March 16, 2007 | Comments ()

By Dustin Rowles | Trade News | March 16, 2007 |


The first item is on the sketchy side, so I’m going to link to Cinema Blend and let you blame those good folks if the project fails to materialize, but there is apparently talk of a Forrest Gump sequel, word of which I understand will send many a Pajiba reader to knotsmiths and other capable experts in unbundling panties. In fact, when we put together our 10 Worst Blockbusters of All Time last year, we never let on what was number eleven. Well, it was Forrest Gump, and the reason it didn’t break the top 10 was largely because it had no votes from yours truly. What can I say? I can’t, in good consciousness, relegate a film with Jackson Browne on its soundtrack to the blockbuster heap. And sure, it’s the third biggest offender (after Napoleon Dynamite and Jerry Maguire) for inflicting upon our collective pop psyches torturous catch-phrases that nag like meth-addicted toddlers jonesing for a Happy Meal, but that “Running on Empty” scene still worked for me, even if nothing else did. (“I had run for three years, two months, 14 days, and 16 hours. ‘I’m pretty tired. … I think I’ll go home now.’”)

Anyway, Eric Roth apparently wrote a script for a follow-up several years back based on Winston Groom’s second Gump novel, Gump and Co., but the project fell apart due to legal skirmishes. Well, evidently the powers that be have put aside their petty differences in pursuit of a quick buck and have thus decided to pull the project out of development hell. So we may yet get to see Forrest run through the 80s and 90s, where he will no doubt become a footnote to the cultural touchstones of the last 20 years: The dry-cleaner responsible for neglecting Monica Lewinsky’s semen-stained dress and an able bystander who pulls dozens out of the WTC wreckage. There is no word on whether Tom Hanks will return, but if he doesn’t, I’m sure Christopher McDonald would be available for a straight-to-DVD sequel. Perhaps by then we will have a mush-brained intern with a slow-death wish who can handle the live reviews for Pajiba.

In other sequel news (because original ideas are apparently endangered), George Miller has confirmed that Mad Max 4 will happen and that Mel Gibson will not be in it. I’m probably not the right person to discuss the sequel, because the only memories I have of Mad Max involve vague recollections of a lot of sand and Tina Turner, which doesn’t sound like an amazing film unless Turner is beating the shit out of Ike in a sandstorm. Weren’t there dune buggies, too? And Sting — no, that was the other sand epic. They all run together now. Sorry, Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning swiss-cheesed my brain. Whatever — there isn’t a lot else to report about the project except that Miller wants to find a nice young rising star to take on the role of Max. There is speculation that it might be Paul Walker, who Miller calls “the real deal,” which suggests to me that Tina Turner may have beat the shit out of him a few too many times.

In the box-office round-up, anyone who decided to get out of bed this week probably already knows that 300 opened last weekend with $70 million, making it the third largest R-rated opening and the largest March opening of all time. Kudos to Dan for his fine review and his refusal to read into the film a lot of nonexistent political themes just for the sake of a little rabble-rousing. It looks like the commenters took care of that themselves; in fact, I never knew that so many folks took their Greek history so seriously. Last week’s other opener, The Ultimate Gift managed only $1.2 million, which is probably more than “a Hallmark card adapted by Mitch Albom into a song that’s belted out by Celine Dion right after she watches a puppy get flattened by an ice cream truck” deserved.

This weekend has only a few tepid offerings, in light of the NCAA tournament’s opening weekend (Duke — oooof!). The big opener is Sandra Bullock’s Premonition, which is yet another time-fuck flick, following the unintentional comedy tour de force, Lake House. I understand that in Premonition Julian McMahon dies in a tragic car accident but crawls out of a mailbox two years later completely unscathed. Chris Rock also makes another stab at leading man in I Think I Love My Wife, though I think we can all agree that what we really want from Rock is a sequel to Pootie Tang. We can call it Wang Dang Sweet Pootie Tang. And, finally, James Wan’s Dead Silence looks like it’s trying to capitalize on the success of Letterman’s Ventriloquist week with perhaps the first and only ventriloquist torture-porn flick ever to hit the big screen.

Finally, a few months ago, I shared my excitement about Jake Kasdan’s next project, The TV Set, a David Duchovny flick about Kasdan’s own experiences trying to get a pilot made into a television show (based, I think, on the Zero Effect pilot, as well as directing “Freaks and Geeks.”) Well, it’s coming out in a few weeks, and from the looks of the trailer, it appears to bear some resemblance to this season’s storyline on “Extras.” In either respect, it has Judy Greer and Justine Bateman in it — do you need another reason to see it? Check out the trailer:

Finally, because it is movie-related, I’ve got to toss in a link to this QuizLaw story, which shows just how eerily similar a sentencing hearing can be to The Breakfast Club.

Dustin Rowles is the publisher of Pajiba. He lives with his wife in Ithaca, New York. You may email him, or leave a comment below.

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Trade News | March 16, 2007 | Comments ()



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