Las Vegas, NV - Dan Glickman delivered his final major U.S. address as Chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) today at the ShoWest convention in Las Vegas. Citing a record box office and his tenure in a period of profound transformation, Glickman said "I got my Hollywood ending," adding that "if I could leave this community with one piece of advice it is never forget our power to change people‘s lives and, in doing so, to change the world."

Glickman began by touting recent news that the 2009 box office saw a return to growth in U.S. admissions, reversing a two-year trend. "We have more people going to the movies and more folks going more often," Glickman said. "The quality and diversity of films is what keeps folks coming back. Add this powerful new 3D era, and I predict the best is yet to come at the box office."

Reflecting on his time at the MPAA, Glickman touched on four defining areas:

Globalization: He discussed the transformation of the MPAA into a truly global organization, fueled by both the growing importance of international markets and the rising challenge of protecting intellectual property rights around the world. Noting that the global box office has soared 30% since 2005, Glickman pointed out that movies are among the only American exports with a positive balance of trade around the world.

Technology: Glickman heralded the new era of 3-D and what it is doing to bring more people back to the theater. He also spoke openly of the challenge of racing to adapt to a fast-moving digital age and predicted that "technology will help resolve these issues in a balanced and fair way, while opening new opportunities for creators to share their works with the world."

Content Protection: Glickman spoke with pride about a unique creative community that supports more than 2.4 million American jobs. He noted that "‘Hollywood‘ can be found in every state in our union today," and pointed to the passage of the Pro-IP Act in Washington, camcording laws in more than 40 states and growing global consensus as laying a strong foundation for protecting intellectual property at the dawn of the digital age.

Ratings: He spoke passionately about the enduring value of the ratings system as a valued tool for parents. He also urged the industry to welcome the diverse voices joining online conversations on film content. "We‘ll never find a bright white line at the intersection of free speech, creative and political expression and how parents raise their kids," Glickman said. "We should continue to examine ways to keep the system relevant and contemporary."

In his speech, Glickman announced the relaunch of www.filmratings.com. "We‘re hoping this will provide some added transparency, shining a light on how the process works and promoting better understanding of the lesser-known, but equally important Advertising Administration, which strives to ensure every piece of movie advertising is appropriate for the audiences that see it."

Glickman was candid about the fact that some viewed him as an unusual choice for MPAA given his background as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. "Joe Hollywood, I‘m not," he said. "I‘m just a guy from Kansas who has loved movies since I was a kid, who has a genuine affection for this art form and a real appreciation for what movies do for this country and, I truly believe, for the world."

A vocal proponent of American movies and their "soft power" to promote freedom and democracy around the world, Glickman said, "I didn‘t come to this job from the industry. But I leave it believing quite strongly that this community is not something separate and apart from America, but something inextricably tied up in what America means to the world." He pointed to recent Oscar contenders and the creative community‘s real-world response to the crisis in Haiti to make his case.

Glickman came to the MPAA after a career that spanned Congress, the U.S. Cabinet and Harvard University. He said the common thread through it all has been "working to encourage our nation to engage the world." He begins his new job as president of Refugees International in April.

"Movies will always be my first love," he said. "But now I get to follow my heart back into public service." In a nod to his audience, Glickman, a lifelong fan of the communal experience of the movie theater, concluded by saying, "I won‘t say 'goodbye'-just 'see you at the movies.'"

Read more

At ShoWest 2010, XpanD is exhibiting the world's first universally compatible active 3D glasses for 3D-ready televisions. The XpanD X103 glasses are compatible with virtually any monitor capable of playing 3D-ready content, making 3D an affordable social experience.

"While major television manufacturers are beginning to roll out their first 3D-ready television models, a key to widespread adoption lies in the ability for consumers to use their 3D glasses with any display that is capable of showing 3D content," says Maria Costeira, CEO of XpanD. "The XpanD X103 glasses deliver unparalleled freedom by offering the universal 3D viewing technology in any environment, on any device!"

As with all XpanD models, the X103 active 3D glasses utilize a fast-switching, liquid crystal cell, know as "pi-cell"--the fastest 3D glasses in the world. Moreover, with the understanding that the X103's universal compatibility will allow users to bring their glasses with them wherever they go, XpanD is developing the glasses in 12 different colors, providing freedom of expression on par with cell phones, portable media players and laptop computers.

"The main problem with display-linked active glasses lies within the incapability to use these glasses with a 3D TV that is manufactured by another brand. While we support TV manufacturers by manufacturing glasses for them, we are also requested by the same manufacturers to sell universal active glasses that will work with all the modern 3D TVs," adds Ami Dror, XpanD Chief Strategy Officer. "TV retailers cannot maintain 15 different models of glasses to support 15 different TV brands, rental AV companies cannot do it, and even 3D broadcasters ask for a universal pair of glasses that they can provide their 3D channel subscribers."

3DTV and XpanD universal 3D glasses are also revolutionizing the 3D cinema business model. Owners of XpanD universal glasses are coming to the cinema with their personalized glasses. As a result, the cinema owners and the studios do not need to pay for 3D glasses anymore, making 3D cinema distribution and exhibition less expensive. The cinemas are using their unique position and becoming a point of sale for universal 3D glasses, and can profit from these sales.

Read more

Total tweets for March 19th Openers

Diary Of A Wimpy Kind started off with 293 tweets on Monday. As I said in my column yesterday this is going to have a pretty low ratio thanks to its primary appeal being to a younger non-Tweet friendly audience. In comparison, The Spy Next Door had 261 tweets its Monday before release, and The Tooth Fairy had 283. We should be looking at a ratio between 450 and 550 and 2,000 to 2,200 total tweets. This should allow it to reach ~$3.75 million by next Friday. Repo Men managed to secure the most buzz amongst the new openers on Monday with 526 tweets. By comparison, The Fourth Kind had 515 on its Monday before release, and Daybreakers had 830. I'm expecting this to come in at around a 1,000 - 1,200 ratio, and this Monday number points to 3,000 - 3,500 tweets for the full week, as such a ~$2.75 million Friday appears to be in order.

Lastly, The Bounty Hunter had 501 tweets reference it on Monday. That number might seem low but remember its 35+ core audience really puts it on the skirts of the Twitter sweet-spot and as such its going to have a very low ratio. The best comparison here will be Couples Retreat which managed to secure 533 tweets its first Monday on its way to 3,710 for the week and a 301 ratio. Expect this film to follow a similar path and end up with around 3,500 tweets for the full week and a ~350 ratio for around a $10 million Friday

Check back tomorrow to see the Tuesday numbers and more comparisons. Follow @AlexBOXOFFICE on Twitter for additional updates.

Twitter tracking history. (For 2009's ratio history please check here.)

alltweets031210.jpgThe ratio is the number of tweets per $1 million of Friday Box Office gross. A film with 1,000 tweets and a $10 million Friday would therefore have a ratio of 100. In general, films that appeal to very young or older audiences have lower ratios since those audiences are not big users of Twitter. By comparison, films that appeal to younger audiences (18-35) have much higher ratios since those audiences are much more active users of Twitter.

Read more

Opening this upcoming week we have three new wide releases: Diary Of A Wimpy Kid, Repo Men, and The Bounty Hunter.

Diary Of A Wimpy Kid had 864 tweets on its lead-up frame last week. The live action flick based on the popular books looks to attract young kids and teens, generally not the largest users of Twitter, a fact which should lead to a relatively low ratio of the weekend. In looking at similarly targeted past films, The Spy Next Door had 376 tweets its week before release, and The Tooth Fairy had 1,247. The film should come in with a ratio between 450 and 550 and 2,200 to 2,500 total tweets. This should allow it to reach ~$4 million on next Friday.

Repo Men was the strongest of the new openers last week with 1,400 total tweets. However, seeing as though it is a Sci-Fi film and in the lowest amount of theaters it will no doubt have the highest ratio. Similar past films include: Surrogates which had 810 tweets its week before release, The Fourth Kind had 1,432, Daybreakers had 1,733. The genre and lowish theater count should ensure it has a ratio of 1,000+. Considering it will likely have 3,000 - 3,500 tweets it should be in store for a $2.5 - $3 million Friday.

Lastly, The Bounty Hunter had 1,172 tweets last week. Seems like a pretty low number but by comparison Couples Retreat had 1,102 tweets its week before release, Law Abiding Citizen had 902, and It's Complicated had 881. The film should hit a wide demographic, with a strong appeal to the 35 and older crowd which will help to keep its ratio on the low side. I would expect something in the range of a 300-400 ratio from its ~3,500 tweets for a $9 to $10 million Friday.

Check back Monday night for analysis of the Monday tweet totals. Follow @AlexBOXOFFICE on Twitter for additional updates.

Twitter tracking history. (For 2009's ratio history please check here.)

alltweets031210.jpgThe ratio is the number of tweets per $1 million of Friday Box Office gross. A film with 1,000 tweets and a $10 million Friday would therefore have a ratio of 100. In general, films that appeal to very young or older audiences have lower ratios since those audiences are not big users of Twitter. By comparison, films that appeal to younger audiences (18-35) have much higher ratios since those audiences are much more active users of Twitter.

Read more

LOS ANGELES - ShoWest has named Jay Roach Comedy Director of the Decade, it was announced today by Robert Sunshine, managing director of ShoWest, which will be held March 15 - 18, 2010, in Las Vegas. Roach will be presented with the ShoWest Comedy Director of the Decade Award at ShoWest's Final Night Banquet and Award Ceremony on Thursday, March 18, at Bally's and Paris Las Vegas.

"Jay has directed some of the most hilarious movies for over a decade," said Sunshine. "With his much-loved debut Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery, Roach learned how to make audiences laugh out loud from the very beginning. Since then, moviegoers have flocked to theatres with each of his releases, making box office smash-hits and winning audiences over time and time again. We are excited to see what he has in store for audiences with Dinner for Schmucks and it is with this same amount of joy that we present Jay with the Comedy Director of the Decade award."

Roach is currently directing and producing the Paramount Pictures, Dream Works Pictures and Sypglass Entertainment comedy Dinner for Schmucks, starring Steve Carell and Paul Rudd, due out July 23rd. Dinner for Schmucks tells the story of Tim (Paul Rudd), a guy on the verge of having it all. The only thing standing between him and total career success is finding the perfect guest to bring to his boss' annual Dinner for Extraordinary People, an event where the winner of the evening brings the most eccentric character as his guest. Enter Barry (Steve Carell), a guy with a passion for dressing mice up in tiny outfits to recreate great works of art. From Roach, director of Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers, comes an unforgettable feast about two unlikely friends and one very memorable dinner.

Roach has garnered a reputation as one of Hollywood's producers/directors with a magic comedic touch, having helmed a string of very funny and successful hits. Roach made his directorial debut in 1997 with Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery and following that up with the sequels Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me and Austin Powers in Goldmember. Roach also directed and produced Meet the Parents and the follow-up Meet the Fockers. Prior to Parents, he also directed the wry and touching Mystery, Alaska, starring an ensemble cast headed by Russell Crowe. In 2008, Roach won two Emmy Awards for directing and producing, a Director's Guild Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe for producing for the star-studded HBO made-for TV film Recount, starring Kevin Spacey, Laura Dern and Tom Wilkinson, among many other in which he took over directing for the late Syndey Pollack. Recent producing credits include Sacha Baron Cohen's film Bruno, Charlie Bartlett and the Academy Award nominated Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan. Prior to that, he produced The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. In addition to Diner for Schmucks, Roach is also currently producing the third installment of the Focker's films Little Fockers, out December 2010.

Read more

Subscribe to Articles Feed