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BUSINESS
July 16, 2010 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
Warner Bros. is opening one of the riskiest movies of the summer this weekend, while Walt Disney Studios is opening one of the most commercially challenged. Warner's thriller "Inception" from director Christopher Nolan will probably top the box office, people who have seen pre-release surveys say, although they're far from certain how audiences will respond to its narrative complexity that's already dividing critics. The movie should open to roughly $45 million but could easily go higher or lower depending on word of mouth.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 26, 2012 | By Ben Fritz
Warner Bros. has extended a deal with its longtime partner Village Roadshow Pictures, which has secured debt financing of more than $1.1 billion to invest in upcoming movies like "The Great Gatsby," "Lego," and "Mad Max: Fury Road. " The agreement is a critical one for the Burbank studio, as Village Roadshow is one of two companies that put up half the budgets for most of Warner Bros.' productions. Village, which has worked with Warner since 1997, will continue to do so through the end of 2017 under the new deal.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 2012 | By Ben Fritz
With a high-stakes 2013 looming in which its first slate of in-house developed films will be released, Legendary Entertainment has raised $443 million in new equity financing, the company announced Tuesday. The deal gives asset management and financial planning giant Waddell & Reed Financial, Inc. a stake of just under 20% in Legendary and values the production company at about $2.5 billion, according to a person familiar with the structure of the financing but not authorized to speak publicly.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 24, 2011 | By Ben Fritz and John Horn, Los Angeles Times
China bought $91.9-billion worth of U.S. goods last year, including boatloads of medical devices, precious metals and electrical equipment. But when it comes to America's most celebrated cultural export - Hollywood movies - crossing China's borders has proved more difficult than climbing the Great Wall. After years of frustration with the Chinese government's severe limits on how many imported movies can play in its theaters, several prominent American film producers are cutting ambitious deals with Chinese firms that provide alternative routes into the country's exploding movie market.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 11, 2013 | By Amy Kaufman
Will the kids who turn out for “Despicable Me 2” get the better of the on-screen man-children of “Grown Ups 2”? The two films will battle for No. 1 at the multiplex this weekend, as Guillermo del Toro's 3-D "Pacific Rim" will meanwhile hope to avoid the same fate as recent big-budget flops “The Lone Ranger,” “White House Down” and “After Earth.” "Despicable Me 2," which debuted with a huge $83.5 million, will likely take...
ENTERTAINMENT
July 23, 2012 | By Amy Kaufman, Ben Fritz and Andrew Blankstein, Los Angeles Times
Law enforcement officials plan to continue an undercover presence in Los Angeles-area movie theaters through at least Sunday, as"The Dark Knight Rises"opened to a very strong $249 million worldwide. There was only one reported incident this past weekend after police were posted in local theaters in an effort to reduce anxiety and prevent copycat crimes following Friday's massacre at a showing of the third film in   Christopher Nolan's Batman franchise in Colorado. A man waiting for the superhero film to begin at an AMC theater in Norwalk was arrested Sunday after fellow patrons reported that he became agitated and said, "I should go off like in Colorado," sheriff's deputies said.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 4, 2013 | By Joe Flint
After the coffee. Before making sure my electric bill is paid up. The Skinny: I wonder if that blackout during the Super Bowl would have been as much fun without Twitter around for people to crack jokes and stay interested in the game. I just hope that Joe Flacco's swearing won't lead to another decade-long legal battle between CBS and the FCC. Monday's headlines include a recap of the weekend box office, a look at the sometimes tense relationship between Legendary Films head Thomas Tull and Warner Bros., and the challenges of trying to make historical films look right.
BUSINESS
March 17, 2008 | Josh Friedman, Times Staff Writer
Twentieth Century Fox's G-rated "Horton Hears a Who!" opened to an estimated $45.1 million at the weekend box office, the studio said Sunday, the latest potent performance by a movie aimed at family audiences. The animated picture, produced for about $90 million, follows a string of G- and PG-rated hits since the fall including Walt Disney Co.'s "Enchanted" and "Hannah Montana & Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour" and Fox's partly animated musical-comedy "Alvin and the Chipmunks."
ENTERTAINMENT
June 17, 2013 | By Amy Kaufman
When "The Hangover Part III" opened with half as many ticket sales as its predecessor in May, it was clear American moviegoers had tired of the Wolf Pack.  But there was hope yet for Warner Bros. In the two years between the second and third "Hangover," the international marketplace expanded -- and the second installment had performed especially well for a R-rated comedy overseas. PHOTOS: Scenes from 'Hangover III' "If you look at the third movies of comedy trilogies -- 'Rush Hour,' 'Meet the Parents,' 'Austin Powers' -- honest to God, those movies tend to drop in their third film.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 11, 2013 | By Amy Kaufman
The sports biopic "42" will rough up its box office rivals as it steps up to the plate this weekend. The drama about famed baseball player Jackie Robinson is poised to claim No. 1, opening with a solid $20 million, according to those who have seen pre-release audience surveys. (Warner Bros. is predicting a softer launch of around $15 million.) The weekend's other debut, the spoof "Scary Movie 5," will likely take in a respectable $17 million or so. PHOTOS: Scenes from '42' For years, Hollywood has been eager to make a movie about Robinson, the  first African American to play Major League Baseball.
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