The Dark Knight
The LAT is the latest to discuss the fine line Warner Bros. has been trying to walk as they push Heath Ledger for a Best Supporting Actor nomination while not appearing to exploit the late actor’s legacy in any way.
Despite some initial rumors to the contrary, Warner Bros. will indeed be re-releasing the movie in January, well after the film comes out on home video (which is this week). But even before the home video release the film has become the #1 movie download on iTunes.
X-Files: I Want to Believe
The producer of the second X-Files feature film blames The Dark Knight for using up all the genre fanboys before his movie got a real chance. There’s a bit of that that’s true, but only just a bit before you have to get into audience awareness and other issues of actual property demand.
Paramount continues to have a bit of fun with the whole movie-within-a-movie concept and has created “For Your Consideration” ads pushing Kirk Lazarus, the character played by Robert Downey Jr., for Best Supporting Actor. There are even print and TV ads that the studio has created.
Punisher: War Zone
There was one extra poster design concept in the closet at Lionsgate that was released just a day before the movie was released. It’s pretty good and fits in nicely with the final parts of the campaign.
Splash Page has a great list of essential reads if you’re looking to get up to speed on the character’s comics history.
A.O. Scott talks about distribution and the cinematic experience in the NYT. Key point is when he points to a number of classic films that he has *never* seen on the big screen. That’s important to remember, that for all the anniversary reissues and such to theaters, many of the best movies of all time have only been seen on home video.
Meanwhile the WSJ looks at how we’ll watch in the future, including new formats for downloading and receiving the movies in the first place as well as features that will allow for greater interactivity with the movie itself as well as others who are watching the movie.
In order to cover the cost of changing over to more 3-D capabilities, studios and theaters are considering a $5 surcharge for movies in that format. That might be the worst idea ever and would go a long way in killing the short-term growth of the format.
While the cost of new release rentals continues to climb, Blockbuster is mulling going to $.99 for some old releases.
Ted Hope mentions that banding together might be key to the survival of independent film houses. What strikes me as odd in this is that it slowly chips away at the idea of them actually being “independent” and that it seems like the first step to making sure these theaters eventually run into the same problems as the chains have currently.