“Pitch Perfect 2″ leaves “Mad Max: Fury Road” in the dust at box office

18 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Mad Max’ good, ‘Pitch Perfect 2′ better at box office.

If you’ve seen Mad Max, one of the standout images is the blindfolded man rocking out with a fire-spewing guitar on the front of a truck. – The ladies of “Pitch Perfect 2” hit all the right notes opening weekend, amassing a $70.3 million debut, according to Rentrak estimates on Sunday.”It was literally like going to war,” says Guy Norris of the enormous, intricately orchestrated Namibian Desert battle scenes in Mad Max: Fury Road, the year’s most spectacular action film. The Elizabeth Banks-directed sequel to the 2012 sleeper hit and video-on-demand phenomenon cost Universal Pictures only $29 million to produce and was expected to open in the $50 million range. As the movie’s supervising stunt coordinator, Norris oversaw a small army of stunt people – up to 150 at a time – during more than 300 sequences, which are all the more impressive given the film’s relatively minimal use of CGI. (For stunt scenes, the technique was mainly used to erase safety rigs and cables.) “We wanted to make it real,” he says. ‘Real vehicles, real locations, real movement and real stunts.” After cutting his teeth (and other body parts) as a traveling stunt-show performer in his native Australia, Norris teamed with Max franchise creator and Fury Road director George Miller as a stuntman on 1981’s The Road Warrior.

He told MTV, “I have in the past built him props that I thought were just supposed to be props, and then he goes, ‘Okay, plug it in now.’” He learned his lesson, and ensured that the electric guitar worked for the shooting of Mad Max. When that happens, the sky’s the limit.” Audiences for the musical comedy starring Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson were 75 percent female and 62 percent under the age of 25, according to Universal. He later coordinated stunts on Miller’s more family-friendly films Happy Feet Two and Babe: Pig in the City. “We’ve worked so closely together, it was like we were thinking with one mind,” Miller says of their time on Fury Road.

Gibson said, “Yes, the flame throwing guitar did have to operate, did have to play, the PA system did have to work.” Australian iOTA had the pleasure of being strapped to an 8-wheel drive, blindfolded, and playing the guitar. But after personally performing two key stunts in Fury Road, he figures he’ll leave actual daredevilry to the next generation. (His two teenage sons play War Boys in the film.) “I crashed a 12-ton vehicle into the War Rig,” Norris says. “I’ve jumped off 500-foot buildings.

Gibson also revealed why Doof Warrior was brought on the convoy; he can play guitar really well. “Pretty much everybody had to have a reason for existing”, said Gibson. “His reason for existing was that he could play the guitar — and there was sort of a theory of what the social hierarchy and everything was: you were either available to do battle, as a war boy; or you had a higher status than anyone else; or you had a particular skill. George Miller’s critically acclaimed “Mad Max: Fury Road” landed a distant second in its debut weekend with a solid and expected $44.4 million from 3,702 locations. I’ve been set on fire, but that stunt worked so well I thought, ‘I don’t know what else I can do.’ I wanted to go out on that feeling.” “The challenge was, How do to make a foot chase with same intensity as a car chase?

Fellman said that many of the showings ended with applause, only adding to the hope that word of mouth will contribute to a lengthy and successful run. “Each film absolutely found its target audience,” Dergarabedian said. “They were running on parallel tracks, and both exceeded expectations by not cannibalizing each other. It was the perfect release strategy for two very different, high-profile films … it really paid off handsomely.” After opening in China six days ago, the “Avengers” sequel brought in $185 million internationally in its fourth weekend. It involved a winch moving the hook across the screen at a set rate, timed to Tom’s leap for it, timed with the War Boys’ arrival just as Max has leaped out of their reach.

Tom did it all.” “Furiosa’s tanker is attacked by what we call the Buzzards, a tribe we decided are of Russian descent and live underground in burrows. Which is what we did here by having two moving crashes combined in one big crash.” “The idea behind the Rock Riders came from mountain goats — they live in the mountains, so they know them like a mountain goat would. Again, it gave us an amazing opportunity to do something that had never been done before.” 2015 may not bring everything that Back to the Future II promised it would: flying cars, self-lacing shoes, we don’t see ’em happening over the next 12 months. (Then again, don’t bet against Nike.) But this year will definitely pack plenty of punch when it comes to cultural happenings.

Mad Max will roar back out of the apocalypse while Mad Men rides off into the sunset, rock’s Antichrist Superstar and hip-hop’s Yeezus will rise again. Drake will celebrate his self-proclaimed “second home,” Houston, Texas with his second Houston Appreciation Weekend, set to take place over Memorial Day weekend, Vibe reports. The weekend will reportedly feature several charity-driven events, though the centerpiece will be a celebrity softball game on Friday, May 22nd at the University of Houston’s Cougar Field. Drake will take the field alongside a number of athletes and entertainers, including local talent like former Astros stars Chris Sampson and Brandon Backe, the Houston Texans’ Duane Brown and Darryl Morris Jr. and Houston rapper Kirko Bangz. As Drake’s debut mixtape, So Far Gone, was gaining traction in 2009, Bun B told Rolling Stone, “It’s just one of those moments in time, where the right person comes with the right music to the people.

You’re embarrassing us!'” Letterman was being a fanboy, basically; of both a musician he loved and a genre — Americana, by proxy, but really the craft of songwriting — he’d come to champion. This wasn’t the first time Letterman had asked Isbell to play outside of his Late Show stage — though Isbell made his debut as an instrumentalist in Justin Townes Earle’s band, it was his performance of “Codeine,” off 2011’s Here We Rest, that really perked the host’s ears. He liked the midtempo, pedal-steel-twanged track so much that he had his bookers invite the then-relatively unknown singer on the show — with one slight caveat. “He loved the second verse of the song so much he wanted to hear it twice,” Houser tells Rolling Stone Country. “The arrangement was literally in Dave’s request. ‘Anything Goes’ was the first single I ever put out, maybe in the fifties on the chart at the time. It doesn’t have to be a big hit — if Dave dig its, he pushes it.” Houser worked on the new arrangement with Shaffer and Letterman was thrilled. “Yeah, that’s exactly what I’m talking about,” he said after the performance, shaking the singer’s hand. This was his show and his stage, and the Late Show became a haven for quality acts who didn’t ever need to count a Number One hit as a booking prerequisite.

Letterman’s a comedian, for sure, but at the center of every good joke, and every good late-night interview, is a story. “He loves songs, he loves story songs and he loves songwriters,” says Isbell. It’s no coincidence that the same could be said about the Southeastern singer himself, who has been a leader of the genre and one of few artists to develop a friendship with the prickly host. But he found kindred spirits in Isbell and Cook, the latter of whom he first heard on SiriusXM’s Outlaw Country station, during his regular drives into the city from his Connecticut home. The buzzed-about Stapleton was the last artist to debut on Letterman before his closing weeks. “Letterman has made a statement of bravery in their bookings and trusting their instincts,” Sacks says. Since the show’s debut in 1993, Letterman has indeed made a point of choosing artists that didn’t always play to a radio-friendly, Top of the Pops mentality: Steve Earle, Harris, Zevon, Willie Nelson and Tom Waits were all early favorites, with Ryan Adams and Dawes joining the ranks.

He was also an early champion of Miracle Legion, Golden Smog and Syd Straw.” Letterman also has chosen, along with his trusted team, musical guests who had absolutely zero promotional tie. Letterman, points out Americana Music Association executive director Jed Hilly, was likely the first person to even reference the actual term “Americana” on-air. On The Colbert Report, he did make an effort to weave music — from Cheap Trick to Wilco — into a program that, as a satire, didn’t always lend itself to live performance.

Whether or not Colbert’s history as a staunch liberal will impact the role of country music on his show, Houser isn’t too worried. “He’s a smart guy,” he says. “And he has fans to think about.” As for Letterman, the void will certainly be a palpable one — both in the stories he squeezed out of guests on his couch, and the stories he let songwriters share on the musical stage. After months of escalating protests and grassroots organizing in response to the police killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, police reformers have issued many demands.

The moderates in this debate typically qualify their rhetoric with “We all know we need police, but…” It’s a familiar refrain to those of us who’ve spent years in the streets and the barrios organizing around police violence, only to be confronted by officers who snarl, “But who’ll help you if you get robbed?” We can put a man on the moon, but we’re still lacking creativity down here on Earth. While law enforcers have existed in one form or another for centuries, the modern police have their roots in the relatively recent rise of modern property relations 200 years ago, and the “disorderly conduct” of the urban poor.

Like every structure we’ve known all our lives, it seems that the policing paradigm is inescapable and everlasting, and the only thing keeping us from the precipice of a dystopic Wild West scenario. Rather than be scared of our impending Road Warrior future, check out just a few of the practicable, real-world alternatives to the modern system known as policing: Unarmed but trained people, often formerly violent offenders themselves, patrolling their neighborhoods to curb violence right where it starts. Stop believing that police are heroes because they are the only ones willing to get in the way of knives or guns – so are the members of groups like Cure Violence, who were the subject of the 2012 documentary The Interrupters. There are also feminist models that specifically organize patrols of local women, who reduce everything from cat-calling and partner violence to gang murders in places like Brooklyn.

While police forces have benefited from military-grade weapons and equipment, some of the most violent neighborhoods have found success through peace rather than war. Violent offenses count for a fraction of the 11 to 14 million arrests every year, and yet there is no real conversation about what constitutes a crime and what permits society to put a person in chains and a cage.

Decriminalization doesn’t work on its own: The cannabis trade that used to employ poor Blacks, Latinos, indigenous and poor whites in its distribution is now starting to be monopolized by already-rich landowners. To quote investigative journalist Christian Parenti’s remarks on criminal justice reform in his book Lockdown America, what we really need most of all is “less.” Also known as reparative or transformative justice, these models represent an alternative to courts and jails. From hippie communes to the IRA and anti-Apartheid South African guerrillas to even some U.S. cities like Philadelphia’s experiment with community courts, spaces are created where accountability is understood as a community issue and the entire community, along with the so-called perpetrator and the victim of a given offense, try to restore and even transform everyone in the process. Communities that have tools to engage with each other about problems and disputes don’t have to consider what to do after anti-social behaviors are exhibited in the first place. Obviously these could become police themselves and then be subject to the same abuses, but as a temporary solution they have been making a real impact.

In New York, Rikers Island jails as many people with mental illnesses “as all 24 psychiatric hospitals in New York State combined,” which is reportedly 40% of the people jailed at Rikers. We have created a tremendous amount of mental illness, and in the real debt and austerity dystopia we’re living in, we have refused to treat each other for our physical and mental wounds. Mental health has often been a trapdoor for other forms of institutionalized social control as bad as any prison, but shifting toward preventative, supportive and independent living care can help keep those most impacted from ending up in handcuffs or dead on the street.

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