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ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 2014 | By Steven Zeitchik
"Captain America: Winter Soldier, " the latest exercise in character kitchen-sinkdom that is the Marvel Studios universe, did a few things in theaters this week‎end. It was, most prominently, a major box office hit, destroying the April record by more than $10 million and, at $96.2 million, falling just short of the magic $100-million mark. The Chris Evans film was also a critical success, garnering largely plaudits, if occasionally some reservations, on its way to an impressive 89% on Rotten Tomatoes.
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BUSINESS
January 3, 1996 | Times Staff and Wire Reports
'Toy Story' Video Sequel Being Considered: In a press release, Richmond, Calif.-based Pixar Animation Studios, which produced the hit Walt Disney film using innovative computer technology, said it is discussing a direct-to-video sequel with Disney. "Toy Story," which has grossed more than $150 million to date domestically at the box office, has been Hollywood's biggest hit over the holiday season. No details of the prospective project were announced.
BUSINESS
August 13, 2012 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
As it celebrates its 100th birthday, Paramount Pictures is enjoying a lazy summer. The Hollywood studio famous for its giant gates on Melrose Avenue and such pictures as "Sunset Boulevard,""The Godfather"and"Transformers"is in the midst of a three-month-plus period during which it has no new releases, the longest such lull for any major studio in the last decade. And with no self-produced tentpoles this year, it's virtually certain to end up No. 7 in the box-office rankings, an embarrassing outcome for a studio regularly grouped among Hollywood's "big six. " The precipitous drop from No. 1 in 2011 has been caused in part by the delay of three planned 2012 releases to next year.
OPINION
July 22, 2006
Re "Everybody's a critic," Current, July 16 Kyle Pope cannot be serious. No one thinks critics -- whether the "elite" ones he so despises or even the more folksy Ebert and Roper variety -- had anything to do with the financial success of any of the films he mentions. Each one of his examples -- "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," "Mission: Impossible III," "X-Men: The Last Stand" and "The Da Vinci Code" -- have a single, glaringly obvious thing in common: They were made because they are brand names the public already knows and were promoted to within an inch of their lives.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 28, 2001
Re "A Strike? The Script Is Out of Their Hands" (by Rachel Abramowitz, April 20): Topper Lilien hit the nail on the head with his comment, "Maybe it's time to read a book." The movie industry is pathetic. It exists simply because of the insatiable desire of Americans to be entertained, often badly. In a world in which new technologies are emerging, Hollywood continues to bring us unoriginality, retread plots, boring sequels and totally predictable premises. Hopefully, there will be a strike or, in true Hollywood fashion, a sequel to the 1988 work stoppage.
BUSINESS
April 19, 1996 | KEVIN BRASS, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES; Kevin Brass is a senior editor at Video Store magazine
The always tenuous business of arranging financing for films is getting tougher for producer Michael Meltzer, veteran of "The Hidden," "The Hidden II" and "Dead Heat." He can no longer count on the direct-to-video market, the traditional safety net of film financing. "The video stream is a way to get movies made and that stream is dwindling," said Meltzer, who recently completed "Sometimes They Come Back . . .
ENTERTAINMENT
December 12, 1998
The Times reports how disappointing "Psycho's" opening weekend was ("Reaction Tepid to 'Psycho,' " by Richard Natale, Dec. 7). A mere $10.5 million. But when "John Carpenter's Vampires" brought in about the same amount, and was No. 1 of that particular box-office weekend, it was called a hit. I'm getting sick of everybody making a big deal about this movie. Where was everybody when they were cranking out those bad "Psycho" sequels? Nobody was crying sacrilege then. Or what about that TV movie?
BUSINESS
July 30, 2011 | By Ben Fritz, Los Angeles Times
No spandex-clad characters truly soared during Hollywood's summer of superheroes, but that isn't stopping the studios from speeding ahead with plans for more. The last three months have brought to theaters four superhero movies based on long-running comic books, more than have ever been released before in such a short time frame. Results were mixed: "Thor" and, based on early returns, "Captain America: The First Avenger" were solid performers; "X-Men: First Class" did decent business; and "Green Lantern" is a flop.
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