Natl Film Title Weekend Gross Rank LDS/Mormon Filmmaker/Star Total Gross Theaters Days --- ----------------------------- ----------- ----- ---- 11 The Santa Clause 2 3,204,145 1,701 52 Ken Daurio (screenwriter) 129,836,982 Cinco Paul (screenwriter) 28 Sweet Home Alabama 209,352 338 87 C. Jay Cox (screenwriter) 124,779,901 72 Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure 8,222 9 683 Scott Swofford (producer) 13,748,999 Reed Smoot (cinematographer) Sam Cardon (composer) Stephen L. Johnson (film editor) 79 Jack Weyland's Charly 4,270 10 87 Adam Anderegg (director) 563,737 Jack Weyland (book author) Janine Gilbert (screenwriter) Lance Williams (producer) Micah Merrill (producer, film editor) Tip Boxell (co-producer) Bengt Jan Jonsson (cinematographer) Aaron Merrill (composer) Actors: Heather Beers, Jeremy Elliott, Adam Johnson, Jackie Winterrose Fullmer, Diana Dunkley, Gary Neilson, Lisa McCammon, Randy King, Bernie Diamond, etc. 85 China: The Panda Adventure 3,233 4 514 Reed Smoot (cinematographer) 2,978,643 88 Galapagos 2,912 4 1151 Reed Smoot (cinematographer) 12,396,908? 97 Ziggy Stardust & Spiders from Mars 1,330 4 166 Mick Ronson (2nd billed actor) 143,204
CHURCH PUBLISHES A VERY COOL DVD: "Friends to All Nations" DVD Set Available from Church. See http://www.ldscatalog.com. A new two-disk DVD set will be available from Church Distribution Centers beginning Saturday, 21 December. This set presents over 5 hours of video, highlighting activities of the Church and its members during the 2002 Olympic Winter Games hosted by Salt Lake City. The 18 program segments of the set feature, among other things, the "Light of the World" production, staged in the 21,000-seat Conference Center; the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square in their Cultural Olympiad Concert performances; President Hinckley's interviews with NBC's Tom Brokaw; and many other bonus features in the 5+ hours of video.
CATCH ME IF YOU CAN CHARACTER A BYU PROFESSOR? Frank Abagnale's fellow "alternatively legal" folk heroes Butch Cassidy and D.B. Cooper were Latter-day Saints, but we're certain that Frank isn't a Church member. According to a Knight Ridder News Service article by Lance Gould (Salt Lake Tribune, 22 December 2002), Frank Abagnale, the real-life grifter whose whose experiences are the basis for the movie "Catch Me If You Can," claims that he was a professor at Brigham Young University, which is owned and operated by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The university disputes this. [QUOTING FROM THE ARTICLE:] "We have gone back and searched [our records] under every alias he ever used" and found nothing, said BYU spokeswoman Carri Jenkins. "One of the telling items is his claim in a speech he gave . . . that the [Utah] Board of Regents questioned the grades he gave at BYU. Well, we're a private university and the board of regents has nothing to do with us."
MOLEN AND MINORITY REPORT: Segments from interviews with producer Jerry Molen are included in a number of documentaries on the "Minority Report" DVD. I don't recall any of the other producers being interviewed. But Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg dominate the documentary material. I don't know why. Perhaps some people think Tom Cruise is better-looking than Jerry. Interestingly enough, Jerry Molen co-starred onscreen with Tom Cruise in "Rain Man." Molen played Dr. Bruner (the psychiatrist), which wa the movie's 4th billed role. This was the biggest on-screen role Molen has had. Dustin Hoffman took home the Best Actor Academy Award for playing the title character in "Rain Man." But did Molen get a Best Supporting Actor nomination? Nope. He was edged out by Kevin Kline, Alec Guinness, River Phoenix, Dean Stockwell, and Martin Landau. Molen's other on-screen roles are "Jurassic Park", "Amistad" and "Days of Thunder" and playing the first mission president in "The Other Side of Heaven."
ANOTHER ACADEMY AWARD NOM FOR MOLEN? Will Latter-day Saint movie producer Jerry Molen, who was overlooked last year in the Best Picture category for his movie "The Other Side of Heaven" AGAIN be shafted at the Oscars this year? Molen won for "Schindler's List," but hasn't been nominated since then. We're not the only ones who think "Minorty Report" deserves Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture. The country's leading movie critic, Roger Ebert, agrees with us. Quoting from Ebert's writeup of his recent interview with "Minority Report" director Steven Spielberg (http://www.suntimes.com/output/eb-feature/cst-ftr-spiel23.html):
NEW YORK--While many directors spend years in gestation before making a film, Steven Spielberg seems cheerfully productive. In June he released "Minority Report," an awesomely virtuoso futurist thriller starring Tom Cruise, and now here it is December, and he's back with "Catch Me If You Can"... We talked last summer, we talk again now. Spielberg seems more relaxed about the new film (opening Wednesday), which was shot on a much lower budget in a relatively short time, and which must have felt like unwinding after the complexities of "Minority Report." I told him I'd just seen "Minority Report" again on the big screen, going down to Times Square to catch it, just to confirm my feeling about how good it was...
Ebert: My opinion of "Minority Report" is exactly the same as it was last summer when I had to use a seven-letter word in order to tell you how much I liked it.
Spielberg: It was a beautiful word, though. I'll never forget it.
Ebert: Is it going to be overlooked at Oscar time just because of that attention gap problem that the academy has?
Spielberg: Well, you know, I'm not the one to say whether something deserves attention or not. We directors are in control of everything we do, except in the Oscar award season. I'm philosophical about that.
GLAD FOR GLADYS: Latter-day Saint sing and celebrity Gladys Knight is cast in an upcoming movie "Hollywood Homicide," which is scheduled for a June 13, 2003 release. Harrison Ford has the lead role. Ron Shelton is the director. In the movie Ford and Josh Hartnett play Hollywood police detectives who investigate the murder of a rap group, possibly staged by their rap label boss. A number of celebrities from the music world appear in the movie. In "Hollywood Homicide" Knight plays the mother of a character played by popular rap singer Kurupt (who recently appeared with Steven Seagal in "Half Past Dead"). There is a major chase scene in which Harrison Ford chases Kurupt, who flees to his mother's house. Knight will have a much larger role -- a supporting role with above-the-line/marquee billing -- in an upcoming Latter-day Saint-themed feature film directed by... Knight is listed as one of the recording artists providing music, as well as a supporting actress, on the mock-up poster for... Gladys Knight is known primarily as a singer and songwriter, but she has done some acting. She had a small part in an independent feature film, "Twenty Bucks" (1993), and had a major supporting role in the TV movie "Desperado" (1987). She sang the title song for the James Bond "License to Kill" (1989). Knight also had a regular role as "Diana Richmond" onthe short-lived TV series "Charlie & Co." (1985). She has also made dozens of guest appearances on TV shows, including sitcoms, dramas, variety shows and musical specials.
THE R.M. THEATERS ANNOUNCED: The official website for the upcoming Latter-day Saint-themed feature film "The R.M." has announced some theaters where the movie will premiere in 5 weeks, on 31 January 2002. The theaters, all in Utah, are: Gateway 8 (Bountiful); Westates Cinema 8 (Cedar City); Cinemark Tinseltown USA (Layton); Westates Water Gardens 6 (Pleasant Grove); Westates Providence 8 (Providence); Cinemark 16 (Provo); Wynnsong Cinemas (Provo); Megaplex 12 at the Gateway (Salt Lake City); Megaplex 17 at Jordan Commons (Sandy); Westates Stadium 8 (St. George); Cinemark 24 Jordan Landing (West Jordan).
DON BLUTH: Don Bluth is working on an animated "Dragon's Lair" feature film, with a screenplay by Todd McFarlane (the popular Spider-Man writer/artist and creator of "Spawn"). You can read about the new "Dragon's Lair" comic book series, the new "Dragon's Lair" 3D computer game, and new "Dragon's Lair" action figures, clothing and more, all based on the animated video games directed by Latter-day Saint animation legend Don Bluth, in the following articles:
YES, THAT WAS ME: This has absolutely nothing to do with movies, but LDSFilm.com's webmaster had the following letter published in the Salt Lake Tribune on 19 December 2002 (http://www.sltrib.com/2002/dec/12192002/public_f/12646.asp) [QUOTE]:
Hooray for Rocky! As a Latter-day Saint "living abroad," I have followed the plaza controversy.[END QUOTE]
Until yesterday I felt that Rocky Anderson was a terrible mayor who was doing very bad things to Salt Lake City.
But after his proposal to trade land for peace on Main Street, I think he's a hero.
I hope the Church will provide specific instructions about how members (such as myself) can donate money to build the new Rocky Anderson Community Center on the west side.