Jumanji

(Photo by Columbia/courtesy Everett Collection)

All Robin Williams Movies, Ranked by Tomatometer

Robin Williams earned his big-screen debut as Popeye in 1980 on the the growing popularity of his frenzied, freewheeling stand-up routine, and his literally out-of-this-world role on TV’s Mork & Mindy. Williams’ follow-up, The World According to Garp, was quick to reveal the sensitive artist, the melancholic side to the actor that sought fulfillment in dramatic characters and movies. Of course, it was the ’80s, and the market demanded awful comedies, which Williams was obliged to make until that special breakthrough role that would propel him out of yuppie slapstick. That moment arrived in 1987 with Barry Levinson’s Good Morning, Vietnam, a box office smash that nabbed Williams his first Oscar nomination and was part and parcel of Reagan-era movies like First Blood and Platoon that re-defined the American perception of the War.

Vietnam kicked off a strong run of critical praise and Academy recognition, as William appeared in Dead Poets Society, Awakenings, and The Fisher King one after the other. If comedy was beginning to look like something in the rear view mirror, Williams abruptly shifted gears into family fare, starting with 1991’s Hook, and then Aladdin (a turning point for celebrity voice actors as animated marketing draws), Mrs. Doubtfire, Jumanji, and Flubber. Williams was everywhere in the ’90s, and it all culminated with the multiple career-launching Good Will Hunting, which got him his final Oscar nomination (he was previously recognized for Fisher King and Dead Poets) and only win.

After flops Bicentennial Man and Jakob the Liar saw him veer hard into sentimentality, Williams re-invented himself as a dark angel in 2002 with Death to Smoochy, Insomnia, and One Hour Photo. Broad comedies (like Old Dogs, Man of the Year, RV, or License to Wed) would still remind audiences of the old eager-to-please Williams, even as they repelled critics. And he could use his pre-conceived image as a genial figure in his favor in ensemble pieces like the Night at the Museum series, Happy Feet, or Lee Daniels’ The Butler. But it was obvious Williams was increasingly drawn to pitch-black comedies and dramas, which ramped up in menace over the course of The Night Listener, World’s Greatest Dad, The Angriest Man in Brooklyn, and A Merry Friggin’ Christmas.

Williams’ final on-screen performance was 2015’s Boulevard, and his last voice role featured in 2017 for Absolutely Anything. A Certified Fresh 2018 documentary, Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind, remains to illuminate more of his life, as we rank all Robin Williams movies by Tomatometer.

#57

Old Dogs (2009)
5%

#57
Adjusted Score: 9007%
Critics Consensus: Its cast tries hard, but Old Dogs is a predictable, nearly witless attempt at physical comedy and moral uplift that misses the mark on both counts.
Synopsis: While preparing for an important business deal, two bachelors (John Travolta, Robin Williams) become the unexpected caretakers of twin children.... [More]
Directed By: Walt Becker

#56

The Big Wedding (2013)
7%

#56
Adjusted Score: 11015%
Critics Consensus: The Big Wedding's all-star cast is stranded in a contrived, strained plot that features broad stabs at humor but few laughs.
Synopsis: Don (Robert De Niro) and Ellie Griffin (Diane Keaton) are long-divorced, but when their adopted son's ultraconservative biological mother unexpectedly... [More]
Directed By: Justin Zackham

#55

License to Wed (2007)
7%

#55
Adjusted Score: 11985%
Critics Consensus: Featuring one of Robin Williams' most shtick-heavy performances, the broad and formulaic License to Wed wrings little out of its slightly creepy, unappealing premise.
Synopsis: Newly engaged couple Sadie (Mandy Moore) and Ben (John Krasinski) look forward to a traditional wedding in St. Augustine's Church... [More]
Directed By: Ken Kwapis

#54

The Survivors (1983)
9%

#54
Adjusted Score: 9166%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: When Sonny Paluso's (Walter Matthau) gas station is blown up and Donald Quinelle (Robin Williams) loses his cushy executive job,... [More]
Directed By: Michael Ritchie

#53
Adjusted Score: 9504%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: After learning that a brain aneurysm will kill him in about 90 minutes, a perpetually unhappy man (Robin Williams) struggles... [More]
Directed By: Phil Alden Robinson

#52

House of D (2004)
10%

#52
Adjusted Score: 12557%
Critics Consensus: A sincere but inept coming of age story.
Synopsis: In the present, artist Tom Warshaw (David Duchovny) recalls his traumatic coming of age. As a 13-year-old (Anton Yelchin) growing... [More]
Directed By: David Duchovny

#51

Club Paradise (1986)
11%

#51
Adjusted Score: 12038%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Jack Moniker (Robin Williams) is a retired firefighter who teams up with reggae singer Ernest Reed (Jimmy Cliff) to open... [More]
Directed By: Harold Ramis

#50
Adjusted Score: 13816%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Boyd is forced to spend Christmas at his parents' house and has to hit the road with his eccentric father... [More]
Directed By: Tristram Shapeero

#49

Jack (1996)
17%

#49
Adjusted Score: 18507%
Critics Consensus: Robin Williams' childlike energy is channeled in all the wrong places with Jack, a bizarre tragedy that aims for uplift but sinks deep into queasy schmaltz.
Synopsis: After an unusually short pregnancy, Karen Powell (Diane Lane) gives birth to a baby boy whose body ages much faster... [More]
Directed By: Francis Ford Coppola

#48
#48
Adjusted Score: 19925%
Critics Consensus: Given the impressive array of talent involved in Absolutely Anything -- and the near-total lack of laughs it provokes -- this Monty Python reunion can only be regarded as a disappointment.
Synopsis: Eccentric aliens give a man (Simon Pegg) the power to do anything he wants to determine if Earth is worth... [More]
Directed By: Terry Jones

#47

Man of the Year (2006)
21%

#47
Adjusted Score: 27003%
Critics Consensus: Weakened by second-half attempts at thriller and romance, this presidential comedy also fails to hit any sharp political notes, resulting in a confused and unsatisfying mess.
Synopsis: Tom Dobbs (Robin Williams), the satirical host of a political talk show, decides to shake things up by running for... [More]
Directed By: Barry Levinson

#46

Patch Adams (1998)
22%

#46
Adjusted Score: 24463%
Critics Consensus: Syrupy performances and directing make this dramedy all too obvious.
Synopsis: After struggling with depression in a mental hospital, Hunter "Patch" Adams (Robin Williams) decides he wants to become a doctor.... [More]
Directed By: Tom Shadyac

#45

RV (2006)
24%

#45
Adjusted Score: 27859%
Critics Consensus: An unoriginal and only occasionally funny family road-trip movie, RV is a mediocre effort that not even the charisma of Robin Williams can save.
Synopsis: The Munros are a typically American dysfunctional family, complete with rebellious, uncommunicative offspring and baffled parents. Patriarch Bob (Robin Williams)... [More]
Directed By: Barry Sonnenfeld

#44

Flubber (1997)
24%

#44
Adjusted Score: 24543%
Critics Consensus: With its overactive focus on special effects and tiresome slapstick, Flubber squanders the immense talent of its cast and crew.
Synopsis: Professor Philip Brainard (Robin Williams) is experimenting with new kinds of energy, and he thinks this project will save struggling... [More]
Directed By: Les Mayfield

#43

Fathers' Day (1997)
25%

#43
Adjusted Score: 27561%
Critics Consensus: A maudlin misfire, Father's Day manages the difficult task of making Billy Crystal and Robin Williams woefully unfunny.
Synopsis: Jack (Billy Crystal) is a straitlaced lawyer with a loving wife (Julia Louis-Dreyfus). Dale (Robin Williams) is suicidal about his... [More]
Directed By: Ivan Reitman

#42

Nine Months (1995)
25%

#42
Adjusted Score: 26486%
Critics Consensus: Nine Months finds writer-director Chris Columbus playing to his worst comedic instincts -- and relying far too heavily on the trademark tics of his miscast leading man.
Synopsis: When successful child psychologist and one-time playboy Samuel Faulkner (Hugh Grant) hears that his girlfriend, Rebecca (Julianne Moore), is pregnant,... [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

#41

Hook (1991)
29%

#41
Adjusted Score: 32918%
Critics Consensus: The look of Hook is lively indeed but Steven Spielberg directs on autopilot here, giving in too quickly to his sentimental, syrupy qualities.
Synopsis: When his young children are abducted by his old nemesis, Capt. Hook (Dustin Hoffman), middle-aged lawyer Peter Banning (Robin Williams)... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#40

Jakob the Liar (1999)
29%

#40
Adjusted Score: 31703%
Critics Consensus: Any real story is buried by awkward performances and contrived situations.
Synopsis: In 1944, Jewish shop owner Jakob (Robin Williams) overhears a radio broadcast on the movements of the Soviet army while... [More]
Directed By: Peter Kassovitz

#39

The Big White (2005)
30%

#39
Adjusted Score: 14291%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: An indebted travel agent (Robin Williams) tries to land $1 million by claiming a dead body is his missing brother.... [More]
Directed By: Mark Mylod

#38

Toys (1992)
30%

#38
Adjusted Score: 30617%
Critics Consensus: Like a colorfully overengineered gewgaw on the shelf, Toys might look like fun, but its seemingly limitless possibilities lead mainly to confusion and disappointment.
Synopsis: A hi-tech toy factory falls into the hands of an army general who turns the models into killing machines. The... [More]
Directed By: Barry Levinson

#37
#37
Adjusted Score: 30410%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Married banker Jack Dundee (Robin Williams) has lived his life regretting a botched play he made in a high school... [More]
Directed By: Roger Spottiswoode

#36
Adjusted Score: 30769%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In this animated sequel, after months of preparation for their wedding, former street thief Aladdin (Scott Weinger) and his beloved... [More]
Directed By: Tad Stones

#35

Bicentennial Man (1999)
36%

#35
Adjusted Score: 39989%
Critics Consensus: Bicentennial Man is ruined by a bad script and ends up being dull and mawkish.
Synopsis: Richard Martin (Sam Neill) buys a gift, a new NDR-114 robot. The product is named Andrew (Robin Williams) by the... [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

#34

Final Cut (1985)
37%

#34
Adjusted Score: 39349%
Critics Consensus: The Final Cut fails to make compelling use of its intriguing premise and talented cast, settling for a middling sci-fi drama that never justifies its pretensions.
Synopsis: A Hollywood film crew's bayou location takes a dangerous turn when one of their technicians and a local woman disappear.... [More]
Directed By: Larry G. Brown

#33

August Rush (2007)
37%

#33
Adjusted Score: 41900%
Critics Consensus: Though featuring a talented cast, August Rush cannot overcome the flimsy direction and schmaltzy plot.
Synopsis: A musically gifted orphan, Evan (Freddie Highmore), runs away from his orphanage and searches New York City for his birth... [More]
Directed By: Kirsten Sheridan

#32
#32
Adjusted Score: 44479%
Critics Consensus: This psychological thriller compels by blurring the line between truth and fiction; unfortunately, the film itself gets muddled in a hazy account of Maupin's original novel.
Synopsis: Gabriel Noone (Robin Williams), a writer and host of a late-night radio show, begins a phone correspondence with Pete (Rory... [More]
Directed By: Patrick Stettner

#31

Death to Smoochy (2002)
42%

#31
Adjusted Score: 45509%
Critics Consensus: The talent involved can't save a script that has nowhere to go with its promising premise.
Synopsis: Tells the story of Rainbow Randolph (Robin Williams), the corrupt, costumed star of a popular children's TV show, who is... [More]
Directed By: Danny DeVito

#30
#30
Adjusted Score: 48669%
Critics Consensus: Parents might call this either a spectacle-filled adventure or a shallow and vapid CG-fest, depending on whether they choose to embrace this on the same level as their kids.
Synopsis: A night watchman (Ben Stiller) at a museum of natural history makes a startling discovery: Thanks to the unleashing of... [More]
Directed By: Shawn Levy

#29
Adjusted Score: 50690%
Critics Consensus: Night at the Museum: Battle at the Smithsonian is busy enough to keep the kids interested but the slapstick goes overboard and the special effects (however well executed) throw the production into mania.
Synopsis: Once the night guard at the Museum of Natural History, Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) is now a successful purveyor of... [More]
Directed By: Shawn Levy

#28

Happy Feet Two (2011)
45%

#28
Adjusted Score: 49213%
Critics Consensus: The animation is as eye-popping as ever, but Happy Feet Two's narrative is too noisily incoherent to recapture the Oscar-winning charm of its predecessor.
Synopsis: Mumble (Elijah Wood) the penguin, now called the Master of Tap, has an unusual problem: Erik, his son, is reluctant... [More]
Directed By: George Miller

#27
Adjusted Score: 50310%
Critics Consensus: While not without its moments, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb is a less-than-inspired sendoff for the trilogy.
Synopsis: When the exhibits at New York's Natural History Museum start behaving strangely, Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) -- now the director... [More]
Directed By: Shawn Levy

#26

Boulevard (2014)
52%

#26
Adjusted Score: 54268%
Critics Consensus: Boulevard features a richly layered performance from Robin Williams, but that may be this dour drama's sole distinctive feature.
Synopsis: A married man's (Robin Williams) long-suppressed sexual identity slowly emerges when picks up a male hooker (Roberto Aguire) and pays... [More]
Directed By: Dito Montiel

#25

Being Human (1994)
54%

#25
Adjusted Score: 53030%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: One human soul named Hector (Robin Williams) gets the chance to live five separate lives, through different periods of history.... [More]
Directed By: Bill Forsyth

#24
#24
Adjusted Score: 55398%
Critics Consensus: An insubstantial plot overshadows the beautiful, surreal scenery.
Synopsis: After Chris Nielsen (Robin Williams) dies in a car accident, he is guided through the afterlife by his spirit guide,... [More]
Directed By: Vincent Ward

#23

Cadillac Man (1990)
55%

#23
Adjusted Score: 51694%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Car dealer Joey O'Brien (Robin Williams) is spread as thin financially as he is in his love life. He's dating... [More]
Directed By: Roger Donaldson

#22

Jumanji (1995)
55%

#22
Adjusted Score: 56952%
Critics Consensus: A feast for the eyes with a somewhat malnourished plot, Jumanji is an underachieving adventure that still offers a decent amount of fun for the whole family.
Synopsis: A magical board game unleashes a world of adventure on siblings Peter (Bradley Pierce) and Judy Shepherd (Kirsten Dunst). While... [More]
Directed By: Joe Johnston

#21

Popeye (1980)
63%

#21
Adjusted Score: 64746%
Critics Consensus: Altman's take on the iconic cartoon is messy and wildly uneven, but its robust humor and manic charm are hard to resist.
Synopsis: Looking for the father (Ray Walston) who deserted him as a baby, a sailor named Popeye (Robin Williams) journeys to... [More]
Directed By: Robert Altman

#20
Adjusted Score: 62553%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Crysta (Samantha Mathis) is a fairy who lives in FernGully, a rainforest in Australia, and has never seen a human... [More]
Directed By: Bill Kroyer

#19

Robots (2005)
64%

#19
Adjusted Score: 70176%
Critics Consensus: Robots delights on a visual level, but the story feels like it came off an assembly line.
Synopsis: In a world of sentient robots, striving young inventor Rodney Copperbottom (Ewan McGregor) wants to work for the avuncular Bigweld... [More]

#18

Mrs. Doubtfire (1993)
72%

#18
Adjusted Score: 75137%
Critics Consensus: On paper, Mrs. Doubtfire might seem excessively broad or sentimental, but Robin Williams shines so brightly in the title role that the end result is difficult to resist.
Synopsis: Troubled that he has little access to his children, divorced Daniel Hillard (Robin Williams) hatches an elaborate plan. With help... [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

#17
#17
Adjusted Score: 79000%
Critics Consensus: Gut-wrenching and emotionally affecting, Lee Daniels' The Butler overcomes an uneven narrative thanks to strong performances from an all-star cast.
Synopsis: After leaving the South as a young man and finding employment at an elite hotel in Washington, D.C., Cecil Gaines... [More]
Directed By: Lee Daniels

#16
#16
Adjusted Score: 73766%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Novelist Harry Block (Woody Allen) has become a success by turning his family and friends' lives into fodder for his... [More]
Directed By: Woody Allen

#15
Adjusted Score: 73928%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A nurse during World War II, Jenny Fields (Glenn Close) conceives with a dying pilot and bears a boy named... [More]
Directed By: George Roy Hill

#14

Happy Feet (2006)
76%

#14
Adjusted Score: 82051%
Critics Consensus: Visually dazzling, with a thoughtful storyline and catchy musical numbers, Happy Feet marks a successful animated debut from the makers of Babe.
Synopsis: Mumble (Elijah Wood), a young emperor penguin, lives in Antarctica. Like others of his kind, he needs to be able... [More]
Directed By: George Miller

#13

The Birdcage (1996)
81%

#13
Adjusted Score: 83794%
Critics Consensus: Mike Nichols wrangles agreeably amusing performances from Robin Williams and Nathan Lane in this fun, if not quite essential, remake of the French comedy La Cage aux Folles.
Synopsis: In this remake of the classic French farce "La Cage aux Folles," engaged couple Val Goldman (Dan Futterman) and Barbara... [More]
Directed By: Mike Nichols

#12

One Hour Photo (2002)
82%

#12
Adjusted Score: 87621%
Critics Consensus: Robin Williams is very effective in this creepy, well-shot thriller.
Synopsis: Casual shoppers stocking up at the local SavMart may not pay much attention to the man at the photo counter.... [More]
Directed By: Mark Romanek

#11

Dead Again (1991)
83%

#11
Adjusted Score: 85213%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: When a mute woman suffering from amnesia (Emma Thompson) arrives at the gates of an old orphanage, private investigator Mike... [More]
Directed By: Kenneth Branagh

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 88724%
Critics Consensus: Affecting performances from the young cast and a genuinely inspirational turn from Robin Williams grant Peter Weir's prep school drama top honors.
Synopsis: A new English teacher, John Keating (Robin Williams), is introduced to an all-boys preparatory school that is known for its... [More]
Directed By: Peter Weir

#9

The Fisher King (1991)
84%

#9
Adjusted Score: 87557%
Critics Consensus: An odd but affecting mixture of drama, comedy and fantasy, The Fisher King manages to balance moving performances from Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges with director Terry Gilliam's typically askew universe.
Synopsis: After shock jock Jack Lucas (Jeff Bridges) inadvertently provokes a caller into murdering a group of innocent people in a... [More]
Directed By: Terry Gilliam

#8
#8
Adjusted Score: 85997%
Critics Consensus: With Robin Williams' affecting portrayal as a Russian immigrant at the center of its fish-out-of-water story, Moscow on The Hudson soars with an abundance of laughs and heart.
Synopsis: A Russian musician defects to the United States and settles in New York with the help of a Bloomingdale's employee.... [More]
Directed By: Paul Mazursky

#7

Awakenings (1990)
89%

#7
Adjusted Score: 90046%
Critics Consensus: Elevated by some of Robin Williams' finest non-comedic work and a strong performance from Robert De Niro, Awakenings skirts the edges of melodrama, then soars above it.
Synopsis: The story of a doctor's extraordinary work in the Sixties with a group of catatonic patients he finds languishing in... [More]
Directed By: Penny Marshall

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 92408%
Critics Consensus: World's Greatest Dad is a risky, deadpan, dark comedy that effectively explores the nature of posthumous cults of celebrity.
Synopsis: When the son of high school English teacher Lance Clayton (Robin Williams) accidentally kills himself, Clayton writes a fake suicide... [More]
Directed By: Bobcat Goldthwait

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 93129%
Critics Consensus: A well-calibrated blend of manic comedy and poignant drama, Good Morning, Vietnam offers a captivating look at a wide range of Robin Williams' cinematic gifts.
Synopsis: Radio funny man Adrian Cronauer (Robin Williams) is sent to Vietnam to bring a little comedy back into the lives... [More]
Directed By: Barry Levinson

#4

Insomnia (2002)
92%

#4
Adjusted Score: 98595%
Critics Consensus: Driven by Al Pacino and Robin Williams' performances, Insomnia is a smart and riveting psychological drama.
Synopsis: From acclaimed director Chris Nolan ("Memento") comes the story of a veteran police detective (Al Pacino) who is sent to... [More]
Directed By: Christopher Nolan

#3

Hamlet (1996)
95%

#3
Adjusted Score: 97005%
Critics Consensus: Kenneth Branagh's sprawling, finely textured adaptation of Shakespeare's masterpiece lives up to its source material, using strong performances and a sharp cinematic focus to create a powerfully resonant film that wastes none of its 246 minutes.
Synopsis: In the only unabridged film version of the classic play, here updated to the 19th century, Prince Hamlet (Kenneth Branagh)... [More]
Directed By: Kenneth Branagh

#2

Aladdin (1992)
95%

#2
Adjusted Score: 100274%
Critics Consensus: A highly entertaining entry in Disney's renaissance era," Aladdin is beautifully drawn, with near-classic songs and a cast of scene-stealing characters.
Synopsis: When street rat Aladdin frees a genie from a lamp, he finds his wishes granted. However, he soon finds that... [More]
Directed By: Ron Clements, John Musker

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 101368%
Critics Consensus: It follows a predictable narrative arc, but Good Will Hunting adds enough quirks to the journey -- and is loaded with enough powerful performances -- that it remains an entertaining, emotionally rich drama.
Synopsis: Will Hunting (Matt Damon) has a genius-level IQ but chooses to work as a janitor at MIT. When he solves... [More]
Directed By: Gus Van Sant

Despite a pair of newcomers close behind in its rearview mirror, Will Ferrell‘s hit comedy Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby finished in first place for the second consecutive weekend to retain its North American box office trophy.

The frame’s biggest shocker came in second place with the stellar debut of the teen dance drama Step Up which flew past expectations to edge out Oliver Stone‘s high-profile 9/11 film World Trade Center which opened with solid results in third place. The new horror film Pulse launched in fifth place with mediocre results while Tim Allen‘s family film Zoom imploded with a disastrous bow in seventh place.

Talladega Nights held onto the number one spot with an estimated $23M in its second weekend of release dropping an understandable 51%. The $73M Sony hit raced to a total of $91.2M after ten days of release and could find its way to the $140M mark.

Getting high marks in the runnerup spot was Buena Vista’s Step Up which surprised the industry with a sizzling $21.1M opening weekend, according to estimates, from 2,467 theaters. The PG-13 pic about a trained ballerina who joins forces with a tough street dancer averaged a sturdy $8,539 per location and was powered primarily by teenage girls and young women. The surprise muscle of Step Up played out much like the bow of another late-summer film targeting teen girls – 2000’s Bring It On. That pic debuted at number one with $17.4M, spent two weeks at the top, and found its way to $68.4M followed by a pair of non-theatrical sequels keeping the franchise alive to this day.

Oliver Stone’s 9/11 drama World Trade Center finished in third place grossing an estimated $19M over the weekend and $26.8M since debuting on Wednesday. Averaging a solid $6,431 from 2,957 theaters over the Friday-to-Sunday portion, the Paramount release stars Nicolas Cage and Michael Pena as cops buried underneath the rubble of the collapsed Twin Towers. Reviews were mostly positive for the $65M film and word-of-mouth so far seems positive. Studio research showed that 91% of those polled called the disaster drama "excellent" or "very good".

While young moviegoers were lining up for Step Up, World Trade Center skewed mostly to a mature adult audience with 65% of the crowd being over the age of 25. Females made up 55% of the audience. With good reviews, positive buzz, and almost no interesting films for adults opening in the coming weeks, World Trade Center could hold up well in the weeks ahead.

Paramount’s animated comedy Barnyard dropped only 36% in its second weekend to an estimated $10.1M for fourth place. With $34.1M in the bank after ten days, the toon could find its way to about $60M. The PG-rated film’s budget was under $50M.

The suspense thriller Pulse debuted in fifth with an estimated $8.5M from a launch in 2,323 sites. Averaging a mild $3,640 per location for The Weinstein Co., the PG-13 film made only a small dent in the overall box office.

Disney took in an estimated $7.2M with its summer tentpole Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest lifting its incredible total to a towering $392.4M. The Johnny Depp smash fell just 35% and now sits at number seven on the list of all-time domestic blockbusters just behind Spider-Man which hauled in $403.7M in 2002. Overseas, there’s still no stopping Pirates which vaulted its international total to $463M pushing the global gross to a stunning $855M.

Sony’s Tim Allen family pic Zoom crashed and burned in its debut grossing a measly $4.6M in its opening weekend. Playing in 2,501 theaters, the PG-rated film about an old super hero recruited to train a bunch of kids averaged an embarrassing $1,839 per venue.

The horror flick The Descent dropped 48% in its second weekend to an estimated $4.6M and pushed its ten-day tally to a decent $17.5M. The Lionsgate release should dig up $25-27M by the end of its run. Universal’s action remake Miami Vice suffered another steep drop falling 56% to an estimated $4.5M for a $55.1M total. The animated pic Monster House rounded out the top ten with an estimated $3.3M, off 46%, giving Sony $63.7M to date.

Four more films were tossed right out of the top ten this weekend. Fox’s high school comedy John Tucker Must Die fell 52% to an estimated $3M in its third frame. With a solid $35.7M, the low-budget teen hit should finish with around $40M. Fellow comedy You, Me and Dupree grossed an estimated $1.9M, down 48%, and has collected $70.8M to date. Universal’s $54M pic is set to reach an impressive $74M.

Not-so-impressive results came from The Ant Bully with an estimated $1.8M and The Night Listener with an estimated $1.4M. Tumbling 55%, the Warner Bros. toon has taken in just $22.4M and will stumble to about $25M. Miramax’s Robin Williams thriller has grossed a puny $6.3M for Miramax and could end up with only $8M.

With Hollywood’s summer season of blockbusters coming to an end, plenty of activity was brewing over the weekend with limited release titles. ThinkFilm opened its critically-acclaimed indie Half Nelson in just two New York theaters but grossed a stellar $55,000, according to estimates. The R-rated drama about an inner city teacher with an addiction to crack averaged a potent $27,475 and expands to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. on August 25.

Sony Classics premiered the Brazilian drama The House of Sand in five locations in New York and Los Angeles and grossed an estimated $33,000 for a moderate $6,600 average. The distributor’s teen pregnancy drama Quinceanera widened from eight to 27 theaters in its second weekend and grossed an estimated $138,000 giving the Sundance award winner a mild $5,111 average. Total to date stands at $278,000.

Indie darling Little Miss Sunshine witnessed another powerful expansion widening from 58 to 153 locations for a weekend estimate of $2.6M and a sizzling average of $16,993. Fox Searchlight reported that audiences in the new cities are responding to the stellar word-of-mouth while theaters in existing markets are holding up remarkably well. The weekend decline among holdover theaters was only 17%. With $5.6M in the bank, look for Little Miss Sunshine to pop into the top ten next weekend when it expands into 600 playdates nationwide and remain there with a wider push into 1,500 locations the following frame. So far, the dysfunctional family comedy has performed even better than the distributor’s spring indie hit Thank You for Smoking as well as its 2004 hit Garden State which was released at this same time and in similar fashion. Those films went on to gross $24.7M and $26.8M, respectively.

Paramount Vantage’s global warming film An Inconvenient Truth became the third biggest documentary of all time over the weekend. Al Gore‘s success story took in an estimated $367,000 in its 12th weekend and lifted its cume to $21.9M surpassing the $21.6M of 2002’s Oscar-winning doc Bowling for Columbine.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $105.9M which was up 6% from last year when Four Brothers debuted at number one with $21.2M; but down 12% from 2004 when Alien vs. Predator opened in the top spot with a robust $38.3M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

Comedy superstar Will Ferrell scored his first-ever number one opening in a lead role with the stronger-than-expected debut of his latest hit Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby which left all competitors in the dust at the North American box office.

Solid opening weekend results came from the animated comedy Barnyard: The Original Party Animals in second place and the horror film The Descent in fifth, but the Robin Williams thriller The Night Listener failed to find much of an audience in its debut. Overall, the marketplace was healthy and showed substantial improvement over the first weekend of August from the last two summers.

Sony crossed the finish line in first place for the industry-leading eighth time this year with the turbo-charged opening of Talladega Nights which grossed an estimated $47M over the Friday-to-Sunday period. Playing in a massive 3,803 theaters, the PG-13 film about a legendary NASCAR driver averaged a fantastic $12,359 per location. Will Ferrell has collected more than his share of second place trophies. The former Saturday Night Live star has opened at number two numerous times in recent years with films such as Kicking and Screaming, Bewitched, Anchorman, Elf, and Old School. Elf climbed into first place in its second weekend, and Ferrell has had supporting roles and cameos in number one openers from other stars. But Talladega Nights marks the first time he has anchored a top spot debut, and he did it decisively.

Reviews were generally positive for the racing comedy, which co-starred John C. Reilly, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Michael Clarke Duncan, and the weekend gross was roughly three times the take of its closest competition. Sony backed the $73M film with a lavish marketing campaign which involved promotional support from numerous corporate sponsors. Even veteran talk show host Larry King turned his daily chat session on opening night into a one-hour commercial for the film by interviewing Ferrell and Reilly in character as Ricky Bobby and his racing pal Cal Naughton Jr.

Talladega reached a broad audience with young males standing out slightly, as expected. Studio research indicated that 53% of the audience was male and that 52% was under 25. Aside from being Ferrell’s biggest opening weekend ever, the film also generated the third best bow ever in the month of August. Only 2001’s Rush Hour 2 and the following year’s Signs did better with debuts of $67.4M and $60.1M, respectively. Those two pics also launched on the first frame of the month which studios still look at as a good weekend for programming a high-profile summer film on. By this point, most of the season’s tentpole films have played out, but there is still enough summer playing time ahead to have long-term success.

Finishing far back in second place, but still enjoying an impressive debut, was Paramount’s animated comedy Barnyard with an estimated $16M. The PG-rated toon bowed in 3,311 locations and averaged a solid $4,844 per theater. The opening was better than The Ant Bully‘s $8.4M from last weekend, but did not reach the $22.2M debut of Monster House from two weeks ago. Barnyard was produced by Nickelodeon Movies for just over $50M and played mostly to kids and parents. Audience research showed that 75% of the crowd was made up of families with males and females represented evenly. With two other cartoons in the top ten, and with Pirates still pulling in every age group, the opening performance of Barnyard was commendable.

The year’s biggest blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest dropped 47% to an estimated $11M boosting its domestic treasure to a stunning $379.7M. That puts the Johnny Depp adventure sequel at number eight among all-time domestic blockbusters surpassing the $377M of The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. Pirates also managed to bump Mel Gibson‘s The Passion of the Christ off the all-time top ten list. Overseas, Disney scored another colossal gross taking in $57M from 47 markets to rule the international box office for the fifth straight frame. That sent the offshore cume soaring to $392M and the worldwide haul to $771.7M making it the top-grossing global hit of 2006 after just one month of release. Pirates could certainly be on its way to the one billion dollar mark with another installment in the franchise on deck for a May 2007 release.

Audiences rejected Miami Vice which tumbled a horrendous 62% in its second weekend to an estimated $9.7M. With $45.7M in ten days, the Universal action thriller is on course to end with $65-70M. That would give Vice a domestic gross of about half of its $135M production budget. Good news did, however, come from the U.K. where the cop pic debuted at number one this weekend.

Opening in fifth place was the new horror entry The Descent with an estimated $8.8M from 2,095 locations. The R-rated fright flick about a six-pack of young ladies trapped in an underground cave full of flesh-eating creatures averaged a solid $4,200 per venue. Reviews were unusually positive for the genre and distributor Lionsgate pitched The Descent in its advertising as being from the studio that brought audiences Saw and Hostel. But the opening was far short of the $18.3M and $19.6M that those low-budget hits opened to. Still, with a modest pricetag of its own, the cave exploration flick looks to make a few bucks theatrically and dig up a bigger audience when released on DVD.

Fox’s teen comedy John Tucker Must Die dropped 58% in its second weekend to an estimated $6.1M. With $28.6M in ten days, the revenge flick should find its way to the neighborhood of $40M. Sony’s animated scarefest Monster House followed close behind with an estimated $6M, off 49%, for a $57M cume. Competing toon The Ant Bully fell 54% in its sophomore session to an estimated $3.9M. Warner Bros. has collected just $18.2M in ten days and should conclude with an underwhelming $25-27M.

A pair of films tied for ninth place with an estimated $3.6M each. Universal’s comedy You, Me and Dupree declined 49% and upped its sum to $66.8M. Miramax’s new Robin Williams thriller The Night Listener bowed in 1,367 locations and averaged a weak $2,634 per site.

Opening with healthy but not spectacular results in platform release was the teen drama Quinceanera which grossed an estimated $97,000 from only eight sites for a $12,125 average. The R-rated tale of a Mexican-American girl’s impending coming-of-age party won both the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and was snapped up by Sony Classics. Quinceanera will expand beyond New York and Los Angeles in the weeks ahead.

Three comedies and a bedtime story dropped out of the top ten over the weekend. Fox’s hit fashion industry pic The Devil Wears Prada held up well once again in its sixth frame with an estimated $3.1M, off 35%, lifitng the cume to a stellar $112.7M. It was the Meryl Streep film’s fourth consecutive weekend with a drop of less than 40%. Produced for just $35M, Devil should find its way to a fabulous $120-125M making it one of the more profitable hits of the summer.

On the other hand, the Warner Bros. suspense thriller Lady in the Water has been falling by more than 60% each frame and took in an estimated $2.7M in its third scare. Down a steep 62%, the M. Night Shyamalan pic has grossed only $38.7M in 17 days and looks to drown with a mere $42-44M overall. The production budget was reportedly in the $75M range.

Sony’s Little Man fell 51% to an estimated $2.5M in its fourth outing and pushed its cume to $55.1M. The Wayans brothers pic cost $64M to produce and should end its domestic run with a respectable $58-60M. Fox’s super hero comedy flop My Super Ex-Girlfriend stumbled 73% in its third flight and grossed an estimated $1.1M. With $20.2M in the bank, look for a disappointing $22M finish.

In limited release, Fox Searchlight expanded its hit indie comedy Little Miss Sunshine from seven to 58 theaters in the top dozen markets and grossed an estimated $1.5M. That resulted in a muscular $25,169 average and a $2.2M total. The distributor will add 17 more cities on Friday and widen nationally the following weekend on the heels of strong word-of-mouth momentum.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $115.7M which was up 18% from last year when The Dukes of Hazzard debuted at number one with $30.7M; and up 23% from 2004 when Collateral opened in the top spot with $24.7M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

Sony shoots for its industry-leading eighth number one film of the year with the Will Ferrell comedy "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby" which is one of four new movies hitting theaters on Friday.

Paramount offers more laughs, but for a much younger audience, with its animated comedy "Barnyard: The Original Party Animals." Horror fans get blood and gore with "The Descent" from Lionsgate while Miramax releases the Robin Williams thriller "The Night Listener."

At long last, comedy gets to take over the top spot at the box office with "Talladega Nights" which is on course to finish in first place far ahead of its competitors. The PG-13 film finds Ferrell playing a legendary NASCAR driver whose career has gone through some outrageous ups and downs. John C. Reilly, Sacha Baron Cohen, and Michael Clarke Duncan co-star while "Anchorman" director Adam McKay reteams with Ferrell for another funny tale of an outlandish character drowning in dumbness. The audience for "Talladega" is broad. Teens and young adults will make up a large portion, but older adults may take a ride too. Given the racing storyline, males might slightly edge out females, but interest from women should be solid too. And of course the population of NASCAR fans is enormous so expect many from that world to line up.

Sony’s timing is perfect. The summer has alternated between action and comedy each month. May and July were ruled by action flicks and now it’s time for August to give a repeat of June when laughers led the way. Ferrell provides ample starpower, trailers and commercials are funny, and the studio is spending heavily on marketing so the stars are aligned for Ricky Bobby to claim pole position. "Talladega" should appeal to the same moviegoers that came out for the male-oriented comedies "Anchorman," "Starsky & Hutch," "The Dukes of Hazzard," and "Dodgeball." Those PG-13 pics all opened in the tight $28-31M range and Ferrell’s latest could follow. Racing into around 3,400 theaters, "Talladega Nights" might debut with about $30M this weekend.

Farm animals go nuts when the farmer’s not looking. That’s the premise behind Paramount’s new animated comedy "Barnyard: The Original Party Animals." The third PG-rated toon in as many weeks features the voices of Kevin James, Courteney Cox Arquette, Danny Glover, and Wanda Sykes and comes from writer/director Steve Oedekerk ("Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls"). Competition for tykes will be tough with "Monster House" and "The Ant Bully" splitting the family pie in three. But "Barnyard" does offer the most comedy among the trio which could be key to getting in the target audience. The film has the kind of laughs parents expect when taking the kids on a trip to the movies, but it lacks a built-in audience that could send the numbers through the roof. Still, the marketing push from Nickelodeon will provide some valuable help and could put it ahead of Ant, but below "Monster" in overall strength. Opening in over 3,000 theaters, "Barnyard" might debut with roughly $12M.

Lionsgate unleashes what it hopes will be its latest horror hit in "The Descent," an ultraviolent thriller about an all-female caving expedition that stumbles upon frightening creatures when trapped underground. The R-rated pic aims to become the latest flick low on starpower, but high on brutality and gore, to become a winner with audiences. The distributor is no doubt one of the current kings of the genre and has banked $55.2M for Saw, $87M for "Saw II," and $47.3M with "Hostel." Early reviews have been among the best ever for recent fright flicks which is helping to spread a pulsating buzz throughout the horror community. Lionsgate has wisely been promoting itself as the studio behind "Saw" and "Hostel" in an effort to convince fans that they will be in for another gore-filled ride this time around. The tactic should work wonders and a creepy ultra-deep voiceover in the television spots will help lure in victims too. With "Lady in the Water" failing to scare many people, hardcore fright fans will certainly look to "Descent" to deliver the summer chills. The film is not going out too wide and Will Ferrell will certain take away many young men so there will be a limit to how high this weekend’s opening will be. Dropping into around 1,800 locations, "The Descent" could dig up about $10M over the frame and post a solid average.

Robin Williams pops his head into theaters in the psychological thriller "The Night Listener" playing a radio host who gets tangled in a relationship with his biggest fan. Toni Collette, Sandra Oh, and Rory Culkin co-star. Miramax’s R-rated release has not been backed by too much of a marketing push and it won’t launch in that many theaters so expectations are low. Only older adults will take interest, but most that are curious will not find this to be worth paying top dollar for. The former Mork can be a box office draw in the right film, but in a vehicle like this, ticket buyers do not show up. His flops "Death to Smoochy" and "Jakob the Liar" bowed to just $4.3M and $2.1M, respectively. "The Night Listener" opens in around 1,400 theaters this Friday and could tune into about $4M.

Ricky Bobby plans to put Crockett and Tubbs in their place this weekend. Universal’s "Miami Vice" enjoyed a solid debut last weekend opening a little higher than director Michael Mann‘s previous film "Collateral," another R-rated action thriller debuting in late summer. But word of mouth for "Vice" is not as strong so whereas the Tom Cruise assassin pic went on to gross four times its opening, the Jamie Foxx-Colin Farrell actioner should see a smaller multiple. A 45% drop would give "Miami Vice" about $14M for the frame and a ten-day tally of $50M.

Mid-summer juggernaut "Pirates of the Caribbean" is about to close the books on its first month of release. Another decline of 40% would leave Disney with $12M in the fifth frame and $380M after 31 days putting it in "Star Wars Episode III" territory. That would also send the global cume soaring past the $700M mark.

Fox’s high school comedy "John Tucker Must Die" is sure to see a steep drop in sales this weekend, especially with "Talladega Nights" stealing away teens. A 55% fall would result in a sophomore frame of $7M and a respectable cume of $29M after ten days.

LAST YEAR The good ol’ boys of "The Dukes of Hazzard" charged into first place opening with a powerful $30.7M to lead the first weekend of August. The Warner Bros. release ran out of gas quickly but still managed to reach a healthy $80.3M domestically. With no other new films hitting screens, holdovers rounded out the rest of the top five. New Line’s sleeper smash "Wedding Crashers" placed second with $16M while the Warners kidpic "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" followed with $11M. The top three films were all part of the Time Warner family. Disney’s "Sky High" took fourth with $9M and Warner Bros. appeared in fifth place again with "Must Love Dogs" which grossed $7.4M. In limited release, Focus cracked the Top 20 with its arthouse hit "Broken Flowers" which debuted with a stellar $28,904 average from 27 playdates on its way to a domestic tally of $13.7M.

Author: Gitesth Pandya, BoxOfficeGuru.com

This week in movies, we’ve got tough chicks fighting for their lives ("The Descent"), a redneck racing saga ("Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby"), a psychological thriller starring Mork from Ork ("The Night Listener"), and farm animals who just wanna have fun ("Barnyard: The Original Party Animals"). Which flicks will get the critical seal of approval?


"The Descent" — Certified Fresh!

Two constants in Hollywood are that (A) foreign flicks generally don’t have widespread appeal and (B) horror flicks don’t get critical praise, like, ever. "The Descent," about six female spelunkers whose weekend cave-diving adventure turns deadly, has defied these tenets — a low-budget import from Scotland, of all places, this female-driven frightener has critics on the edges of their popcorn-strewn seats. The scribes say that director Neil Marshall ("Dog Soldiers") has masterfully created a claustrophobe’s nightmare, and has added a compelling meditation on morality, vengeance, and the depths to which we might go for human survival. High marks also go to the cast of relatively unknown actresses, who manage to balance sex appeal and strength as believable adventuresses. At 90 percent, this gory thriller has earned RT’s Certified Fresh stamp — and is on track to becoming the best-reviewed horror film of the year!


"Talladega Nights" — sponsored by Wonder Bread and Old Spice

Perennial jester Will Ferrell stars as hard-driven, bumbling NASCAR ace Ricky Bobby in "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby," a high-octane comedy set in the all-American world of race car driving. Inescapably drawing comparisons to 2004’s "Anchorman" (which, like "Talladega," starred Ferrell and was co-written by director Adam McKay), there’s no doubt that Ferrell is on his comedic game in this sweet-natured send-up of the NASCAR world. Critics also agree on the strength of Ferrell’s supporting cast (including John C. Reilly as Ricky Bobby’s steadfast racing buddy, and British comedian Sacha Baron Cohen ("Da Ali G Show") as his scene-stealing gay French rival). But is it funny? While the largely-improvised laughs are occasionally uneven, critics say the highs are indeed hilarious and worth the ride. At 73 percent on the Tomatometer, go ahead and buckle up for "Talladega."


Robin Williams in the JT Leroy-ish thriller, "The Night Listener"

"The Night Listener" marks another revisiting of comic genius Robin Williams to that oh-so-foreign milieu — dramatic acting — in a psychological thriller adapted from Armistead Maupin’s story of the same name. Williams plays Gabriel, a lonely nighttime radio host who forges a relationship with a young abuse victim named Pete (Rory Culkin), but begins to question the truth behind Pete’s story; eventually, he wonders if Pete really exists at all. The critics say that, despite a real-life relevancy in light of such fictitious media sensations as J.T. Leroy, any suspensefulness built up by Patrick Stettner‘s creepy, atmospheric direction fizzles out with muddled storytelling; perhaps, too, funnyman Williams has been slightly miscast in a sad-sack role that requires more believable misery. However, many scribes are quick to point out the film’s unusually brief 81-minute runtime, if that gives you any more incentive to buy a ticket, but at 45 percent on the Tomatometer, you probably want to tune out this "Listener."


When the farmer’s asleep, the cows cut loose in "Barnyard"

Are you in the mood for an animated tale of farm animals who party when the humans aren’t looking? How about one with a rebellious boy cow as the hero? "Barnyard" offers up such fare with the story of Otis (voiced by Kevin James), a fun-loving cow who would rather carouse about the farm than protect its denizens from ravenous coyotes, a duty that his father (Sam Elliott) tries in vain to impart to him. With a voice cast that includes Wanda Sykes and Courteney Cox, "Barnyard" aims for comedic targets in the form of anthropomorphized animal laughs, gross humor, and sight gags (courtesy of "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls" director Steve Oedekirk) — lowbrow humor that, critics moan, appeal only to the senses of children under the age of eight. Unfortunately for the chaperones of the target demographic, aside from some spontaneous musical numbers and a few adult-oriented jokes, there’s not much here to entertain grown-ups. At 33 percent, "Barnyard" is only for parents who love their kids enough to sit through it.

Also opening this week, albeit in limited release: "My Country, My Country," a political documentary about the Iraq 2005 election, is at 100 percent; French romantic thriller "The Bridesmaid" is at 83 percent; the coming-of-age tale (and Sundance fave) "Quinceanera" is at 81 percent; retiree rom-com "The Boynton Beach Club" is at 55 percent; the prison cell drama "Jailbait" is at 14 percent; and gay teen drama "Vacationland" is at — gulp — 0 percent.

Recent Will Ferrell Movies:
—————————————————————————–
Curious George – 69%
Winter Passing – 41%
Melinda & Melinda – 51%
Kicking and Screaming – 43%
Bewitched – 25%

There’s no denying that raucous Robin Williams has himself a pretty full plate these days, professionally. He’s got "RV" coming out this weekend, "The Night Listener," "Night at the Museum," and "Happy Feet" later this year, and a whole bunch of projects on the back burner. But don’t expect to be seeing a "Mrs. Doubtfire 2" any time soon.

From USA Today: "There have been two different drafts (of the script)," Williams says. "The hard part about following it up is at the end of the first one, he revealed his identity to his kids. How do you play that out? How does she come back? One of the ideas was that he’d go to New York because his daughter was going to college and he’d be nearby. But as a script, it never worked."


Williams in "RV"

Click here for the full article.

Kellvin Chavez of Latino Review had an entertaining sit-down with the maniacal Robin Williams, and the clearly insane comedian dropped some news regarding his upcoming flicks: RV, Happy Feet, The Night Listener, and Night at the Museum. Plus he answers the question of if he’d like to play The Joker in Batman Begins 2.

"The Night Listener, the movie is based upon a Armistead Maupin short story, its based upon a thing that actually happened to him about a woman contacting him and saying I have a child whose been horribly abused, has AIDS and can you start corresponding with him. And eventually started calling and talking to the kid and then you find out later on that the kid didn’t even exist.

I play 3 penguins in Happy Feet, I play the Argentinean the one who sings ‘My Way.’

Night at the Museum is about the Museum of Natural History coming to life at night, which I went “I’m in.”

And when asked if he’d like to reunite with his Insomnia director Christopher Nolan

"Would you then consider taking a role like the Joker for Batman Begins sequel?
Robin Williams: Oh God Yeah!"

For the full interview, click here.

Now that the Sundance Film Festival is starting to wind down, more films join the ranks of early pick-ups "Little Miss Sunshine" and "The Science of Sleep," acquired this week by Fox Searchlight and Warner Independent, respectively.

Bent Hamer’s "Factotum" originally had a distribution deal with Picturehouse after it premiered at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, but was dumped last month — Picturehouse reportedly wanted a television-friendly version (read: no sex or alcohol abuse). Luckily, the character study of a directionless, alcoholic womanizer proved worthy at it’s American debut this week and got picked up by IFC Films. Read Tim’s review of "Factotum" here.

IFC stood prouder yet as Miramax bought distribution rights to "The Night Listener," an IFC Films co-produced thriller starring Robin Williams as a late-night radio show host who develops a connection with a young caller.Co-written by "Tales of the City" writer Armistead Maupin from his own novel, "Listener" reportedly entertained offers from Sony Pictures Classics and Lionsgate before accepting Miramax’s offer of $3 million and becoming the company’s first major post-Weinstein acquisition.

Meanwhile, Lionsgate picked up rights to "Right at Your Door," a suburban disaster thriller starring Rory Cochrane and Mary McCormack. "Door" follows a man who seals himself inside his home after a bomb goes off in LA, trying to keep out the toxic fallout and desperate people caught out of doors. The film, by first-time director Chris Gorak, went for $2 million — quite notable for a relative newbie filmmaker.

Finally, the first doc to break out this year turned out to be "Wordplay," a fondly humorous look at the world of crossword puzzles. IFC Films added to it’s strong Sundance presence this year by paying $1 million to distribute first-time director Patrick Creadon‘s pic, which features New York Times Puzzle Editor and crossword god Will Shortz, Jon Stewart, Ken Burns and more and follows the national crossword competition held annually.

With the festival in it’s second phase more deals are expected to be announced soon, including pending negotiations for the Edward Norton starrer "The Illusionist" and "Half Nelson," starring Ryan Gosling.

Check back for reviews of "The Science of Sleep," "Wordplay" and more.

Check out Sundance features by Rotten Tomatoes:
Sundance Full Coverage
Sundance Blog
Sundance Discussion

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