Monday Mixer: First look at 'X-Men's new Nightcrawler
Posted Monday, April 27, 2015 at 12:42 PM Central
Last updated Monday, April 27, 2015 at 12:48 PM Central
by John Couture
For the first time in over two months, I woke up with a clean face. The annual playoff beard is no more for 2015. My beloved Nashville Predators had a great unexpected resurgence to prominence in the NHL this season and while it ended on a sour note and much too quickly for my taste, it was a great sign of things to come for the Preds.
The whole NHL tradition of growing beards during the playoffs is an interesting one for sure. When I was growing up in Detroit, there weren't that many playoff seasons which sort of shows my age a bit, but when they did come sporadically, the players would all uniformly grow out their whiskers. This was long before hipsters brought back facial hair to the mainstream, so the idea of seeing a bunch of grown men with beards together was such a novel idea that it would often generate stares.
It's interesting how much stock people put into certain physical traits and characteristics. I've recently lost a little bit of weight and I don't mention that to brag (OK, maybe a little), but I've had more people notice my missing beard this morning than my weight loss. Which trust me, is fine with me because I'm not one that likes to call attention to myself for such things, but it's an interesting study in human psychology that one little outward change could prompt such a response.
I suppose that's why we are always intrigued when our favorite actors or actresses immerse themselves in roles that involve a physical change to their appearance. Case in point, Jared Leto made a lot of waves this weekend when director David Ayer tweeted out his first in character short of him as the Joker in Suicide Squad.
But more on that in a minute, for now I'm just trying to squelch the desire to stroke my own non-existent whiskers. Settle in for this week's MM.
Box Office 411
I would like to take this moment and personally thank each and every one of you who made it your job, nay, your mission to go out and see Furious 7 this weekend. Thanks to you, I will never have to utter the words "Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 #1 at the box office." And man, does it feel so good.
I was concerned that this 'tweener week would be the unraveling of so much good work from everyone last week. Without any strong new releases, the battle for first place at the box office was going to come down to Furious 7's holdover power versus weak word-of-mouth reports on Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2. Thankfully, there was enough gas left in Furious 7's tank to hold off that Mall Cop.
Furious 7 completed its fourth perfect weekend on top of the box office by amassing another $18.3 million. So far, the action film has netted $320 million at the box office, but with Avengers: Age of Ultron set to open this week, its reign at the top is officially over. To give you some context about the volatility of the box office, the last film to match Furious 7's four week stay at the top was 2012's The Hunger Games. As much as we praise The Avengers for its box office prowess, it was only able to remain in first place for three weeks.
Furious 7's legacy is secured though as Universal has officially announced that Furious 8 will happen and debut in theaters on April 14, 2017, a scant three weeks before Guardians of the Galaxy 2 and six weeks before Star Wars: Episode VIII. In other words, I don't see Furious 8 repeating this four-week feat. While the $400 million mark seems a bit lofty at this point, we'll know more next weekend to gauge it better. Still, Furious 7 will push north of $350 million.
The Age of Adaline opened in third place with $13.4 million. This early shot at counter programming ahead of Avengers: Age of Ultron performed better than I thought it would based solely on trailers. Next week, it will likely take a beating which means that it will struggle to make it to $50 million.
The only other real item of note from this weekend's box office was the expansion of Ex Machina. The film expanded to 1,255 screens and took in $5.4 million in sixth place. The intimate Domhnall Gleeson/Oscar Isaac psychological thriller is like a mini-Force Awakens preview. The film should finish close to $20 becoming the highest grossing film from A24 Films.
- If you happened to even briefly check in on social media this weekend, it was impossible to miss this. It's the image that has everyone talking. Suicide Squad director David Ayer posted this first in-character shot of Jared Leto as the joker. The image has certainly unleashed a storm of opinion, mostly mixed. I try to keep an open mind about such early looks, but it does look like they are trying a little bit too hard with this one.
Today marks the first day of shooting on a couple of huge sequels. First up, it's day one for X-Men: Apocalypse. To celebrate, director Bryan Singer decided to post a very brief look at Kodi Smit-McPhee as Nightcrawler.
Sadly, Singer was right. If you weren't up early this morning, you missed it. The Instagram has been deleted. But don't worry, we snagged a screenshot for you.
I guess we know when X-Men: Apocalypse will be set. Gotta love the 1980s!
Day 1 of the Apocalypse.... Back to the 80s.... pic.twitter.com/0ecjnXX23l— Simon Kinberg (@Kinberg) April 27, 2015
To celebrate this weekend's release of Avengers: Age of Ultron, this LEGO version of its first trailer was made. It's rather spectacular if you ask me.
- We've long known that Kevin Smith loves comic books, but apparently his love for Joss Whedon is reciprocated.
Finally today, I wasn't the only one who had to shave their beard this weekend. I guess we won't be seeing Captain America with a beard in Civil War, which also started filming today.
Dear beard We had a good run, but this is where I leave you. Thank you for braving the Boston winter with me. I miss you already #Cap3Begins— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) April 27, 2015
Frankly my dear, I don't give a mix!