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BEN AFFLECK'S MASTERPIECE: Here's What You Missed In 'Argo'


argo movie ben affleck oscarsBen Affleck's "Argo" won best picture at the 85th Academy Awards.

The film tells the (mostly true) story of the risky CIA operation to bring home six American diplomats from Tehran during the Iranian Hostage Crisis of 1979.

If you haven't seen the movie and want to know what everyone's talking about, check out our highlights (with all screen caps taken from the trailer). And then go watch the real thing!

The Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was overthrown during a revolution in February 1979.

President Carter allowed the Shah into the U.S. in October to be treated for cancer at New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center.

(Source: "Argo" Blu-Ray DVD extra / The New York Times)

Angered with the U.S., Islamist students and militants protested outside the American Embassy.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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1939's Wicked Witch Of The West Looks Much Sexier In Today's 'Oz'


This weekend marks the release of "Oz The Great And Powerful."

The Wicked Witch of the West is an iconic character in the original "Wizard of Oz." In the latest flick, the character is played by Mila Kunis

But one Reddit member pointed out how much much the character has changed over the years. 

The top image is Margaret Hamilton in the 1939 film. The bottom image is Kunis in "Oz."

oz great and powerful

SEE ALSO: "Oz The Great And Powerful" Could Be Disney's Next "John Carter" Flop >

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George Lucas Was Working On A New 'Star Wars' Trilogy Before Disney Purchased Lucasfilm


george lucas star wars

When Disney purchased Lucasfilm for $4 billion last fall, one of the most exciting bits of news was that we would be getting a new "Star Wars" trilogy. 

And fans were even more excited about getting episodes VII, VIII, and IX because George Lucas wouldn't be behind the new movies. 

Instead, his title on the new projects is a vague "creative consultant" role.  

However, it turns out we may very well be seeing Lucas' visions (in some form) for the trilogy on the big screen.  

A new Bloomberg Businessweek article reveals Lucas was working on treatments for new films before inking a deal with Disney in October.  

Basically, Lucas laid the foundation for the future "Star Wars" films out for Disney before any negotiations.  

bloomberg businessweek disneyPrior to Iger and Lucas discussing the Disney deal, Lucas already had talks with Kathleen Kennedy to head Lucasfilm, "The Empire Strikes Back" screenwriter Lawrence Kasdan was called upon as a consultant, and preliminary talks with the original cast to appear in the future films took place. 

Yes, it's looking more and more likely that all of those rumors about the original cast of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford joining the new trilogy is indeed true.  

Lucas let a little bit slip in his interview:  

“We had already signed Mark and Carrie and Harrison—or we were pretty much in final stages of negotiation," said Lucas. "So I called them to say, ‘Look, this is what’s going on.’ … Maybe I’m not supposed to say that. I think they want to announce that with some big whoop-de-do, but we were negotiating with them.” 

So, when Lucas called Iger in June 2012, one of the primary reasons behind the Lucasfilm buy was to attain rights to Lucas' rough sketches for the movies. 

After Disney purchased Lucasfilm, Lucas gave those treatments over to the Mouse House with very specific instructions.  

From Bloomberg Businessweek:  

"Once Lucas got assurances from Disney in writing about the broad outlines of the deal, he agreed to turn over the treatments—but insisted they could only be read by Horn and Kevin Mayer, Disney’s executive vice president for corporate strategy. ‘We promised,’ says Iger. ‘We had to sign an agreement." 

Now, Lucas' role as a "consultant" on the film makes perfect sense. The story outlines for Episodes VII, VIII, and IX are essentially his own. 

Let the Lucas legacy live on.

You can read the entire Bloomberg Businessweek article here >

SEE ALSO: In addition to a new trilogy, we're getting "Star Wars" spin-off films. Here's who should get their own >

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Brilliant Animation Gives You The Entire Plot Of 'The Matrix' In 60 Seconds

Why Hollywood Is Having A Terrible Year


jack the giant slayerIt's no secret the box office is hurting right now. 

We're into the second week of March, and only one film, Universal's "Identity Thief," has managed to have both an opening weekend over $30 million and reach the $100 million mark at theaters. 

At this same point last year, three films ("Safe House,""The Vow," and "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island") surpassed that milestone. Meanwhile, last year's highest-opening weekend was taken by Dr. Seuss film "The Lorax" earning a hefty $70 million upon debut.

What's going on this year? 

For one thing, there have been far too many adult movies in theaters. Since January, there have been 14 R-rated films limiting the younger audience going out to theaters.

8 of the 14 have had disastrous opening weekends all under $10 million.

The lowest opening grosses of the year so far included Sylvester Stallone's "Bullet to the Head," which brought in $4.5 million, star-stuffed "Movie 43" with $4.8 million, and Jason Statham's latest action thriller "Parker" earning $7 million.

Even "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters," a film with "Avengers" star Jeremy Renner which is based off a childhood tale and had the appeal to draw younger teens, was rated R. The film has fared better, grossing $181 million worldwide.

Last year, by the same time, there were nine R-rated films in theaters including "Safe House" with Denzel Washington which earned more than $100 million after a month in theaters.  Another three of those films, "Project X,""Underworld Awakening," and "The Devil Inside," went on to earn more than $100 million worldwide. 

One of the latest R-rated flicks to hit theaters, "21 and Over" was expected to piggyback off the success of last year's low-budget "Project X," but fell flat at theaters opening week with $8.8 million.

There were also more kid and family-friendly films last year. "The Secret World of Arrietty,""Journey 2: The Mysterious Island,""The Lorax," and "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace" in 3D all debuted early 2012. Plus, Martin Scorsese's Oscar picture, "Hugo," was still in theaters.

escape from planet earthCurrently, the only new kid's flick at theaters is The Weinstein Company's alien film, "Escape from Planet Earth."   Meanwhile, "Wreck-It Ralph" and a 3D return of "Monsters Inc." from Disney are still playing in theaters from late last year. 

However, the box-office slump could boil down to something much simpler: the movies just aren't that good.

Warner Bros. executive vice president of domestic distribution Jeff Goldstein told TheWrap the films aren't living up to the hype. 

"There's no mystery as to why the box office is down," Goldstein said. "It's the movies. They just haven't done it for audiences, but that's the saving grace, too. A couple of hits and things will be back on track."

This weekend, $200 million budget "Oz the Great and the Powerful" hits theaters, hoping to turn the box office around.

SEE ALSO: 5 reasons 'Jack the Giant Slayer' failed at the box office >

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The Wolf Pack Return To Las Vegas In First 'Hangover Part III' Teaser Trailer

There's Still One Thing That Many Porn Stars Refuse To Do...


Heidi Klum SealAdult film stars are known for pushing the limits. They get paid to perform sexual acts many have never even heard of, let alone seen before.

Porn stars will do most anything, it seems, except for one act that is still taboo within the industry: interracial sex.

Adult film star Aurora Snow wrote a thoughtful article this week for The Daily Beast, in which she reveals one of the first questions she was asked upon entering the 'biz: "Do you do black guys?” [For the record, she does.]

It's not a requirement within the industry to sleep with people of other races; in fact, it can even be seen as a career breaker  not maker.

“Racism exists, and it exists in porn,” award-winning porn star Kristina Rose confirmed to The Beast. 

Alexis Texas Porn StarThe topic was brought to light recently when fans began to notice that popular porn star Alexis Texas has appeared in hundreds of adult films  but never with someone who isn't white like her.

Texas refused to comment for the Beast's article, but she isn't alone with her preferences.

"According to LA Direct Models’ online listings, only about 20 percent of its performers are willing to film interracial scenes," reports the Beast. "Another agency, Spiegler Girls, is more typical of top agents: 75 percent to 80 percent of its performers say they shoot interracial material."

Aurora Snow porn starSnow confirmed the stats, saying "My experience has taught me that the adult audience is far more progressive than porn-industry leaders."

Why is interracial sex on tape still taboo in the industry? Here are a few reasons:

  1. Size. "One reason for some actresses’ reluctance might be size," says Snow. "The sheer size of these guys can be intimidating."
  2. Career anxiety. "Most girls in the industry hear at some point from their agent or another performer that an actress can increase the longevity of her career by refusing interracial scenes," adds Snow.
  3. Pay. A current myth, alluded to in Kanye West’s song “Hell of a Life,” is that directors will pay a girl less once she has shot interracial scenes. As TMZ bluntly states: "More black equals less green."
  4. Stereotypes. "Consumers are still buying stereotypes. An interracial porn shoot frequently portrays the big black man with the tiny white girl. This remains a popular marketing strategy," says Snow.
  5. Family. “The No. 1 reason I hear,” adult actor agent Mark Spiegler tells The Beast, "and that doesn’t mean it’s true, is ‘my family wouldn’t like me doing it.’” Snow confirms,"I’ve met a handful of girls who thought their families would be more OK with finding out they did porn than finding out they did interracial porn."
  6. New territory. “Sometimes the first black guy they have been exposed to is in the industry, says Tee Reel, a black adult performer-turned-agent. “It’s not as if they have some racist gene. They aren’t anti-black, they just never had the opportunity."

interracial couple in poolMark Spiegler is starting to notice an industry change, though.

“In the old days, you start out slow and work your way up. But now the more you do the better. Sasha Grey and Katsumi started out doing interracial; it doesn’t seem to have hurt them," he says.

“Some agents will charge a premium for girls who do interracial," says Spiegler. "But we don’t do that: it’s the same rate for noninterracial.”

Instead, Spiegler argues that more work equals higher rates — not the color of skin of the person you're performing with on-screen.

Black performer-turned-agent Tee Reel tells the Beast: “As a black man, I don’t take it personally when a girl says, ‘I don’t want to do interracial.’ In the business, some girls who say they don’t do interracial I’ve actually had sex with off camera."

SEE ALSO: Here's what female porn stars get paid for different types of scenes >

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Hollywood Has Become Incredibly Dependent On Overseas Viewers


skyfall bond

With the box office in a slump this season, Hollywood could use some hits.

While analysts are hoping for the first U.S. hit of 2013 with this weekend's "Oz the Great and Powerful," the answer for a quick box-office turnaround may be appealing to the right audience overseas. 

Last year, Hollywood had its best year ever to date earning a record $10.8 billion 

It wouldn't have come anywhere close to record numbers, however, if it weren't for the foreign box office. 

With international grosses added into the mix, the top ten 2012 box office movies earned $9.2 billion at theaters. Without overseas earnings, the same films earned $3.2 billion. 

international box office 2012 chart

Even bombs benefited from overseas.

"Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" earned $222 million abroad while barely surpassing the $100 million mark at home. The "Total Recall" remake earned more than three times its $58.9 million domestic gross overseas.

And Tom Cruise's weak box-office performance with "Jack Reacher" at home ($79.7 million) earned $136.5 million in foreign grosses. 

"Battleship" may have seen earnings of only $65 million here, but went on to earn a massive $303 million worldwide. Despite Disney's $200 million write down on "John Carter" last year the film made nearly 75 percent of its earnings overseas.  

power international box office

With the foreign box office acting as a cushion for poor-performing U.S. films, it gives incentive for Hollywood studios to take a gamble on big budget films. If movies don't perform well at home, there's always the chance they will pick up abroad.

But don't expect overseas earnings to save a total flop.

"Foreign box office took some of the sting out of major misses like 'Battleship' and 'John Carter,' but both films still lost tens of millions for their studios when you factor in prints and advertising," Jeff Gomez, CEO of Starlight Runner Entertainment, tells Business Insider.

"John Carter," for instance, resulted in Walt Disney Studios President Rich Ross stepping down and a $200 million write-off.

So, what explains the overseas surge?

"Two significant markets have opened wider to Hollywood product." Gomez tells Business Insider. "Russia and China are both nurturing theatrical growth industries, and American movies will always be held as the gold standard there." 

In the past year, five American-made films have surpassed the $50 million mark in China while another nine have crossed $25 million. 

Last year, China overtook Japan to become the second-biggest box-office market in the world. A new report by Ernst & Young pits the country to overtake the US film market by 2020. 

Worldwide president of distribution at Sony Pictures, Rory Bruer, told TheWrap one reason its films do well overseas is because of the storylines. 

“If you look at the stories that we’re telling, like ‘The Amazing Spider-Man,’ these pictures are meant for every person on the planet,” said Bruer. “They’re not U.S.-centric. They’re relatable for everyone.” 

3D movies in your living roomGomez says another reason foreign box office has been booming is because of the increase of 3D and IMAX abroad in recent years.

"One of the major factors in the foreign box office boom is that overseas filmgoers have embraced 3D, far more so than their American counterparts," says Gomez.

"Action and spectacle have always been big winners internationally, and elements like 3D and IMAX boost the wow factor and continue to be enormously popular." 

With the box office hurting right now,  "Oz the Great and Powerful" could be the right combination both domestically and abroad with IMAX and 3D showings. 

"Although the 'Wizard of Oz' story world has been relatively dormant for the past decade, it ranks with 'Star Wars' among the most highly recognized story worlds in all of global popular culture," says Gomez. "The film is tracking to be a hit domestically, and its huge international will be icing on the cake."

SEE ALSO: Movie Studios Are Setting Themselves Up For Huge Losses >

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'Oz The Great And Powerful' Looks Like It's Going To Have A Huge Weekend


Oz the great and powerfulDisney's "Oz the Great and Powerful" comes out today in theaters and its expected to be the largest opening weekend at the box office of the year so far. 

It won't be that difficult for "Oz" to claim the top spot.

The box office has been in a major slump for the past month and a half

The largest opening gross so far has been $34.6 million from Melissa McCarthy's "Identity Thief." 

Disney, of course, has a lot riding on the line with its $200 million budget for "Oz." 

Despite some early negative buzz (even we questioned whether the new "Oz" may be the next "John Carter" flop), it looks like the film may do even better than estimates tracking the film as high as $85 million

Here's why:

  • As of early this morning, the prequel to the 1939 classic accounted for 79% of all ticket sales on FandangoNow, the film is tracking for 85% of all ticket sales today on the ticket seller. 
  • According to a survey by the site, 66% of moviegoers are planning to see the film with their families.
  • Fandango has confirmed with us that "Oz" is its largest movie in presales this year. 

Of course, there's not much else out this weekend. 

The other big film out this weekend is Lionsgate's "Emperor" following Tommy Lee Jones as General MacArthur (Jones) after the surrender of Japan during World War II. 

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'Oz' Has Highest-Grossing Opening Of The Year—Here's Your Box-Office Roundup


michelle williams oz the great and powerful

It was a "great and powerful" weekend for "Oz." 

Disney's prequel to the 1939 classic easily earned the top spot  for highest-grossing film of the year.  

Up until this point, that honor belonged to Melissa McCarthy's comedy "Identity Thief" with a paltry $34 million.  

Even with more than double McCarthy's film, "Oz" still falls far below the $116.1 million opening weekend of "Alice in Wonderland" and that of director Sam Raimi's largest "Spider-Man" opening ($88.1 million). 

Outside of "Oz," it was still a painstakingly slow weekend at the box office.  

The other wide release, Colin Farrell's "Dead Man Down," bombed and Warner Bros.' "Jack the Giant Slayer" took a massive dive in its second week.  

Other than "Jack" and "Oz" no other film earned more that $7 million this weekend.  

Out of the top ten this week include "A Good Day to Die Hard" in its fourth week and Keri Russell's "Dark Skies" flop. 

In its first week, "Emperor" featuring Tommy Lee Jones earned $1 million from a small 260 theaters.  

Here are this week's winners and losers in Hollywood: 

10. "The Last Exorcism Part II" dropped five spots in its second week earning $3.1 million. The film, which cost an estimated $5 million to make, has now earned $12 million at the box office. 

9. The Weinstein Company's (TWC) cartoon, "Escape from Planet Earth" also died down this week with $3.2 million. The alien kid flick has earned the majority of its $49.2 million gross in the U.S. 

8. TWC's Oscar film "Silver Linings Playbook" continues to perform well at theaters with $3.7 million. In its 17th week, the film is closing in on the $200 million mark worldwide and should hit it within the next week.  

7. Nicholas Sparks' film "Safe Haven" added another $3.8 million to its $62.9 million haul. After four weeks, the film is now behind 2010's "The Last Song" after debuting stronger than Miley Cyrus' movie. 

6. "21 and Over" drops three spots this week earning $5 million. This weekend's box office figure helps push it past its $13 million estimated production budget. By now, the equally low-budget and similar film "Project X" of last year had earned $39.7 million.  

5. "Snitch" moves down one spot from last week earning $5.1 million. In three weeks, The Rock's Lionsgate film has earned $31.9 million worldwide. 

4. Colin Farrell's not box office gold anymore. New thriller "Dead Man Down" flopped earning $5.4 million opening weekend. 

3. With no other new films gaining traction, Melissa McCarthy's "Identity Thief" remains near the top of the box office earning another $6.3 million. After five weeks, that puts the film at $118.7 million worldwide.  

2. "Jack the Giant Slayer" takes a giant 63 percent dip at the box office in week two with $10 million. So far, with only $22.6 million overseas, it doesn't appear the foreign box office will give the nearly $200 million film a giant boost. Worldwide, "Jack" has earned $66.4 million. 

1. It's no surprise that "Oz the Great and Powerful" ruled the box office with $80 million. With a miserable start to the box-office year, that easily pits the film as the highest-earning film of the year so far. It's also the third largest March opening behind last year's "The Hunger Games" and "Alice in Wonderland."

SEE ALSO: What led to the big box-office weekend for 'Oz' >

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Chris Pine Is Breaking All The Rules In The Latest Trailer For 'Star Trek'


Over the weekend, Paramount debuted a new teaser trailer for "Star Trek Into Darkness."

Despite all the doom and gloom of the first few teasers, this one offers a bit of light comedy, focusing on Captain Kirk (Chris Pine).

Starring Pine, Zoe Saldana, Zachary Quinto, and Benedict Cumberbatch, "Star Trek Into Darkness" hits theaters May 17. 

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The First 'Hangover III' Poster Is A 'Harry Potter' Replica


Warner Bros. is having fun with its marketing campaign for the "Hangover III." 

The film's first poster is a nod to the one for the final installment of the "Harry Potter" franchise.

Here's the "Hangover III" poster:

hangover part III poster 

And, here's the "Harry Potter" one:

harry potter poster

We hope this is the first in a series of ads utilizing marketing efforts of other popular series' endings.

"The Dark Knight Rises" with its tagline "The Legend Ends" may be another good fit.

dark knight rises bane teaser poster

SEE ALSO: What you missed in Ben Affleck's Oscar-winning "Argo">

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This Is What Movies Would Look Like Without Visual Effects



Last month, visual effects (VFX) company Rhythm & Hues filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The studio helped bring a ravenous Bengal tiger to the big screen in Oscar winner "Life of Pi."

However, after more than 200 layoffs, some 400 VFX artists protested during the 85th Academy Awards. 

The recent bankruptcy filing of Rhythm & Hues is the latest blow to the VFX community which has taken a hard hit in the past year.  

Last September, VFX studio Digital Domain Media Group also filed for bankruptcy before being bought in part by Galloping Horse and Reliance Capital. 

Now, some VFX artists have suggested a walk out later this week on 3/14 ("Pi" day) to show support for creating a union.

If it weren't for visual and special effects crews, a lot of Hollywood's biggest blockbusters would be unwatchable. 

From "Life of Pi" to "The Dark Knight Rises," we've gathered together images from visual effects studios Industrial Light & Magic and Rhythm & Hues and visual effects software company Imagineer Systems to show what popular movies would look like without added effects.

Visual Effects crew Rhythm & Hues helped make Oscar winner "Life of Pi" go from this ...

... to a boat lost out in the Pacific Ocean with a giant Bengal tiger.

All of Davy Jones' gang in Pirates of the Caribbean is completely computer generated.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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22 Storytelling Tips For Writers From A Pixar Storyboard Artist


toy story buzz lightyear

There's no question Pixar dominates the Best Animated Feature at the Oscars.

Year after year, the animation studio churns out award season gold (save perhaps "Cars 2").

One of the biggest questions is how Pixar continues to stay fresh year in and year out.

If you've ever wanted some advice from a Pixar employee, this is for you.

Former Pixar storyboard artist Emma Coats tweeted out 22 tips for aspiring writers.

Since then, her list started going viral on Reddit.

1. "You admire a character for trying more than for their successes."

2. "You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be very different."

3. "Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about til you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite."

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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UPDATE: 'Veronica Mars' Movie Reaches $2M Kickstarter Goal In Record 10 Hours


Kristen Bell Veronica Mars

UPDATE: "Veronica Mars" creator Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell zoomed past their $2 million in 30 days Kickstarter goal to receive all of the needed funds in just ten hours!

“I love you guys. You are all SO spectacular. I am speechless,” Bell tweeted afterward, continuing, "dear pope: Im sorry VM fans stole ur thunder on ur 1st day. I mean,Im not really that sorry,but i thought it would be polite 2 say so."

Now Warner Bros. is expected to follow through on its promise to handle distribution and publicity, in exchange for raising the money to make the movie.

As for the movie's story line, Thomas revealed some teasers:

"Life has taken Veronica away from Neptune. In the years since spoiling [dad] Keith's [Enrico Colantoni] chances to be re-elected sheriff, Veronica hasn't taken a case. But something big is about to bring her back home and back to her calling. My goal is to include as many of your favorite characters as possible. It is, after all, time for Veronica’s 10-year high school reunion."


This article was published March 13, 2013

Before Kristen Bell was known as the "Forgetting Sarah Marshall"actress who loves sloths, she played the title character on the CW's cult favorite show "Veronica Mars."

Since the show was canceled in 2007 after three years on the air, fans have been begging to bring back Bell and her kick-butt cast mates.

Show creator Rob Thomas was listening and on Wednesday, posted a campaign to Kickstarter in hopes of raising $2 million in 30 days to make a "Veronica Mars" movie. 

The entire original cast is on board, and even made the below video asking for fans' help.

Kristen Bell Veronica Mars Kickstarter CampaignThe campaign has already raised almost a million dollars and is encouraging fans to donate by pledging rewards for certain amounts  ranging from a copy of the script for $10 to a role in the film for $10,000. 

Warner Bros. has promised to handle distribution and publicity if Bell and co. can raise the cash in time.

If they get the funds, the low-budget movie would start production this summer, and hit theaters in 2014 for a limited time before getting released on digital platforms.

“Kristen and I met with the Warner Bros brass, and they agreed to allow us to take this shot," show creator Thomas wrote on the project’s fundraising page. “They were extremely cool about it, as a matter of fact. Their reaction was, if you can show there’s enough fan interest to warrant a movie, we’re on board."

Watch Bell and her cast mates "Veronica Mars" video pitch below:

SEE ALSO: What TV shows can learn from the success of "The Walking Dead">

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Sylvester Stallone Tweets His Dream Casting For 'Expendables 3'


After hearing rumors of "The Expendables 3" casting a few months earlier, Sylvester Stallone is talking about the upcoming third film in the series.

Stallone tweeted he's working on the script and that the team is looking for a few new men including a young "tech wizard" ... and Jackie Chan.

Stallone hints the the next installment will be funnier:

Anyone hoping for Steven Seagal, may be disappointed, but Jackie Chan fans may be in luck:

The crew is also looking for a young actress and a nerdy, "tough" tech geek:

Last year's "The Expendables 2" earned $300.4 million worldwide. 

"The Expendables 3" is set for a 2014 release.

SEE ALSO: Justin Bieber slams media and Lindsay Lohan in crazy instagram rant >

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'The Incredible Burt Wonderstone' Bombs In Theaters—Here's Your Box-Office Roundup


the incredible burt wonderstone"The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" was no magical obstacle for "Oz the Great and Powerful."

This was the first time Steve Carell and Jim Carrey teamed up since the immensely successful "Bruce Almighty" a decade earlier. Of course, that was back when Carrey was a big blockbuster draw, and Carell wasn't a ubiquitous household name. 

Unfortunately, the film took in nowhere near as much as the 2003 comedy. Instead, "Wonderstone" is one of the smallest openings ever for both Carell and Carrey in a wide 3,160 theater release. 

Even Halle Berry's thriller "The Call" about a 911 operator coming to the aid of a young woman performed better than the magic show. 

"Oz," meanwhile, is performing well in its second week. Despite nearly a 47 percent dip in theaters from last week, the film is keeping on par with how "Alice in Wonderland" performed in 2010. That film went on to earn $1 billion at theaters worldwide. 

Out of the top ten this week include Colin Farrell's "Dead Man Down" and "The Last Exorcism Part II" after three weeks in theaters. 

Here are this week's winners and losers in Hollywood:

10. Weinstein Company's cartoon "Escape from Planet Earth" earned another $2.3 million in week five. With little competition in the kid category at theaters the film hasn't performed immensely well with $53.5 million worldwide. The film cost an estimated $40 million to produce.

9. Nicholas Sparks' "Safe Haven" drops two spots with $2.5 million. Of Sparks' eight film adaptations, the Julianne Hough and Josh Duhamel romance is the third highest grossing to date.

8. "Silver Linings Playbook" still manages to stay at the same pace in theaters earning $2.58 million in week 18. The Oscar-nominated film starring Jennifer Lawrence has now crossed the $200 million mark worldwide.

7. "21 and Over" took in another $2.6 million in its third week. The Relativity comedy has failed to duplicate the immense success of low-budgeted similar film "Project X" from last year. That film earned more than $100 million at theaters. By week three, that movie grossed nearly $50 million domestically. "21 and Over" has earned $21.9 million worldwide.

6. The Rock's "Snitch" drops one more spot this week with $3.5 million. The film, which is estimated to have a $15 million budget, has earned more than $37 million worldwide.

5. After a month and a half, "Identity Thief" continues to sit near the top of the box office earning another $4.5 million. While the majority of the film's earnings have been at home, the comedy has grossed $125.9 million worldwide to date.

4. "Jack the Giant Slayer" falls two spots with new films out this week earning $6.2 million. The nearly $200 million film to produce has earned but $76.5 million worldwide. Currently, its foreign earnings are accounting for less than 30 percent of the film's earnings. 

3. "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" did not have a magical debut. The film's $10.3 million debut is one of the lowest openings for actors Steve Carell and Jim Carrey. When the two last teamed up in 2003 for "Bruce Almighty" the film opened to a huge $68 million. Though analysts didn't see "Wonderstone" earning anywhere near that sum, the comedy was estimated to earn closer to $15 million

2. "The Call" featuring Halle Berry managed to rake in $17.1 million opening weekend. The TriStar thriller cost an estimated $13 million to produce and opened in nearly 600 less theaters than "Wonderstone."

1. No surprise here. With little competition, "Oz the Great and Powerful" wins the box office for the second week in a row earning another $42.2 million. The "Wizard of Oz" prequel is doing just as well overseas as it is at home which is good news for Disney. The film has now earned $281.8 million worldwide.

SEE ALSO: Oscar Producers say everyone missed the joke on the 'boobs song' >

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Here's How Poorly Steve Carell's Latest Film Performed Opening Weekend [CHART]

'Escape From New York' Is Getting A Remake


kurt russell escape from new yorkEXCLUSIVEJoel Silver‘s Silver Pictures has joined forces with Studio Canal to build a new franchise with a retelling of Escape From New York.

The 1981 John Carpenter original starred Kurt Russell as Snake Plissken, a tough convict dropped into a futuristic New York that has been turned into a post-apocalyptic maximum security prison.

He’s charged with rescuing the president (Donald Pleasence), who is held hostage by the prison kingpin (Isaac Hayes) after his plane crashes within the city walls. Snake’s offered a pardon if he’s successful, but fitted with a lethal device that will kill him if he tries to run or misses the deadline.

A remake had been attempted not that long ago at New Line with producer Neil Moritz and The Crazieshelmer Breck Eisner, with Gerard Butler, Jeremy Renner and Tom Hardy all mentioned as potentials to play Plissken. That effort ended when New Line let the option lapse almost two years ago.

Studio Canal, which partnered with Silver on the Liam Neeson action films Unknown and Non-Stop and the upcoming Sean Penn-starrer Prone Gunman, has entrusted Silver with the rights. Silver is planning an entirely new take on the material. The goal is to turn it into a trilogy, starting with an origin story in a fashion similar to the way Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes restarted that franchise. Studio Canal will finance development of the project before placing it with a studio. A writer search is underway.

Silver and Silver Production Prexy Andrew Rona will produce. Silver’s EVP Alex Heineman will be executive producer. As for a new Snake, either Butler, Renner, Hardy or Neeson would hit the mark as the one-eyed tough guy.

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The Most Popular Movie At SXSW Was Never Supposed to Get Made


short term 12 sxsw

"Short Term 12" was the most popular movie at South by Southwest, winning top awards from both the festival's jury and its audience.

Yet Destin Daniel Cretton’s second feature-length film, based loosely on his own experience working at a foster care facility, was never supposed to get made. Cretton had made a short, and that was supposed to be that.

“A lot of people said, ‘You have to have a feature version,’” Cretton told the rapturous crowd at the Topfer Theater in Austin last week. “I didn’t write the short to be a feature.”

After college, Cretton worked at the foster are home for a couple of years, stumbling into the position because he couldn’t find a job. “I was frightened of doing one thing to hurt the kids more and of the kids hurting me,” he told TheWrap.

One of the kids he worked with, he remembered, would beat up anyone who ever touched the top of his head.

"Every kid had these things deeply rooted in their past that were just frightening. But after three months of getting to know the kids I realized they were some of the smartest, most resilient people I have ever met," he said.

The short about his stint at the home won a Grand Jury Prize at Sundance in 2009, prompting the film-school graduate to begin work on a feature-length screenplay. He soon ran into a wall, frustrated that he seemed to be telling the same story all over again.

"Writing the first draft it felt like I was keeping characters the same and repeating things," Cretton said. "I couldn't do it."

So he decided to do something he'd never done before -- tell the story from a woman's perspective.

Also Read: SXSW: Jack Black Debuts ‘Ghost Ghirls’ – The Next ‘Girls’ or ‘Burning Love’?

The feature-length version stars Brie Larson as a young woman who has cauterized the wounds of her difficult upbringing, a youth curtailed by abuse both paternal and self-inflicted. She channels those experiences to help disadvantaged kids overcome their own adversities. 

“It felt scary because I hadn’t written from a female perspective,” Cretton said, but it also made the project feel fresh again.

"It made every scene new -- even some of the scenes that carried over from the short into the feature."

Though the story felt fresh to Cretton, it didn't make a difference to Hollywood. Traction Media's Asher Goldstein was committed, but though Cretton won a Nicholl Fellowship from the Academy for his script, the duo couldn't get additional money to fund production.

As part of winning the fellowship, he got money to write another script. So he wrote his debut feature, "I Am Not a Hipster," to shoot something right away when he couldn't get funding for "Short Term 12.""Hipster" debuted at Sundance in 2012 and finally earned the director financial support from Animal Kingdom for "Short Term 12."

There was only one casting hold-over from the initial short, Keith Stanfield (pictured left with Larson and Kaitlyn Dever), who plays an abused 17-year-old who raps in the movie. The actor also laid down some tracks for the film's soundtrack.

Unknown kids hold most of the supplementary roles. And then there's Larson, a star of recent Sundance breakout "The Spectacular Now."

Also Read: Shailene Woodley, Miles Teller Get Sundance Buzz for Teen Spirit in 'The Spectacular Now'

Her character Grace is at first unflappable. Whenever a kid misbehaves or appears traumatized, she has the perfect response, whether it’s a stern condemnation or an understanding conversation. That’s what makes her implosion so jarring.

“She transforms pretty incredibly and is just so unpredictable,” Cretton said. “I lucked out. It looks like I know how to direct, but these actors are just incredible.”

His family pitched in, too. Cretton relied on all of his sisters for insight into how women of a certain age act, think and feel.

"I very often heard, ‘Girls don’t talk like that. That’s you; that's not her,'" he said, stifling laughter.

While the writer and director was unwilling to praise himself for much of anything, others filled the void. Reviews have been reverential, and every media outlet in Austin seems to have anointed Larson the festival’s breakout star, something TheWrap predicted going into South by Southwest. 

In a year where critics hailed the strength of programming at South by Southwest, “Short Term 12” stood out. The question now is not if the film will get bought, but when.

"You'll definitely see us at festivals," Goldstein said after the screening. "The [sales] part we're handling."

He grinned.

"You'll see us again."

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