Feature Films by LDS/Mormon Filmmakers and Actors
Weekend Box Office Report (U.S. Domestic Box Office Gross)

Weekend of August 9, 2002

[If table lines up improperly, use mono-spaced font, i.e. Courier]

Natl  Film Title                Weekend Gross
Rank  LDS/Mormon Filmmaker/Star   Total Gross Theaters Days
---  ----------------------------- -----------  -----  ----
 6   Master of Disguise              5,107,640  2,568    10
     Perry Andelin Blake (director) 23,762,214

15   Minority Report                   733,531    678    52
     Gerald Molen (producer)       128,157,396

32   The Divine Secrets of the         113,802    129    66
     Ya-Ya Sisterhood               68,517,158

36   ESPN's Ultimate X                  65,962     34    94
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)    3,738,840

56   Shackleton's Antarctic Adventure   40,628     13   549
     Scott Swofford (producer)      13,109,924
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)
     Sam Cardon (composer)
     Stephen L. Johnson (film editor)

71   China: The Panda Adventure         13,768      6   381
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)    2,734,220

73   The Singles Ward                   12,621      8   192
     Kurt Hale (writer/director)       921,019
     John E. Moyer (writer)
     Dave Hunter (producer)
     Cody Hale (composer)
     Ryan Little (cinematographer)
     Wynn Hougaard (film editor)
     Actors: Will Swenson, Connie Young,
        Daryn Tufts, Kirby Heyborne,
        Michael Birkeland, Robert Swenson,
        Wally Joyner, Lincoln Hoppe,
        Sedra Santos, etc.

75   Ziggy Stardust & Spiders from Mars 11,231      1    33
     Mick Ronson (2nd billed actor)     50,516

87   Galapagos                           5,820      4  1018
     Reed Smoot (cinematographer)   13,589,284

107  The Believer                          988      2    87
     Ryan Gosling (lead actor)         256,810

SINGLES WARD PASSES BRIGHAM CITY: Kurt Hale's comedy "The Singles Ward" (HaleStorm Entertainment) reached a box office total of $921,019 over the weekend, passing the "Brigham City" box office total of $905,073. This makes "The Singles Ward" the 3rd highest grossing Latter-day Saint-themed feature film of the post-Dutcher era, after "The Other Side of Heaven" and "God's Army."

THE RM ONLINE: The official website for the next HaleStorm Entertainment feature film "The R.M." is now online: Currently there's not a lot there, but it's worth checking out for the production stills currently posted, with a note that says a new still will be posted each day. Currently there is at least one still featuring Olympic gold medalist Rulon Gardner, who makes a cameo appearance in "The R.M."

DUTCHER ON SMITH: Richard Dutcher took a break from working on "The Prophet" to discuss his research on the life of Joseph Smith, Jr., at the annual Sunstone Symposium. Articles about Dutcher's participation on a panel discussing the life of the prophet appeared in both the Ogden Standard Examiner and Salt Lake Tribune. Also presenting at Sunstone on an entirely different topic was Kevin Christensen, uncle of co-webmaster Thomas C. Baggaley. However, this presentation has no known connection to the Dutcher film (or any film for that matter) and at this time we are unaware of any articles in any local papers about Christensen's presentation, which nonetheless was very fascinating.

DAY OF DEFENSE POSTPONED: The Latter-day Saint-themed feature film "Day of Defense", now in post-production, has moved its Kingsbury Hall, SLC premiere from September 21st 2002 to January 2003.

UTAH FILM COMMISSION DOES LUNCH: Tomorrow, August 14th, the Utah Film Commission is sponsoring a Motion Picture Industry Luncheon for local film professionals. The featured speaker will be Robert Dowling, editor-in-chief and publisher of the Hollywood Reporter. Those film professionals interested in attending should contact the Utah Film Commission.

JOHNNY LINGO REPORT: Jerry Molen isn't finished yet. We have received word that "The Legend of Johnny Lingo" - yes, that Johnny Lingo - will hit the theaters in spring of 2003. Partially sponsored by Morinda, Inc. makers of Tahitian Noni products, the film will be produced by Jerry Molen. We understand the film has actually been in production in the Cook Islands for the past five weeks and should finish shooting soon. The original Johnny Lingo film, directed by Wetzel O. Whitaker, was actually based on a short story, "Johnny Lingo's Eight Cow Wife" by author Patricia McGerr. It starred Makee K. Blaisdell, a BYU graduate who you may also remember from his guest appearance in the original Star Trek series and other television shows in the 60's and 70's.

WRITING GRANT: We know nothing about this, and we really don't know the people involved, but they suggested we forward information about the Roy W. Dean Film and Video writing grant. Read all about it for yourself here:

LET THE FLOOD BEGIN: Beginning this weekend, a number of films with Latter-day Saint filmmaker connections are scheduled to be released. The next three weekends feature the premieres of director Mark Swan's "The Princess and the Pea", "Serving Sara" (Latter-day Saint actress Alaina Kalanj in a minor role), the nationwide release of director Blair Treu's "Little Secrets", screenwriter/director Neil LaBute's "Possession" and the wider (than before) theatrical release of the Latter-day Saint-themed feature film "Out of Step" (produced by Cary Derbidge, directed by Ryan Little). We'll soon provide a pre-release report on Blair Treu's "Little Secrets." A little later, on September 20th... "Jack Weyland's Charly."

A LONG PARAGRAPH: Every film faces the enormous challenge of finding enough funding. Those filmmakers that are able to attract investors have their films made. Those that do not, often are left out in the cold. We've been hearing rumblings lately of various efforts that are designed to take LDS cinema to the "next level". Encouraged by the financial successes of Richard Dutcher's films and "The Singles Ward", several local filmmakers are looking for ways to bring together the resources and expertise of LDS talent in a way that will allow for both a higher quality and quantity of independent LDS productions. The hope (which we imagine most LDS filmmakers share) is to be able to attract investors and produce films with the polish and production values equal to that of many Hollywood productions - but of course with better morals. Ideas which we have heard bounced around include combining the efforts of various production companies into one larger and stronger company, which would then have the resources to carry a film from pre-production through distribution much like the Hollywood studio system and finding various ways for the general public to invest in LDS films from investing in publicly-offered shares of stock in a production company to investing in a particular film and voting with their investment dollar which films ought to be made. Other ideas include a support network for LDS film professionals and a film school which would provide professional training and experience for young filmmakers in conjunction with one or two of the various local instutions of higher education. There is even word of a possible motion picture studio being built near Park City. As always we are interested in hearing your own ideas, opinions and responses on this topic. has no position on any of these ideas and is not an instigator of any such efforts -- it is simply a website. We're just passing along some notes about what has been discussed of late.

BAGGALEY HYPES HIS OWN ALBUM (IN HIS DEFENSE, HUNTER *TOLD* BAGGALEY TO USE THIS SPACE TO HYPE THE ALBUM): Film composer and co-webmaster of Thomas C. Baggaley will be releasing a new CD for the LDS market in the first part of September. The album, titled "Spirit of the Sabbath", will include several new hymn arrangements as well as original music all centered around the theme of music you can feel good about listening to on the Sabbath. "As a film composer," Baggaley says, "I have learned to be particularly aware of the influence that music has on our feelings. When we talk about being careful about the music we listen to, so often we limit the discussion to the lyrics of the songs, but music's influence on us is not limited to the words we hear. I'm not talking about different genres of music either. Whether the music be popular music or classical music, it doesn't matter. Some songs can help us be more in tune with the Spirit, while others tend to drive the Spirit away. I tried to include music that would invite the Spirit, or in the case of the hymns, I tried to maintain the Spirit of each hymn in the arrangement."

According to the press release from Baggaley's publishing company, Quest Haven Publishing, one strength of the CD will be its diversity of sounds and styles. The CD will include choral works, solo vocal and instrumental music and even a track from one of the films Baggaley has scored. Original track titles include "Not Going Alone", "Daughter of God", "My Gethsemane", "Fathers" and "Keep Looking for the Light". Among the hymns are arrangements of "Abide With Me; 'Tis Eventide", "Lead Kindly Light" and "I Know That My Redeemer Lives". Baggaley adds, "I think anyone who listens to the CD will find something that appeals to them, regardless of their age or particular musical tastes, as long as they are looking for something uplifting." The CD should be available in stores beginning September 9th.