April 22, 2013

Movie Review: Moviegoers dive into 'Oblivion'

LOS ANGELES - Movie fans slipped into "Oblivion" as the Tom Cruise sci-fi thriller led Hollywood with a $38.2 million debut, according to studio estimates Sunday.

click image to enlarge

“Oblivion” stars Tom Cruise as a machine repairman who gets ambushed in the wastelands of Earth after a war with aliens.

The Associated Press/Universal Pictures

The domestic haul comes on top of the $33.7 million that "Oblivion" added in overseas markets, where the film began rolling out a week earlier. "Oblivion" raised its overseas total to $112 million over the weekend and its worldwide receipts to $150.2 million.

Though many people were caught up Friday in coverage of the manhunt for the suspect in the Boston Marathon explosions, it seems to have had little effect on how the film fared.

"Oblivion" took in $13.3 million on opening day Friday and $14.9 million on Saturday. That 12 percent increase is not unusual for big new releases, which typically do better business on Saturday than Friday.

The previous weekend's top film, the Warner Bros. baseball drama "42," held up well, slipping to second-place with $18 million in its second weekend. The Jackie Robinson biography starring Chadwick Boseman and Harrison Ford raised its domestic total to $54.1 million and is on its way to the $100 million mark, said Dan Fellman, Warner's head of distribution.

Overseas, Paramount's "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" got a lift with $40 million, most of it coming from a $33 million debut in China. The action sequel has topped $200 million internationally and $300 million worldwide.

"Oblivion" came in a bit higher than industry expectations. But despite its strong opening, Hollywood's 2013 revenue funk continued, with overall domestic receipts at $109 million, down 19.4 percent from the same weekend last year, according to box-office tracker Hollywood.com.

A year ago, two new romances -- the comedy "Think Like a Man" and the drama "The Lucky One" -- combined for $56 million that weekend, while the blockbuster "The Hunger Games" remained strong with nearly $15 million.

Domestic revenues in 2013 total $2.76 billion, down 11.2 percent from where business was at last year, when Hollywood took in record cash.ATLANTA - Police in Georgia say actress Reese Witherspoon was arrested early Friday on a disorderly conduct charge after a traffic stop involving her husband in Atlanta.

A Georgia State Police incident report says a state trooper observed that a car driven by Witherspoon's husband, James Toth, was failing to stay in its lane. The officer writes that Witherspoon disobeyed multiple orders to stay in the car while he performed a field sobriety test on Toth. After she refused to return the car, she was handcuffed and arrested.

The officer says Witherspoon asked him, "Do you know who I am?" Toth was charged with driving under the influence.

A message left seeking comment wasn't immediately returned by Witherspoon's publicist, Meredith O'Sullivan Wasson.

Gay, lesbian movie awards honor Clinton

LOS ANGELES - NBC's sitcom "The New Normal," FX's thriller "American Horror Story: Asylum" and NBC's daytime drama "Days of Our Lives" took home top TV honors at the 24th annual GLAAD Media Awards held Saturday in Los Angeles.

The GLAAD awards pay tribute to "inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives."

The event, hosted by actress-producer-director Drew Barrymore, boasted such Hollywood heavyweights as presenters Jennifer Lawrence, Charlize Theron, Betty White and Leonardo DiCaprio.

Other winners included "Perks of Being a Wallflower," which was named outstanding film: wide release, and former President Bill Clinton, who was given the first advocate-for-change award.

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