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Category: Films

Headline News Signs Back On Top

While sim-actress comedy SIMONE barely made a blip in the weekend box office, M. Night Shyamalan's thriller SIGNS, with visual effects by ILM, rebounded to number one. After debuting in the top spot then spending two weeks in second place, SIGNS has rebounded to number one, adding $14.3M for a cume of $173.2M. SIGNS ousted two-time number one actioner XXX, with visual effects by Digital Domain, which dropped to second with $13.7M for a total of $106.2M. SPY KIDS 2 maintained its hold on third place for the third week in a row.

Headline News Simex Digital Studios Builds Racers For Lego In 4 Dimensions

SimEx Digital Studios has recently completed a specialty venue project for LEGOland, an all-CG animated short based on the newly released LEGO Racers toy line. LEGO RACERS 4D is a high-definition 3D stereoscopic 13-minute short with in-theater special effects featuring Max, a driver for Team Nitro, and Max's nemesis Sever, driver for the Exo-Force Team. Together with six other drivers, Max and Sever bang fenders within a 20 mile-diameter racing stadium called The Drome, which provides Max and the other racers with an endless array of obstacles and landscapes.

Headline News R!OT Goes To The Moon For Pluto Nash

A team of digital matte artists, computer animators and visual effects specialists from R!OT helped to build the first city on the moon for Warner Bros.' latest comedy THE ADVENTURES OF PLUTO NASH. The R!OT team prepared a series of digital cityscapes of the lunar metropolis, complete with trains, buses, holographic signage, office towers and a multitude of lunar residents on scooters. The digital shots, including several fly-overs revealing large expanses of the city, appear throughout the film. "It is a city encased in glass," said R!OT lead matte painter Rocco Gioffre.

Headline News ComputerCafe Creates Mutant Animals and Swashbuckling Skeletons For Spy Kids 2

Thanks to visual effects house ComputerCafe, a miniature zoo and menacing mutant animals are among the new adventures awaiting siblings Carmen and Juni Cortez, who are back in action in SPY KIDS 2: THE ISLAND OF LOST DREAMS. In SPY KIDS 2, a new mission takes Carmen and Juni to a mysterious island where they meet Professor Romero, a genetic scientist who has created the ultimate children's toy, a tabletop zoo featuring miniature penguins, a kangaroo, a lion and an elephant.

Headline News XXX Is Number One Again

The top two movies held their places from last weekend, with extreme-sports actioner XXX, with visual effects by Digital Domain, coming in at number one with $23M, for a gross to date of $84.9M. Alien thriller SIGNS, with visual effects by ILM, was in second place, with $19.5M for a cume of $150.7M. The surfer girls of BLUE CRUSH had a third place debut with $15.2M and kids' action pic SPY KIDS 2: THE ISLAND OF LOST DREAMS, with visual effects by ComputerCafe, added another $11.6M to its total for a ten day cume of $45.7M and fourth place.

Headline News Something Fishy From SecondSun

SecondSun Entertainment has teamed with Revolution Studios and Columbia Pictures to screen its new animated short cartoon, SOMETHING FISHY, together with the film THE MASTER OF DISGUISE, starring Dana Carvey, now in theaters. The 3-minute short, about a little shrimp and his position in the food chain, was produced by SecondSun Entertainment's 3D-animation division, Brainchild Studios, and was directed by Ed Konyha. The film was chosen by Revolution Studios from over 300 short cartoons that were submitted.

Headline News Michael Moore Teams With Tom Tomorrow For Animated Feature

Controversial documentary filmmaker Michael Moore (ROGER AND ME, BOWLING FOR COLUMBINE) is getting animated. VARIETY reports that Moore's next project will be an animated feature, co-written with cartoonists/animators Tom Tomorrow (Dan Perkins) and Harold Moss. Tomorrow is well known for his comic strip "This Modern World," which appears regularly in approximately 150 papers across the country, and Moss is the founder and creative director of FlickerLab in New York.

Headline News XXX Marks The Spot

Extreme-sports actioner XXX, with visual effects by Digital Domain, was the number one film this weekend, earning $44.5M. The signs were still good for M. Night Shyamalan's crop-circle caper, which has already crossed the $100M mark after ten days in theaters. SIGNS, with visual effects by ILM, dropped 51% from last weekend but still brought in $29.4M for a total of $117.9M and second place. Family friendly sequel SPY KIDS 2: THE ISLAND OF LOST DREAMS, with visual effects by ComputerCafe, debuted in third with $16.7M for the weekend and a total of $25M since its Wednesday debut. Yeah baby!

Headline News Andrew Adamson To Helm Live-Action The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe

Andrew Adamson, co-director of SHREK, has been hired to direct a live-action feature film adaptation of THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE. Producer Walden Media partnered with The CS Lewis Company to option the entire seven-part fantasy book series THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA, of which THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE is best-known. Writer Ann Peacock (A LESSON BEFORE DYING) will adapt the screenplay. The film does not yet have a distributor, but Walden hopes to have it in theaters by mid-2004. SHREK marked Adamsons feature film directing debut.

Headline News Signs Appears At Number One

All signs pointed to big money at the box office this weekend, when M. Night Shyamalan's latest thriller took the top spot, besting AUSTIN POWERS: GOLDMEMBER and scoring August's highest non-sequel debut in history. SIGNS, with visual effects by ILM, was number one with a $60.3M debut. GOLDMEMBER was second, dropping off 56% from its first weekend, but still earning a strong $30M for a two-week total of $140M. The third and fourth spots were held by two new releases, the Dana Carvey starrer THE MASTER OF DISGUISE with $17M and MARTIN LAWRENCE: LIVE with $7.5M.

Headline News Austin Powers Has Box Office Mojo

GOLDMEMBER, the third installment in the AUSTIN POWERS franchise, handily topped the box office this weekend with a whopping $71.4M debut. This gives the spy spoof $75M total (including Thursday's sneak preview gross) making it the highest July debut ever. The weekend's other new film, Disney's THE COUNTRY BEARS, based on the Disneyland theme park attraction, made a lackluster sixth place debut with $5.2M. This may not bode well for Disney's upcoming features based on theme rides The Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Headline News DreamWorks Casts Millennium Actress For Anime Debut

DreamWorksSKG has thrown its hat into the anime ring with the acquisition ofthe worldwide distribution rights for the Japanese animated filmMILLENNIUM ACTRESS. The film rights, licensed from The Klockworx Co.,Ltd., include all forms of distribution including theatrical, homevideo, television and ancillary rights, and covers all markets withthe exception of Asia. Based in Tokyo, The Klockworx Co., Ltd. willoversee the film's release in Asia. Directed by PERFECT BLUE director

Headline News Perdition Squeaks Past Stuart Little 2

Despite three new films in wide release, this weekend posted a relatively low total box office. And in a repeat of the LILO & STITCH vs. MINORITY REPORT box office battle, a family film was neck and neck with an adult drama, only to lose the top spot. The continuing adventures of the animated mouse of STUART LITTLE 2 lost its hold on the number one box office spot to THE ROAD TO PERDITION. STUART LITTLE 2, with visual effects by Sony Imageworks, debuted in second place with $15.1M, following closely behind ROAD's $15.4M.

Headline News Cinesite Inks X-Men 2 VFX Deal

Hollywood, California-based production house Cinesite will be providing visual effects for the 20th Century Fox feature X-MEN 2, scheduled to be in theaters May 2, 2003. In this sequel to 2000's X-MEN, Brian Cox (THE BOURNE IDENTITY) portrays the villainous Stryker, a former Army commander who holds the key to Wolverine's past - as well as the future of the X-MEN. The original cast from X-MEN will return, joined by Alan Cumming as Nightcrawler, a mutant who can teleport himself from one point to another almost instantaneously.

Headline News DreamWorks Goes Over The Hedge

DreamWorks Pictures has enlisted Jim Carrey and Garry Shandling to voice the main characters in its upcoming 3D animated comedy OVER THE HEDGE, based on the comic strip by Michael Fry and T Lewis. OVER THE HEDGE, slated for release in 2005, will be the second computer animated project to be produced entirely at DreamWorks animation studio in Glendale, following the comedy SHARKSLAYER, which is currently in production. Produced by Bonnie Arnold (TOY STORY, TARZAN), OVER THE HEDGE follows the adventures of mischievous raccoon R.J.

Headline News Men In Black II Stays On Top

Four new releases failed to attack the MEN IN BLACK's box office hold. Despite a 50% drop from last weekend's monstrous box office, MEN IN BLACK II is still number one, earning $25M and breaking the $100M mark after just 8 days. The film, with primary visual effects by ILM, has earned $133.3M since its July 4 debut. DreamWorks' THE ROAD TO PERDITION, debuted in second place with $22.1M. In third was the dragonslaying thriller REIGN OF FIRE, with visual effects by The Secret Lab, which brought in $16M, and HALLOWEEN: RESURRECTION managed to scare up $12.3M for fourth place.

Headline News Miramax And Lego Bring Bionicle To The Big Screen

Miramax Films is joining the ranks of studios with animation projects in the works. The independent film studio has partnered with LEGO Media to develop a CG-animated motion picture for 2004 release, based on LEGOs successful Bionicle toys and comics. In addition to the feature film project, the agreement gives Miramax worldwide distribution rights to LEGO Media's previously announced, CG-animated direct-to-video movie, BIONICLE: MASK OF LIGHT, scheduled to debut in September 2003.

Headline News Men In Black II Features A Surprising CG Animated Short

Sony Imageworks first 3D animated short, a 5 1/2 minute comedy titled THE CHUBBCHUBBS, is now playing in theaters before the feature film MEN IN BLACK II. Produced by Imageworks, and directed by Eric Armstrong, animation supervisor for STUART LITTLE 2, THE CHUBBCHUBBS features an alien hero named Meeper who valiantly tries to warn the patrons of the Ale-E-Inn of impending intergalactic danger. According to VARIETY, the short was never intended for the public and was made as an internal systems test.

Headline News Men In Black Come Back With Box Office Record

Aliens are proving to be big box office this summer, as MEN IN BLACK II debuts at number one, and LILO AND STITCH breaks the $100M mark after three weeks. MEN IN BLACK II, the sequel to the 1997 blockbuster, has taken in a record-breaking total of $90M since its Wednesday, July 4 debut, knocking last week's number one film MR. DEEDS, to second with $18.8M for the weekend and $74M to date.

Headline News ILM Makes Peter Pan Fly In Live-Action Adaptation

IndustrialLight + Magic will provide the special visual effects and animationfor PETER PAN, the first live-action version of J.M. Barrie'senduring classic about the boy who doesn't want to grow up. The filmis a joint production of Universal Pictures, Columbia Pictures andRevolution Studios, with P.J. Hogan (MY BEST FRIEND'S WEDDING)enlisted to direct. Principal photography will begin in fall 2002 inQueensland, Australia. Hogan and writer Michael Goldenberg (CONTACT)

Headline News Lilo & Stitch Stays In Second

After fighting a battle royal with futuristic thriller MINORITY REPORT and ending last weekend in close second, this weekend's tally finds LILO & STITCH holding fast to the number two spot while MINORITY REPORT has slipped to third. In first place was the latest Adam Sandler vehicle MR. DEEDS, which topped the chart with $37.6M. In second, LILO & STITCH grossed $22.2M for $77.8M to date and MINORITY REPORT's $21.6M was good for third, and a two-week total of $73.4M. SCOOBY DOO, with visual effects by Rhythm & Hues and Warner Bros.

Headline News Scooby Dooby Two

After it grossed $100M in only 10 days, it's nosurprise that Warner Bros. has announced plans for a secondSCOOBY-DOO feature, with the original starring cast returning underthe anticipated helm of SCOOBY-DOO director Raja Gosnell. Theannouncement was made by Lorenzo di Bonaventura, president ofworldwide production for Warner Bros. Pictures. The upcoming filmwill be produced by Mosaic Media Group's Charles Roven, and byRichard Suckle. Stars Freddie Prinze Jr., Sarah Michelle Gellar,

Headline News Lilo & Stitch Comes Close Second In Hot Box Office Race

The final numbers from this weekend's box office have been tallied, and it was a close one! Although Disney officials predicted the traditionally animated duo LILO & STITCH will take the number one spot over the powerful combination of Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg, it was not to be. It was down to the wire, but Spielberg's MINORITY REPORT, with primary visual effects by ILM, prevailed, edging out LILO & STITCH for the number one spot with $35.7M.

Headline News Giant Killer Robots Create Spirited VFX For Scooby Doo

The CGIScooby isn't the only startling effect in Warner Bros. feature filmSCOOBY DOO. Spooky Island features a host of ghosts and SanFrancisco visual effects house Giant Killer Robots (GKR) delivered120 visual effects shots, most involving the "spirits" of the film'scharacters. When the villain Mondavarius and his team of evil-doerssteal the spirits of the Mystery, Inc. gang, the artists at GKR hadto bring those spirits to life. Working with point cloud scans of the

Headline News Scooby Doo Is Number One

Three new releases took the top three spots at this weekend's box office. Number one was the live-action comedy SCOOBY DOO, featuring an all CGI Scooby courtesy of Rhythm & Hues and Warner Bros. Feature Animation. The Mystery Inc. crew debuted with $56.4M, making SCOOBY DOO the third highest grossing debut this year, after EPISODE II and SPIDER-MAN. In second place was the thriller THE BOURNE IDENTITY with a strong $27.6 debut. In third was the John Woo-helmed World War II pic WINDTALKERS, with visual effects by Cinesite, earning $14.5M for the weekend.

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