Natl Film Title Weekend Gross % B.O. Theatrs Rank LDS/Mormon Filmmaker/Star Total Gross Change $/Thtr Days --- --------------------------- ----------- ------ ------- ---- 10 The Upside of Anger 2,069,066 -17% 1,166 38 Keri Russell (actress) 15,119,417 $1,774 16 Millions 664,748 +53% 251 38 LDS major characters: 2,962,628 $2,648 3 LDS missionaries 27 Constantine 132,943 -41% 221 59 Allen Hall (SFX coordinator) 74,341,414 $602 50 Down and Derby (NEW) 43,930 58 3 Eric Hendershot 43,930 $757 (writer/director/exec. producer) Steele Hendershot (producer) Dickilyn Johnson (producer) John Stone (exec. producer) T.C. Christensen (cinematographer) Gordon Lonsdale (cinematographer) Actors: Adam Hicks, Carmen Rasmusen, Scott Christopher 60 Bugs! 30,997 +0% 19 766 stars Papilio, 15,100,698 $1,631 a Great Mormon butterfly 63 The Work and the Glory 26,680 +128% 37 145 Russ Holt (writer/director) 3,272,500 $721 Gerald N. Lund (author) Scott Swofford (producer) T.C. Christensen (cinematographer) Gordon Lonsdale (cinematographer) Sam Cardon (composer) Stephen L. Johnson (editor) Larry H. Miller (exec. producer) Jeff T. Miller (line producer) Supporting actors: Brighton Hertford, Sarah Darling, Ryan Wood John R. Uibel (production designer) Cathren Warner (costume designer) Edwin Matsu (makeup artist) Stephanie Scott (makeup artist) Laurie Vukich (assistant hair stylist) Heather Toone (2nd assistant director) LDS main characters 72 Lemony Snicket's A Series 19,515 -8% 26 122 of Unfortunate Events 118,604,722 $751 Brett Helquist (co-creator/ book illustrator) 91 Saints and Soldiers 7,609 +33% 10 255 Ryan Little 1,267,759 $761 (director/producer/cinematographer) Adam Abel (producer) Brian Brough (assoc. producer/produc. manager) Wynn Hougaard (editor) J Bateman (composer) Matt Whitaker (screenwriter) Jennifer Buster (casting) Actors: Corbin Allred, Larry Bagby III, Kirby Heyborne, Lincoln Hoppe, Curt Dousett, Ben Gourley, Ethan Vincent, etc. LDS main character: Deacon 100 Galapagos 5,895 +86% 3 1998 Reed Smoot (cinematographer) 14,765,744 $1,965 103 Sons of Provo 4,093 -31% 8 73 Will Swenson 105,825 $512 (writer/director/producer/ lead actor/songwriter) Peter D. Brown (writer/producer/songwriter) John Lyde, Stephen Rose (cinematographers/editors) John Shircliff (prod. designer) Anne Rose (costume designer) KC Blake (sound designer) Tyler Keegan (unit prod. manager/1st A.D.) Scott Hust (2nd A.D.) Robert Swenson (2nd 2nd A.D.) Spencer Barnes, Anna K. Findlay (make-up artists) Actors: Will Swenson, Kirby Heyborne, Danny Tarasevich, Jennifer Erekson, Peter D. Brown, Maureen Eastwood, Michael Birkeland, Alison Akin Clark, Jeremy Elliott, etc. LDS main characters 123 The Young Black Stallion 1,063 -2% 2 480 Reed Smoot (cinematographer) 6,728,507 $532
If you noticed that LDSFilm.com was inaccessible last week, it was only because of a problem with the server. We're upgrading to handle more traffic.
The simple truth is the site has continued to grow in its traffic, so we experienced a bit of growing pains...
To make a long story short, we had an average of 3378 unique visits per day last month (March), or an average of 8039 pages visited per day. That's probably at least 3000 visitors per day.
In May 2004 (nearly one month ago), LDSFilm.com had a daily average of 1639 unique visits. So that means we have about twice as much traffic as we did a year ago.
If you want to examine the detailed traffic logs, just let me know and I'll point you to them.
This increase in visitors to LDSFilm.com has nothing to do with anything I've done personally. It's all about what you guys have done. People visit LDSFilm.com because they're interested in what LDS Filmmakers and doing.
From my perspective, the world of LDSfilmmaking has matured and grown considerably. There's a great deal of diversity, which means product across a wide range of genres, topics, and quality.
The level of detail that was focused on certain aspects of LDS filmmaking in the past is not as intense now, as attention is split among a larger number of LDS filmmakers, film productions, and research areas. Not only is there more competition for attention among LDS filmmakers hoping to attract viewers, there is increased competition from Hollywood and abroad, as non-LDS filmmakers such as Danny Boyle ("Millions"), Tom Hanks ("Big Love"), Mike Nichols ("Angels in America") and Steven Soderbergh ("Ocean's Eleven", "Ocean's Twelve") use LDS characters and make LDS-themed films and television projects. Hollywood-based Latter-day Saints are also making Latter-day Saint-themed movies, such as "Suits on the Loose" and Rick Schroder's planned project "The Principle Wife." And LDS Cinema filmmakers are "crossing over" to make mainstream market films without LDS content (e.g., Ryan Little's "Everything You Want").
Latter-day Saints who had not been active in feature film production for a while are returning to activity, a la Bro. Sterling Van Wagenen ("The Work and the Glory" sequels), and successful LDS authors are increasingly venturing into filmmaking as well, e.g. Chris Heimerdinger, Orson Scott Card, Dave Wolverton, Gerald R. Lund, Jack Weyland. Of course, the Church is still very active in making film productions both major and minor, such as the Joseph Smith biopic slated for release December of this year.
We hope that LDSFilm.com has been useful in keeping abreast of some of this activity.
We welcome suggestions. Are there topic areas we aren't covering that we should? Is there something that should be focused on more? Are there subject areas we cover that you think should be de-emphasized or eliminated?
EARLY REVIEWS OF ERIC HENDERSHOT'S "DOWN AND DERBY" - Early reviews are in on Brother Eric Hendershot's latest feature (and first theatrical release). Here's a sampling.
riverfronttimes.com - http://www.riverfronttimes.com/issues/2005-04-13/film.html
movieweb.com - http://www.movieweb.com/movies/film.php?3059
Boise Arbiter - http://www.arbiteronline.com/vnews/display.v/ART/2005/04/14/425df1ba465f3
Fort Worth Weekly - http://www.fwweekly.com/content.asp?article=218
Associated Press Article compares the film to "Rocky" "Raging Bull" and "Seabiscuit" - http://www.northjersey.com/page.php?qstr=eXJpcnk3ZjczN2Y3dnFlZUVFeXkxNjcmZmdiZWw3Zjd2cWVlRUV5eTY2NzkwMTcmeXJpcnk3ZjcxN2Y3dnFlZUVFeXk3
L.A. City Beat - http://www.lacitybeat.com/article.php?id=1943&IssueNum=97
Phoenixville News article about the film - http://www.phoenixvillenews.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=14360162&BRD=1673&PAG=461&dept_id=17915&rfi=6
Dallas Morning News - http://www.dallasnews.com/s/dws/drc/entertainment/stories/DRC_Not_a_grownup.1ddbe41e6.html
LDS FILMMAKER RYAN LITTLE'S MOVIE: ABC FAMILY MOVIE - "Everything You Want" premiered on ABC Family Sunday, April 17. Check it out at http://www.abcfamily.com
This is really amazing news. Thanks to Christian Vuissa for pointing this out to us...
This movie was directed by none other than Canadian Latter-day Saint filmmaker Ryan Little, the director of the LDS Cinema movies "Out of Step" and "Saints and Soldiers."
One of the film's stars is Orlando Seale, who had the male lead role in the LDS Cinema film "Pride and Prejudice."
The cast includes a number of LDS actors, including K.C. Clyde ("The Best TwoYears"), Frank Gerrish ("Brigham City"), Ben Gourley ("Pride and Prejudice"), and Scott Wilkinson.
The film was made in Utah, with a mostly LDS crew, including Steven A. Lee as screenwriter/co-producer and one of the key people behind the whole project, Brian Brough as producer. Music by J Bateman ("Saints and Soldiers"), film editing by Ethan Vincent ("Truth & Conviction"). This really is a star-studded thing, relative to LDS filmmaking.
It's a romantic comedy, without overtly LDS characters. Although the premiere and the other two airings we heard about have already passed, we imagine it will be airing on other occasions, and when it does so you should definitely check it out!
OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF "EVERYTHING YOU WANT" - See http://www.lovesurreal.com/
Producer -- Brian Brough Co-Producer -- Steven A. Lee, Brittany Wiscombe Director -- Ryan Little Director of Photography -- Gene Salvatori Production Designer -- Barbara Ward Prop Master -- Bruce Wing Screenwriters -- Steven A. Lee, Kevin Lawrence King Composer -- J Bateman Editor -- Ethan Vincent Cast Nick Zano Orlando Seale Alexandra Holden Will Friedle Scott Wilkinson KC Clyde
HELMED BY FOUNDER OF SUNDANCE FILM FEST, PRODUCTION PROCEEDS ON "WORK AND THE GLORY" EPS II, III - See http://www.thedailytimes.com/sited/story/html/204397
SATIRICAL FILM REMAKE OF "TRAPPED BY THE MORMONS" BEGINS NATIONAL TOUR - See http://sltrib.com/entertainment/ci_2666257
DETAILED ARTICLE ABOUT MIREILLE ENOS, LDS FILM/STAGE STAR - Mireille Enos is the sister of Jongiorgi Enos, a frequent collaborator with Richard Dutcher, recognizable to LDS film fans for his role as Ed the tow truck driver in "Brigham City", and for his supporting role in "Someone Was Watching."
REPORT FROM KENTUCKY: LDS-MADE FILM ABOUT MICHAEL MOORE'S VISIT TO LDS COLLEGE - Wow, Bro. Stephen Greenstreet seriously continues to be the man of the hour with his documentary. Any reasonable LDS film historian would have to rank "This Divided State" as one of the year's 5 most talked about films by Latter-day Saints.
WESTMINSTER STUDENT'S DOCUMENTARY BOUT LATTER-DAY SAINTS AND OTHER UTAHNS OF VARIOUS DESCENT - See http://www.slccglobelink.com/news/2005/04/14/Community/weaving.The.Threads.Of.Identity.Features.Utahns.Of.Various.Descents-923220.shtml
HOLLYWOOD REMAKE OF LDS ACTOR'S GREATEST FILM IN WORKS: STRANGERS ON A TRAIN - Hitchcock's "Strangers on a Train" is widely regarded as Latter-day Saint actor Robert Walker's greatest film role. Walker played the film's villain "Bruno Anthony," a man who "trades murders" with an unwitting tennis player.
CARMEN RASMUSEN, FROM "AMERICAN IDOL" FINALIST TO MOVIE STAR - See our new page at http://www.ldsfilm.com/actors/CarmenRasmusen.html
REFERENCES TO LATTER-DAY SAINT FILMMAKERS IN THE COMIC BOOK LIMITED SERIES SPIDER-MAN/DOCTOR OCTOPUS: NEGATIVE EXPOSURE - See our new page at http://www.ldsfilm.com/comics/SpiderManNegativeExposure.html
DIRECTOR BOYLE DISCUSSES HIS SCANDINAVIAN LATTER-DAY SAINT CHARACTERS IN "MILLIONS" - "Millions" also includes gentle humor directed toward Mormonism, with Scandinavian elders as bit players. Most missionaries in England tend to come from the Nordic countries, Boyle says, but he admits that they may not have had a place in the movie were it not for the fact that he shot "A Life Less Ordinary" in Utah in 1996.
"When we came up with the Mormons, it just felt so right," he says. "We had spent some time there. And it's funny, actually, we were shooting in this place, Widnes [England], and who should come along, two Mormons on bicycles, Scandinavian, with the white shirts cut off there and the rucksack on the back. . . . People were like, this can't be real. It's a setup."
Excerpt from http://sltrib.com/entertainment/ci_2665964
INJUSTICE, EVEN AGAINST MORMONS, OFTEN GETS AN R RATING - See http://www.ohio.com/mld/ohio/living/11342479.htm
NEW BOOK ABOUT ELIZABETH SMART - This is sort of off-topic and sort of NOT off-topic. This article is about a book, a subject we don't normally cover, but it's a book about the Elizabeth Smart story, which WAS turned into a TV movie, and has been parodied on MadTV and elsewhere. By the way, last Saturday I heard a great story about exactly the topic of this book on NPR's "This American Life" - the segment discussed how Elizabeth Smart literally was the invisible girl. She walked around Salt Lake City for months after her kidnapping, but nobody ever realized they were seeing her, because the way she was dressed and in the company of Mitchell, she was completely not what people expected.
DVD/CD RELEASE FROM POPULAR 5 LDS BROWN SIBLINGS FROM JULIARD - See http://deseretnews.com/dn/view/0,1249,600126530,00.html
1M BRITISH POUNDS TITHING REPORT MENTIONS U.K.'S FAVE LATTER-DAY SAINTS: OSMONDS, BILLY CASPER, GENE FULLMER, NOW PHIL SMITH - See http://www.yorkshiretoday.co.uk/ViewArticle2.aspx?SectionID=1299&ArticleID=1002289
THE SPOKESMAN REVIEW (SEATTLE): TOM CRUISE, MATT DAMON TO PLAY LDS MISSIONARIES IN NEW MOVIE? - On the cutting edge of journalism, the Spokesman Review (Seattle, Washington newspaper) asks two LDS missionaries who should play them in a movie:
Here's an excerpt:
Elders Collin Thompson, 20, of Tucson, Ariz., and Mike Kettle, 19, of American Fork, Utah, joined the ranks of more than 60,000 Mormon missionaries worldwide, serving for 18 to 24 months and paying their own expenses.
If there was a movie made about you and your job, what actor should play you?
Thompson: "Matt Damon."
Kettle: "Tom Cruise.".
HOLLYWOOD ROMANCE: CELEBRATED UKRAINIAN/YUGOSLAVIAN VIOLINIST COUPLE GRUPPMAN - CONVERTS TO CHURCH - See http://sltrib.com/lifestyle/ci_2667076
OFF TOPIC: AN ACCLAIMED FILMMAKER'S AMAZING TESTIMONY OF JESUS - Bro. Robert Starling wrote the following:
An amazing movie experience - I had to share it.
Here's an interesting scenario: A prominent Hollywood film personality decides to risk professional ostracism and financial ruin by putting on film his personal vision of the life, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He creates a visual masterpeice which floods the world and affects the lives of millions. He takes special care to show viewers that it was not the Jews as a people who caused the crucifixion, but only a few wicked priests and leaders.
Who was he?
Of course this scenario describes Mel Gibson and his "Passion of the Christ" that was released last year. But it also describes the masterful work called "King of Kings", produced and directed in 1929 by Cecil B. DeMille.
Last night I had the great privilege to see this movie screened in pristine elegance at Peery's Egyptian Theater in Ogden, Utah. Like the condition of the film, Peery's has been restored to its glorious splendor as it was when the film was first shown in 1929. It is one of the last great silent movie palaces in the US, and it was a perfect venue.
The film was accompanied by a live organist who performed an amazing score without any sheet music, and he wove into the music quite a few hymns of the Restoration that were uniquely apppropriate to scenes in the film. When the Savior bid his apostles to let the little children come unto Him, there were faint strains of "I Am A Child of God" heard. Similarly appropriate Sacrament themes were heard at the Last Supper, and the glorious resurrection scenes (shown in the original 2-strip Technicolor for those scenes only) were accompanied by "He Is Risen".
Personally I was moved to tears several times, and it's an experience I will never forget. I wish everyone could have shared those precious moments.
I know from reading his autobiography (several times) that DeMille never accepted a single penny from this very successful film. Instead his share of the boxoffice profits were given to a foundation that produced 16mm copies of the film that could be shown to audiences in remote parts of the world, and to other charities. He simply wanted his visual testimony of Christ to be seen by as many people as possible. According to his granddaughter, the film's "patron" who funded the movie was Sun Oil founder and multibillionaire Joseph N. Pew, who likewise took nothing from the profits but donated them to charities.
Fortunately, "King of Kings" was released a few months ago on DVD. I doubt if I will ever have another opportunity to see it in such a perfect venue or with such an amazing musical accompaniment, but at least I (and you) can see this pinnacle of the art of silent films - one man's offering of his talents to serve his God.
I stand all amazed.
Robert Starling CEO/ Producer
Trefoil Productions, LLC
OFF TOPIC: LDS FILMMAKER DAN HARVILLE REVIEWS "SIN CITY" - From LDS filmmaker Dan Harville:
I'm so sorry that I didn't write this review two weeks ago when I first saw the film "SIN CITY". I have just let it fester inside me, pained over the evil in the world. Shocked at how low some of the people I admire have sunk in making this film.
Let me confess; I admire Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino. Quentin is my absolute favorite director [other than myself, of course; ) ] I would have the complete Tarantino library in my house, except my wife keeps throwing the DVDs away. Kill Bill 2 went into the trash before I even got it unwrapped.
Bruce Willis is perhaps my favorite actor.
Let me also confess; I am one of the admitted 43% LDS visitors to my Mormon Cinema website who go to R rated movies. I do it regularly. (VOTE; in polls here; http://www.mormoncinema.com/VOTE.htm )
I review Sin City so that you don't have to.
I tell all in this review. I happily spoil the ending, (sorry ending that it is). Hopefully you will read this review so that you don't feel like you need to see the film. Maybe you can stop your kids from seeing it as well.
WASHINGTON POST: AS U.S. HOUSE MOVES TOWARD APPROVING BILL, DEBATE OVER LDS-MADE TECH FOR LOCALIZING FILMS FOR LDS VALUES - See http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A61565-2005Apr17.html
U.S. HOUSE EXPECTED TO PASS BILL GIVING LEGAL PROTECTION TO LDS MOVIE CONTENT FILTERING TECHNOLOGY - See http://www.kykernel.com/news/2005/04/19/Features/Flap-Over.Moore.Visit.Subject.Of.New.Film-929191.shtml
SLTRIB: 'CLEANING' OF MOVIES MAY RECEIVE LEGAL PROTECTION; PLUS: NEW DOCUMENTARY ABOUT THIS STORY TO PREMIERE ON CABLE - See http://www.sltrib.com/ci_2668570