Saturday, September 30, 2006

'Guardian' scores $5.8M Friday night

According to Box Office Mojo, "The Guardian" took in $5,845,000 during opening night on screens nationwide. It's currently in second place behind Kutcher's kiddie movie, "Open Season" ($6,150,000). Forecasts show "The Guardian" taking in more than $18M this weekend and landing in second.

Chris Jay, audience gripped by 'Guardian' premiere

Originally uploaded by alexandyr1.
Chris Jay, who attended the premiere of "The Guardian" Friday at the Springhill Theatre, filed the following story and photo. Jay is one of Shreveport's most passionate cinephiles.

"'The Guardian' debuted in Springhill last night to a crowd of approximately 150 at the recently-rennovated Spring Theatre, a beautiful art deco theatre originally constructed in 1946. Though guests Charles Rapp (a unit production manager of 'The Guardian') and Sheri Boucher added some excitement to the event by sharing insight into the filmmaking process, the real excitement began when 'The Guardian' lit up the screen. I've discussed the pros and cons of theatre-going with countless people over the years, and the most compelling case I can make for seeing a film with a crowd was in evidence Friday night: When a film has an entire audience completely in its grip, there's a magical feeling in the room that cannot be replicated by a home theatre. Andrew Davis, director of 'The Guardian,' knows how to craft a thriller, and he had the Springhill audience eating out of his hand. We collectively laughed, gasped, and choked up at all of the right times. From the moment that the real action kicks in around the one-hour mark, even the concessions staff had wandered into the auditorium, eyes glued to the screen.

"Costner and Kutcher are without a doubt the stars of the show, but the 'Best Supporting' role of the evening definitely goes to Shreveport-Bossier City. Watching the film with a Springhill crowd, it was wonderful to hear the excited whispers as familiar landmarks like Superior's Steakhouse, The Phillin' Station, and Barksdale Air Force Base appeared on-screen. Audience members were especially thrilled to see what appeared to be a Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs shirt in the film's closing moments. Springhill obviously loves Shreveport, Kevin Costner, and Ashton Kutcher - in that order.

"A note to cinephiles: If you have yet to see a film in the stunning, neon-enshrouded Spring Theatre, you don't know what you're missing. Plan to make an evening visit to the Spring Theatre. Just strolling down the aisles of this rare old-time moviehouse is worth the price of admission. To me, The Spring Theatre is to movie houses what Kevin Costner is to actors: The built-to-last, classy kind that they aren't making any more of."

Great stuff, Chris, and many thanks.

Friday, September 29, 2006

TurnKey gets write-up in Variety

Variety, a very important publication for the entertainment industry, is featuring a story on TurnKey Louisiana today. Click here.

Writer Bashirah Muttalib outlines an important point about the production equipment and services broker. "TK/LA boasts an exclusive license to provide MOS Sync's Minutes technology, which allows instant dailies on location regardless of the format or camera used for shooting." That could save time and money for production folks.

I covered TurnKey for The Times on Wednesday and Thursday. Click here.

Today's Variety also features an ad put in by the North Louisiana Film Alliance and local industry folks. It promotes what's been shot in North Louisiana. Will it grab Hollywood's attention?

This is more evidence our region is pushing to grow the local film and TV industry.

One more "Guardian" premiere to go

Loving "The Guardian" has just gotten started in Louisiana. The Spring Theatre in Springhill is hosting a premiere event tonight. I'm told the neon-lit single screen on Main Street is a mecca for cinephiles.

When: 7 p.m. today. Doors open at 6 p.m.
Where: Spring Theatre, 214 N. Main St., Springhill.
Tickets: $20. Call Kellie Harris of Spring Theatre at (318) 539-9200 or Cindy Allen with Louisiana Films North at (318) 539-5552 for information about advanced tickets.
Dress: Black tie not required.
Special guest: Charles Rapp, production supervisor for "The Guardian," will take about the making of the movie.

The Robinson Film Center's Chris Jay, a native of Springhill, said other crew members who didn't attend last night's premiere may be headed to tonight's event.

Before "The Guardian" cranks up, viewers will see the promotion video, "North Louisiana: A Filmmaker's Dream." For more info about it, log on to the North Louisiana Film Office.

If you go to the event, please email me your pictures and stories! I'll post them. Also, is "The Guardian" good or not?

Thursday, September 28, 2006

"Kevin Costner" parks where he pleases

Originally uploaded by alexandyr1.
Only one featured actress, Bonnie Bramlett, walked the red carpet for the local premiere of “The Guardian” tonight at the Louisiana Boardwalk’s Regal Cinemas.

But there was one convincing impostor. The guy pictured here, Mark Hotard a.k.a. "Kevin Costner," won tickets through a radio station's look-alike contest. Driving into the parking lot, Hotard told a security guard he was the movie star and got this response. “Oh, Mr. Costner. You can park wherever you want!”

Hotard’s wife Susan said it was great to have a celebrity look-alike at her side. His likeness, she laughed, is only skin deep. “I just wish our bank statement was a little bigger.”

"The Guardian" premieres tonight

Shreveport, welcome to Hollywood!

"The Guardian," a rather large film shot in northwest Louisiana, premieres locally tonight at the Boardwalk and nationally tomorrow.

Scenes of Costner and Kutcher battling the waves of the Bering Sea were shot in a Shreveport industrial park. No joke.

Later, I'll dish on the scene at tonight's premiere.

Click here to email your thoughts about Shreveport's big debut. Or post comments below.