it's release and Brad Pitt is always a major box office potential but Superman will seriously effects it's box office and probably stop being a number one hit.

Ethan Hawk and Julie Delpy continue their relationship onscreen on Before Midnight, the third film to feature these characters. Again directed by Richard Linklater.

The series has a fan base, but it's small and the film will have the same impact on home video so a top 10 hit is probably on the cards.

Finally Dwayne Johnson stars as a desperate father searching for the truth in Snitch.

Johnson has a fan base but the subject matter may turn people off, this may miss out on the top 10 altogether.

After a bad reception and opening weekend in America the UK shows more love for Will Smith and son by taking After Earth to the top.

Directed by M. Night Shyamalan, once the talk of Hollywood, After Earth stars the two Smith boys in a film set 1000 years from now in a time when there are no people left on earth. A quiet week for new releases mean that a £2.2 million gross saw off last weeks top film, Hangover Part III which slips to second place.

Last year Prometheus was still at the top of the box office while horror film The Pact was the highest new film at 4 with just £900,000 for the weekend.

Five years ago Sex and the City was still keeping the top spot warm which slapstick comedy Superhero The Movie was the highest new film at 3 with £800,000. Ten year ago The Matrix Reloaded was still at the top as Anger Management crept into number 2 with £1.7 million.

Fifteen years ago Adam Sandler was there again hitting the top spot with The Wedding Singer which debuted at the top with £1 million.

The days of local video shops where you would rent out a video/DVD after browsing the shelves for hours, and had a good chance of socialising is well and truly over, today if you want to rent a film it is usually via Netflix, Love films or your XBox 360/PS3.

Films for rental are usually cinema blockbusters or films which don't get a cinematic release do they go straight to DVD. This is now changing, in a move not dissimilar to the recent House of Cards series being available on Netflix first an independent British film called Pulp is going to debut on the XBox 360.

In recent years there has been a decline in smaller independent films getting decent distribution, and with these films not having shelf space and relying on digital content distribution this seems like a good idea. The music industry has been working on a similar model now for a while.

This could mean a surge in people making movies themselves with the possibility of people seeing their movies, which could in turn lead to a healthier film industry, win win all round really.

It was a sizable hit back in March of this year and people took to Google to find out more as The Hunger Games is the most searched for film if 2012.

Maybe it's because it was a little unkown when the film came out, who knows but the film beat Skyfall which is second and Prometeus which is thurd.

The full list 10 ten most searched films on google is
1. The Hunger Games
2. Skyfall
3. Prometheus
4. The Avengers
5. Magic Mike
6. John Carter
7. Ek Tha Tiger
8. Paranormal Activity 4
9. Taken 2
10. Dark Shadows

An interesting array of films with no mention of Breaking Dawn, The Dark Knight Rises, The Hobbit or Spider-Man!

Interestingly the 2 actors which got the most search queries this year were Whitney Houston and Michael Clarke Duncan who both sadly passed away this year.

What can we learn from this? Probably not a lot but it's interesting to see, what do you think? To see more go to Google's Zeitgeist site.

This weekend the latest Bond film, Skyfall, achieved the biggest mission of Bond's 50-year movie history when it became the biggest grossing film ever in the UK.

The 4-year gap since the last film, Quantum of Solace, looks to have made people more hungry for Bond than ever. Couple that with a great story, a title song from cart-topper Adele, Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes, not forgetting Daniel Craig, who gives one of the best performances ever as Bond, and you have a winning combination.

Released in the UK on 25th October it has taken Skyfall 5 weeks to become the top film. The previous top film, Avatar, took the crown from Titanic (which had held the honour for 10 years since 2008). Its release in 3D meant it had the advantage of the extra charge for 3D glasses. Bond takes the title with no such surcharge.

With average cinema ticket prices in the UK being around the 5.40 mark this amounts to about 17.4 million people seeing the film so far. Skyfall is currently topping the UK box office (as of 30th November 2012) and has plenty of momentum left. So much so that it could be the first film in the UK to gross 100 million in box office receipts. We should know by Christmas.

Worldwide, Skyfall is also doing well for itself. It has grossed $868,585,083 globally and is currently the 28th highest grossing film ever. The Americans' love for Bond film has undoubtedly contributed, with the 50th anniversary film taking $245,585,083 in the US alone.

It's 35 years since Star Wars made it debut in the US, it opened in Manns Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles (and actually 31 other locations across America), and people queued around the block to see it.

The legacy of the original has been immense and still to this day the Star Wars series of 6 films is one of the highest grossing movie series of all time, behind only Harry Potter and James Bond.

1977 opening of Star Wars in LA

The franchise hit mass criticism and lost some of it's appeal after the 1999 release of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace which was to explain the back story of the popular villain Darth Vader, but all it really did was anger fans because it was frankly quite naff.

The disappointment of the new trilogy of films angered fans more because a few years previously Lucas had messed with the loved original trilogy adding new special effects and scenes, fans preferred the original theatrical release, especially the changed Jaba The Hut scene and the now infamous Gredo shoots first scene.

Despite all this Star Wars is alive and well, and in truth us fans still love the series, the new films got better as the series went on and we all hope and prey for the 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special to be released on Blu-ray some time.

This has got to be one of the best things I've seen in a while, amateur film maker Casey Pugh asked people on the internet to send him 15 second clips they had made depicting scenes from the film Star Wars, and he's now strung them altogether.

The finished product is nothing short of amazing with some truly brilliant individual styles, as well as some not so brilliant it must be said.

What truly stand out for me is that all these clips are 15 seconds, and obviously a scene is longer than 15 seconds, but the way Aaron Valdez the films editor and Bryan Pugh the sound mixer has seamlessly put them together is just brilliant.

You can checkout more info at their website.

Personally I think this should get full endorsement from Lucasfilms and get a theatrical release, till that day catch it on YouTube or on the embedded video below

A report is due to be released next week suggesting that the UK should make more commercially successful films, this is after a year where the British film industry contributed £4 Billion to the UK economy.

Prime Minister David Cameron is to visit Pinewood Studios on Wednesday (11th Jan) and has said himself that he British film industry should support "commercially successful pictures", but in doing this does it mean film makers loosing their artistic integrity?

In my mind this begs the question, do film makers make films for person reasons, it may be to make art, to make a statement or because the maker has a story they just have to tell, and despite it's commercial success if its going to be seen and enjoyed or acknowledged by the public, despite how small that group might be, it's worth making the film. Or is the making of a film an industry and if the product won't make a profit then why bother to produce it? In reality the films, which make the money, are (generally) big blockbuster.

Last year Britain produced The Kings Speech, The Inbetweeners, Johnny English Reborn and finish off the Harry Potter series (which can arguably be credited to Britain), all successful films which made money at the box office and have continued to make money in the home market (DVD, Blu-ray, downloads). But outside of this there were plenty of films that were lower grossing movies that probably didn't make money.

The "independent" films that Britain produces are often what separates it, and forms the identity of the film industry, India and France also have massive films industries and can be identified by these films which are loved by people in their native countries as well as other nationalities. In the UK we love American (Hollywood) blockbuster for what they are, and it just so happens they make money, maybe it's the marketing push of millions of dollars but they make money, much of which is pumped back into the American economy.

Of course this is the attraction, American mainstream films make money the world over, British films tend to make money only in the UK, the marketing pounds aren't there to promote the film to the same extent abroad. Despite The Kings Speech which won Oscars doing well in the US, The Inbetweeners and Johnny English didn't.

It must be argues that if Britain makes more 'mainstream' films there is a fear of the British film industry just becoming a Little Hollywood, and although it's no bad thing to produce movies that make money (and hence having a larger audience) we shouldn't and can't stop making films which can be truly identifies as British and which probably wont make millions.

The company was started in the US in 1997 specialising in mailing DVD's to it's customers rather than having them go to a Video Shop to rent them, utilising the internet it revolutionised the industry and was the first nail in the Blockbuster coffin. Today the company still deals with mail order but also does big business with streaming video, and from today the service has come to Britain, over 10 years later!

Does the UK need Netflix? LoveFilm has no strong competition, so in the mail order sector, but streaming/downloaded video, maybe not. I can stream films from my PS3, my Xbox 360, my iTunes account, my Apple TV (OK technically thats through iTunes as well), my TV itself, even Blockbuster if I so choose, so Netflix I think is 10 years late.

So why launch Netflix now? It has the brand recognition, despite it being US only many many UK people know the name, in fact many probably thought the service was already available in the UK. Netflix are also a massive company making billions of dollars a year, expansion was only a matter of time.

I remember working for the biggest video rental company in Britain many years ago, the company was called Ritz Video Film Hire, Blockbuster Video had been trying to crack the UK for a couple of years, they were a massive American company at the time and thought they could bring the American business model to the UK, it didn't work and Blockbuster Video was failing, so what did they do? They bought Ritz Video Film Hire and overnight the staff who had grown to hate Blockbuster were suddenly working for them, I know LoveFilm is owned by Amazon.co.uk but I can seriously see them selling to Netflix sometime down the line.

At the end of the day as long as the customer wins who cares? Already LoveFilm have reduced their prices by a pound, but LoveFilm don't offer HD yet, Netflix had that advantage for the extra pound. I'm going to sound off now, I know these services are good value, £4.99 or £5.99 for unlimited streaming films is very good, but, this thing that annoys me is they don't have the latest releases, I want to see film when they are out on DVD/Blu-ray, not weeks later, I'd even pay a pound or 2 extra so i could stream Breaking Dawn Part 1 from the day it's released, I wont get that yet with Netflix or LoveFilm, for that I'd need to stick iTunes, PS3 etc.

I'm sure these services will get there, and for rental at least the future is in digital distribution, but for me Netflix isn't there yet, but still it is a welcome addition that I may use when they get same day as disk releases.

It had all the cast reunited from the first Fast and Furious movie and this excited movie goers so much that not only did the film make over $600 million dollars worldwide and become a DVD/Blu-ray smash hit but it was the most pirated film in 2011 according to torrentfreak.com

Fast Five starring Vin Diesel was downloaded more than 9 million times, in second place was The Hangover Part II and in third place was Thor. The argument for Pirated movies has been a long and intense once, but all 3 of these films were big hits at the cinema with each one taking over or close to half a billion dollars in box office takings.

I'm not sure what this list tells us, I'll let you make up your own minds, cinema attendances were down this year but were in the middle of a world wide financial crisis, personally I think that on the whole people who will see the film in cinemas will do and then maybe down load the movie, people who download the movie and don't see it in cinemas would never anyway. This is an interesting list so for your pleasure take a look at the top 10 most downloaded films of 2011 and by all means let me know your thoughts.

Most Downloaded Movies on BitTorrent, 2011
rank movie downloads worldwide grosses
torrentfreak.com
1 Fast Five 9,260,000 $626,137,675
2 The Hangover Part II 8,840,000 $581,464,305
3 Thor 8,330,000 $449,326,618
4 Source Code 7,910,000 $123,278,618
5 I Am Number Four 7,670,000 $144,500,437
6 Sucker Punch 7,200,000 $89,792,502
7 127 Hours 6,910,000 $60,738,797
8 Rango 6,480,000 $245,155,348
9 The King's Speech 6,250,000 $414,211,549
10 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 6,030,000 $1,328,111,219
Source: Torrent Freak
Go back just over a year and the biggest film in the world (by box office gross) had been established, that film was James Cameron's Avatar, a film built from the ground up to show what 3D can achieve.

This weekend in the US Cars 2 has hit the top spot with a weekend gross of $68 million of which only 40% of that take was from 3D screening, so is the public finally realisd that 3D is just a gimmick?

If you listen to Sony they would have you believe that 3D is the future, we'll be watching all out broadcast TV and home movies in 3D, Nintendo are another company who have invested a lot of money in 3D, producing the 3DS, there is certainly no shortage of temptation for us to embrace the 3D age.

Not lets look at the numbers, Cars 2 isn't a first, King Fu Panda 2 and Rio both took more money in 2D rather than 3D, and most people who saw Pixar's top grossing film last year Toy Story 3 seemed to agree that the 3D did nothing for the film. In Japan the 3DS has been struggling, being outsold by the 7 year old PSP, a device for which the successor has already been announced and is reducing in sales.

Is there a future for 3D? Who knows at the moment, but 3D is starting to show it's colours at the cinema, the surcharge on the glasses certainly cant be helping, Sky TV are struggling with the uptake of 3D subscribers, again there is a surcharge, and gamers seem to be rejecting the notion as well.

There are a couple of high profile catalogue 3D film that have been retrofitted with 3D, the Star Wars Saga and Titanic, this may well be a test as to how the public is embracing 3D, but on current evidence we don't want it, the novelty has warn off.

I know there are a couple of people out there who are looking forward to the second part of the last part of the seven part Harry Potter saga, so to get you all excited Warner has released a little video vignette for you to watch.

The video is mainly interviews with the 3 principles, but there are also small (and I mean small) clips of the new film, so keep you eyes peeled and finger on the pause if you want to take them in full.

The last ever Harry Potter film is due for release on July 15th so not long to wait until there is no more.

Check out the video below.

Within the coming months for the people involved this will be the first of many family photos, yesterday in New Zealand the cast of the soon to start filming The Hobbit posed for a picture ahead of filming which starts on March 21st.

Front and foremost is Martin Freeman who is set to play the lead role of Bilbo Baggins. Also flying the British flas was James Nesbit who will play Bofur.

Peter Jackson was missing from the Press Conference as he's recovering from a recent operation, also the reason why filming has been delayed. Also not in the shot is Ian McKellen, Andy Serkis and Elijah Wood who all reprise roles from the Lord of the Rings movies.

Check out Stuff.co.nz for a 3 minute clip of the Hobbit get together.

This is the start of the gold rush for pics, stay tuned to the hype mill as I suspect there will be a lot more to come.

Who says that video pirating is killing the film industry? A report has come out claiming that Avatar is the top pirated film on DVD in 2010, and that's with it's nearly $3 Billion world wide box office gross.

Were not advocating the pirating of films here mind, just pointing out that despite the increase in piracy on DVD a film can still make a substantial amount of money in box office grosses, and if a punter is going to see a movie at the cinema, they will.

Avatar is a rare case in as much as is was ground breaking and to get the full 3D effect you essentially had to go and see it at the cinema, but clearly people liked the film enough to try and get it on DVD before the official release.

Piracy has many other more terrifying motives to it than the amount of money that the film industry looses, so rather than the studios piping on about how much they loose per year lets try and tackle the organized crime that is funded by all piracy.

It's had a troublesome time in production but the new Narnia film, The Voyage of the Dawn Trader, is the highest grossing movie over it's launch weekend.

That said it's debut gross is half that of the previous film in the series, Price Caspian, and only a quarter of the first film, The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.

Dawn Trader rakes in a fair £2,460,118 to topple the latest Harry Potter movie from the top of the chart. The series is starting to really loose steam and don't expect this one to go much past Christmas.

Harry Potter topples to the runner up spot this week after a couple of weeks at the top. A £1,905,368 keeps it going well but the film is starting to struggle already and it may not be the big earner people were expecting, although another push is bound to happen when part 2 is released next week. The film has grossed £42,570,440 so far in the UK.

Angelina Jolie and and Johnny Depp make their presence known at 3 this week as their new collaboration, The Tourist, takes £1,341,143 for the weekend, maybe a little less than was expected for these 2 a-list actors.

I was unaware until now that the land that the Hollywood sign sits on is owned by a Private Investors Group, who bought the land from Howard Hughes estate in 2002. The Investment group are willing to sell the land to the City of Los Angeles who own the letters but they want $12 million for it.

The City is only just shy of this money, but in the mean time a Danish architect has come up with an idea of removing the current letters and rebuilding a bigger replica with a hotel in so people can stay in the letters.

A fascinating idea for sure, but removing the icon sign and rebuilding may be a step too far. I'm sure it would make money, and would be booked out the whole time, but the sign is what many people go to Hollywood to see and I think it would loose it's appeal if changed at all.

With all this said it will loose it's appeal even more if the money is not raised and the land is used to build luxury homes as the Investment company is planning, so if it's has to change then the hotel is the better of two evils, but I'm sure we'll be seeing the current sign for years to come.

Blu-ray sales are soaring as prices come down in price and it does look like there will be a day when it's the dominant format and take over from DVD.

A bold statement I know, but many people never thought that DVD would take over from the might of VHS and that was a harder sell in the first place, at least with Blu-ray when you upgrade your player you can still watch all your DVD's, and they will probably look better.

Sales for Blu-ray are increasing fast, the latest figures for the US show that in the first quarter of 2010 (January March) there was a 68.5% year on year increase amounting to over $330 million in Blu-ray sales.

Blu-ray accounted for 12.3% of packaged media in the same quarter (packaged media meaning not digital distribution) which is a big increase on the 7% from this time last year.

Looks like Blu-ray will be here to stay in the immediate at least, Sony must be happy, as should the future of the Playstation 3, it's certainly how I view my Blu-ray disks.

Sony and online DVD/Blu-ray rental company Lovefilm have today announced that it will be delivering movies via the internet to owners of Sony internet TV's.

In the same week that bricks and mortar video rental company Blockbuster announce that unless they have an injection of cash they will go bankrupt, one of the more successful online rental companies announce a deal that could amount to the final nail in the video shop coffin.

Movie rentals via the likes of the Playstation Network via a Playstation 3 or XBox Live via an XBox 360 have been with us for a while and proved successful, the internet TV delivers is in essence an extenuation of this.

Samsung are also in negations to offer a similar service and as people replace their TV's the replacement will most likely be internet enabled allowing the service to grow in time.

Is this another example of the physical media being a thing of the past, in the future will our film collection be in the "cloud" and we stream the movie when we want to watch it, will our film collections be Lovefilms catalogue?

I personally still like the idea of physical media, it's still fun and exciting, maybe I'm just an old fossil that needs to accept the future?

Whatever happens it looks like the video shop is going to be a thing of the past, no-one knows this more that Blockbuster Video the once king of the rental market who didn't move with the times and will go bust by the end of the year. As a former employee of the company I cant help but feel sad about that.

The accolades for Avatar just keep on rolling as this weeks total gross for the movie easily takes it past Mamma Mia's gross to make it the highest grossing film in the UK ever.

It took 11 years to topple Camerons previous king of the world, Titanic, and in 2008 Mamma Mia just edged past the 1997 epics gross of £69,025,646 with £69,166,087 but now Avatar, a mere 18 months later, passes the £70 million mark to become the UK's top grossing movie.

Now Avatar is the first film to go past the 70 million mark in the UK the race is on the become the first film to get past £100 million, although Avatar is still going well with a weekly gross in the region of about £6 million surely it cant get to the magic figure, but I wouldn't bet against it at the moment.

With half term coming and the possibilities of BAFTA and Oscar awards who knows it could just edge it's way past the milestone.

Of course the thing we need to look at for a full picture is cinema attendance and I'm afraid that's one are where Avatar lacks, about 13 million people in the UK have seen the film, Mamma Mia is just ahead with just over 13.5 million tickets sold, whereas Titanic is way ahead with over 18 million people seeing the film at the cinema, of course none come close to the champion on this list, Gone with the Wind, with around 35 million tickets sold.

No one can deny Camerons achievement with Avatar and it still has a way to go.

In an interesting turn of events the Google owned YouTube are going to experiment with renting films though their online video playing service.

Before us in the UK get too excited about this there are a couple of things you should now, first of all it's for the US market only, so we can stop here, next up is that there are no blockbusters at the moment, in fact there are just 5 films, all from this years and last years Sundance Film festival, so there is clearly limited choice.

Another small thing to mention, remember at the beginning I reminded you (not that I need to) that You Tube is owned by Google, well guess what, you have to pay for the movie via Google checkout, not a real hassle but if you haven?t set it up yet then you have to go through that whole process as well.

For you lucky people in the US the rentals will be available from tomorrow (Friday 22nd January) and once you have bought a film you have 48 hours to watch it.

This is an interesting move, and with new television announced at the recent CES that can connect to a wireless internet connection with a main reason for watching YouTube video then this has potential, also in the UK there is little in the way of on-line rental services.

CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2010 is kicking off in Las Vegas tomorrow with the Microsoft CEO (Steve Balmer at the moment) being the traditional first Keynote speaker at 6.30pm (PST) on 6th January.

The show always gives a good showcase as what we can expect in the future of technology from the likes of Sony, Samsung, LG, Panasonic and other manufacturers of home entertainment equipment with TV's and film media always having a good showing.

This year Blu-ray and high definition is expected to have a show as the format goes from strength to strength in sales and knocks on the door of DVD in a similar fashion to DBD to VHS 10 years ago.

TV's are on the dawn of a new technology going mainstream, althoug hseen last year OLED is expected to make a bog splash this year. OLED screens are very think and light and give better definition pictures to that of either LCD or plasma, the prices are falling and sizes coming up, expect many TV's PC monitors and other screen devices to be announced.

3D movies made a big impact in cinemas is 2009, and with Avatar doing so well at the box office at the moment studios are keen to push the idea into the home and it's thought that there will be a big display of 3D home movies and TV on display although the technology is new. 3D does have it's doubters who think it's a gimmick and will not catch on.

Also set to make a big impact at CES is tablet PC's, it is widely thought that Apple are on the verge of a big tablet announcement, although we will most likely have to wait until the end of January for that, but there are others who want to enter this market. Tablet PC's could mark a change to the way people view movies on the go, and with Windows 7 touch technology being so good, and probably the excellent iPhone OS being on any Apple device which will allow apps to run on it we could be at the dawn of something big for mobile movies, and in HD of course. Whatever the show has to offer it's always interesting to see what we may have in our homes in the coming years, and what new development in the pipeline, you can follow some of the best coverage, like me, at these site.

engadget.com

Despite the fact that it took him over 10 years to follow up on Titanic, which is the highest grossing movie of all time, it seems he hasn't lost his Midas touch as Avatar reaches the magic $1 Billion mark in world grosses.

Not only has it reached the magic milestone that so few films before it have done, this is only the 5th, but it has done it in 17 days of release. It has to date taken $1,022,314,898 in world grosses, and at this rate could become the 2nd highest grossing in no time.

This must be pleasing Fox, and a sigh of relief for Cameron who gambled a lot on this film, and gave it a production cost of $230,000,000, at the current box office rate and potential home video sales it will redeem its budget easily.

Will it challenge Titanic's box office crown? There is a strong possibility, the ship disaster movie was a film that people went and saw again and again, Avatar seems to be doing the same, it must be for the stunning 3D effects rather than the story.

This is also truly a cinema film and people wont want to wait to watch it on their home cinema system regardless of how good, or big a screen they have, the movie theatre experience cant be beaten on this occasion.

For the record here is how the top 5, billion dollar grossing films stack up as of 5th January 2010,

  1. Titanic - $1,835,300,000
  2. The Lord of the Rings The Return of the King - $1,129,219,252
It's not often that I take much notice of the Star Wars fan email that I get in my inbox on regular occasions these days, and usually wants to sell me something, but this time something caught my attention, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back is about to be 30 years old!

Now apart from the sudden terror that I had of, how old does that make me, the email details the fact that this past weekend is the 30th anniversary of the screening of first images from the film in the form of a trailer.

I clicked the link and watched the trailer, first of all you start to realise how much cinema has changed in 30 years, and trailers certainly have a different job these days, but 2 things happened to me, first I thought about how people must have been amazed sitting in the cinema watching this, the trailer was attached to a re-release of Star Wars (something which rarely happens these days) and not only was this the only way could have got to see the trailer, no internet back then, and home video was for the rich, but the trailer was there to give people a taste of the movie, not market the film to the hilt.

The second thing that happened was I remembered when I first saw footage of Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, a UK programme called The South Bank Show had done a special on Star Wars and at the very end they showed a quite long clip of the film. To note is the fact hat back on those days there was a quite lengthy gap between a film being released in the UK and America.

For a moment on Saturday it was a good trip down memory lane, so check out this link and enjoy the trailer of The Empire Strikes Back.

Although retail sales on the street are looking pretty glum at the moment with retailers closing their doors by the week it's nice to see a report that sales of Blu-ray movies are up, by an incredible 400%.

The British Video Association have reveled (in a chat with pocket-lint.co.uk) that 1.5 million disk were sold in December. This is great news for Sony, the format and entertainment sales, but lets look try to examine why such a huge jump.

Blu-ray is a new(ish) home movie format, one which had a vicious and fairly long battle with Toshiba's now defunct HD DVD to be the successor to DVD in the home, so 2008 was the first Christmas that consumers had only one high-definition format to choose from, a relief for many I'm sure. Couple this with the fact that the price of the players are coming down to that which consumers beyond the film fanatic are willing to pay and the number of Blu-ray players in the home starts to increase.

HD TVs are also dropping in price and you can currently pick up a decent 1080p TV for well under £1000 if that's too much a decent "HD Ready" can be bought for as little as £300, this together with good sales of the PlayStation 3 which can play Blu-ray movies means that the high definition world is hitting more and more homes, probably by the week.

Now what was the best selling disk on Blu-ray in December, well no surprise to hear it was The Dark Knight (selling nearly 300,000) which was not only one of the more anticipated moves of the year but also one which many people would have wanted on the high-def format, summer action/sci-fi films are what will sell the format.

With all this in mind it's no wonder that sales of the Blu-ray disks are increasing at such a fantastic rate. Don't get me wrong I love Blu-ray and have the full high-def set-up and have enjoyed many films (WALL-E and The Dark Knight are particularly good) on the format, and I hope this surge in sales continues and eventually overtakes DVD, roll on Quantum of Solace it'll be great I'm sure, but it's not really a surprise is it?

We all agree that the PSP is a smart little device and watching film on it can he handy for when your away from home, like on holiday. At the moment the only way to watch films is on UMD or by cracking the DVD and putting the film on a memory stick.

Sony have now revealed plans to release some films on Blu-ray what also includes a version encoded and shrunk to it fits on a memory stick, and more to the point is legal.

This is a very interesting experiment and its good to see that Sony is trying different ways of getting people using the PSP as more than a gaming device.

I hope that the compression brings the file size down enough that you can fit a couple of movies on a 1gb memory stick, although carrying 5 memory stick is certainly preferable to 5 UMD, and they can be reused.

I dont think Sony are going to abandon movies on the UMD format just yet but it's the first sign and with a PSP2 inevitable at some point possible in the next few years maybe it will be UMD free.

It is of course another reason to go the Blu-ray route rather than HD-DVD and another sign that HD-DVD really has no way back.

Let me know your thought below.

As soon as CES started and Warner Bros. confirmed that they are going Blu-ray only we all knew it was only a matter of time before there would be only one format and this "war" would be over, and now it looks like Toshiba will announce their withdrawal from HD-DVD.

This speculation along with the Warner announcement and the many US retailers announcing either Blu-ray exclusivity or Blu-ray dominance in stores are enough to kill the format, who wants to buy a player that has little retail support.

Blu-ray is the winner and it's only a matter of days (if not hours) before it will become official. This is one in the eye for Microsoft who has reportedly pumped millions of dollars into support for the format and a big triumph for Sony who developed it.

The conspiracy around the Microsoft involvement is multilayer, but whatever the truth is I think that downloadable content for films and TV has taken a hit in the back of this move as well, people can buy a player with confidence now.

The good news for Sony now is their insistence of putting a Blu-ray player in the Playstation 3 might pay off, the gaming device is still by far one of the better players on the market and is still the cheapest certainly in the European market where the stand alone players are still not that common.

The players are sure to come down in price now and the HD-DVD format will slowly start to disappear off the shelves, for those that did buy an HD-DVD player you will soon be able to pick up the movies very cheap.

Can you believe that it's ten years today (November 18th) since the first teaser trailer for Star Wars Episode 1 was shown in the cinema for the first time? The internet was still in its infancy, as was DVD and staggered cinema releases were still a big thing for blockbuster film releases.

The event was huge and well hyped and although the trailer was released onto the internet few people had a fast enough internet connection at home to really download the trailer or steam it in a watchable fashion so American audiences really did to get to see it ahead of the rest of the world.

I was working at the time for a well known internet company and had access to a fast T1 connection and I remember waiting patiently that afternoon to download the trailer and watch it on the tiny 14 inch monitor I used to work with, I wanted to wait and see it on the big screen, but I couldn't wait until the new year to see this new Star Wars footage.

In the US the trailer was attached to a number of films at the time, two being The Waterboy and The Siege and the teaser can probably account for much of those films total gross. These days people choose to watch trailers on the internet and you rarely, if ever get people walking out of a screening once the trailers are over.

Was the trailer any good, my god was the trailer good, in fact the trailer as it turned out was better than the film itself. After seeing the trailer I got straight on the phone to a friend of mine who lives in California and arranged to fly to the US the following May so we could go and see the movie the night of release, which I did.

Did you get goose bumps down your spine the first time you saw the trailer? Was it one of the most exciting things you had seen since the trailer for The Return of the Jedi? Let us know you thought on the trailer and what you think 10 years later.

Just to refresh your memory here is the original Star Wars Episode 1 teaser trailer.

Today marks, for some, a sad day in home entertainment, Pioneer have announced that they will stop making laserdisk players this month.

Initially brought to market in 1978 under the name of Discovision the 12 inch disks were going to revolutionise home entertainment and bring that cinema quality high definition picture to the home.

Although the technology inside the huge players was far superior to that of it's magnetic tape (VHS and Beta) equivalents the lack of storage (60 minutes on each side) and high price stopped them from becoming a mainstream purchase.

American video enthusiasts took to the devices as did the Japanese, but Europe never really embraced the devices. VHS had a strong hold, and by the time people realised that their £15 film on the fragile tape was a bad idea and looked for alternatives the 5 inch DVD was hitting the market.

Despite it's hard life the format has laser 30 years and sold a quite respectable 360 million units. Disks didn't shift that many, Star Wars was one of the biggest sellers with 100,000 sold and The Lion King not far behind, although exact sales data is hard to find.

Check out the wikipedia page and an article on the demise at hometheatermag.com.

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UK BBFC Certificate: 12

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