NCM Entertainment Roundup – November 14, 2018

The magic is back! Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald hits theaters this weekend.

Let’s talk about the top stories in Hollywood this week!

Marvel Comics writer, editor and publisher Stan Lee passed away on Monday at the age of 95. Lee began the Marvel business in 1939 which has since grown into a media empire ranging from films to television, video games, toys and, of course, comics. This year’s top grossing films, Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther, featured some of Lee’s superhero creations. Lee is survived by family including his daughter and younger brother Larry Lieber, a writer and artist for Marvel. (Hollywood Reporter)

The domestic box office set the record for shortest time to gross $10 billion in a calendar year: ten months and 11 days. 2018 is pacing 5.6% ahead of 2016 which closed at $11.4 billion. This year’s box office success can be attributed to big blockbusters (Infinity War, Black Panther, Ant-Man and the Wasp), as well as some surprising breakout films (A Quiet Place, The Meg, Crazy Rich Asians). There are still major releases to come this year, including the Fantastic Beasts sequel, Aquaman, Ralph Breaks the Internet and more. (Deadline)

Disney and Marvel Studios took home six of the ten People’s Choice Awards in the movies category, including Movie of 2018 which went to Avengers: Infinity War. Click here to see the full list of winners. (CBS News)

Star Wars’ John Boyega and Black Panther’s Letitia Wright are attached to a sci-fi romance project based on Katie Khan’s novel Hold Back the Stars. The book focuses on a man and woman trapped in space with only 90 minutes of oxygen left. It is being called “Romeo & Juliet meets Gravity.” Mike Cahill will direct a script by Christy Hall. (Variety)

Harrison Ford addressed Chris Pratt’s chances of joining him in Indiana Jones 5. During an interview with Variety, Ford simply stated “I think it’s him or me.” Pratt commented on the possibility of taking the mantle from Ford in 2015 saying “It’s all nothing until it’s something…It’d be cool. No one’s called me…it would have to be perfect to do it.” (Variety, /Film)

After news that Shazam! reshoots were extended to December, fans expressed concerns that major changes were being made to the film’s plot and connection to the DCEU. Director David F. Sandberg addressed the rumors on Twitter, simply stating the reshoots are “All normal stuff. No changing the tone, removing DC references or whatever else theories are out there.” Shazam! is still slated for an April 5, 2019 release. (Heroic Hollywood, Twitter)

Paramount Players has acquired Unboxing, a film about a young YouTube influencer who unboxes her father’s secret safe as a stunt for her channel, resulting in the release of “the treacherous Puck and his band of evil tricksters.” The script comes from Ice Age: The Meltdown writer Jim Hecht. It will be produced by indie studio Pocket.watch. (Deadline)

Mark Dindal, director of The Emperor’s New Groove and Chicken Little will direct an animated Garfield movie. The film was announced in 2016, but has not moved much since that news broke. “Comic strip characters have always had a special appeal to me,” said Dindal. “To have this opportunity to make a film with a classic character like Garfiled is a privilege and a thrill.” (/Film)

In a Steam community forum, Five Nights at Freddy’s creator Scott Cawthon announced some important developments, including a delay for Blumhouse’s live-action adaptation of Cawthon’s cult video game. “I had a script written,” wrote Cawthon, “Jason [Blum] liked it…but I tossed it. I had a different idea for it, one that I liked better. I take responsibility for this delay, it’s my fault.” (Polygon)

Click below to watch the latest trailers.

Going to the movies this weekend? Get there early to see Noovie! Find Noovie at a theater near you, and follow WhatsNoovie on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more updates.

Now, when you get to the theater early, you can play augmented reality games on the big screen! Download Noovie ARcade on the App Store or Google Play!

  • Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald: The second installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series set in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World featuring the adventures of magizoologist Newt Scamander.
  • Instant Family: A couple find themselves in over their heads when they adopt three children.
  • Widows: Set in contemporary Chicago, amidst a time of turmoil, four women with nothing in common accept a debt left behind by their dead husbands’ criminal activities, take fate into their own hands, and conspire to forge a future on their own terms.
  • Green Book: A working-class Italian-American bouncer becomes the driver of an African-American classical pianist on a tour of venues through the 1960s American South.
  • At Eternity’s Gate: A look at the life of painter Vincent van Gogh during the time he lived in Arles and Auvers-sur-Oise, France.
Posted in Entertainment

NCM Entertainment Roundup – November 7, 2018

Benedict Cumberbatch is out to steal Christmas in Illumination’s The Grinch.

Let’s talk about the top stories in Hollywood this week!

BBC News uncovered documentation that may reveal the titles for James Cameron’s four Avatar sequels. In order of their release dates, the titles found are Avatar: The Way of Water (December 2020), Avatar: The Seed Bearer (December 2021), Avatar: The Tulkin Rider (December 2024) and Avatar: The Quest for Eywa (December 2025). Though these titles are not confirmed by Warner Bros., The Way of Water is plausible given the “tremendous amount of water work” Cameron hinted at in Avatar 2 and 3. (BBC News)

Six weeks before it hits theaters, Aquaman is finally complete. Director James Wan made the announcement on Instagram, celebrating the efforts of his team. “I can’t THANK enough the amazing post team…for working tirelessly around the clock,” wrote Wan. “Everyone poured their heart and soul into it, and I can’t wait to share this 21st December.” (CinemaBlend)

A week removed from its wide release, a Suspiria prequel idea was shared with The Playlist. In the interview, director Luca Guadagnino talked about his vision for a backstory to the horror remake that explores the origin of the dance company’s leader. Guadagnino has not formally begun working on a prequel. (The Playlist)

New Line won a bidding war for a horror story that originated on Twitter. Former BuzzFeed writer Adam Ellis composed a thread in which he described being haunted by the ghost of a dead child trying to kill him. Shopped as Dear David based on the way Ellis addressed the ghost, New Line beat Paramount Players for the viral project that earned Ellis over one million followers. (Collider)

Fantastic Beasts producer David Heyman confirmed the Willy Wonka movie in the works will be a prequel. “We are still trying to figure out how to tell that story,” said Heyman. “When we find him at the chocolate factory doing the golden ticket, where is he before that?” Heyman wants Paddington director Paul King to helm this project, but King is getting ready to direct a Pinocchio remake for Disney. (Collider)

Illumination founder Chris Meledandri told Variety that an animated Super Mario Bros. is in “priority development” with plans to hit theaters by 2022. Unlike the 1993 live-action film, the animated project has been created in close collaboration with Super Mario Bros. creator Shigeru Miyamoto. “It’s an ambitious task,” said Meledandri. “The challenge is taking things that are so thin in their original form and finding depth that doesn’t compromise what generations of fans love about Mario.” (Variety)

A recent Instagram post by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson hinted at the possibility of a future collaboration with Jumanji costar Kevin Hart. “Great having [Kevin Hart] stop by my set of HOBBS & SHAW…to have a big meet up about new opportunities,” wrote Johnson in the post’s description. Even though Johnson was not specific about the opportunities being discussed, it’s likely that the duo is in talks to work on future films after costarring in two (Jumanji and Central Intelligence), and a third (Jumanji 2) is in the works. (CinemaBlend)

Star Wars director J.J. Abrams is in search of a mega deal. Abrams is speaking with several Hollywood studios on franchise opportunities with “put pictures” – a guaranteed number of slots in a studio’s film slate – and expansions into television, digital and other mediums. Abrams “hopes for a pact worth half-a-billion dollars or more” that CAA president Richard Lovett is leading. (Variety)

Click below to watch the latest trailers.

Going to the movies this weekend? Get there early to see Noovie! Find Noovie at a theater near you, and follow WhatsNoovie on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more updates.

Now, when you get to the theater early, you can play augmented reality games on the big screen! Download Noovie ARcade on the App Store or Google Play!

  • The Grinch: A grumpy Grinch plots to ruin Christmas for the village of Whoville.
  • The Girl in the Spider’s Web: Young computer hacker Lisbeth Salander and journalist Mikael Blomkvist find themselves caught in a web of spies, cybercriminals and corrupt government officials.
  • Overlord: The story of two American soldiers behind enemy lines on D Day.
  • The Front Runner: American Senator Gary Hart’s presidential campaign in 1988 is derailed when he’s caught in a scandalous love affair.
Posted in Entertainment

NCM Entertainment Roundup – October 31, 2018

Rami Malek takes the stage as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody.

Happy Halloween! Let’s talk about the top stories in Hollywood this week!

James Cameron is hard at work producing four sequels to his blockbuster success Avatar. In an interview with Hollywood Reporter, Sigourney Weaver discussed the production process. “We just finished shooting [Avatar] two and three… [Right now] I’m busy doing Avatar 4 and 5… it really is a big saga.” Weaver mentioned that many scenes in the sequels are shot underwater. The first sequel is slated to release December 18, 2020. (Hollywood Reporter)

What would you do with $12 billion? In the last 12 months (October 2017-October 2018), the box office earned this record-setting amount with the help of big blockbusters (The Last Jedi, Black Panther, Infinity War) as well as some other surprising standouts (A Quiet Place, The Meg). (Deadline)

Tyler Perry revealed that A Madea Family Funeral will be the final film in the Madea franchise. Perry has portrayed the tough-talking grandmother since 1999, but feels it is time to focus on new projects. “I just don’t want to be her age, playing her” said Perry in a Sirius XM interview. (Variety)

The PG-13 release of Deadpool 2 on December 21 will come with some new scenes. While screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick “can’t say” what the re-shoots entailed, they did not change the plot of the R-rated version. “The aim of the new scenes was to have fun with the existing story, not to modify it,” according to /Film. (/Film)

Seth Rogan and Michael Keaton are set to star in dark comedy King of Jungle, a movie based on tech leader John McAfee who abandoned civilization to move to a jungle in Belize and create his own colony. When the project was first announced last year, Johnny Depp was cast to portray McAfee. (Deadline)

Amblin Entertainment’s The Trial of the Chicago 7 is getting off the ground with Aaron Sorkin on board to direct. The film about the infamous trial of seven defendants charged with conspiracy arising from the 1968 DNC protest in Chicago has been halted several times. The film was shelved in 2007 amid the writer’s strike, and again in 2013 after Steven Spielberg and director-of-interest Paul Greengrass had budget conflicts. Sacha Baron Cohen is in early talks to join the cast. (Variety)

Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy confirmed the solo Star Wars Boba Fett film is officially not moving forward. Kennedy’s focus is currently on The Mandalorian, a new television series by Jon Favreau for Disney’s upcoming streaming service. Both the Boba Fett and Obi Wan solo Star Wars films fell into question after Solo: A Star Wars Story under-performed at the box office in May. (/Film)

DreamWorks Animation is bringing Mice and Mystics to the big screen. The film will be based on a role-playing board game in which players must face rats, cockroaches, spiders and a house cat named Brodie all while assuming the role of mice imprisoned in a seaside castle. Alexandre Aja is attached to direct and co-write the script with Aquaman writer David Leslie Johnson. (Variety)

Click below to watch the latest trailers.

Going to the movies this weekend? Get there early to see Noovie! Find Noovie at a theater near you, and follow WhatsNoovie on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more updates.

Now, when you get to the theater early, you can play augmented reality games on the big screen! Download Noovie ARcade on the App Store or Google Play!

  • The Nutcracker and the Four Realms: A young girl is transported into a magical world of gingerbread soldiers and an army of mice.
  • Bohemian Rhapsody: A chronicle of the years leading up to Queen’s legendary appearance at the Live Aid (1985) concert.
  • Nobody’s Fool: A woman is released from prison and reunites with her sister. She soon discovers that her sister is in an online relationship with a man who may not be what he seems.
  • Boy Erased: The son of a Baptist preacher is forced to participate in a church-supported gay conversion program after being forcibly outed to his parents.
Posted in Entertainment

NCM Entertainment Roundup – October 24, 2018

Gerard Butler enters a war he didn’t start in Hunter Killer.

Let’s talk about the top stories in Hollywood this week!

Warner Bros. pushed Wonder Woman 1984 release back 7 months to June 5, 2020. Director Patty Jenkins commented on the change, stating that the new opening weekend “feels like home.” Star Gal Gadot also chimed in on Twitter, echoing her director’s sentiments. “Thanks to the changing landscape, we are able to put Wonder Woman back to its rightful home,” wrote Gadot. (Hollywood Reporter, Twitter)

Just hours after Warner Bros’ announcement, Sony and Paramount jumped in to take Wonder Woman 1984’s original November 1, 2019 release. Sony pushed its Charlie’s Angels reboot from September 27, 2019, while Paramount moved Terminator up two weeks from its original November 15 debut. (Hollywood Reporter)

Purge writer and director James DeMonaco spoke to Entertainment Weekly about his plans to end the horror film franchise. After four movies, DeMonaco and his team “came up with the idea and pitched it to everybody, they seemed psyched, and I think it will be a really cool ending.” The franchise has grossed over $284 million at the domestic box office. (Entertainment Weekly)

Disney is exploring a reboot of its Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. The studio has met with Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, the duo that penned both Deadpool films, to write the script for their reboot. Jerry Bruckheimer will stay on board as the producer. There is no word yet on Johnny Depp’s involvement to reprise his role of Jack Sparrow. (Deadline)

Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker movie found its butler. Douglas Hodge has been cast as Alfred Pennyworth alongside “a very young Bruce Wayne, in a period of his life years prior to considering becoming Batman.” Hodge joins an all-star cast including lead Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, Zazie Beets and more. (Comic Book)

John Kransinski will write the sequel to his breakout horror hit A Quiet Place. Shortly after A Quiet Place 2 was confirmed to hit theaters May 15, 2020, Paramount CEO Jim Gianopulos stated his desire to keep the sequel in the hands of “the same group of people that made the first film.” Even though Krasinski will write the sequel, it has not been confirmed if he will also return to direct the project. (/Film)

After years of turning down offers for a film adaptation of her groundbreaking novel Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret, Judy Blume has granted the rights to Gracie Films and Kelly Fermon Craig. Fermon Craig, who collaborated on coming of age film The Edge of Seventeen, will direct Blume’s adaptations. Are You There God? Is among Time’s list of the top 100 fiction books written in English since 1923. (Deadline)

Judi Dench is set to play Old Deuteronomy in the film adaptation of Broadway classic Cats. Deuteronomy is “a large old cat who have live many lives and buried ‘nine wives.’” Deuteronomy was played by a man in the original Broadway production. Dench will star alongside James Cordon, Taylor Swift, Jennifer Hudson and Idris Elba. (Deadline)

Click below to watch the latest trailers.

Going to the movies this weekend? Get there early to see Noovie! Find Noovie at a theater near you, and follow WhatsNoovie on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more updates.

Now, when you get to the theater early, you can play augmented reality games on the big screen! Download Noovie ARcade on the App Store or Google Play!

  • Suspiria: A darkness swirls at the center of a world-renowned dance company, one that will engulf the artistic director, an ambitious young dancer, and a grieving psychotherapist. Some will succumb to the nightmare. Others will finally wake up.
  • Hunter Killer: An untested American submarine captain teams with U.S. Navy Seals to rescue the Russian president, who has been kidnapped by a rogue general.
  • Johnny English Strikes Again: After a cyber-attack reveals the identity of all of the active undercover agents in Britain, Johnny English is forced to come out of retirement to find the mastermind hacker.
  • Indivisible: INDIVISIBLE is the extraordinary true story of Army Chaplain Darren Turner and his wife Heather. When war etches battle scars on their hearts, they face one more battle: the fight to save their marriage. One marriage, one family, under God.
Posted in Entertainment

NCM Entertainment Roundup – October 18, 2018

Michael Myers returns to Haddonfield in Halloween.

Let’s talk about the top stories in Hollywood this week!

The first Avengers 4 teaser may be just around the corner. Twitter user @ImAFilmEditor, the same user that correctly reported the trailer launches for Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Solo: A Star Wars Story, posted that the Avengers 4 teaser is undergoing DMR, or digital media remastering, for IMAX. Last year, Marvel released the first teaser for Infinity War in late November. (Comic Book)

Tom Holland signaled the end of production on Spider-Man: Far From Home with a Instagram post featuring his new suit. Standing next to MJ (Zendaya), the new suit resembles Spider-Man’s classic comic book style. Spider-Man: Far From Home hits theaters July 5, 2 months after Avengers 4. (/Film)

Marvel has pushed production on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 to 2021. The directorial role remains vacant following Disney’s decision to part ways with James Gunn. Despite the delay, the film has a working title: “Hot Christmas.” (Pursue News)

Disney currently has three movies listed on its For Your Consideration site: Infinity War, Black Panther and Incredibles 2. The studio is vying for 28 considerations, 17 of which are focused on Black Panther, including Best Picture and Best Director. Infinity War is only listed as a consideration for Best Visual Effects. (Disney)

The latest photo released from the Men In Black set features Tessa Thompson and Chris Hemsworth in the desert. Dressed in full suits, the Thor: Raganrok pair are carrying umbrellas to keep cool; Thompson’s umbrella is much larger than Hemsworth’s. The Men in Black remake is set to hit theaters May 17, 2019. (/Film)

Black Panther director Ryan Coogler has officially signed on to write and direct the sequel. Coogler will begin penning the script next year with a goal of beginning production in either late 2019 or early 2020. Marvel has not made any announcements about their film slate beyond Spider-Man: Far From Home releasing July 5, 2019. (Hollywood Reporter)

Warner Bros. is opening the vault to revive two classic cartoon franchises. Warner Animation Group (WAG) is laying the groundwork for live-action hybrids of Tom and Jerry and Scooby-Doo. WAG has approached Tim Story to direct the Tom and Jerry film, and Chris Columbus is on board as creative producer on the new Scooby-Doo. (Variety)

Idris Elba joins James Corden, Taylor Swift and Jennifer Hudson in the film adaptation of Cats. This will be Elba’s second cat-related role since he voiced Shere Khan in 2016’s The Jungle Book. Elba is currently filming Hobbs & Shaw, a Fast & Furious spinoff starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham. (Variety)

Click below to watch the latest trailers.

Going to the movies this weekend? Get there early to see Noovie! Find Noovie at a theater near you, and follow WhatsNoovie on FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more updates.

Now, when you get to the theater early, you can play augmented reality games on the big screen! Download Noovie ARcade on the App Store or Google Play!

  • Halloween: Laurie Strode comes to her final confrontation with Michael Myers, the masked figure who has haunted her since she narrowly escaped his killing spree on Halloween night four decades ago.
  • Can You Ever Forgive Me?: When Lee Israel falls out of step with current tastes, she turns her art form to deception. An adaptation of the memoir Can You Ever Forgive Me?, the true story of best-selling celebrity biographer Lee Israel.
  • Mid 90s: Follows Stevie, a thirteen-year-old in 90s-era LA who spends his summer navigating between his troubled home life and a group of new friends that he meets at a Motor Avenue skate shop.
  • What They Had: Bridget (Hilary Swank) returns home at her brother’s (Michael Shannon) urging to deal with her ailing mother (Blythe Danner) and her father’s (Robert Forster) reluctance to let go of their life together.
Posted in Entertainment

Three Things to Consider When Deploying Your Fourth Quarter Dollars

The fourth quarter starts a spending frenzy as agencies attempt to utilize every dollar they’re allocated to preserve next year’s budget. While some estimates indicate that improved planning throughout the year would yield 5 to 10 percent greater returns, value can still be found from October through December where impressions increase by 50 percent while average order costs rise only 30 percent. TV is the typical benefactor of advertisers targeting men day and night in October across postseason baseball, Saturday college football, and NFL Sundays, Mondays, and Thursdays—despite declining ratings. And November ushers in a slew of heart-warming holiday programming that advertisers hope will reach a female audience. But this fourth quarter offers another attractive option find value: a strong box office.  Here are three things to consider when deploying your end-of-year dollars.

Movies Can Reach a Broader and More Diverse Audience Than Sports/Broadcast Alone

In the last five years, ratings across adults 25-54 have dipped 33 percent in primetime while rising 29 percent across cinemas. Overall, theater network buys offer comparable ratings to top fourth quarter content at substantially lower CPMs. In recent years, the World Series has pulled a 7.7 Nielsen rating while the box office draws 6.7 across PG13 and R content in October, meanwhile the average NFL regular season game will only draw 4.2 from September through December whereas PG13 and R film produces a 6.1 during that time span.

Beyond going toe-to-toe ratings-wise with live sports, data also suggests that a large sports audience might be more limited than you think. A survey by research firm GfK MRI found that 63 percent of ‘moviegoers’ (classified as people who saw 1 movie per month) age 25-54 reported that they have not watched a single NFL regular season or playoff game within the last 12 months. That result increased to 77 percent for the NBA and MLB regular and postseasons.

Sports also critically miss the younger side (A-21-34) of the A21-49 demo with that group having a 16.6 percent audience composition versus 45.6 percent for the motion picture industry. Television also heavily under-indexes for women age 21-49, yielding audience comps of 9 percent for the World Series and 13 percent for the NFL Regular Season whereas Hollywood delivers 36 percent within that group.

A Historic Number of PG & PG-13 Films Offer Opportunities to Appeal to a Family Audience

This quarter the distribution pipeline for R-rated films is the lowest it has been in years and an array of popular PG and PG-13 titles, positioned toward a total family audience, are filling that void. October and November will feature the “Goosebumps” re-boot and “Mowgli,” a sequel of sorts to “The Jungle Book” along with established family franchises like “Wreck It Ralph,” “Fantastic Beasts,” and “Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch.” Meanwhile, the highly-anticipated “The Return of Mary Poppins,” saw its release date moved up a week to keep pace with demand. This is critical because the toy category carries a higher brand and message recall across movies than television, according to Nielsen Brand Effect. And of the $19.68 billion spend on toys in the U.S. last year, moviegoers accounted for $10.14 billion. The demand is there; and the viewing medium puts customers in market: Nielsen Cinema Data shows that 61 percent of moviegoers frequently shop after the movies and PG films have a higher percentage of parent/children co-viewing experiences than networks like Nickelodeon, Nick JR, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, and The Cartoon Network.

No Longer “Summer Blockbusters or Bust”

Much like how Black Friday drove profitability for retail stores, the summer blockbuster season has traditionally driven the lion’s share of a studio’s take—but that’s swiftly changing. According to Box Office Mojo, 2017 saw one of most evenly distributed box office quarterly performances, with Q1 and Q4 delivering 26 percent each while Q2 saw 24 percent and Q3 23 percent.

Top performers like “Black Panther” in February, “Avengers: Infinity War” in April, “Incredibles 2” in June and “Crazy Rich Asians” in August look to provide another healthy distribution.  And this month’s titles like “Venom” and “A Star is Born,” are already setting records for films debuting this time of year.

November brings “Bohemian Rhapsody,” a film drawing buzz as the ‘sleeper of the year,’ which chronicles the rise of the rock group Queen and the subsequent demons that haunted their British lead singer, Freddie Mercury.  The lineup is rounded out by adult dramas such as “Creed II,” “Mary Queen of Scots,” and “First Man” where Ryan Gosling stars as Neil Armstrong in the story of America’s race to the moon. With the box office closing out a record year with a fourth quarter of promising programming, media buyers will have a unique opportunity to efficiently reach coveted consumer groups by year end.

 

Doug Pulick, SVP – Strategic Insight & Analytics

Doug Pulick is the Senior Vice President, Strategic Insight and Analytics, for National CineMedia (NCM). Prior to NCM, Doug served as the Vice President of Research with Discovery Communications, Inc. and the Director of Research at The Weather Channel, Inc.

Posted in Ad Industry, Insights