LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK, Aug 18 (Reuters) – “Lee Daniels’ The
Butler,” a civil rights drama starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah
Winfrey, surpassed expectations and easily won the weekend box
office battle, debuting with $25 million in U.S. and Canadian
ticket sales through Sunday.
Jennifer Aniston comedy “We’re the Millers” finished in the
No. 2 slot, earning $17.8 million in its second weekend,
according to studio estimates. Last weekend’s box office leader,
Matt Damon sci-fi thriller “Elysium,” fell to third place with
(Reuters) – Fox Sports 1, the new sports cable channel, will reach 90 million homes when it goes live on Saturday and will be carried by all major TV operators, the network said on Thursday.
A top-ranking executive of the new cable channel, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox, also said that Fox would consider bidding on Thursday night National Football League games for the new channel should the league decide to sell those rights.
LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Matt Damon’s futuristic thriller “Elysium,” the story of an elite space outpost locked in battle with poor invaders from a ruined Earth, won a crowded box-office race among four new films at U.S. and Canadian theaters over the weekend.
“Elysium” grabbed $30.5 million in domestic ticket sales from Friday through Sunday, according to estimates from distributor Sony Pictures. The movie added $10.9 million from 17 international markets, for a combined global opening of $41.4 million.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Walt Disney Co expects to lose between $160 million and $190 million on its expensive summer movie bomb “The Lone Ranger,” the media giant said on Tuesday as it reported a small gain in quarterly profit that beat Wall Street forecasts.
The loss for “The Lone Ranger,” a Western starring Johnny Depp, will be recorded for the quarter that ends in September, Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo said on a conference call with analysts.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Walt Disney Co posted a slightly higher quarterly profit that beat Wall Street expectations, even though its movie studio earnings declined as hit film “Iron Man 3″ failed to match the spectacular success of last year’s “The Avengers.”
Pre-release marketing costs for box office bomb “The Lone Ranger” helped drag down operating income at the studio division by 36 percent from a year earlier, Disney said on Tuesday.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Dreamworks Animation SKG Inc, the studio that built one of Hollywood’s largest film franchises on the back of a green ogre named Shrek, has suddenly become one of the entertainment industry’s busiest dealmakers.
In the last year, Dreamworks has bought a YouTube network aimed at teenagers and picked up a company that controls such iconic characters as Lassie and Casper the Friendly Ghost. It acquired the rights to the Troll toy franchise and in June, signed a deal to produce a TV series for streaming video service Netflix Inc. It also plans to build a $3 billion entertainment complex with partners in China.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – U.S. broadcast network CBS took its dispute with Time Warner Cable to the Internet, blocking access to shows on the CBS.com website for the cable operator’s customers in New York and Los Angeles.
The move followed Time Warner Cable’s decision on Friday to drop CBS from its systems in those markets and some others, an escalation of a weeks-long fight over the fees it pays to carry the network.
(Reuters) – CBS went dark for millions of Time Warner Cable subscribers on Friday after the cable operator and the network’s parent company CBS Corp failed to reach an agreement over fees after weeks of contentious negotiations.
The blackout of the No. 1 rated broadcast network followed an increasingly hostile and public battle between the two sides, which accused each other of making unreasonable demands in their talks over how much Time Warner Cable will pay to carry CBS.
(Reuters) – CBS Corp (CBS.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) on Wednesday reported better-than-expected profit for the second quarter, as the broadcaster brought in more revenue from online licensing deals and international syndication of its television shows.
Chief executive Les Moonves said the company would remain firm in its standoff over fees with Time Warner Cable (TWC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), which briefly blacked out CBS this week in New York and Los Angeles after the companies could not reach a deal. The deadline for a new agreement is Friday at 5 p.m. EST.
(Reuters) – Time Warner Cable agreed on Tuesday to keep the CBS network on the air in New York and other cities after initially announcing a blackout when the two sides failed to reach an agreement on fees.
Negotiations between CBS and Time Warner Cable continued after midnight in New York, according to a spokeswoman for the cable operator. Time Warner said it had relented “at the request of CBS.”