Entertainment behind the scenes
“Funny People,” the new Judd Apatow (“Knocked Up”, “The 40-Year-Old Virgin”) starring Adam Sandler and Seth Rogen, failed to perform as strongly at U.S. box offices this past weekend as Apatow’s and Sandler’s most recent movies.
In the Monday morning analysis that always follows weekend box office watching, it would seem that the message about the dark nature of “Funny People” got out — it tells of a standup comedian who learns he is terminally ill – and as audiences have repeatedly shown this past year during the recession, they decided they wanted lighter fare – real laughs, not those that come mixed with tears. “Funny People” took in just $22.7 million, according to final data issued Monday, compared to pre-weekend forecasts that ranged from the low $20 millions to $30 million. You can read our box office story here.
Along that thinking, escapist fantasy “Harry Potter” landed No. 2 with $17.7 million in its third weekend and animated comedy “G-Force,” was close behind at $17.1 million. In only 10 days, “G-Force” has grossed $66.5 million — a nice sum for a movie about a squad of guinea pigs looking to stop an evil billionaire planning world domination. Now that’s funny.
We were out on Hollywood Boulevard again this past weekend to ask people what they thought of the weekend’s new movies. Below is the video in which one fan gives a nod to one of this summer’s indie breakouts, “The Hurt Locker” which is set in Iraq, and that just shows there is an audience for adult-oriented movies with dark themes — just not a mass movie megaplex market.
If their comments on Thursday to radio host Howard Stern are any indication, it looks like writer/director/producer Judd Apatow and his protege Seth Rogen are still sore over a comment Katherine Heigl made about their 2007 movie “Knocked Up .” Heigl has said the movie, which she starred-in opposite Rogen, was a “little sexist” because it made women look like “shrews” and men seem “lovable.”
The comment has generated controversy ever since she made it in 2007, with some praising Heigl for taking a feminist stand, and others accusing her of being ungrateful.
Psst! Want to know where Judd Apatow hangs his hat when he’s not on the lot churning out pictures like “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” and “Knocked Up”? Universal Pictures accidentally included his home address in widely distributed press materials produced for his latest movie, “Funny People,” which opens on July 31.
His wife, “Funny People” co-star Leslie Mann, was outraged when told of the snafu at a press gathering for the film on Sunday, saying: “That’s really not cool at all.” Apatow started to answer a reporter’s question on the subject, but was interrupted by a studio publicist.