What Matters in Hollywood Today

7:05 AM 11/13/2017

by THR staff

Me Too march LA - H
Mia Galuppo

What's news: Take Back the Workplace and #MeToo marches took over Hollywood on Sunday. Plus: The star of Supergirl speaks out after the series' showrunner is suspended over harassment claims, Mel Gibson sees his best box office opening since 2002, and the Academy gathers to honor five legends. — Erik Hayden

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  • 'Supergirl' Star Speaks Out

    Supergirl star Melissa Benoist is calling for Hollywood to change "the norm" after series showrunner Andrew Kreisberg was accused of sexual harassment by multiple women, Kimberly Nordyke writes:

    "[W]hen people commit crimes or harass others, they should always be held accountable — no matter what industry they work in or how much power they wield," she wrote in a statement that was posted on Twitter on Sunday night. "I've spoke up about it in the past — publicly and not so publicly — and I'll continue to do so. All of us should, without fear or shame. We all need to hold ourselves to a higher standard."

    Kreisberg, executive producer of The CW's DC Comics series, which also include The Flash and Arrow, was suspended last week by producers Warner Bros. Television Group in the wake of the allegations. Warner Bros. Television, the studio behind the Greg Berlanti-produced comic book adaptations, has launched an internal investigation into the claims leveled against Kreisberg.

    Benoist noted that this isn't uncommon in the industry, which is "heartbreaking" and makes her "feel helpless." But she's still hopeful she can effect change.

    Elsewhere in TV...

    ? ESPN launches SportsCenter on Snapchat. Just like the original SportsCenter, the Snapchat show will offer a mix of sports news and highlights. But each episode will be under 5 minutes and will offer up the news in a more casual way.

    ? HBO launches stand-alone service in four more countries. The direct-to-consumer HBO Go service is expanding to Hungary, Romania, the Czech Republic and Slovakia with such hit shows as Game of ThronesWestworld and Silicon Valley.

    ? Netflix's Stranger Things 2 tops data firm's "most popular" shows. The series is the most popular show in the country, while Star Trek: Discovery isn't far behind — at least according to data company Parrot Analytics.

    ? Netflix's The Punisher, reviewed. Far better than Iron Fist, Marvel's latest Netflix standalone is a tight, brutal six-episode story of revenge stretched exhaustingly and inexcusably over 13 hours. The takeaway: "Punishing indeed."

    ^How Saturday Night Live joked about Louis C.K. It was "Weekend Update" that held its gaze on C.K. and the current climate the longest. Co-host Colin Jost began by telling New Yorkers the brutally cold weather and the fact that "everyone you've ever heard of is a sex monster" are two good reasons to stay indoors. Watch. 

    ? ABC picks up more Kevin (Probably) Saves the World. The network has ordered three more episodes of the first-year light hourlong. Additionally, freshman comedy The Mayor has received an order for three more scripts.

    Amazon replaces director of Carnival Row. The streaming service has tapped English filmmaker Jon Amiel to replace Paul McGuigan, who was originally set to helm and exec produce the drama starring Orlando Bloom and Cara Delevingne.

    ? R.I.P., Liz Smith. The Grande Dame of Dish, whose newspaper column emanating from New York satisfied readers' hunger for gossip about the rich and famous for more than three decades, has died. She was 94. Full obit.

    Rep Sheet Roundup: Lindsay Samakow has joined ICM Partners as a senior agent in the lectures unit, now branded under the Royce Carlton banner ... Abrams has hired three agents to its Los Angeles office, Michael Brooks, Derek Plum and Ryan LeveeMore. 


  • Box Office: Mel Gibson Returns

    A couple better-than-expected openings provided a much-needed balm after a string of fall films were spurned by audiences, Pamela McClintock writes:

    + Thor rules. Ragnarok won the frame with $56.6M for a 10-day domestic tally of $211.6M. Overseas, Ragnarok also topped the chart with $75.9M for a foreign total of $438.5M and a global cume of $650.1M. In North America, the threequel has already surpassed the first two Thor films, as well as boasting the best hold of any title in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (54 percent).

    + Mel Gibson is back. Daddy's Home 2, rated PG-13, nabbed $30 million and marks Gibson's best opening as an actor since Signs in 2002. (He made his comeback as a director last year with Hacksaw Ridge.) The follow-up scored an A- CinemaScore, compared to a B+ for the first one. Family-friendly again?

    + Adults arrive for Orient Express. The Fox film, which placed third with $28M, is a victory for the sort of adult-skewing fare that has suffered with the advent of Netflix and other platforms. Kenneth Branagh's adaptation of Agatha Christie's iconic train-set mystery, playing in 3,341 theaters, beat projections despite so-so reviews and a B CinemaScore.

    + At the specialty box office, Greta Gerwig's critically acclaimed dramedy Lady Bird continued to fly high as it expanded into a total of 37 theaters. From A24, the movie shot up to No. 10 with $1.2 million for a mighty screen average of $33,766. Full wrap. 


    ? Legendary hires bankers to sell analytics business. The studio is exploring spinning off and selling the data analytics division that it built to help it market its films. The studio is looking to sell a majority stake, or around 70 percent, in the Applied Analytics group.

    ? Take Back the Workplace, #MeToo marches storm Hollywood. Hundreds turned out for the march, which was organized by comedian Tess Rafferty with the help of the Feminist Majority Foundation, Civican and We for She. In attendance at the Sunday-morning march was Weinstein accuser Lauren Sivan. Full report.

    ? Rebel Wilson says she has been sexually harassed by a male co-star. The actress also opened up about a "hotel room" encounter with a director in a series of tweets, saying, "I had the ability to escape both incidents. I realize not everyone is as lucky."

    ? AFI swaps out Kevin Spacey movie. Aaron Sorkin's Molly's Game is now set to be the closing film at this year's AFI Fest, replacing Ridley Scott's All the Money in the World in the wake of allegations against its original star, Kevin Spacey.

    ? Universal drops Louis C.K. from animated film. In 2016's The Secret Life of Pets, the comedian voiced the lead dog and was set to reprise the role in the sequel, which is slated for a June 7, 2019, release. The relationship has been "terminated," the studio said. 

    ^Academy avoids harassment talk as legends get awards. Gregg Kilday writes: At Saturday's private black-tie dinner at the Ray Dolby Ballroom at the Hollywood & Highland Center, newly elected Academy president John Bailey, the presenters (many of them Academy governors) and the honorees all steered clear of the volatile topic of the day. Full story. 

    ? Helen Mirren wants to play Donald Trump. During an in-depth interview with Stephen Galloway for his Hollywood Masters series, the actress describes the President as "a Shakespearean character ... who might have a Shakespearean fall."

    Wonder, reviewed. A boy with a craniofacial disorder ventures beyond the cocoon of homeschooling in a family drama (in theaters Friday) starring Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson and Jacob Tremblay. The takeaway: "Winningly unpretentious."

    ? The Florida Project wins at Los Cabos film fest. The film, a story about a mother and daughter living out a precarious existence in a motel on the outskirts of Disney World, took the top prize at the sixth edition of the Mexican festival. 

    ? R.I.P., William Frye. A man about town in Hollywood, who produced General Electric Theater and Boris Karloff's Thriller for television as well as films including The Trouble With Angels and Airport 1975, has died. He was 96. Full obit.

    Oscars: Animated contenders so far. Twenty-six features, from studio films like Pixar's upcoming Coco to indie offerings like the Afghanistan-set The Breadwinner, have been submitted for consideration in the animated feature film category for the 90th Academy Awards. Details.


  • Batman Is His Business

    Meet Chris Begley, the 29-year-old founder of the fan-site Batman-News. His site averages 2 million page views a month and has cultivated devoted reader engagement, Aaron Couch writes. He's a one-man news machine too.

    What else we're reading...

    "How to get rich playing video games." Taylor Clark reports on Twitch: "the game-streaming market remains a free-for-all, its driven, rambunctious broadcasters struggling to manage their newfound success." [New Yorker]

    "Louis C.K. and Hollywood’s canon of creeps." Manohla Dargis writes: "I’ve watched a lot of movies with really excellent camerawork from male directors who treat women onscreen like garbage." [New York Times]

    "Smooth sailing, no streaming for Taylor Swift’s Reputation." Anna Steele notes: "The move appears to have worked, leading to strong sales, and setting her up for what could be her biggest first week sales." [Wall Street Journal]

    "Colin Kaepernick will not be silenced." The new cover story assembles "artists, activists, academics, and one legend of the civil rights movement" who speak to the meaning behind the player's protest. [GQ]

    — "China cools on Hollywood." Ryan Faughnder, James Rufus Koren report: "In 2016, Chinese investment in the U.S. entertainment industry hit $4.78 billion. This year, investments have shrunk to $489 million." [Los Angeles Times]

    What's ahead this week...

    Tuesday: Lionsgate premieres Wonder in L.A. ... Hulu's Future Man starts streaming, Mindy Project airs series finale. 

    Wednesday: Fox Searchlight premieres Guillermo del Toro's awards contender Shape of Water in L.A. ... Television Academy holds Hall of Fame ceremony in L.A. to induct John Wells, Shonda Rhimes, Joan Rivers (posthumous), Roy Christopher. 

    Friday: Warner Bros' Justice League, Sony's The Star, Lionsgate's Wonder hit theaters in wide release ... Netflix's final season of Longmire and first season of The Punisher starts streaming. 

    Today's birthdays: Gerard Butler, 48, Steve Zahn, 50, Neil Flynn, 57, Whoopi Goldberg, 62, Chris Noth, 63, Frances Conroy, 64, Joe Mantegna, 70.