Feature Films by LDS/Mormon Filmmakers and Actors
Weekend Box Office Report (U.S. Domestic Box Office Gross)

Weekend of March 14, 2003

[If table lines up improperly, use mono-spaced font, i.e. Courier]

Natl  Film Title                Weekend Gross
Rank  LDS/Mormon Filmmaker/Star   Total Gross Theaters Days
---  ----------------------------- -----------  -----  ----
21   Final Destination 2               638,273  1,036    45
     A.J. Cook (2nd-billed actor)   45,619,162

59   The R.M.                           30,376     20    45
     Kurt Hale (writer/director)       576,909
     John E. Moyer (writer)
     Dave Hunter (producer)
     Cody Hale (composer)
     Ryan Little (cinematographer)
     Actors: Kirby Heyborne, Will Swenson,
        Britani Bateman, Tracy Ann Evans
        Merrill Dodge, Michael Birkeland,
        Maren Ord, Leroy Te'o, Curt Dousett
        Wally Joyner, etc.

57   Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure   38,409     10   766
     Scott Swofford (producer)      14,194,575
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)
     Sam Cardon (composer)
     Stephen L. Johnson (editor)

73   Cirque du Soleil: Journey of Man   11,722      3  1046
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)   15,066,856

74   Poolhall Junkies                    9,604      9    17
     Rick Schroder (5th-billed star)   554,711
     Filmed in, set in Salt Lake City

85   Galapagos                           3,676      3  1235
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)   13,965,758

95   Jack Weyland's Charly               1,719      4   171
     Adam Anderegg (director)          787,803
     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.

100  China: The Panda Adventure            675      1   598
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)    3,003,170

HERE COMES PIGLET - "Piglet's Big Movie" opens on Friday. Ken Sansom's last movie ("The Tigger Movie") grossed $45,542,421 in 2000. We'll soon know if "Piglet" top that? Most critics writing early reviews are praising "Piglet's Big Movie" as a triumph of epic proportions. At, 4 of the 6 early reviews currently tallied are ranked positive. is predicting that "Piglet's Big Movie" will win the #1 spot at the box office this weekend.

SCREENWRITING SEMINAR SCHEDULED - The Utah Film Commission is sponsoring a free screen writing seminar.

When: April 26, 2003
Where: The New Salt Lake City Library, 110 East 400 South
Cost: Free

The Utah Film Commission is holding the first annual Utah Film Commission Screen Writing Seminar with special guest Dan Decker author of Anatomy of a Screenplay. This event is being held in conjunction with the LocoMotion Film Festival and Spy Hop Productions.

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FINAL CUT - Final Cut 2003 March 18-22 a BYU Student Film Showcase

Short Format Program: in Varsity Theatre
Program A: Tues-Thurs from 7-9 p.m.
Program B: Tues-Thurs from 9:30-11:30 p.m.

Long Format Program in 250 SWKT
Program C: Tues-Thurs from 7-9 p.m.

The Best of Final Cut: in JSB Auditorium
Friday and Saturday from 6-8 p.m. and 9-11 p.m.

The Sitcom "So Much in Love" in the Varsity Theatre
Tues.-Sat. from 6-6:30 p.m.
Fri and Sat only from 9:30-10:30 p.m.

Tickets can be purchased at the Wilkinson Center Information Booth or at the door (but there may not be any left!) Get your tickets today!

Featured in this year's Final Cut long format program is "Unfolding" - Christian Vuissa's latest short film. Vuissa's previous short film, "Roots & Wings" won a number of awards including the AML award for film, the most prestigious award given to a LDS-themed films. This award had only been given once before - to "God's Army". We are also privy to some exciting information about Christian's future which we cannot release yet, but you won't want to miss the opportunity to see this talented young filmmaker's latest work.

2 FAST 2 FURIOUS TRAILER - Trailers are now posted for "2 Fast 2 Furious", which will open in theaters nationwide on June 6th. A sequel to the surprise hit racing movie "The Fast and the Furious," the new movie stars Latter-day Saint actor Paul Walker in the top-billed role. Walker reprises his role as a police officer who goes undercover to root out crime in the street racing underground. This time he does so in Miami. The movie was directed by non-LDS director John Singleton (Boyz N the Hood, Baby Boy, Shaft, Rosewood, Higher Learning, Poetic Justice). Walker received $7 million for starring in "2 Fast 2 Furious." Walker also stars in the big budget time travel adventure "Timeline," which is slated to open a month after "2 Fast 2 Furious," so he might be competing with himself this summer. See

DONNY NOMINATED FOR AN EMMY - Donny Osmond, host of the new syndicated TV series, has been nominated for an Emmy Award for Best Game Show Host. Osmond's competition for the Emmy this year: Alex Trebek (Jeopardy!); Bob Barker (The Price is Right); Tom Bergeron (Hollywood Squares); Ben Stein and Sal Iacono (Win Ben Stein's Money); Pat Sajak (Wheel of Fortune). Donny previously was nominated for an Emmy twice for his talk show "Donny and Marie": in 2000 and 2001. Osmond was recently nominated for "Best Original Song" in the DVD Premiere Awards, for "Imaginary Friend", in the "Land Before Time IX" video. But he lost to Jennifer Love Hewitt.

BARNEY AT GUGGENHEIM - Detailed article about the exhibit of ethnic Mormon filmmaker and artist Matthew Barney's film/sculpture exhibit "The Cremaster Cycle" at the Guggenheim. Barney has used Mormon and Utah motifs extensively in his Cremaster series, although this Boston Globe only mentions this briefly. See:

BRIGHAM CITY ACTRESS IS STAR OF ELIZABETH SMART'S FAVORITE MOVIE - Newspaper accounts report that one of the first things Elizabeth Smart did after being reunited with her family watch her favorite movie "The Trouble with Angels." For the record, the movie was not written or directed by Latter-day Saints, but one of the stars of the movie was Portia Nelson, a native of Brigham City, Utah. Nelson had a major role as a nun in "The Trouble with Angels," her only major supporting role in a movie other than her role in "Doctor Doolittle." Nelson had a smaller role as "Sister Berthe" in the classic movie "The Sound of Music." Nelson, born 1920 in Brigham City, died in 2001 in New York. She is also known for playing "Mrs. Rachel Gurney" on the daytime soap opera "All My Children" from 1980 to 1990.

HANDCART'S THEATRICAL RUN NEARING AN END - Your last chance to see "Handcart" in the theaters is quickly approaching. The film did not play in any theaters the past weekend, but it is scheduled to open in 3 or 4 new theaters on April 11, including theaters in Las Vegas, Sacremento, Afton, Wyoming and Orem, Utah. After this last set of theaters, Handcart will end its theatrical play. It will have played in 50 theaters in all and should approach the $100,000 mark. So far, the film has grossed $92,175. Presale of the DVD's should begin in May or June.

ECKHART VS... - "The Core," BYU graduate Aaron Eckhart's first top-billed role in a big-budget film, opens March 28th. His co-star is Academy Award winner Hillary Swank in this $60,000,000+ blockbuster hopeful. Will "The Core" emerge triumphant in the #1 spot in its debut weekend? It's up against some heavy competition. Also opening on March 28th: "Basic" (starring John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson), "Head of State" (directed by Chris Rock; starring Chris Rock and Bernie Mac); "Assassination Tango" (directed by and starring Robert Duvall). Our take: Chris Rock will no doubt lock up the comedy and urban crowd. Duvall's movie will bring out fans of military-themed dance movies (?) and old people who accept Duvall as a leading man. The real battle will be between the big marquee names (Travolta and Jackson in "Basic") and the big s.f. plot (Eckhart in "The Core"). We predict "The Core" wins by a nose.

NEW CITIES FOR THE R.M. - "The R.M.", directed by Kurt Hale and starring Kirby Heyborne and Canadian pop sensation Maren Ord, will open in at least 5 Arizona cities on March 21st: Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Peoria, Tucson. The movie will also open on March 21st in Nevada in Henderson, Las Vegas, Mesquite and Reno. California openings are scheduled for April 11th. Currently the movie is playing all over Utah and Idaho.

SCREEN DOOR JESUS REVIEWS - E-Film Critic has posted a very positive review of the feature film "Screen Door Jesus," which stars Latter-day Saint actress Alaina Kalanj in the lead role. The reviewer gave the movie 4.5 out of 5 stars. A wider theatrical release of the movie has not yet been scheduled. See:

Some excerpts from the review: "Popular wisdom says that you should never address religion or politics in polite company. The logic goes that neither side is going to change their views based on your opposition, and in fact they'll likely defend those to the death - so what's the point in even going there? Screen Door Jesus not only goes there, but it mixes those two no-no's, examining the politics of religion in such a way that nobody - religious nut, middle of the road thinker or left-leaning liberal - could come away overtly offended. Director Kirk Davis has taken on what could have been a suicidal task, shining a light on the good, the bad and the ugly of religion, yet through an even hand, a first hand perspective and an honest dialogue, the result is one that every thinking person should see and consider. .. Screen Door Jesus is a brave, beautiful ensemble affair that never once strays into preachy or instructive or accusatory territory."

The Austin Chronicle also published a positive review of "Screen Door Jesus."

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ANXIOUSLY WAITING ANXIOUSLY ENGAGED - You'll recall way back in the first half of 2002 that we released information about Cary Derbidge's plans for his next movie, "Anxiously Engaged". (Derbidge is the producer of the critically acclaimed Latter-day Saint-themed feature film "Out of Step"). Well, there is now a webpage for the movie, currently located as a subpage of a Derbidge website:

The webpage is slated to have a permanent home at:

Currently the page has nothing but an animated GIF which displays the following text:

two temple weddings

four funerals

and a charming LDS woman who has just turned 30...

and isn't married!

Anxiously Engaged


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CANDLELIGHT MEDIA GROUP LOOKING FOR FILMS TO DISTRIBUTE - (These are the guys who distribute Ryan Little's films "The Last Good War" and "Freedom on the Water", as well as "The Wrong Brother" by Chris Bowman and Angelessy's "Elijah and the Widow of Zeraphath"). Call for entries: Candlelight Media Group is looking for quality films to distribute. Please see our Submissions page. See

OTHER DISTRIBUTION OPPORTUNITY - Distributor startup seeks independent films. Dan Harville represents a company which is actively seeking independent films to purchase. They are interested in all genre's including LDS Cinema and LDS-themed short films. They are primarily interested in the outright purchase of the distrubtion rights. All rights for North America and worldwide distribution, including theatrical, DVD, VHS, and other media, known and unknown. Interested parties should contact Dan Harville:

COSMIC AGENTS DETAILS - II Millennium Movie Makers, is proud to announce a new comical; but also serious at times, plus action packed futuristic science fiction/Military/Martial Arts movie series in the works, entitled: "Cosmic Agents: Episode One: When Earth Became an Endangered Species." Written, directed, produced and starring Darell Thorpe and others... will explore what might happen if the human family continues to invent and progress in their weaponry to the point of inventing global killer weapons, that go way beyond nukes, where one weapon can destroy an inhabited world. Contact or see our auditions page for additional information.

WAR IN HEAVEN EXTRAS POSITIONS STILL OPEN - According to Action! Actors Studio, auditions for "War in Heaven" will be next week, but the auditions for leads are now CLOSED. There are still openings for extras. Filming will take place on July 12th. Contact Stephen Groo ( for additional info.

CONTIGO EN MENTE: "With you in Mind" is a bilingual TV show on KJZZ-14 airing on Saturdays at 10:30. Looking for talent, sales people and volunteers. Call 801-521-0716.

BEST OF STATE UTAH 2003 is calling for entries. Entry materials must be mailed by April 2. Specific entry requirements for each category can be found at

GLORIA INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL is looking for quality films and screenplays for the 2003 Film Festival in Salt Lake City. For entry forms and info visit