Thursday, January 17, 2019

THEATER OWNER BALKS AT $60 VIDEO-ON-DEMAND

October 7, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

It’s hard to imagine that any theater chain would feel threatened by Universal Pictures’ announcement on Wednesday that it plans to release the Eddie Murphy-Ben Stiller comedy Tower Heist on “Premium Video-on-Demand” two weeks after it hits theaters in two test markets, Portland, OR and Atlanta, for $60. But the Cinemark chain wasted no time […]

“SUMMER STARTS EARLY”

April 29, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

On the calendar, summer officially begins more than a month and a half from now, but so far as Universal Pictures is concerned, it begins this weekend. “Summer Starts Early” is the slogan the studio is using to usher in Fast Five, a movie requiring the accompaniment of popcorn, starring Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana […]

UNIVERSAL REVAMPS FAST & FURIOUS FRANCHISE — WILL IT WORK?

April 26, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

This weekend will reveal whether Universal’s wholesale retinkering of its Fast and Furious franchise will keep it alive. Today’s (Tuesday) Los Angeles Times observed that Fast Five, which opens on Friday, will be more like Ocean’s 11 than the clandestine-racing series that has proved to be a bonanza for the studio for nearly a decade. […]

HOP SKIPS FORECASTS, JUMPS TO $38 MILLION

April 4, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Hop leaped beyond the best predictions of box office analysts over the weekend, taking in an estimated $38.1 million. The Universal live-action/CGI feature nearly quadrupled the $10.2-million take for 20th Century Fox’s second week of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, with which it was supposed to vie closely for the family audience. Instead, Wimpysettled for […]

FORMER VIVENDI CHIEF CONVICTED

January 21, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

In a surprise verdict, a French court ruled today (Friday) that former Vivendi CEO Jean-Marie Messier had misappropriated company funds and misrepresented the financial condition of the company when he went on a $77-billion acquisition binge in 2000 that included bringing Universal Pictures and Universal Music under the Vivendi umbrella. The conviction came despite the […]

VIDEO ON DEMAND FOR BILLIONAIRES?

December 8, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

During a week when “tax cuts for the rich” has been receiving considerable media attention, a proposal has been unveiled that would allow the rich to view movies on their home theaters beginning the same day that they open in theaters. Today’s (Wednesday) Wall Street Journal says the service, from Prima Cinema Inc., would require […]

DON’T TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONES DURING “DESPICABLE ME”

July 7, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

In the latest attempt to bring an interactive experience to movie theaters, and at the same time quiet mobile phones in them, Universal Pictures and Best Buy are teaming up to offer a free smartphone app to fans going to see the animated Despicable Me this weekend. The Best Buy “Movie Mode” app will allow […]