Showbiz Sandbox 49: Hollywood Experiences Premature Sequalization

April 12, 2010

Have you ever wondered why movie studios love to make sequels of hit films? Well, these studios don’t even wait for a film to be released before announcing its sequel. Steve Zeitchik of the Los Angeles Times fills us in on the sequel culture that has taken over Hollywood.

Meanwhile, the king and queen of television, Steve Carell and Tina Fey, nudged “Clash of the Titans” out of first place at the box office with their new release “Date Night”.

While Fey may be making a move to the silver screen, the big news of the week was happening in television – cable television no less. Oprah Winfrey announced five new shows that will air on her cable network starting next January, a lineup that left some industry-watchers befuddled. Another TV personality following Oprah onto a cable network is Conan O’Brien. He surprised just about everyone by announcing he would be starting his own late night talk show this fall on TBS.

While analyzing the week’s top entertainment news stories including how celebrities are using Twitter these days. We finish off with a little Inside Baseball in which we try and understand why anyone would want to buy Miramax or MGM.  Read more


Showbiz Sandbox 6: Down With ‘Up’ And Other Contrarian Opinions

June 1, 2009

We are excited to be joined by journalist Anne Thompson of Thompson On Hollywood who recently returned to the United States after covering the Cannes Film Festival. You may remember Anne as the West Coast Editor for Premiere Magazine and Film Comment, not to mention her stint as the Deputy Film Editor at The Hollywood Reporter. She’s also written for a plethora of media outlets including, The New York Times, Washington Post, Wired and LA Weekly. Anne fills us in on who scored big at this past year’s festival and who wound up spinning their wheels.

There was plenty to talk about this week with Pixar’s tenth animated film “Up” winning praise from both critics and audiences. The film earned $68.2 million during it’s opening weekend in North America, but not a dime from Karen Woodward who’s not a fan of animated films (or as she calls them. . . cartoons). “Up” may just give “The Hangover” a run for its money when it opens next week. The comedy flick from director Todd Philips has been receiving a lot of buzz as a potential sleeper hit. Another animated film trying to capture people’s attention is Robert Zemeckis’ take on “A Christmas Carol”. Though it’s not due out until November of this year, Disney has launched a promotional tour which will have clips of the film visiting 40 cities over the next six months by train.  Actor Jim Carrey tells us why another version of the classic tale is being made. Read more