Saturday AM Update: Some studio distribution bosses used to say that moviegoing is a 52-week business. Well, that’s not the philosophy this weekend, and it’s even grimmer next weekend, as most of the majors figured in the wake of MLK weekend, and a traditional box office dead zone like January with omicron flying around, that it wasn’t worth the P&A spend to put any kind of movie out there. Back in the good ole days, and we’re talking five years ago, post-MLK was the time when Universal turned M. Night Shyamalan’s Blumhouse horror movie Split into an event with a $40M start, and Paramount settled for second on their Vin Diesel sequel, xXx: Return of Xander Cage, for $20.1M. And so, we settle for Sony’s Spider-Man: No Way Home rising to No. 1 in its 6th weekend with $13.5M , putting its massive domestic total at $720.4M, and Paramount/Spyglass Media’s Scream in second with a -61% drop with $11.7M and a $50.6M ten-day total. That second weekend ease … [Read more...] about ‘Spider-Man’ Leads Quiet Box Office Weekend As Domestic Cume Grows To $720M+
On the morning of Sept. 27, 2021, Josh Hargis opened a private video-chat link for what the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee billed as an open dialogue about its newly implemented mandate. Everyone on Team USA would need to be vaccinated against Covid-19 by Nov. 1, unless they could obtain a medical exemption — or a religious one. The executive order to jump the scientific starting gun on the 2022 Winter Games was a harrowing decision, senior Olympic officials acknowledge, not least because they knew the anti-vaxxer crowd — emboldened by an emerging class of brazenly unvaccinated superstar athletes — would come at them with fake news. “From the start of the pandemic, we have made science-based, data-driven decisions,” the USOPC’s CEO wrote in a memo to all American athletes, which was attached to an invitation for the meeting and obtained by Rolling Stone . “There is strong support for this requirement from our community.” Among two-dozen or so … [Read more...] about ‘Get Vaccinated or Else’: The Anti-Vaxxers of the Winter Games Fought the Olympic Mandate. Did the Mandate Win?
The freezer-truck drivers had finally hauled off the last of the body bags by early autumn, from a makeshift Covid morgue in the city’s parking lot across the street. And by the time Kyrie Irving turned the corner last Friday evening to the Brooklyn Nets ’ riverside practice facility in the neighborhood of Sunset Park, he was let right in. But Omicron had grinched into town for the holidays, and the NBA ’s rigorous testing once again provided early indicators of an unrelenting virus. On the 17th day of December, the league had sent its who’s-who to quarantine: eight Nets a-swabbing, seven Bulls secluding, six Sacramento Kings, five sick Knicks, four Lakers stars, three Boston forwards, two head coaches… and then came a pseudo-pardon for Kyrie. The basketball superstar-turned-superhero of the anti-vaxxers entered a lab set up by the Nets a few steps from the private players’ garage. Two months after banishing him in response to his boycott of a New York City vaccine mandate … [Read more...] about The NBA’s War on Omicron Christmas: Behind Closed Doors with Kyrie Irving and the Anti-Swabber Superstars