August 16, 1999 |
Studio executives are not yet insisting that moats and drawbridges be added to their stately homes, but it would be understandable if they were. For after the huge success of "The Blair Witch Project," trumpeted on simultaneous covers of Time and Newsweek, movie industry players may be forgiven for feeling just the slightest bit besieged. If ever a film's triumph could be called unprecedented, "Blair Witch" is the one.
January 16, 2000 |
With breakout independent film successes last year like "The Blair Witch Project," "Being John Malkovich" and "Dogma," companies like Artisan Entertainment, USA Films and the smaller Lions Gate are hoping to build on their success in 2000 and become major players in the minor leagues of independent film distributors.
August 31, 1999 |
Even without the once-in-a-generation breakaway hit "The Blair Witch Project," independent and art-house releases acquitted themselves quite well this summer. The grosses may not appear impressive when compared to the giant studio releases, but most were low-cost films with upscale appeal. The function of independent movies in summer, says Sony Pictures Classics principal Michael Barker, is as counter-programming to major-studio escapist fare.
August 20, 1999 |
In a bewitching scenario for independent film distributor Artisan Entertainment, industry sources estimate that in the next seven years Hollywood's newest movie franchise, "The Blair Witch Project," and its sequels could generate $500 million in revenue and $150 million in profits for the privately held company. Artisan's investment in the pseudo-documentary that nobody else in Hollywood wanted will ultimately total around $30 million. That includes an acquisition price of $1.
August 14, 1999 |
The people who work at creating play, who craft the whizzes and the bangs and the dings and even the dongs, will tell you the same story: Designing toys is a very serious occupation. Oh, sure, people like Eric Ostendorff of Mattel Inc.'s Hot Wheels design group get to shoot little metal cars along precision plastic tracks all day. Or maybe, like Ryan Slate of Playmates Toys, they spend their time helping dream up dolls that can remember your birthday or ask for cereal for breakfast.
July 26, 1999 |
The man who is poised to turn the smallest movie of the summer--the super-low-budget thriller "The Blair Witch Project"--into one of the season's biggest hits was basking in the Santa Monica sunshine last week, a big smile on his face.