The Early Report for September 9, 2002

A weekly rundown of the upcoming releases.

Week of September 13 to 19, 2002

Alias Betty (Wellspring)
Grieving after the death of her young son, a novelist becomes melancholy. Her mother, desperate to bring her daughter some happiness, arranges to kidnap a child to replace the child lost. Although she knows it’s wrong, Betty accepts the child as her own. The stolen child’s mother, however, is looking for her son… with the help of her boyfriend and some of his criminal cohorts. In French with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Opening in New York City on Septmeber 13
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 103 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS

Barbershop (MGM)
Ice Cube, Sean Patrick Thomas and Cedric The Entertainer star in this ensemble drama/comedy about one day in the life of a South Side Chicago barbershop, as the son of the deceased owner realizes the errors of his way after selling the shop to a local loan shark.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1500 plus screens nationwide on September 13
MPAA Rating: PG13 for PG-13 for language, sexual content and brief drug references
Running Time: Not available at this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Children of the Century (Empire)
Oscar winner Juliette Binoche stars as famed feminist author George Sand in Diane Kurys’ biographical film. In French with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Limited release on September 13
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 135 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS

Igby Goes Down (United Artists)
Kieran Culkin stars as Jason “Igby” Slocumb Jr, a young man who, as he is about to embark on his adult life, discovers his parents’ unique lifestyle has left him completely unprepared to make it in the real world. The supporting cast includes Claire Danes, Jeff Goldblum, Amanda Peet, Ryan Phillippe, Bill Pullman and Susan Sarandon.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Limited release on September 13
MPAA Rating: R for language, sexuality and drug content
Running Time: 97 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Quitting (Sony Pictures Classics)
Chinese drama about a would be actor whose family attempts to intervene when he increasingly introverted and psychotic. In Mandarin with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on September 13
MPAA Rating: R for drug content
Running Time: 112 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
Sound Formats: Stereo

Stealing Harvard (Columbia/Revolution)
Waiting for Miramax to give Kevin Smith the greenlight to make a new series of Fletch movies, Jason Lee slums around with Tom Green in this comedy about a man who resorts to crime when his niece is unable to afford her tuition to Harvard. Formerly known as Stealing Stanford.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1800 plus screens on September 13
MPAA Rating: Rated PG13 for crude and sexual humor, language and drug references.
Running Time: Not available at this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, SDDS

The Transporter (Fox)
Luc Besson produced thismid-budget action film, which stars Jason Statham as a courier who finds himself in a world of hurt after he breaks his one rule… don’t ask any questions.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1500 plus screens nationwide on September 13
MPAA Rating: Rated PG13 for for violent sequences and some sensuality.
Running Time: Not available at this writing
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS

Expanding this week

Circuit: Opens at the Main Art in Detroit

Group: Opens at the Metro 4 in Santa Barbara

Notorious C.H.O.: Opens at the Madstone San Matteo in Albuquerque,the Regal Shadowood in Boca Raton, the Vinegar Hill in Charlottesville VA, the Cedar Lee in Cleveland, the Drexel in Columbus OH, Landmark’s Inwood Theatre in Dallas, the Neon Movies in Dayton OH, the Shadowood in Fort Lauderdale, Landmark’s Greenway Theatre in Houston, the Art Theater in Long Beach, the Regal South Beach 18 in Miami, Landmark’s Oriental Theatre in Milwaukee, the Fountain Theater in Mesilla NM, Landmark’s Canal Place Cinemas in New Orleans, the Ritz Theatres in Philadelphia, the Madstone Theatres in Phoenix, the Avon Theatre in Providence, the Burns Court in Sarasota, the Translux Jean Cocteau in Santa Fe, the Loft in Tucson, and the Little Art in Yellow Springs OH

One Hour Photo: Adds 154 playdates

Ram Dass: Fierce Grace: Opens at the Oak Street Cinema in Minneapolis and the Ken Theatre in San Diego

Satin Rouge: Opens at the Jacob Burns Center in Pleasantville, New York

Swimming: Opens at the Century Centre Cinema in Chicago and the Sunshine in New York City

Week of September 20 to 26, 2002

8 Women (Focus)
From France comes this comic murder mystery in the vein of Gosford Park, in which eight of France’s most famous actresses (including Catherine Deneuve, Fanny Ardant, Emmanuelle Béart and Isabelle Huppert) finds themselves murder suspects when the villa vacation hostess is found murdered. In French with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on September 20
MPAA Rating: R for some sexual content
Running Time: 113minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS

Ballistic: Ecks Vs. Sever (Warner Brothers)
Antonio Bandares and Lucy Liu topline Korean director Wych “Kaos” Kaosayananda’s American film debut, as two former government agents and long time adversaries who find they must team together to fight a larger menace.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 2000 plus print release on September 20
MPAA Rating: Not yet rated
Running Time: 91 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

The Banger Sisters (Fox Searchlight)
Oscar winners Goldie Hawn and Susan Sarandon star as best friends from the 1960s who reunite in the modern day. One has become a waitress who misses the gold old days, while the other is a repressed wife and mother of two teenage daughters. Together, the friends will learn something about themselves… and each other.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1500 plus print release on September 20
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language, sexual content and some drug use
Running Time: 98 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Comedian (Miramax)
Shortly after the end of hiseponymous sitcom, Jerry Seinfeld got married, had a daughter and took a year-long comedy tour. Director Christian Charles, who has worked with Seinfeld on his American Express commmercials, took a crew on the road to document the behind the scenes happenings of the tour. Colin Quinn, Chris Rock and Garry Shandling appear as themselves. Seinfeld’s post-sitcom on-stage routine was already documented in the HBO special, Jerry Seinfeld: I’m Telling You for the LastTime
Opening Week Release Pattern: Exclusive to New York City’s Landmark Sunshine Cinemas on September 20
MPAA Rating: R for language
Running Time: 104 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby SR

Das Experiment (IDP)
German thriller about a group of men who sign up for a controlled experiment. Half the men will play prison guards, while the others will play the incarcerated convicts. The prisoners are locked up and told to behave, while the guards are to keep the peace. Will the guards allow their newfound power to cloud their vision? Will the prisoners rise up and revolt against their oppressors? Will any of them remember it’s only a simulation? In German with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Opening in New York City and Los Angeles on September 20
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Running Time: 114 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby SR

The Four Feathers (Paramount)
The director of 1998’s Elizabeth returns to the screen with this epic starring Heath Ledger, Wes Bentley and Kate Hudson. A disgraced British officer (Ledger) who has resigned his post just before a major battle goes undercover to regain his honor, the love of his fiancée (Hudson) and the trust of his best friend (Bentley).
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1750 plus printrelease on September 20
MPAA Rating: Rated PG13 for intense battle sequences, disturbing images, violence and some sensuality
Running Time: 127 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

His Secret Life (Strand)
A young widow discovers shortly after her husband’s death that he had a male lover. Both disgusted and fascinated by this revelation, she attempts to integrate herself into this previously unknown world. In Turkish with English subtitles.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City on September 20
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Running Time: 106 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Stereo

Invincible (Fine Line)
A Jewish blacksmith finds refuge from the Nazis in 1930s Berlin by living up to his reputation as “The Strongest Man In The World.” Tim Roth and Udo Kier costar in Werner Herzog’s newest film.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on September 20
MPAA Rating: Rated PG13 for some sexual content and thematic elements
Running Time: 135 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Lawrence of Arabia (Sony)
Fortieth anniversary rerelease of David Lean’s Oscar winning epic about the life of T.E. Lawrence, an Englishman who left his homeland after World War One to become an observer to Price Faisal, the leader of an Arabian tribe. There will be, perhaps for the last time, some 70mm prints at selected theatres.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Opens in Baltimore, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City and Seattle on September 20
MPAA Rating: PG
Running Time: 216 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

Secretary (Lions Gate)
A young woman (Maggie Gyllenhaal) recently released from a mental institution gets a job as an administrative assistant to a successful lawyer (James Spader). The two form a bond, with her self-hating tendencies and his overheightened self-worth creating a strange psychosexual relationship.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on September 20
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong sexuality, some nudity and depiction of behavioral disorder
Running Time: 104 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby SR

Slap Her She’s French (Premiere Marketing & Distribution)
Coyote Ugly‘s Piper Perabo stars as a French exchange student who drives her host family’s daughter, a popular high school student, batty as she finds her status as queen of the campus jeopardized by the scheming, seemingly innocent girl from overseas
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1500 plus screens nationwide on August 30
MPAA Rating: PG13 for sex-related humor, drug content and language
Running Time: 92 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Spirited Away (Buena Vista)
Acclaimed anime filmmaker Hayao (Princess Mononoke) Miyazaki’s newest and perhaps final film comes to America. A family moving to the suburbs stops at an abandoned theme park. As Chihiro, the young daughter of the family, explores the park, she finds herself in a fantastic world populated by strange monsters and witches after her parents have been turned into obese pigs. This film played over a year in Tokyo, shattering Titanic‘s record gross there, and has won numerous awards from film festivals worldwide.
Opening Week Release Pattern: Limited release on September 20
MPAA Rating: PG for some scary moments
Running Time: 125 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

Trapped (Sony)
While her husband is away on business, a wife and her young daughter are held hostage by a couple of vicious psychopaths, who have a different game plan to collect on their ransom demands. Kevin Bacon and Courtney Love are the big bads, and Charlize Theron is a put upon mother.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 1500 plus print release on September 20
MPAA Rating: R for violence, language and sexual content
Running Time: 99 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, SDDS

The Trials of Henry Kissinger (First Run Features)
The life of Richard Nixon’s former Secretary of State is examined in this documentary based on Christopher Hitchens’ book, which follows the man’s life from Holocaust émigré to one of the most famous statesmen ever seen.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City’s Film Forum on September 25
MPAA Rating: Not rated
Running Time: 80 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Mono sound

Expanding this week

Group: Opens at the Orpheum in Madison, WI

Notorious C.H.O.: Opens at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor, Landmark’s Dobie Theatres in Austin, the Hippodrome in Gainesville FL, the Key Cinemas in Indianapolis, the Beach Boulevard in Jacksonville, the Regal in Knoxville TN, the Hilldale in Madison WI, the Savoy Theater in Montpelier VT, the Bonita Springs in Naples FL, and Landmark’s Tivoli in St. Louis

One Hour Photo: Adds 154 playdates

Satin Rouge: Opens at the Shattuck Theatre in Berkeley, the Bethel Cinema in Bethel CT, the Cinema Arts in Fairfax VA, the Rialto Theater in Ridgefield Park NJ, the Opera Plaza Cinemas in San Francisco and the Rafael Film Center in San Rafael CA

Snipes: Opens in Baltimore, New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC

Swimming: Opens at the Fiesta in San Antonio and the Varsity in Seattle

Week of September 27 to October 3, 2002

Crazy As Hell (Artistic License)
ER‘s Eriq LaSalle makes his feature directorial debut in this drama about a psychiatrist (fellow ER alumni Michael Beach) whose unique treatment philosophies are being documented by a film crew, only to find himself reevaulating his life when a stranger claiming to be Satan (LaSalle) enters the mental ward.
Opening Week Release Pattern: The AMC Empire 25, UA Union Square 14 and the Magic Johnson Theatres in New York City, and Laemmle’s Fairfax in Los Angeles on September 27
MPAA Rating: R for some strong sexual content, violent images and language
Running Time: 113 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Just A Kiss (Paramount Classics)
Our second actor makes his feature directorial debut of the week. This time, Fisher Stevens steps behind the camera to tell the story of a successful commercial director (played by Ron Eldard) who finds his life start to unravel just as he finally thinks he has it under control. Supporting players include Marisa Tomei, Kyra Sedgwick, Marley Shelton and Taye Diggs
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on September 27 (although the official web site still says September20)
MPAA Rating: R for strong sexual images and language
Running Time: Unknown as of this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Stereo

Moonlight Mile (Buena Vista)
After the death of his fiancée, a young man (Jake Gyllenhaal) finds himself unable to move on this his life and depending more and more on the parents (Dustin Hoffman and Susan Sarandon) of the deceased. Written and directed by Brad Silberling, who previously directed Casper and City of Angels
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City’s Angelika Film Center and exclusives in four other major markets on September 27
MPAA Rating: PG13 for some sensuality and brief strong language
Running Time: Unknown as of this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Skins (First Look Pictures)
Chris Eyre, whose Smoke Signals became a minor hit several years ago, returns to the screen with another tale of pride within the Native American community, as a drunken former football star (Graham Greene) and a police officer (Eric Schweig) form a unique friendship in the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, which lies in the shadows of Mount Rushmore.
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City on September 27
MPAA Rating: Rated R for language and violence
Running Time: 84 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Stereo

Sweet Home Alabama (Buena Vista)
After accepting a propsoal of marriage from the most eligible bachelor in New York City (Patrick Dempsey), a socialite (Reese Witherspoon) goes back to her long repressed “white trash” beginnings down South, to tell her family the good news… and obtain a divorce from the high school sweetheart (Josh Lucas) she ran away from years before.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 2500 plus print release on September 27
MPAA Rating: PG13 for language and sexual references
Running Time: Unknown at this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

The Tuxedo (Dreamworks)
Jackie Chan plays a cab driver who is hired to be the chauffer of a mysterious man, only to discover after the man is kidnapped that he was a spy. Determined to solve the crime, Jackie dons his boss’s gadget-laden tuxedo. Jennifer Love Hewitt plays a nerdy government official who must work with the neophyte crimefighter.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 2000 plus print release on September 27
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for action violence, sexual content and language
Running Time: Unknown at this writing
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital, DTS, SDDS

Expanding this week

Eight Women: Expands to select markets

Notorious C.H.O.: Opens at the Royal Park in Gainesville FL, the Green Hills 16 in Nashville, the Enzian Theatre in Orlando, the Tower Theater in Salt Lake City, the Fiesta in San Antonio and the Miracle Theatre in Tallahassee

Ram Dass: Fierce Grace: Opens at Landmark’s Dobie Theatre in Austin

Secretary: Expands to select markets

Week of October 4 to 10, 2002

Bloody Sunday (Paramount Classics)
A docu-drama based upon the true story of a clash between Irish Civil Rights Marchers and British forces, which became known as “Bloody Sunday”. Winner of the Audience Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City on October 4
MPAA Rating: R for violence and language
Running Time: 107 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Sound Formats: Dolby Digital

Heaven (Miramax)
Tom Twyker, the director of Run Lola Run, directs a screenplay co-written by the late master filmmaker Krzysztof Kieslowski, about a woman (Cate Blanchett) who is mistakenly arrested for the murder of her husband. The only person who will listen to her pleas is a young officer (Giovanni Ribisi) who has fallen for her
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on October 4
MPAA Rating: R for a scene of sexuality
Running Time: 96 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.66:1
Sound Format: Dolby Digital

Jonah: A Veggie Tales Movie (Artisan)
Based on the wholesome Saturday morning series. This time, the Veggies join Jonah in the belly of the whale. There promises to be much veggie singing. Or something like that.
Opening Week Release Pattern: 500-1000 print release on October 4

The Man From Elysian Fields (First Look Films)
Opening Week Release Pattern: New York City and Los Angeles on October 4

Red Dragon (Universal)
Opening Week Release Pattern: 3000 plus print release on October 4

Welcome To Collinwood (Warner Brothers)
Opening Week Release Pattern: Limited release on October 4

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