Showbiz Sandbox 247: Everything You’ve Heard About This Summer’s Box Office Is Wrong

Listening to the chorus of industry naysayers or reading all the media reports might lead you to believe this year’s summer movie season was a complete financial disaster from which Hollywood could not recover. Granted, North American box office declined 15% from the same period last year, marking an 8 year low, and attendance was off by 5%. Even so, there were no huge flops over the summer and certainly none that would send a shiver down the spine of studio execs.

In fact, most of this summer’s releases will make money when international receipts are added to their theatrical grosses. The only problem with that, as Ben Fritz of the Wall Street Journal points out, is that not all box office dollars are counted equally when they are earned overseas.

We’ll also discuss how giant telecom companies are trying to maintain their stranglehold on the Internet in the United States by preventing cities from offering broadband to residents as a public utility. Such legal skirmishes are becoming more important as we move toward streaming services for movies and music.

Of course, we also cover the week’s top entertainment news stories including a new children’s book written by Bruce Springsteen, the first woman ever chosen to head the BBC and a King Arthur movie franchise may finally become a reality.

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‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Rules Lackluster Labor Day
http://variety.com/2014/film/news/box-office-guardians-of-the-galaxy-rules-lackluster-labor-day-1201295004/

Global Box Office: ‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ Roars in China, Crosses $600M Worldwide
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/global-box-office-dawn-planet-729337

‘Dawn of the Planet of the Apes’ Rises to No. 1 in China
http://variety.com/2014/film/box-office/dawn-of-the-planet-of-the-apes-rises-to-no-1-in-china-1201295157/

Box Office Down 15% in Hollywood’s Worst Summer in Nearly a Decade
http://variety.com/2014/film/news/summer-box-office-low-analysis-1201292170/

Box Office: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Wins Labor Day, Closes Out Troubled Summer
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/box-office-brutal-summer-ends-729312

Rona Fairhead Confirmed as Head of BBC Governing Body
http://variety.com/2014/tv/news/rona-fairhead-confirmed-as-chair-of-bbc-governing-body-1201295088/

A Book for Children, and Others, by Bruce Springsteen
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/08/28/a-book-for-children-and-others-by-bruce-springsteen/

Charlie Hunnam Is Guy Ritchie’s Choice For King Arthur
http://deadline.com/2014/08/sons-of-anarchys-charlie-hunnam-is-guy-ritchies-choice-for-king-arthur-825945/

Chris Hemsworth and Charlie Day Join New Line’s ‘Vacation’ (Exclusive)
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/chris-hemsworth-charlie-day-join-727642

Operalia 2014 winners include Mario Chang, Rachel Willis-Sørensen
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/arts/culture/la-et-cm-operalia-winners-20140831-story.html

For Hollywood, Not All Box Office Dollars Are Equal
http://online.wsj.com/articles/for-hollywood-not-all-box-office-dollars-are-equal-1409241925

Rejected Late Show Host Craig Ferguson Is Gonna Get Rich
http://defamer.gawker.com/rejected-late-show-host-craig-ferguson-is-gonna-get-ric-1561830022

US Telecoms Giants Call on FCC to Block Cities’ Expansion of High-Speed Internet
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/aug/29/us-telecoms-fcc-block-high-speed-internet-chattanooga