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John Krasinski’s “IF” Tops Box Office with $35 Million Debut Despite Mixed Reviews

John Krasinski’s latest film, “IF,” claimed the top spot at the box office this weekend with a $35 million North American debut, according to studio estimates on Sunday. Though slightly lower than some projections, the film’s opening performance has sparked various reactions and narratives.

“IF” stars Ryan Reynolds, Cailey Fleming, and features a host of A-list voices including Steve Carell, Matt Damon, Emily Blunt, Louis Gossett Jr., Phoebe Waller-Bridge, and Maya Rudolph. Krasinski not only directed the film but also wrote and co-starred in it. The movie’s premise, centered around imaginary friends, is an original idea from Krasinski.

Paramount released “IF” in 4,041 locations across North America, and it grossed an estimated $20 million from 56 international markets, bringing its global total to $55 million. With a production budget of $110 million, the film’s future success hinges on its ability to sustain audience interest.

“Families came out in force and they loved the film,” said Chris Aronson, Paramount’s head of domestic distribution.

The film has received mixed reviews, currently holding a 49% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. However, audiences have responded positively, giving it an A CinemaScore. This mirrors the trajectory of Pixar’s “Elemental,” which had a modest opening but continued to perform well, ultimately grossing nearly $500 million globally.

Aronson is optimistic about “IF” maintaining its momentum, particularly as schools break for summer. “Kids are out of school starting this coming week and I couldn’t think of a better film to be in the marketplace than this one: It’s new, it’s fresh, its original, and it’s such a heartwarming film,” he said.

In other box office news, “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes” remains a strong contender, earning $26 million in its second weekend and surpassing $100 million domestically. Lionsgate’s horror film “The Strangers—Chapter 1” overperformed with a $12 million debut, thanks in part to an innovative marketing campaign.

Additionally, the Amy Winehouse biopic “Back to Black” opened with $2.9 million, while the IMAX documentary “The Blue Angels” made $1.3 million from 227 screens.

The summer box office season is still ramping up, with anticipated releases like “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga” and “The Garfield Movie” set to draw in more viewers. Memorial Day weekend could see a surge in box office numbers as audiences catch up on missed films.

Despite the non-traditional lineup and slower start compared to previous years, analysts like Paul Dergarabedian of Comscore remain hopeful. “Collectively these films should have a solid Memorial weekend,” he said.

Photo Credit: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock.com

Shia LaBeouf Makes a Comeback at 2024 Cannes Film Festival for “Megalopolis” Premiere

Shia LaBeouf made a rare public appearance at the 2024 Cannes Film Festival, where he walked the red carpet for the premiere of his latest film, Megalopolis. The 37-year-old actor, sporting a tuxedo and bleached blond hair, attended the event in France alongside the film’s ensemble cast, including Adam Driver, Aubrey Plaza, Laurence Fishburne, Grace VanderWaal, and Giancarlo Esposito.

Megalopolis, written and directed by the legendary Francis Ford Coppola, who was also present at the premiere, is described as “a Roman epic in an imaginary decadent modern America.” According to the festival’s synopsis, the film follows an idealist architect and a corrupt mayor battling for control of the future of a decaying city called New Rome. LaBeouf and Jon Voight play key roles as emblematic characters caught between the two men.

LaBeouf’s last major red carpet appearance was at the 92nd Academy Awards on February 9, 2020, where he presented the Oscar for Best Live Action Short Film with his Peanut Butter Falcon co-star Zack Gottsagen. Megalopolis marks LaBeouf’s first significant role since the 2020 biopic Padre Pio, released shortly before his former girlfriend FKA twigs filed a lawsuit against him, accusing him of sexual battery and “relentless abuse.”

Following the allegations in February 2021, LaBeouf sought inpatient treatment and parted ways with his agency, CAA, taking a hiatus from acting. In August 2022, LaBeouf denied reports that he was fired from Don’t Worry Darling by director Olivia Wilde, asserting that he “quit the film due to lack of rehearsal time.”

“My failings with Twigs are fundamental and real, but they are not the narrative that has been presented,” LaBeouf wrote in an email to Wilde, obtained by Variety. “There is a time and a place to deal with such things, and I am trying to navigate a nuanced situation with respect for her and the truth, hence my silence.”

In November 2022, LaBeouf was spotted filming Megalopolis in Atlanta, marking his return to the big screen. His appearance at Cannes signals a significant step in his career comeback as he navigates personal and professional challenges.

Megalopolis is poised to captivate audiences with its ambitious storyline and star-studded cast, and LaBeouf’s performance is eagerly anticipated as he re-emerges in the public eye.

Photo Credit: DFree / Shutterstock.com

Glamour and Boldness Shine at Cannes for “Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga” Premiere

The cast and creatives behind Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga graced the red carpet for its Cannes Film Festival debut on Wednesday, with stars Anya Taylor-Joy and Chris Hemsworth making notable fashion statements.

Anya Taylor-Joy opted for a classic look, wearing a stunning champagne-colored Dior ball gown. The elegant ensemble was highlighted by Tiffany & Co. jewelry, including a platinum necklace featuring over 68 carats of diamonds, 18-karat white gold diamond earrings, and two platinum diamond rings. This Old Hollywood style marked a departure from her recent daring red carpet choices but continued her trend of partnering with Dior, where she serves as an ambassador.

Chris Hemsworth also made a stylish appearance, donning black trousers paired with a white jacket and shirt. His look was accented by Chopard’s Alpine Eagle 41 Frozen watch, crafted from ethical 18-karat white gold and set with diamonds and sapphires, along with diamond cufflinks in matching ethical white gold. In a bold move, Hemsworth chose to forego a tie, technically breaching the Cannes dress code, which traditionally requires a tuxedo with a bow tie or an evening dress for Gala screenings.

Taylor-Joy’s red carpet history includes a mix of avant-garde and classic styles, such as the elaborate Paco Rabanne ensemble she wore at the film’s Australian premiere and the much-discussed white Dior Couture outfit at the Dune: Part Two premiere.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga sees Taylor-Joy stepping into the titular role originally played by Charlize Theron in Mad Max: Fury Road. The prequel explores Furiosa’s backstory, detailing her capture by a great Biker Horde led by Warlord Dementus and her ensuing struggle to survive and find her way home amidst a war with Immortan Joe. The film also stars Hemsworth and Tom Burke.

Furiosa hits theaters on May 24, promising to deliver another adrenaline-fueled chapter in the Mad Max universe.

Photo Credit: Ga Fullner /Shutterstock.com

Steve Carell Shares Thoughts on The Office Follow-Up Series and Reunion with John Krasinski

Steve Carell recently shared his thoughts on the upcoming follow-up series to The Office, expressing excitement but clarifying that he won’t be making an appearance. Speaking at the premiere of his new film IF on Monday, Carell told The Hollywood Reporter, “I will be watching but I will not be showing up. It’s just a new thing and there’s really no reason for my character [Michael Scott] to show up in something like that.”

Carell, however, is enthusiastic about the new series. “I love the idea — I guess it’s set in a failing newspaper company, and I worked with Domhnall Gleeson, who is one of the leads; I did The Patient with him and he’s an excellent actor and a super nice guy so I think it’ll be great.”

The new series, co-created by The Office’s Greg Daniels and Nathan for You co-creator Michael Koman, will feature Gleeson and Sabrina Impacciatore leading an ensemble cast. Set in the universe of Dunder Mifflin, it centers on a dying historic Midwestern newspaper, followed by the same documentary crew that immortalized the Scranton office. Peacock has ordered the series, coming 10 years after the original show ended.

While Carell won’t be part of the new show, he is reuniting with The Office alum John Krasinski in IF, with Krasinski serving as writer and director. Carell voices the film’s lead Imaginary Friend, Blue. Reflecting on working with Krasinski, Carell said, “He’s a great director — he’s very thorough, he’s smart and he knows how to work with actors because he is one. It was just a joy from beginning to end and I jumped at the chance to work with him again, partly just to be with him. He’s a good friend and I hadn’t seen him in a while so it was nice to catch up.”

Carell’s excitement for the new series and his reunion with Krasinski highlights his ongoing connection to the The Office universe, even as he moves forward with new projects.

Photo Credit: Featureflash Photo Agency / Shutterstock.com

Steve Buscemi Recovers After Random Street Assault in NYC

Steve Buscemi, the acclaimed actor known for roles in “Fargo” and the recent Netflix series “Wednesday,” was the victim of a random street assault in New York City’s Kips Bay neighborhood. The incident occurred around 11:50 a.m. on May 8, when an unidentified assailant struck the 66-year-old actor in the face. Following the attack, Buscemi experienced swelling around his face and left eye and was promptly taken to Bellevue Hospital for treatment.

His publicist confirmed the incident, highlighting the troubling increase in random acts of violence in the city and expressing sadness for all victims of such senseless aggression. Buscemi, a New York native, has conveyed his appreciation for the public’s concern but remains focused on the broader issue of safety in his hometown.

This assault follows a similar incident involving Michael Stuhlbarg, Buscemi’s co-star from “Boardwalk Empire,” who was attacked with a rock in Manhattan last month. These events underscore a growing concern over public safety in the city. Meanwhile, the police are on the lookout for Buscemi’s attacker, last seen wearing a baseball cap, blue T-shirt, black pants, and white sneakers.

Photo Credit: DFree / Shutterstock.com

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