Sunday, August 3, 2014

THE WINNER AND STILL CHAMPION - MARVEL!!!! "Guardians of the Galaxy #1 with 94 Million!

'Guardians Of The Galaxy' Decimates Box Office Expectations With $94 Million

Huffington Post

LOS ANGELES (AP) — "Guardians of the Galaxy" blasted past expectations at the weekend box office.

Marvel Studios' cosmic romp starring Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana and Dave Bautista as members of an intergalactic band of rebels earned $94 million in its debut weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday. Ahead of its Friday debut, box office analysts initially projected that the comic book adaptation would earn between $60 million and $75 million in North America.

The out-of-this-world launch gives "Guardians" the biggest opening for a film released in the traditionally low-key month of August, a record previously held by the $69.2 million debut of 2007's "The Bourne Ultimatum." It also makes "Guardians" the third largest opening of 2014, coming behind the $95 million inauguration of "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" in April and the $100 million launch of "Transformers: Age of Extinction" in June.

"Guardians," which also features Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel voicing the computer-generated characters Rocket Raccoon and Groot, was originally considered a risky proposition for Marvel and "Guardians" distributor Walt Disney Co. because it features more obscure characters from the Marvel universe and is set almost entirely in outer space.

Despite any apprehension, Marvel was betting on "Guardians," written and directed by "Slither" filmmaker James Gunn, to be a blockbuster. The studio announced at Comic-Con in San Diego last month that a sequel is already set for release in 2017. Marvel's next films are the follow-up "The Avengers: Age of Ultron" and "Ant-Man" starring Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas. Both movies are coming in 2015.

 
Marvel comic book adaptations have dominated 2014 with Sony Pictures' "The Amazing Spider-Man 2," 20th Century Fox's "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and Marvel Studios' "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" each arriving in first place at the box office on their respective opening weekends.
Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak, believes Marvel is unstoppable at this point.
"This is a brand that transcends any character within their universe," he said. "The mere mention of the name Marvel is enough to get people into the movie theater. That's somewhat rare. Pixar obviously has a similar cachet, but for Marvel to have four films this year open with over $90 million is amazing. It's unprecedented success."

Disney noted that "Guardians" hauled in an additional $66.4 million from 42 international territories, including Russia, Mexico, Brazil, South Korea and the United Kingdom, making it the first-place film overseas. "Guardians" is scheduled to land in such markets as Australia, India and Columbia next weekend.

In a distant second place at the North American box office, "Lucy," starring Scarlett Johansson as a woman with mind-bending powers, nabbed $18.3 million in its second weekend, bringing the Universal Pictures release's domestic total to $80 million.

Meanwhile, Universal's James Brown biopic "Get on Up" featuring Chadwick Boseman as the soulful singer opened in third place with $14 million.
___
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Rentrak. Where available, latest international numbers are also included. Final domestic figures will be released on Monday.
1. "Guardians of the Galaxy," $94 million ($66.4 million international).
2. "Lucy," $18.3 million ($5.1 million international).
3. "Get on Up," $14 million.
4. "Hercules," $10.7 million ($14.2 million international).
5. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," $8.7 million ($47.5 million international).
6. "Planes: Fire & Rescue," $6.4 million ($3.5 million international).
7. "The Purge: Anarchy," $5.5 million ($8.1 million international).
8. "Sex Tape," $3.5 million ($4.2 million international).
9. "And So It Goes," $3.3 million ($650,000 international).
10. "A Most Wanted Man," $3.3 million ($30,000 international).
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Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at international theaters (excluding the U.S. and Canada), according to Rentrak:
1. "Guardians of the Galaxy," $66.4 million.
2. "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," $47.5 million.
3. "The White Haired Witch of Lunar Kingdom," $40 million.
4. "Roaring Currents," $30 million.
5. "How To Train Your Dragon 2," $20 million.
6. "Transformers: Age of Extinction," $19.1 million.
7. "Continent," $17 million.
8. "Hercules," $14.2 million.
9. "Girl Friends," $13 million.
10. "The Purge: Anarchy," $8.1 million.
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Universal and Focus are owned by NBCUniversal, a unit of Comcast Corp.; Sony, Columbia, Sony Screen Gems and Sony Pictures Classics are units of Sony Corp.; Paramount is owned by Viacom Inc.; Disney, Pixar and Marvel are owned by The Walt Disney Co.; Miramax is owned by Filmyard Holdings LLC; 20th Century Fox and Fox Searchlight are owned by 21st Century Fox; Warner Bros. and New Line are units of Time Warner Inc.; MGM is owned by a group of former creditors including Highland Capital, Anchorage Advisors and Carl Icahn; Lionsgate is owned by Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.; IFC is owned by AMC Networks Inc.; Rogue is owned by Relativity Media LLC.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Review - 'Guardians of the Galaxy' - A+


Lived up to EVERY bit of hype I had built up in my overactive brain.  It was so good and chock full of fangirl goodness that I will probably be seeing it again tomorrow.

Go see it now or I will no longer respect you...not that I ever did anyway, my little beasties.

BTW, if you don't stay till the ending, I hate you.

Signed,
Wendy, the NOT so good Witch

Pros - Everything...there were a couple of parts where I seriously thought I was going to piss myself laughing.

Cons - Absofreaking none.  Loved every minute.

Pagan Content - I. Am. Groot!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

First Footage Of 'Batman V Superman' And Wonder Woman Costume Unveiled At Comic Con


Forbes
 
The wait is over, as fans were treated to a surprise courtesy of Warner Bros. today during the Hall H panel at San Diego Comic Con. While no official Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice panel was officially scheduled, we all knew it was coming, so the only question was how much we’d see.

Warner did what I and many others had anticipated, as director Zack Snyder took the stage and showed a brief teaser of footage, sending fans into crazed rapture. Then, Snyder brought out Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck, and Gal Gadot on stage for the event. The big overhead screens revealed the stars in their film guise as, respectively, Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman.

We’ve already seen the costumes for the Man of Steel and Dark Knight, but this was our first glimpse of the Amazon Princess. Judging from fan reaction, Warner got it very right. So, before we discuss it further, take a look at the first live-action big-screen Wonder Woman!
Wonder Woman Gal Gadot 1
Okay, you want to know about the footage, but first a minor “spoiler alert” for anyone for whom the title wasn’t a tip-off — I’m going to describe the very brief footage, so skip the next paragraph if you wish to avoid glaringly obvious information.

So, the teaser footage shows Batman in a suit of heavy bat-armor, standing on a roof in the pouring rain at night. His eyes glow solid white (take a moment to gasp and cheer at that, fans), and he pulls a tarp off the bat-signal on the roof and turns it on. Then, as the camera turns toward the sky, Superman is revealed floating in the air in the light of the bat-signal. He is furious, and his eyes begin glowing as his heat vision charges up to full power. Aaaaaand… cue the film logo, and loud sustained audience cheers! A major superhero throw-down was about to take place, obviously, earning the film its confrontational title.
Hopefully this footage will be officially released online soon, and if so I’ll have it for you asap, dear readers! Meanwhile, check out that great Wonder Woman costume design, eh? Another home run for this film, after an incredible Batman costume which we’ve already seen (but you can see it again below) and a tweaked Superman costume that is even better than it looked in last year’s Man of Steel. Wonder Woman looks like a warrior, and the inclusion of a sword is particularly pleasing. There’s a lasso hanging by her right side, as you can see, and her tiara has been adapted to be more warrior-like as well.

Take another look at Ben Affleck’s Batman…
Batman Ben Affleck 3
And here is the new Superman costume design…
Superman from BATMAN V SUPERMAN DAWN OF JUSTICE
Fans will no doubt highly approve of the Wonder Woman uniform, as they have the other costumes thus far. It remains to be seen how — and how long — Wonder Woman fits into this first team-up story, but she’ll no doubt have a much larger role in the Justice League film that comes after Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Some other major news hit the Web yesterday, by the way, as we found out Chris Terrio — the screenwriter who won the Oscar for Argo and who wrote Batman v Superman — is in negotiations with Warner Bros. to pen Justice League. That would be a huge win, so stay tuned for more word on how that pans out.

What do you think of the first cinematic Wonder Woman, dear readers? And how does that first teaser footage sound to you? Sound off in the comments below!
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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

I LOVE HARRY POTTER!!!


J.K. Rowling Releases New Online Harry Potter Story with Adult Harry at the Quidditch World Cup - Read It HERE!!!


Can’t get enough of Harry Potter? Then this is for you. Since March, best-selling author J. K. Rowling has been writing original stories about the imaginary 2014 Quidditch World Cup Finals for Pottermore, the online home for the world of Harry Potter. 

Rowling shared her latest Pottermore.com story exclusively with TODAY.com. Written in the voice of the fictional Daily Prophet's gossip correspondent Rita Skeeter, this post centers around the reunion of Harry Potter and his friends at the Quidditch World Cup Finals.

A scene from Pottermore
Warner Brothers
Dumbledore’s Army Reunites at Quidditch World Cup Final
By the Daily Prophet’s Gossip Correspondent, Rita Skeeter

There are celebrities – and then there are celebrities. We’ve seen many a famous face from the wizarding world grace the stands here in the Patagonian Desert – Ministers and Presidents, Celestina Warbeck, controversial American wizarding band The Bent-Winged Snitches – all have caused flurries of excitement, with crowd members scrambling for autographs and even casting Bridging Charms to reach the VIP boxes over the heads of the crowd.

But when word swept the campsite and stadium that a certain gang of infamous wizards (no longer the fresh-faced teenagers they were in their heyday, but nevertheless recognisable) had arrived for the final, excitement was beyond anything yet seen. As the crowd stampeded, tents were flattened and small children mown down. Fans from all corners of the globe stormed towards the area where members of Dumbledore’s Army were rumoured to have been sighted, desperate above all else for a glimpse of the man they still call the Chosen One.

The Potter family and the rest of Dumbledore’s Army have been given accommodation in the VIP section of the campsite, which is protected by heavy charms and patrolled by Security Warlocks. Their presence has ensured large crowds along the cordoned area, all hoping for a glimpse of their heroes. At 3pm today they got their wish when, to the accompaniment of loud screams, Potter took his young sons James and Albus to visit the players’ compound, where he introduced them to Bulgarian Seeker Viktor Krum.
 
About to turn 34, there are a couple of threads of silver in the famous Auror’s black hair, but he continues to wear the distinctive round glasses that some might say are better suited to a style-deficient twelve-year-old. The famous lightning scar has company: Potter is sporting a nasty cut over his right cheekbone. Requests for information as to its provenance merely produced the usual response from the Ministry of Magic: ‘We do not comment on the top secret work of the Auror department, as we have told you no less than 514 times, Ms. Skeeter.’ So what are they hiding? Is the Chosen One embroiled in fresh mysteries that will one day explode upon us all, plunging us into a new age of terror and mayhem? 
 
Or does his injury have a more humble origin, one that Potter is desperate to hide? Has his wife perhaps cursed him? Are cracks beginning to show in a union that the Potters are determined to promote as happy? Should we read anything into the fact that his wife Ginevra has been perfectly happy to leave her husband and children behind in London whilst reporting on this tournament? The jury is out on whether she really had the talent or experience to be sent to the Quidditch World Cup (jury’s back in – no!!!) but let’s face it, when your last name is Potter, doors open, international sporting bodies bow and scrape, and Daily Prophet editors hand you plum assignments.

As their devoted fans and followers will remember, Potter and Krum competed against each other in the controversial Triwizard Tournament, but apparently there are no hard feelings, as they embraced upon meeting (what really happened in that maze? Speculation is unlikely to be quelled by the warmth of their greeting). After half an hour’s chat, Potter and his sons returned to the campsite where they socialised with the rest of Dumbledore’s Army until the small hours.

In the next tent are Potter’s two closest associates, the ones who know everything about him and yet have always refused to talk to the press. Are they afraid of him, or is it their own secrets they are afraid will leak out, tarnishing the myth of He Who Could Not Be Named’s defeat? Now married, Ronald Weasley and Hermione Granger were with Potter almost every step of the way. Like the rest of Dumbledore’s Army, they fought in the Battle of Hogwarts and no doubt deserve the plaudits and awards for bravery heaped upon them by a grateful wizarding world.

In the immediate aftermath of the battle Weasley, whose famous ginger hair appears to be thinning slightly, entered into employment with the Ministry of Magic alongside Potter, but left only two years later to co-manage the highly successful wizarding joke emporium Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. Was he, as he stated at the time, ‘delighted to assist my brother George with a business I’ve always loved’? Or had he had his fill of standing in Potter’s shadow? Was the work of the Auror Department too much for a man who has admitted that the destruction of He Who Could Not Be Named’s Horcruxes ‘took its toll’ on him? He shows no obvious signs of mental illness from a distance, but the public is not allowed close enough to make a proper assessment. Is this suspicious?

Hermione Granger, of course, was always the femme fatale of the group. Press reports of the time revealed that as a teenager she toyed with the young Potter’s affections before being seduced away by the muscular Viktor Krum, finally settling for Potter’s faithful sidekick. After a meteoric rise to Deputy Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, she is now tipped to go even higher within the Ministry, and is also mother to son, Hugo, and daughter, Rose. Does Hermione Granger prove that a witch really can have it all? (No – look at her hair.)

Then there are those members of Dumbledore’s Army who receive slightly less publicity than Potter, Weasley and Granger (are they resentful? Almost certainly). Neville Longbottom, now a popular Herbology teacher at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, is here in Patagonia with his wife Hannah. Until recently the pair lived above the Leaky Cauldron in London, but rumour has it that Hannah has not only retrained as a Healer, but is applying for the job of Matron at Hogwarts. Idle gossip suggests that she and her husband both enjoy a little more Ogden’s Old Firewhisky than most of us would expect from custodians of our children, but no doubt we all wish her the best of luck with her application.

Last of the ringleaders of Dumbledore’s Army is, of course, Luna Lovegood (now married to Rolf Scamander, swarthy grandson of celebrated Magizoologist Newt). Still delightfully eccentric, Luna has been sweeping around the VIP section in robes composed of the flags of all sixteen qualifying countries. Her twin sons are ‘at home with grandpa’. Is this a euphemism for ‘too disturbed to be seen in public’? Surely only the unkindest would suggest so.

Sundry other members of the Army are here, but it is on these six that most interest is focused. Wherever there is a red head one may make an educated guess that it belongs to a Weasley, but it is difficult to tell whether it is George (wealthy co-manager of Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes), Charlie (dragon wrangler, still unmarried – why?) or Percy (Head of the Department of Magical Transportation – it’s his fault if the Floo Network’s too busy!). The only one who is easy to recognise is Bill who, poor man, is grievously scarred from an encounter with a werewolf and yet somehow (enchantment? Love potion? Blackmail? Kidnap?) married the undeniably beautiful (though doubtless empty-headed) Fleur Delacour.

Word is that we shall see these and other members of Dumbledore’s Army in the VIP boxes at the final, adding to the glitz and razzmatazz of a gala occasion. Let us hope that the behaviour of two of their younger hangers-on does not embarrass them, heaping shame on those who have previously brought honour to the name of wizard.

One always hesitates to invade the privacy of young people, but the fact is that anyone closely connected with Harry Potter reaps the benefits and must pay the penalty of public interest. No doubt Potter will be distressed to know that his sixteen-year-old godson Teddy Lupin – a lanky half-werewolf with bright blue hair – has been behaving in a way unbefitting of wizarding royalty since arriving on the VIP campsite. It might be asking too much that the always-busy Potter keep a tighter rein on this wild boy, who was entrusted to his care by his dying parents, but one shudders to think what will become of Master Lupin without urgent intervention. Meanwhile, Mr and Mrs Bill Weasley might like to know that their beautiful, blonde daughter Victoire seems to be attracted to any dark corner where Master Lupin happens to be lurking. The good news is both of them seem to have invented a method of breathing through their ears. I can think of no other reason how they have survived such prolonged periods of what, in my young day, was called ‘snogging.’

But let us not be severe. Harry Potter and his cohorts never claimed to be perfect! And for those who want to know exactly how imperfect they are, my new biography: Dumbledore’s Army: The Dark Side of the Demob will be available from Flourish and Blotts on July 31st. 

For more original writing about the Quidditch World Cup Finals and other information about Harry Potter's world, visit Pottermore.com.  

Emma Watson named U.N. Goodwill Ambassador

Wonderwall

Photo: Gary Gershoff/WireImage
                                                   
Emma Watson named U.N. Goodwill Ambassador
Brown University and "Harry Potter" alum Emma Watson is getting ready to take on a different kind of role: the 24-year-old star has been named a Goodwill Ambassador in gender equality for the United Nations. "So excited to start work with the AMAZING people at UN Women!" Watson tweeted on Monday. The public response to her news was so strong that her tweet, which name-checked Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the Under Secretary-General and executive director of U.N. Women, broke the U.N.'s website as a traffic overload forced it to shut down.
 
"Women's rights are something so inextricably linked with who I am, so deeply personal and rooted in my life that I can't imagine an opportunity more exciting," the actress said in a statement. "I still have so much to learn, but as I progress I hope to bring more of my individual knowledge, experience and awareness to this role."
 
According to E! News, Watson will be tasked with aiding in with the group's women's-empowerment campaign, HeForShe.