Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer Divorcing
Walt Disney Studios has decided not to renew their first-look deal with Jerry Bruckheimer, one of the most successful movie producers of the past three decades.
The current deal between Disney and Bruckheimer ends in 2014 and despite a lucrative business relationship that goes back to the early ’90s, the two sides decided to part ways due to the producer’s desire to make “more mature” films outside of the Disney brand.
With Disney purchasing Marvel and Lucasfilm in the last couple of years, as well as owning Pixar, the company seems to be focusing more on family-friendly franchises both in film and television.
Bruckheimer hasn’t produced an R-rated film since Bad Boys II in 2003 and has instead focused on Disney’s business model in the PG-13 realm. While this started out extremely successful with the Pirates of the Caribbean and National Treasure franchises, Bruckheimer has been at the helm of some spectacular duds recently, including The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time in 2010 and The Lone Ranger this summer.
The Lone Ranger will ultimately cost Disney close to $200 million and while the studio and Bruckheimer deny the split is over Lone Ranger, Hollywood is a “what have you done for me lately” business. Just ask Joel Silver.
The divorce appears to be amicable, as the two sides will continue to work together to produce more Pirates and Treasure movies, but Bruckheimer also has projects set up at other studios; including another Bad Boys film with Sony and a Top Gun sequel at Paramount.
“We have a full body of work with them. It’s not about Lone Ranger,” said Bruckheimer. “It’s more about the types of movies Disney is making, and the types of movies we want to make, in addition to Pirates. It’s time for us to tackle all kinds of movies, not just Disney movies.”
In addition to Bad Boys and Top Gun, he also has another Beverly Hills Cop movie in the works. So when he says, “all kinds of movies” he really just means more sequels.
Bruckheimer said that he’s confident he will get a deal at another studio. After making more than $3.4 billion for Disney at the domestic box office during his tenure there, I don’t think he’ll have to wait long.
Warner Bros. Classics Coming to Regal Theaters
Have you ever wanted to go see a movie and upon looking at everything that’s playing, realized that nothing looks appealing? This actually used to happen to me quite a bit when I was a teenager because I’d want to go to the theater for my birthday. Problem was, my birthday is in late March, a time when studios are either dumping previous year leftovers or releasing dumb comedies and low-budget action movies, so the choices were meager. One year I actually made the decision to see Meet the Deedles in the theater. That’s a decision I now have to live with for the rest of my life.
You typically won’t run into this problem this time of year. With summer holdovers and pre-Oscar hopefuls, there is an eclectic group of films for everyone. That being said, who says you can’t enjoy an old classic too?
Regal Cinemas is banking on that as the theater chain will be showing six Warner Bros. films in October and November.
Beginning Sunday, October 13, you can see Bonnie and Clyde or if you have plans, check out the second viewing on Wednesday, October 16. Regal will do this for five more weeks after that; showing a film on Sunday and then again the next Wednesday.
After Bonnie and Clyde, the remaining five films will be The Matrix, The Shining, Dirty Harry, JFK and Risky Business. Of these six films, I’m most excited to see The Matrix. Sadly, I didn’t get a chance to see it on the big screen when it was released in 1999 despite the fact that it came out right around my birthday. I could have righted the Meet the Deedles decision! Instead a buddy and I saw The Mummy that year which turned out to be an entertaining movie, but it was no Matrix.
The other classic I’d probably check out would be The Shinning for two reasons: It’s showing on October 27 and 30, right around Halloween, and because it’s Kubrick, a director whose films were meant to be seen on a giant screen.
So if you regret not seeing any of these six films when they were originally released, check out this link that provides a list of every theater in the country that will be participating in the series.
Lucas Black Returning for Fast & Furious 7, 8 and 9
The Fast & Furious crew appears to be competing with The Expendables team for biggest casts assembled. In addition to getting Jason Statham, Kurt Russell, Djimon Hounsou and Tony Jaa for the next installment, producers have also decided to bring back Lucas Black, star of the third film in the series, Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift for Fast & Furious 7 as well as the next two films after that.
Often considered the black sheep of the series (Although you could argue it’s the most coherent) due to the lack of Vin Diesel (I’m not counting the cameo) or Paul Walker, Tokyo Drift featured Black as a troublemaking Alabama kid who was sent to Asia to live with his father. But the allure of street racing eventually got to him (Remember when these films were just about racing cars?) and he got mixed up with rival street gangs.
It kind of makes sense to bring back Lucas considering the sixth film ended with a scene from Tokyo Drift where the Han character dies. This casting might also help clear up the confusion over the chronology of the series which should be viewed in the following order: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 3, 7. Trust me, it’s essential you watch these films in the right order otherwise you will be totally lost (Sarcasm alert).
The bigger news here might be that they’re planning on a whole new trilogy. I thought 7 was going to be last one. I don’t know why I would think that considering the last three have made more money each time.
This franchise continues to break conventions by not only earning more money with each installment, but improving upon the quality of each film. But I have to imagine it will get old eventually. Perhaps when Diesel and Walker are racing rascal scooters, that will be a sign that it’s time to hang up the NOS and piston belts.