In addition to the featurette posted earlier – showing Orlando Bloom practicing a Laketown fight scene – Warner Brothers UK has posted another sneak peek at the upcoming Blu-ray and DVD releases of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.
This clip examines the design of Beorn, with interviews from actor Mikael Persbrandt and Hair/Make-up Designer Peter King.
The Blu-ray/DVD of The Desolation of Smaug will be released this coming Tuesday, April 8. (more…)
Posted in Blu-Ray, DVDs, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, J.R.R. Tolkien, MGM, Mikael Persbrandt, Miscellaneous, New Line Cinema, Production, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.
As many of you might have guessed, there were a couple of stories posted today that were a few facts shy of truthfulness, courtesy of your very tricksy TORn staff on the occasion of April Fools Day. Currently, Warner Bros has no plans to move the release date of “The Hobbit: There and Back Again” to July 2015 or any other date, and no, Peter Jackson has not hired Leonard Nimoy to reprise his “Ballad of Bilbo Baggins” song for the closing credits. We also had a little fun over on the message boards, highlighted by this post by DanielLB. Turns out there were April Fools jokes all over the inter webs today, and even a few with actual advertising, such as the Cheeteau perfume, that smells like Cheetos. None for me, thank you very much. A quick google search should come up with some of the best, but this reporter rather liked the the PBS report on Dolphins shooting rainbows out of their beaks, or Westjet converting to Metric time and giving you a mathematical equation to figure out the time conversion. So if you were scratching your head, wondering if something we said was true or not, rest assured that the two stories mentioned above were not true, but the interview with Luke Evans and the spoiler analysis from Cinemacon were true. And if you would like a walk down memory lane to April Fools past, you can find them on the TORn Mathom-house Wiki.
And for anyone wondering why Garfield the Cat is being used here, the answer lies in my nickname.
Posted in ComicCon Rumos, Conventions, Director news, Fans, Fool, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie Rumors, Original TORn, Other Events, Parodies, Peter Jackson, Premieres, soundtrack, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Warner Bros.
In shocking news, Warner Bros. today announced that the release of The Hobbit: There And Back Again will be pushed back so the final film of Bilbo Baggins’ adventure can premiere at Comic-Con in July 2015. The new worldwide release date is July 29, 2015.
Premieres during Comic-Con International in San Diego are nothing new. “The 300” premiered in Petco Park a few years ago, heralded by bare-chested Spartans throughout the week-long convention. “Cowboys and Aliens” also held their premiere in San Diego during the convention, with DreamWorks booking an theater complex for the event.
This was an April Fool gag, and is not a true story. It is false, and all details have been invented. We hope that everyone enjoyed the joke.
Early details hint that Jackson and Warner Bros. are planning something on an even-larger scale: a massive week-long Middle-earth-themed carnival of events and activities that turn TABA’s debut into “the largest-ever world premiere of a film”. We’ve also noted that it sets Warner Bros. up for a strong one-two punch at the box office with the release of Pan just two weeks earlier.
Readers will, of course, recall that the date for The Hobbit: There And Back Again has, already been pushed back once from July to December 2014. I think we can all sincerely hope that this is the last shift in date for the film!
The official press release follows:
“The Hobbit: There and Back Again” to be released July 29, 2015 and will premiere at Comic-Con International
Posted in Comic Rumors, ComicCon, Contests, Conventions, Events, Fans, Film Screenings, Fool, Headlines, Hobbit Book, Hobbit Movie, Hobbit Movie Rumors, Meet Ups, MGM, New Line Cinema, Peter Jackson, Premieres, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Warner Bros.
Calling all Middle-earth artists! To celebrate the upcoming Home Video release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, we here at TheOneRing.net have got together with Warner Bros. to bring you an exciting COMPETITION — ‘Show us your passion for Smaug’!
What do you have to do?
We know you love the unassessably wealthy one — as Peter Jackson and his team realized him on the big screen. We want to see that passion poured into your own homage to the Greatest of Calamities! You might choose to paint, sketch, embroider or sculpt (or even bake!) your Smaug — the only restriction is that it must be original art created with your own fair hands (so no computer generated wyverns, please!). Then send us a photo (or three) of your Smaug homage for a chance to win some great prizes!
Who can enter?
Posted in Blu-Ray, Contests, Creations, DVD/Blu-Ray, DVDs, Events, Fans, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, Shop, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.
Blu-ray.com has posted their review of the 2D Blu-ray release of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. High marks are given for both video (4.5 out of 5) and audio quality (5 out of 5) – and we also get a closer glimpse at what bonus features are offered on this Theatrical Blu-ray/DVD edition.
Of particular note is the inclusion of last year’s The Desolation of Smaug Live Event, as well as a collection of trailers for the film (both of which were previously unadvertised for this release). (more…)
Posted in Blu-Ray, DVD/Blu-Ray, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, MGM, Miscellaneous, New Line Cinema, Peter Jackson, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.
Box office reporting focuses heavily on ticket sales and revenue numbers. So it’s no secret that (according to latest Box Office Mojo numbers) The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug has pulled in just over $944 million in ticket sales.
Profit figures, on the other hand, tend to be more opaque and mysterious.
However, movie website Deadline | Hollywood has crunched some numbers with a number of “experts” as part of its effort to unearth the most valuable blockbuster of 2013. By its calculation, the second film in Peter Jackson’s Hobbit sequence has (thus far) made a profit of $134.1 million.
Just how did they do it?
The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug profit breakdown. Source: Deadline | Hollywood.
Explaining the earnings
Disregard the calculations for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire in the second column — it’s part of the head-to-head thing that Deadline is conducting.
The first thing to realise (and it took me a little bit of research to work it out) is that that enormous $944 million global box office is split a number of different ways. Nominally at least (Hollywood accounting practises are notoriously dubious), distributors and theatres are taking a goodly chunk of that gross.
Well, according to Deadline’s figures, USA domestic distributors and theatres are taking just under half the domestic box office, while Warner Bros. sees a mere 42.9% of the foreign take and as little as 23.4% of the Chinese gross. The remainder — named Theatrical Rental — is Warner Bros. income. Thus, of that $944.2 million, only $420.3 will make its way to Warner Bros. coffers.
That’s why, according to Deadline, even with other revenues (telly and etc.) factored in, Warner Bros.’ gross revenue from The Desolation of Smaug will hit only (only!) $795.6 million.
Accounting for the expenses
Deadline puts Desolation of Smaug’s production cost at $260 million. I’m not entirely certain how they arrived at that, I’ve seen figures as low as $225 million, and others as high as $295 million (the latter admittedly including printing and advertising costs).
Yet Deadline lists printing and advertising (domestic and international) costs as an additional $155 million.
It’s a puzzle, but this article on io9 gives some insights.
According to Contrino, the Print & Advertising (P&A) costs of a movie can be incredibly high — for a small $20 million film, the promotional budget can be higher than the production budget. That’s because those films are often romantic comedies or kids’ movies, which are cheap to make but still need a lot of promotion. For a film which cost between $35 and $75 million to make, the P&A budget will most likely be at least half the production budget. And the numbers only go up with bigger films. “If the studio spends a lot on the budget, they’re going to want to protect that investment by advertising it heavily,” says Contrino.
If Deadline is correct, the amount invested on marketing The Desolation of Smaug’s around the world clocked in at more than half its estimated production budget.
Rights payments presumably include royalties to the late Saul Zaentz’s Middle-earth Enterprises as well as to Tolkien Estate, while Participations refers to payments to actors, writers and directors as a percentage of either gross or net profit. And overheads seems to be calculated at a straight 15% of the production budget.
According to Deadline, all these factors mean that the total cost of making, marketing and putting The Desolation of Smaug on screen add up to a sizeable $661.4 million.
Return on investment
Which brings us to the bottom line — a profit of $134.1 million. As Deadline calculates, that’s a cash return on cash invested of 20% (134m/661m x 100). It’s a return on investment that as best I can tell compares favourably against other forms of investment — the 10-year (to December 31, 2013) performance of the the S&P 500 is an average annual total return of 7.40%. US bonds, as gauged by the Barclays Aggregate U.S. Bond Index, average 4.55% annually over the same period.
The numbers for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (an ROI of an unbelievable 200%) illustrate even more starkly (in big, fat $$$ signs) the reason studios relentlessly chase blockbuster success.
Of course, the flipside is the greater risk involved. Stocks and bonds, generally, offer a safer investment. For every profitable film, there’s a long list of grand commercial failures that see studios losing tens of millions of dollars. And that’s the hard calculus under all that creative accounting.
Note: This is mostly an attempt to puzzle out the numbers. I am not an expert (in this area at least). If there’s anything I’ve missed, or seems out of whack, leave a note in the comments or drop me a note at demosthenes at the onering dot net.
Posted in Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Peter Jackson, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. will preview of The Hobbit: There and Back Again at CinemaCon in two days time.
On Thursday at 2.30pm Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara, president of domestic distribution Dan Fellman, and president of international distribution Veronika Kwan Vandenberg will showcase a number of the studio’s films that are set to debut this year, including Godzilla, Blended, Edge of Tomorrow, and The Hobbit: There and Back Again. CinemaCon is an annual gathering of USA cinema owners and film distributors. The 2014 edition is being held at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. (more…)
Posted in Director news, Events, Hobbit Movie, Other Events, Peter Jackson, Studios, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: There and Back Again, Warner Bros.
The Blu-ray and DVD editions of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug won’t be released for another two weeks – but for those of you who just can’t wait any longer, the film is now available on iTunes.
Along with the film, you’ll also gain access to the bonus features “Peter Jackson Invites You to the Set” (In the Company of The Hobbit & All in a Day’s Work) and “New Zealand: Home of Middle-earth: Part 2″. (more…)
Posted in Blu-Ray, DVD/Blu-Ray, DVDs, Headlines, Hobbit Movie, Merchandise, MGM, Miscellaneous, New Line Cinema, Shop, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Warner Bros.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Andy Serkis is set to take the director’s chair for a new live action version of Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle book that Warner Bros. is underwriting.
Serkis will step into a role initially filled by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (“Babel”), who departed the project because of scheduling conflicts. (more…)
Posted in Andy Serkis, Director news, Hobbit Cast News, Studios, Warner Bros.