Weekend Box Office: Monster Hunter Scares Away The Croods

Weekend Box Office

Last weekend, Monster Hunter took over the cinemas – those that are still open, that is. According to the Box Office Mojo, the latest sci-fi action-adventure by Thomas W. S. Anderson earned $2,2 million in its inaugural weekend. Monster Hunter is a live-action adaptation of Capcom’s video game franchise of the same name. Like many of Anderson’s films, it features his wife Milla Jovovich in the lead role. She portrays a commander of US Army Rangers stranded on an unknown world populated by gigantic monsters. Before long, they meet a local (Tony Jaa – Ong Bak) who teaches them how to survive.

CGI-animated family film The Croods: A New Age is in second place at the last weekend box office with a little bit over $2 million. In third place with $918,000 is the second newcomer of the weekend – thriller Fatale. It tells a story about one man’s (Michael Ealy – Almost Human) ill-advised one-night stand with a police investigator (Hillary Swank – Logan Lucky) who becomes his stalker. It’s a throwback to cheesy erotic thrillers of the early 1990s, in the vein of Basic Instinct. In fourth place with $365,000 is the re-release of the 2003 holiday comedy Elf starring Will Ferrell as a human raised by Christmas Elves. He embarks on a search for his biological parents. And finally, in fifth place is the comedy Half-Brothers with a weekend gross of $272,000.

HBO Renews His Dark Materials for a Third Season

His Dark Materials

HBO and BBC have decided to renew the fantasy adventure series His Dark Materials for a third and final season, says GeekTyrant. This decision comes ahead of the second season’s final episode that airs on December 28, 2020.

Set in an alternate universe, the story follows Lyra Belacqua (Dafne Keen – Wolverine) who searches for her missing friend only to uncover a sinister world-spanning conspiracy. The series features an ensemble cast including James McAvoy (Split) as controversial explorer Lord Asriel; Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) as the aeronaut Lee Scoresby; and Ruth Wilson (Luther) as influential political figure Marisa Coulter.

His Dark Materials is based on a fantasy trilogy by the British writer Phillip Pullman. First published in the late 1990s, the novels won several awards. They became best-sellers once the Harry Potter mania took off in the early 2000s, and publishers began looking for similar fantasy stories featuring young characters.

So far, the first two seasons of His Dark Materials more or less adhered to the first two novels in the series – The Golden Compass and The Subtle Knife. The third season will most likely focus on events from the trilogy’s last book – The Amber Spyglass. 

As Government Considers Relief Bill for Cinemas, MGM Considers Selling the Studio

Cinemas, MGM

After marathon negotiations, Congress recently announced a bipartisan COVID-19 relief and the stimulus bill. This is the second such bill since the pandemic first struck back in March. According to Slash Film, if the bill passes the vote and gets approved by the President, it will provide $15 billion in financial support to movie theaters and live event venues. Cinemas have been struggling throughout most of this year. Regal Cinemas closed its theater venues several months ago while AMC Theaters is on the brink of bankruptcy. Can US cinemas be salvaged? Should they be saved? Will these measures be approved and if so, will they be enough? Time will tell.

But the time may be running out on MGM Studios. Its parent company, MGM Holdings Inc. is reportedly considering the sale of the studio. MGM hired Morgan Stanley and LionTree LLC to advise them on the formal sale. The MGM Studios currently own and co-own some big franchises, including James Bond, The Terminator, Rocky, and The Lord of the Rings. In March, the latest Bond film No Time to Die became one of the first casualties of the pandemic when MGM rescheduled its premiere until November. Then, MGM Studios had to postpone it again once the second wave hit. This decision, among other things, caused the indefinite closure of the Cineworld, the world’s second-largest movie theater chain.