The Force Awakens
is rated PG-13 for “sci-fi action violence,” per filmratings.com
. It’s only the second Star Wars
to be rated above a PG, after Revenge of the Sith
– although to be fair, the PG-13 rating didn’t even exist until 1984. (And I personally doubt this one will have anything to match extra crispy Anakin.)
→ Box office tracking estimates for the film came out today, and they are, as you might expect, pretty nuts. Oh, and it’s selling a lot of stuff.
→ If you really love hyperbole, Entertainment Weekly wants you to start thinking about The Force Awakens’ Oscar chances. Uhh, okay guys.
→ Yet another featurette, this time on BB-8, is coming to the Disney Channel on Sunday. Looking a bit further ahead, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill will be among the guests on Graham Norton’s Christmas show.
There’s a fairly epic gallery of props from The Force Awakens at Wired today. Lots of good stuff for weapons and helmet geeks. And yes, some of them do have very complicated names.
→ Mark Hamill on keeping secrets. (No, he’s not in mo-cap for Star Wars.)
→ The Force Awakens has already pulled in more than $50M in advance ticket sales, the Wall Street Journal reports.
→ Empire has a new Kylo Ren photo (not that different from several of the old Kylo Ren photos) and Adam Driver’s compares the character to a religious fanatic. (It’s Adam Driver’s birthday, by the way. He is 32.)
→ Check out a custom stormtrooper Fiat 500e, on display at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
→ The Hollywood Reporter on The Force Awakens’ Oscar chances. It’s not that kind of movie, kids, but knock yourselves out, I guess.
The Force Awakens has prompted “unprecedented ticketing demand,” according to online ticket seller Fandango. Traffic on the website seven times their usual peak, and they’ve sold “eight times as many tickets as we did on the first day of sales for the previous record holder.” The chain AMC says they sold out 1,000 shows in under 12 hours, while MovieTickets.com says The Force Awakens tickets accounted for 95% of sales yesterday.
Servers crashed left and right last night, and the Alamo Drafthouse chain even had to issue an apology.
If you don’t have tickets yet, many theaters are adding new shows, but I’d still grab them as soon as you can.
Before you start going off about how fast The Force Awakens is going to beat Jurassic World‘s box office record (yawn) be sure to listen to the latest Full of Sith. Predictive box office talk is usually beyond tedious, but there’s a lot of smart thinking here on summer movies vs. winter movies, how little it actually matters in our case, and other factors. (No, nobody is doubting it’s going to make a ton of money.)
→ Wild speculation alert: Kylo Ren and Ewoks? Well, someone has a burnt Vader helmet which likely originates on Endor, so sure, okay.
→ More evidence at the Irish Examiner that Star Wars may be returning to Skellig Michael.
→ Spoiler corner: At Making Star Wars, there’s the planet at the end of this film, and some new pics from Greenham Common set.
Thanks to Planete Star Wars, we now know that the French edition of Vanity Fair’s Star Wars issue has concept art of Han Solo and Poe Dameron, similar to the art we saw of Rey and Finn (who’s also featured) at Celebration. Why only in French, Vanity Fair? (For that matter, why no Poe outfit on display at Celebration?)
→ A Morgan Stanley analyst believes that The Force Awakens could become the third highest grossing film ever, behind Avatar and Titanic. Is he under or overestimating the film’s chances?
→ Star Wars 7 News says that Ken Leung (Lost) has a small role in The Force Awakens. It’s not a big leap to think he might, but this is SW7N.
Could The Force Awakens be the biggest movie debut ever? Well, if Celebration is any indication… The movie is going to open in at least 4,500 locations, The Hollywood Reporter says. As for total figures, box-office analyst Phil Contrino thinks it “will hit $1 billion without blinking.”
Gee, catering to young dudes is actually harming Hollywood’s cash flow? “Many male-skewing summer tentpoles are luring fewer females.” Imagine that.
April Fools! Here’s one we missed: First Showing spotted what appears to be an Episode VIII script or treatment that appears very briefly in Peter Jackson’s latest Hobbit behind-the-scenes video, which was released on Monday. Of course, there are also appear to be scripts that say The Silmarillion, which I don’t believe anyone even has the film rights for, so take it as you will. I’m sure you can guess how I’m leaning. Well played, hobbitses.
Box office. The Motley Fool predicts that Episode VII will make a lot of money. Not just a a lot of money (because duh) but that it will go where only James Cameron has gone before: To make $2 billion worldwide. Well, if anyone can, it would be Star Wars… Right?
People. J.J. Abrams talks Star Wars and Star Trek with SFX, while Harrison Ford’s lips are sealed on Entertainment Tonight Oh the humanity. Or maybe he’s just tortured his publicist enough this week.
Back… To the future! Movies.com gathers some Lucas’ quotes on earlier plans for extending the saga.
The cumulation of Marvel’s multi-film strategy is proving to be the most successful yet: The Avengers‘ $200.3M opening weekend has soared it past Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 for the biggest opening weekend of all time. (Potter still holds the record for biggest opening day.)
Word-of-mouth is playing a big part – the film only dropped 13% from Friday to Saturday, and it’s getting a rare A+ rating from CinemaScore participants. And:
“It’s not playing like just a superhero film,” says Dave Hollis, Disney’s executive vice president of distribution. “It’s playing like a huge, accessible-to-everyone, all-quadrant picture.” To prove Hollis’ point, Disney is reporting that the PG-13 superhero flick was split 50-50 between moviegoers under the age of 25 and those over 25. And while men outnumbered women, it wasn’t to an extreme extent; men made up 60 percent of the film’s audience.
Everyone loves a superhero movie! Or maybe just Joss Whedon, who will certainly have his pick of offers now.