The Lucky One - recent screening, MPAA rating and questions of release date
Zac was apparently there and just going to paraphrase what I've seen in terms of changes.
Mostly the film seems the same - the sex scenes seem to have few (if any) changes. They did change the opening of the film adding an introductory scene with narration. Sadly this may mean we're stuck with the weak death scene. Oh well.(Sources: 1, 2)
I'm curious if they will make any changes after this point. They submitted the film for an MPAA rating prior to this screening and they were awarded a PG-13 (reported June 1). The MPAA system is rather a mystery so it is unclear how much (if anything) they can change without having to resubmit the film for evaluation. However I doubt any changes they could make now will bump it up to R.
I have to say, I'm rather disappointed with Warner Bros. I feel like they are really dropping the ball on this, especially the release date. Since the studio has been sitting on this decision, most of the fall, winter and spring are full up with competition. And unless they replace one of their previously-scheduled films, I don't know where it will go without its success being somewhat compromised.
Just as a point of comparison, the next Nicholas Sparks movie (set up at Relativity) is Safe Haven. They just announced a director and haven't shot a frame or even announced a cast yet but they've already got their release date set for June 1, 2012. Already!
jeezbee and I have been contemplating a potential release date. I know everyone seems to be saying early 2012 but we looked at everything.
September 2nd or 9th might've been an okay weekend actually but now it would be an awfully rushed promotion. October is pretty full, though there is a small but not ideal (for several reasons, one being another WB film is scheduled already) opportunity as counter-programming on October 21st. However, getting a magazine cover then may be tricky with movies by Johnny Depp, Matt Damon and Justin Timberlake also opening in the last two weeks of October. Both of those months are also compromised though by potential conflicts with his filming schedule. November is out of the question with Twilight and December is unlikely especially with New Year's Eve opening at the beginning of the month.
For January, among other competition (including a Katherine Heigl comedy on the 27th), WB already has two releases (one also a drama) scheduled so it might be pushing it to add it to either open weekend, January 6th or 20th. The drama, Joyful Noise, is smack dab between those two weekends and the possible negative effects on each other's audience is, I'm guessing, not something WB wants to risk.
In theory, WB could move Joyful Noise but even after moving that, there is still the romantic drama/comedy/something Everybody Loves Whales with John Krasinski and Drew Barrymore on that same weekend. So.... that's no good.
February is out since Screen Gems staked out Valentine's Day weekend for their romantic drama, The Vow, with Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum a whole sixteen months before the release date. And a week later, This Means War, an action rom-com with Reese Witherspoon, Chris Pine and Tom Hardy, opens.
March is somewhat of a mess, full of big movies. The most significant threats to TLO are a romantic comedy on March 9th, Relativity's Snow White project on March 16th, and The Hunger Games on March 23rd. Then you have the re-release of Titanic in 3D on April 6th. The rest of April is pretty open though it is hard to estimate what business Titanic will do. So maybe the best open release date still left is April 27th. Or, at the latest, the next weekend as counter-programming to The Avengers. If they go too much later in May or (god forbid) even into June, the two Sparks films will be stepping on each other's feet.
I don't want to be Debbie Downer but it concerns me that short of waiting almost a whole year more to release it, they are handicapping its success from the start. Disturbingly reminiscent of CStC.
On top of twiddling their thumbs over a release date, WB has also done little to actually grow interest in the interim. They don't need a date to release a few stills. I mean it's getting kind of stale posting one of the same five or so usable (some barely) pictures we have.
Not a lot to do about it of course, so I will just hope for the best I guess.
Hopefully now that they have a few screenings down and something close to a final product, we'll get more info soon.
Potential New Project: The Ever After Part
This showed up yesterday in an interview with screenwriters Jonny Umansky and Zach Hyatt by jewcy.com:
Are there specific reasons why you are working in TV instead of movies, what’s your favorite TV (writing wise) right now?
Jonny: We actually work in both. Right now, we’re writing a romantic comedy for Zac Efron that’s kind of nontraditional rom-com called “The Ever After Part.”
From Jonny's twitter, presumably about this project:
This is clearly a looong way from being realized but I'm intrigued by 'absurdly dark action romcom'. Just please don't let it be ridiculous like Killers or Knight and Day.
In general, I am now choosing to not retwitter or post private things in Zac's day-to-day life. It has just become too invasive and too inane (like seriously do we really need to retwitter something about Zac waiting for a urinal? Seriously?). However, I always reserve the option to post anything slightly unusual or more interesting than "Oh Zac is eating next to me," blah blah blah. And these two are interesting...
Zac at E3 Gaming Conference
That's Zac, always our fav and sexiest nerd :)
This one is slightly more private-ish but I love IKEA so I will happily post when he supposedly is spotted there, lol. I hope he ate some meatballs and lingonberry sauce on my behalf.
Zac at IKEA
I will imagine this is what he ate: