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

Weekend of July 23, 2004

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

Natl Film Title                Weekend Gross % B.O. Theatrs
Rank LDS/Mormon Filmmaker/Star   Total Gross Change  $/Thtr   Days
--- ---------------------------  ----------- ------ -------   ----
 6  Anchorman:                     6,974,614  -50%   2,936     17
      The Legend of Ron Burgundy  71,060,084        $2,376
    Brent White (editor)

 8  The Notebook                   4,268,634  -24%   2,003     31
    Ryan Gosling                  62,318,684        $2,131
      (1st billed star)

16  Napoleon Dynamite              1,608,412 +114%     389     45
    Jared Hess (writer/director)   6,517,812        $4,135
    Jerusha Hess
      (writer/costume designer)
    Jon Heder (1st billed star)
    Aaron Ruell (3rd billed star)
    Jeremy Coon (producer/editor)
    Sean Covel (producer)
    Chris Wyatt (producer)
    Munn Powell (cinematographer)
    Cory Lorenzen
      (production designer)
    Curt Jensen (art director)
    Tim Skousen, Brian Petersen
      (assistant directors)

25  Bugs!                            260,565  +43%      30    500
    stars Papilio,                11,158,439        $8,686
      a Great Mormon butterfly

28  Riding Giants (documentary)      176,584  -10%      41     17
    Jeff Clark                       726,645        $4,307
      (featured LDS surfer)

41  Around the World in 80 Days       76,304  -42%     105     40
    Perry Andelin Blake           22,804,073          $727
      (production designer)

54  Home on the Range                 32,193  -43%      78    115
    Roseanne Barr (actress)       49,887,802          $413
      (1st billed star)

69  The Young Black Stallion           7,390  +14%       5    214
    Reed Smoot (cinematographer)   6,454,441        $1,478

80  China: The Panda Adventure         4,810  +49%       2   1095
    Reed Smoot (cinematographer)   3,342,671        $2,405

87  The Best Two Years                 3,036  -33%       5    157
    Scott S. Anderson                921,648          $607
    Michael Flynn (producer)
    Fred C. Danneman (executive producer)
    Gordon Lonsdale (cinematographer)
    Wynn Hougaard (editor)
    Michael McLean (songwriter, music supervisor)
    Dave Sapp
      (line producer/1st A.D./unit production manager)
    Darin Anderson (production manager)
    Michael L. McDonough (sound editor)
    Rebecca Nibley (costume designer)
    Actors: K.C. Clyde, Kirby Heyborne,
      David Nibley, Cameron Hopkin,
      Scott Christopher, Michael Flynn

ON A PERSONAL NOTE - We note the death of Academy Award-winning composer Jerry Goldsmith this week (coincidentally the same day that Elder Neal A. Maxwell passed away). Although he was not himself LDS, Jerry was a teacher and mentor in film composition to me (Thomas) and fellow LDS film composer Christopher Brady during his residency at UCLA. I was particularly saddened to hear of his passing, as I learned a great deal about the craft of film scoring from this amazing man. Each day I spent with this amazing composer for me was truly a feast. He will be missed. (Preston here, not Tom.)

I'm sitting down sending out some of the recent LDS film news, including last week's box office report. I'll send out the box office report in a few minutes. I haven't looked at it yet. I send out the daily mailings... Tom compiles those into weekly box office reports, and also puts in the numbers and figures for the weekly box office chart... Tom mentioned he was going to say something about Jerry Goldsmith in the report...

So before I read what Tom wrote, let me add a few words, uninfluenced by whatever Tom has to say. If you follow movie news at all, you are aware that Jerry Goldsmith passed away 10 days ago: July 21st. I feel a little bad that I didn't send out any notes at the time, but I'll do so now.

Jerry (Tom as always referred to him by his first name) was not a Latter-day Saint, but his influence on American film -- and even LDS films in particular -- is immeasurable.

Jerry Goldsmith's name was not as well known as frequent Spielberg and Lucas collaborator John Williams. But a case could certainly be made that after Williams, you should be familiar with Goldsmith. 17 Academy Award nominations, including 1 win for "The Omen." Not only that, he wrote a ton of the movie and TV scores that you yourself have heard and loved. Most of the "Star Trek" movies. Poltergeist. China Town. The "Alien" movies. The Mummy. Gremlins. Hoosiers. Logan's Run. Forever Young. The list of films he scored is simple incredible: Over 300 movies and TV series. He even worked on many films made by Latter-day Saints. He scored "The Secret of NIMH," which as directed by Bro. Don Bluth. He scored Disney's "Mulan," which was produced by Pam Coats (a Mormon girl from Utah) and which tapped Donny Osmond as the singing voice of the male lead. Goldsmith wrote the music for "The Waltons," one of whose major writers and creators was none other than Brother Ernie Wallengren, one of the most influential and prolific filmmakers in Church history. Goldsmith even scored "Damnation Alley", whose main character is an ethnic Mormon (although Goldsmith was unaware of that fact), and which was set partially in Utah.

Closer to home, Jerry Goldsmith was Tom's teacher and mentor. co-webmaster Thomas C. Baggaley received his PhD in film music scoring just two months ago, and years before that he received his Master's degree. He received both degrees while studying directly under Jerry Goldsmith. LDS film composer Christopher Brady (whose Hollywood-based credits are significantly more extensive than Tom's) also earned his degrees under Jerry Goldsmith.

Like I said, Jerry was not a Latter-day Saint. Obviously somebody of his stature had a say in what graduate students would study under him, and he certainly didn't have to take on two wannabe film composers from BYU -- two returned missionaries at the same time, straight from the boondocks of Utah. But Jerry Goldsmith evidently had no prejudice in these matters.

I've known Tom since we were both in high school. We were close friends then, and also while at BYU. Ever since I've known him he wanted to composer for film. But Tom's identity as a father, husband and as a Latter-day Saint is something I can't imagine he would ever sacrifice. Jerry Goldsmith let him study music and the movie industry at the highest, most advanced, most challenging levels imaginable, without sacrificing who he was as a person. Tom even wrote a heroic ode to Joseph and Hyrum Smith as a thesis piece. This kind of acceptance isn't what everybody thinks of when they think of Hollywood.

I have never heard Tom speak an ill word about Jerry Goldsmith. Whether listening to Goldsmith in interviews for NPR or listening to Tom speak of him, I know of nothing about him other than that he was both talented and an incredibly good person, kind and generous. A true gentleman and a family man.

I'm not a filmmaker and I have no educational or professional background in film. But Tom does -- he has spent half his adult life studying directly under Jerry Goldsmith. Nobody has had more direct influence on what and how Tom thinks of film than Jerry Goldsmith, which means that Goldsmith's influence on is probably immeasurable.

LDSFILM.COM ANNOUNCED REGIONALIZED MAILING LISTS - Want to know in advance when the latest film by LDS filmmakers is coming to town and which theaters you can catch it in? Sign up for the regionalized list(s) of your choice at We'll keep you in the know. We won't send you fluff ads - just good, solid, specific information that is relevant to you where you live.

Seriously. Go there. Now. Sign up.

FILMMAKERS: GOT A FILM THAT IS OPENING UP IN A NEW AREA SOON? - Let us know as soon as possible so we can let the people who want to see your film know their chance is coming up. E-mail us with any questions.

NAPOLEON DYNAMITE ADDS EPILOGUE; NOW PLAYING IN 380+ THEATERS - This week, Napoleon Dynamite raked in almost as much in a single weekend as "The Book of Mormon Movie" took in during its entire theatrical run. The LDS-produced indie hit has taken in nearly $2 million MORE than LDS Cinema record-holder "The Other Side of Heaven" did, and it's just getting started. This weekend, the rollout kicked into a new gear, playing in over 380 theaters and featuring a new epilogue - as if that were necessary to motivate repeat viewers. Excerpted from

They're not even waiting for the DVD to add scenes to the quirky hit comedy "Napoleon Dynamite." The filmmakers have created a five-minute epilogue that will be added to the film for its wider release. The scene, which -- like the film -- was written by Jared and Jerusha Hess and directed by Hess in Preston, Idaho, is said to offer "a peek into the future of Napoleon and his friends." It contains a wedding, and as much as we'd like to see Tina the llama in a veil, our money is on Kip and LaFawnda. Fox Searchlight, MTV Films, and Paramount will take the film to 350 screens with the new epilogue attached.

LDS MOVIE IN THEATERS: RIDING GIANTS - "Riding Giants" is a feature-length documentary currently in its second week of national release. It is from the same director who made the critically acclaimed documentary "Dogtown and Z-boys", which won top awards at Sundance and AFI. "Riding Giants" has been earning high marks from critics across the country.

"Riding Giants" focuses on 3 "big wave" surfers, in 3 segments. The second segment is about LDS surfer Jeff Clark. Clark receives 3rd billing on the official movie poster. The documentary has already grossed more than $725,000. Last weekend it was ranked 5th at the box office among movies by LDS/Mormon filmmakers/stars, behind "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy", "The Notebook," "Napoleon Dynamite" and "Bugs." It is currently the highest-grossing film in theaters about an LDS main character.


PRESS RELEASE: LIKEN THE SCRIPTURES "AMMON THE MUSICAL" RELEASED; 3RD EPISODE ANNOUNCED - One South Studios, a Pasadena-based production company, will host the World Premiere of the second episode in its Liken the Scriptures series of live-action musicals on Aug. 11, 2004 at Jordan Commons in Sandy, Utah.

Episode 2, called "A Mighty Change of Heart," features the story of Ammon on his mission to the land of King Lamoni, as found in the Book of Mormon, with a slight twist.

"Our version of the familiar scripture story is depicted as seen through the eyes of a young boy with a very active -- and musical -- imagination," said Ken Agle, producer. Like the first episode, "I Will Go and Do," the second episode features original new songs by LDS composer Aaron Edson.

The production was shot in high-definition on a soundstage at KJZZ-TV in Salt Lake City, and on location in a home in Farmington, Utah. Production was completed in June. The title is schedule for release on DVD on Aug. 24, 2004. It will be available in most LDS bookstores.

"A Mighty Change of Heart" features frequent Broadway performer T.J. Young as Ammon. Young is the older brother of Jared Young, who played the role of Nephi in Episode 1.

"The entire family is extremely talented," said Aaron Edson, composer and co-director on the project. "T.J. is currently touring internationally with traveling production of 42nd Street. We were delighted that a little hole appeared in schedule that allowed us to cast him in this part."

Also cast in episode 2 are LDS recording artist Katherine Nelson as Abish, frequent star of the Utah stage Daniel Beck as King Lamoni, and Southern California television host Deborah Stapley as the queen. Garrett Summers returns in his role as the Primary-aged boy with a musical imagination. Brad Warwood makes his screen debut playing a modern-day troubled teenaged boy.

Dennis Agle is co-director, as well as screenwriter on the project. Director of photography is Rod Santiano. Michael Schaertl returns as first camera operator. Ken Eklof returns as set designer.

"A Mighty Change of Heart" is the second episode in what is intended to be an ongoing series of live-action musical, scriptures stories in which modern-day characters learn life lessons from their scriptural counterparts. Episode 3, featuring the story of David and Goliath, is expected to go before the cameras this fall.



BRO. JENNINGS - LDS JEOPARDY CHAMP - ON TONIGHT SHOW W/LENO LAST THURSDAY - Bro. Jennings was on with Leno Thursday. He has been one of the biggest entertainment stories over the last few weeks, with newspapers, TV shows, news shows, radio, etc. frequently mentioning that he is a devout Latter-day Saint. The implication is that Latter-day Saints are smarter, cuter and more moral than everybody else. But I think everybody already knew that, what with 'Napoleon Dynamite' opening in theaters and all.

LATTER-DAY SAINT SISTER LISA WEST-BELTRAM STARRING ON CBS NEWS - Lisa West-Beltram is an active member of the Citrus Heights California Stake.

Subject: Watch me on CBSNews


Well, let me tell you this story....Many years ago, before I worked for Westco Plumbing, as many of you know, I worked for TGI Fridays restaurant. I started out as a waitress, became head waitress and then a manager. I was there almost 9 years.

During that time I worked with several people who went on to be 'famous' (unlike me, ha!). For instance, Paul of the Paul and Phil Show, Steve Buzzard, the voice of the Sacramento Kings and others.....

One of those people was Rene Syler. Rene went to work as an Anchor of a TV News station in Dallas and had pretty much settled there until a little over a year ago when CBS News hired her as one of the Anchors of THE EARLY SHOW. She appears daily Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. It is broadcast nationally. You may have seen her if you have ever watched the show.

So Rene's producer called me and said they were doing a segment on each of their 5 Anchors called "My First Job" and Rene had given them my name for an interview. Rene and a CBS News film crew came out here from New York and last week we filmed the segment for about 3 hours. It is slated the air the week of 7/26/2004. It will be a short segment - probably about 4 minutes long. There are three of us altogether participating in the segment - me (now almost famous), Rene Syler and another friend from our TGIF days, Loren Knott.

It was an interesting and exciting day and I'm anxious to see how it turns out. As we get closer to next week I will e-mail you again and let you know which day it will be on.....again, sometime during the week of 7/26 through 7/30/2004 on CBS. That's Channel 13 if you are here in the Sacramento area.

You can view info about Rene by going to the link below:

Lisa West



BYU SHOWED EXPLICIT FILMS - See,1249,595077540,00.html