Zac Efron, "Think Like a Man" Finally Slays "The Hunger Games" 


Two date-night flicks triumphed over "The Hunger Games."

"Think Like a Man" and "The Lucky One" knocked the box-office champion, "The Hunger Games," off its No. 1 box-office position after spending four weeks at the top spot.

Based on Steve Harvey's dating-advice best-seller, "Think Like a Man" overperformed and defied expectations with a $33 million debut, landing the romantic comedy at No. 1. Sony's Screen Gems expected the film to debut around $15 - $18 million but the ensemble comedy featuring Michael Ealy, Taraji P. Henson, Kevin Hart, and Gabrielle Union, surprised everyone!

"The Lucky One," starring Zac Efron, also surprised everyone with its $22.8 million debut at No. 2. Its domestic take came in a bit above Warner Bros' expectations as well. ("The Lucky One" movie review)

But have no fear for "The Hunger Games." The Lionsgate box-office champ took in $14.5 million for the No. 3 spot but so far has raised its domestic total to $356.9 million with a combined global total of $573 million.

Disney's Earth-day documentary, "Chimpanzee," debuted at No. 4 with $10.2 million. Rounding out the Top 5 box-office films was "The Three Stooges" with $9.2 million.

Here's the complete list of the Top 10 Box-Office Films for the weekend of April 20th:

1. “Think Like a Man,” $33 million.
2. “The Lucky One,” $22.8 million.
3. “The Hunger Games,” $14.5 million.
4. “Chimpanzee,” $10.2 million.
5. “The Three Stooges,” $9.2 million.
6. “The Cabin in the Woods,” $7.8 million.
7. “American Reunion,” $5.2 million.
8. “Titanic” in 3-D, $5 million.
9. “21 Jump Street,” $4.6 million.
10. “Mirror Mirror,” $4.1 million.

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Watch "The Lucky One" Movie Review Right Now!  
So is the new Nicholas Sparks film worth your money? Is Zac Efron effortless in channeling fellow Sparks alumnus Channing Tatum for the role? Or is "The Lucky One" purely for the enjoyment of the real lucky ones -- the Nicholas Sparks fans? Take a look at my review:



For my written review of "The Lucky One," click here.

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Happy 65th Anniversary Cannes Film Festival! Check Out the Official Selection List! Is There An "Artist" in the Making? 


1,779 films were submitted to be included as an Official Selection of the 2012 Cannes Film Festival but in the end, only 54 films made it. From competition to Un Certain Regard to midnight screenings (I especially want to see Dario Argento's "Dracula" from the midnight screening category), here's your full list!

The Cannes Film Festival is taking place from May 16th to the 27th. Last year, "Drive," "We Need to Talk About Kevin," "Melancholia," "The Artist," and "The Tree of Life" all wowed festival attendees and ultimately made an impact on the year-end award-giving bodies (with "The Artist" ultimately taking the grand prize of them all -- the Best Picture Oscar). We'll see if the latest crop of Cannes films will have the same staying power as Michel Hazanavicius' "The Artist." (visit the official Festival de Cannes site right here)

2012 Cannes Film Festival Official Selection

COMPETITION:
Moonrise Kingdom, dir: Wes Anderson
Rust & Bone, dir: Jacques Audiard
Holly Motors, dir: Léos Carax
Cosmopolis, dir: David Cronenberg
The Paperboy, dir: Lee Daniels
Killing Them Softly, dir: Andrew Dominik
Reality, dir: Matteo Garrone
Amour, dir: Michael Haneke
Lawless, dir: John Hillcoat
In Another Country, dir: Hong Sangsoo
Taste Of Money, dir: Im Sangsoo
Like Someone In Love, dir: Abbas Kiarostami
The Angel’s Share, dir: Ken Loach
Im Nebel, dir: Sergei Loznitsa
Beyond The Hills, dir: Cristian Mungiu
Baad El Mawkeaa, dir: Yousry Nasrallah
Mud, dir: Jeff Nichols
You Haven’t Seen Anything Yet, dir: Alain Resnais
Post Tenebras Lux, dir: Carlos Reygadas
On The Road, dir: Walter Salles
Paradis: Amour, dir: Ulrich Seidl
The Hunt, dir: Thomas Vinterberg
Thérèse Desqueyroux, dir: Claude Miller (closing film, out of competition)

UN CERTAIN REGARD:
Miss Lovely, Ashim Ahluwalia
La Playa, dir: Juan Andrés Arango
God’s Horses, dir: Nabil Ayouch
Trois Monde, dir: Catherine Corsini
Antiviral, dir: Brandon Cronenberg
7 Days In Havana, dirs: Benicio Del Toro, Pablo Trapero, Julio Medem, Elia Suleiman, Juan Carlos Tabio, Gaspard Noé, Laurent Cantet
Le Grand Soir, dirs: Benoit Delépine, Gustave Kervern
Laurence Anyways, dir: Xavier Dolan
Después De Lucia, dir: Michel Franco
Aimer A Perdre La Raison, dir: Joachim Lafosse
Student, dir: Darezhan Omirbayev
La Pirogue, dir: Moussa Toure
Elefante Blanco, dir: Pablo Trapero
Confessions Of A Chile Of The Century, dir: Sylvie Verheyde
11.25 The Day He Chose His Own Fate, dir: Koji Wakamatsu
Mystery, dir: Lou Ye
Beasts Of The Southern Wild, dir: Behn Zeitlin

OUT OF COMPETITION
Io E Te, dir: Bernardo Bertolucci
Madagascar 3, Europe’s Most Wanted, dirs: Eric Darnelle, Tom McGrath
Hemingway & Gelhorn, dir: Philip Kaufman

MIDNIGHT SCREENINGS
Dario Argento’s Dracula, dir: Dario Argento
Ai To Makoto, dir: Takashi Miike

65th BIRTHDAY FILM
Une Journée Particulière, dirs: Gilles Jacob, Samuel Faure

SPECIAL SCREENINGS
Polluting Paradise, dir: Fatih Akin
Roman Polanski: A Film Memoir, dir: Laurent Bouzereau
The Central Park Five, dirs: Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, David McMahon
Les Invisibles, Sébastien Lifshitz
Journal De France, dirs: Claudine Nougaret, Raymond Depardon
A Musica Segundo Tom Jobim, dir: Nelson Pereira Dos Santos
Villegas, dir: Gonzalo Tobal
Mekong Hotel, dir: Apichatpong Weerasethakul

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Who's Likely to Direct "Hunger Games" Sequel? It's Now Down to Two Tributes! 


As soon as director Gary Ross exited "The Hunger Games" franchise, many speculations were floating around as to who should replace him for the sequel "Hunger Games: Catching Fire." Some were saying Alfonso Cuaron, the guy who gave "Harry Potter" its dark tinge with "The Prisoner of Azkaban," but I personally was hoping that Kathryn Bigelow, the Oscar-winning director of "The Hurt Locker," would take a shot.

But both Cuaron and Bigelow are not the chosen ones for the Reaping Day, it has come down to two candidates -- first, the Oscar-nominated Bennett Miller ("Capote") who most recently offered us the fantastic "Moneyball," and second, Francis Lawrence, the music video director who gave us "I Am Legend" and "Constantine" among others. Deadline is also saying that Juan Antonio Bayona of "The Orphanage" and "Attack the Block's" Joe Cornish both met with Lionsgate. But Miller is the obvious choice here right? Fresh from the success of "Moneyball," the director is a great storyteller with an equally impressive eye. But here's the catch -- Miller wants to shoot, not in August as previously planned, but in spring after he finishes "Foxcatcher" for FOX.

But Lionsgate is adamant to start shooting this August (one of the main reasons Ross left the franchise -- he wanted more time), so Lawrence may be the final victor.

FOX is crimping Lionsgate's style let me tell ya. "The Hunger Games" studio is forced to shoot the sequel earlier so Jennifer Lawrence can make her appearance as Mystique in the "X-Men: First Class" sequel. And now, Miller may be out as a director because of his prior commitment to FOX.

We'll know more about who will be the ultimate director of the sequel very, very soon!

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"Magic Mike" -- Here's the Trailer for the Steven Soderbergh Male Stripper Movie We've All Been Wondering About 


The world of male stripping is explored in this film directed by Steven Soderbergh written by Reid Carolin. Channing Tatum, in a role he's born to play, stars as Mike aka Magic Mike, a veteran stripper. He takes a liking to a young dancer appropriately named The Kid (Alex Pettyfer)and teaches him the fine art of male stripping Soderbergh-style. Matthew McConaughey (yes, in a role he's born to play part 2) co-stars as Dallas, a former stripper who now owns Xquisite, a club where Magic Mike and The Kid both work. Then, catfight ensues! The plot is like a gender-reversal "Showgirls" right? We'll see if "Magic Mike" is worthy of our dollar tips when the film opens on June 29th, a great way to start your 4th of July celebration ladies! :happy

Here's the brand new trailer of "Magic Mike" from Warner Bros.:



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