I’m still recovering from Joe Dante’s Movie Orgy. Partly in terms of sleep, partly in terms of just being overwhelmed. Wish you were there, you know what I mean?
A WEEKEND TO DARN YOUR SOCKS
There’s three wide releases this weekend. Let’s start with the one that might be the best of the bunch.
Harold and Kumar Escape From Guantanamo Bay is the 21st century equivalent of Eddie and the Cruisers 2: Eddie Lives. This sounds like a joke I’d guess (I have this medical condition that has drained my ability to note when I make a joke or not), but Eddie and the Cruiser 1 (and it’s been re-titled to complete the duology) was a film that became popular through home video and cable play. And so a six-year-old film could spawn a cheapie sequel. In the 21st Century, a film like Harold and Kumar go to White Castle does modest but not exceptional business theatrically, but sees an immediate revenue leap due to an unrated DVD and acquires a fandom of people who like stoner comedies, and so the two leads are put together again in the hopes of doing similar business, if not a little more or a little less. What this means is strong Friday numbers, and that’s about it. Still, if word of mouth is good, then we may yet see a third story of these bumbling stoners.
Baby Mama is a Tina Fey joint. I believe she intimated that she polished the draft (and I know guys with nerd fetishes would love to see her polish their drafts, if you know what I mean. Though if you suffer my medical condition, what I mean is this: They want to have sex with her), though she goes uncredited. The date may be around the same time as Mean Girls‘s release, but this isn’t an MTV/Paramount production, this is Universal, and if they had any faith in it at all, they would have put it out in March. That may sound counter-intuitive, but the week before summer starts is a dumping ground (last year offered the Nicholas Cage-starring Next), and so what’s hoped for is an okay opening weekend, and then being able to hang in the bottom of the top ten while the top is held by the powerhouses. They’re even opening it a week after their Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which may hold better than Fey and Amy Pohler. Though – as has been intimated – the film has a strong support staff, with Steve Martin, Sigorney Weaver and Greg Kinnear offering ringers, but it’s likely to be found on cable. Which may lead to Baby Mama 2: Big Baby Mama’s House.
The La Times has a great article about Deception here. Basically, the film was made because 20th Century Fox wants to be in the Hugh Jackman business as long as Wolverine is a viable franchise. And so the film will die a quick death, because it getting made was the victory. See also: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, most non-commerical George Clooney films, etc. Jackman flexed some muscle, but the film is viewed as a non-starter. Though, because of that, it’s likely better than you’d think. Or it could be Stay. Dunno. But in less than a week: Iron Man.
Tangent: People seem to think that some of Chud’s writers are on a hate train aimed at Indy IV, but I was talking to a friend about it the other day who’s in the business, and he confirmed everything that’s been published about the awkward advanced word – in that the film was seen as rocky, and there’s not a lot of faith currently in it being aces. I’m sorry that gets peoples panties in a bunch, but since a high percentage of our readers are men, what they are doing with panties is anyone’s guess. Everyone hopes for the best, but what is out there is what is out there, and calling it like it is should not be viewed as hating.
SHAME ON A PREDICTION, THAT WANTS TO RUN GAME ON A PREDICTION
I’m going to give the edge in comedies to Baby Mama, though I think word of mouth on Forgetting Sarah Marshall may cut into it. It depends on girlfriends wanting to see Harold and Kumar or not, but with pregnancy as main plot point in Baby Mama, it may prove an awkward date night choice. I’m going to give the edge to Harold, though I think those three will be running pretty tight. Otherwise, The Forbidden Kingdom may have the advantage with young males unadorned by female companions. It’s going to be a tight top four, but I’ll break it down like this:
Yo, Ren, what are we gonna call this?
1. Harold and Kumar 2 – $13.4 Million
2. Baby Mama – $12.8 Million
3. The Forbidden Kingdom – $11.5 Million
4. Forgetting Sarah Marshall – $11.5 Million
5. Deception – $5 Million
Though if Prom Night sneaks in the top five, it was bound to happen. And then Sunday I’ll wake up and hold my mistakes up. Before they turn the summer into dust.