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Saturday - May 19, 2001
- Shrek Enjoys $11.5 Million Friday Opening!
- Can Tomb Raider Meet Its Release Date?
- Final Fantasy Costs Square $137 Million - Secret Project in Progress...
- News Link of the Day - Keyboard is Closing in on the Paintbrush

Shrek Enjoys $11.5 Million Friday Opening!
(by On Friday, Shrek grossed an impressive $11.54 million on 3,587 screens throughout the nation, giving the movie an average take of $3,218 per screen. While the number is impressive, it doesn't come close to the Friday opening take of Toy Story 2, which made $22.6 million on November 26, 1999. Shrek did, however, beat Disney's Friday opening of Dinosaur last year (during the same time period). Dinosaur, on Friday, May 19, 2000, made $10.66 million on its way to a $38.8 million opening weekend.

DreamWorks has been conservative with its weekend estimates, predicting Shrek would bring in $25 - $30 million in its first weekend. Based on Friday's opening, the film is likely to bring in close to $40 million. DreamWorks can also celebrate the fact that Shrek made twice as much in its Friday opening than last year's Chicken Run, which eventually became the highest grossing non-Disney animated film of all time.

Click here to visit the in-depth dFX Shrek Movie Site

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Tomb RaiderCan Tomb Raider Meet Its Release Date?
(by If you read the May 15 edition of the dFX Animation and FX newsletter then you are aware of some of the problems plaguing the Tomb Raider movie, set to open June 15, 2001. Creative and schedule differences between the directors/producers and composer Michael Kamen led to Kamen being let go from the movie at the last minute, forcing a new composer, Graeme Revell, to come on board with only 14 days to complete 100 minutes of music.

While Revell met the challenge (some of the music will be synthesized due to not enough time for a full orchestra to perform it), Paramount Pictures must still edit the score into the movie, obtain a rating from the MPAA for the movie, duplicate the film, hold a premiere, and mail prints to theaters in time for the June 15 launch, which is only 21 days away.

While Paramount Pictures appears committed to meeting the release, it is being pushed very close to the wire and could result in a delay - one that might actual improve the film by allowing more time to be put into the musical score and orchestra recordings. [editorialized comment ahead] In fact, Disney likely would be more than happy to pay for the Tomb Raider delay in order to have June 15 to itself for Atlantis: The Lost Empire, which has the most to lose by opening up against Tomb Raider.

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Final Fantasy Costs Square $137 Million - Secret Project in Progress...
(by Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within is going to have to make a lot of money this summer to make up for its $137 million pricetag - an amount bigger than the cost of Shrek ($70 million) and Pearl Harbor ($135 million). Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within opens in the U.S. on Wednesday, July 11, and should easily rule the weekend. It will, however, face tough competition the following weekend with Jurassic Park III and the weekend after with Planet of the Apes.

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within may only be the beginning, however. Square has been secretly working on another "movie" project that it plans on having finished by February 2002. You heard it here first...

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News Link of the Day - Keyboard is Closing in on the Paintbrush

According to the St. Petersburg Times:

"There's something creepy about Princess Fiona, the distressed damsel of DreamWorks' animated fairy tale Shrek, opening today.

Her complexion is supernaturally smooth, over an impossibly chiseled bone structure. Fiona's face is barely more flexible than a mask, with eyes that lack any spark of humanity. If not for Cameron Diaz's energetic dubbed voice, Fiona would be little more than an agile Barbie doll…"

Click here for the full story.

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