‘Wonder Woman’ grosses P48.39-M on opening day, breaks non-holiday record

MANILA, June 2, 2017 – Arriving with power, grace, wisdom and wonder, Warner Bros. Pictures’ Wonder Woman pulled off the year’s biggest non-holiday opening day record as it grossed a whopping P48.39-M on its first day of release (including midnight previews) yesterday, June 1.

This was announced today by Francis Soliven, General Manager of Warner Bros. Philippines.

READ MORE: Movie Review: WONDER WOMAN (2017)

The first solo feature film about the famed Amazonian princess-warrior, Wonder Woman bested the opening day gross of last March’s Beauty and the Beast (at P47-M), and also claimed the biggest first-day haul of 2017 for a Warner Bros. Title (surpassing Kong: Skull Island).

Attracting 205,041 total admissions from 510 screens nationwide, Wonder Woman’s other first-day records include the 2nd Biggest Opening Day of the Year, right after Fast & Furious 8’s P56-M which was established on a Black Saturday holiday; 3rd Biggest Opening Day for a WB Film All-Time (ahead of Suicide Squad at P29.7-M) and 3rd Biggest June Opening Day All-Time Industry-Wide (outgrossing Transformers: Age of Extinction at P39.7-M.)

Gal Gadot returns as the title character in the epic action adventure from director Patty Jenkins (“Monster,” AMC’s “The Killing”).

Joining Gadot in the international cast are Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Danny Huston, David Thewlis, Connie Nielsen, Elena Anaya, Ewen Bremner, Lucy Davis, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Eugene Brave Rock and Saïd Taghmaoui.

Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, raised on a sheltered island paradise and trained to be an unconquerable warrior. When an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers…and her true destiny.

Now playing across the Philippines, “Wonder Woman” is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Amandla Sternberg, from ‘Hunger Games’ to ‘Everything, Everything’

She first gained recognition for her role as Rue in “The Hunger Games,” alongside Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth and Josh Hutcherson. Now, teen star Amandla Sternberg stars as Maddy in in Warner Bros. Pictures’ new romantic drama Everything, Everything (in Philippine cinemas June 21, 2017).

Based on the bestselling book of the same name by Nicola Yoon, Everything, Everything tells the unlikely love story of Maddy (Sternberg), a smart, curious and imaginative 18-year-old who due to an illness cannot leave the protection of the hermetically sealed environment within her house, and Olly (Nick Robinson), the boy next door who won’t let that stop them. Gazing through windows and talking only through texts, Maddy and Olly form a deep bond that leads them to risk everything to be together…even if it means losing everything.

Amandla Stenberg is huge fan of the book and the script—adding, “I was immediately drawn to the whimsy and the quirkiness of the story and the real life, tangible emotional aspects of it that I could connect to, especially as a teenager. I also loved that this beautiful and meaningful teen romance movie involved seeing an interracial couple in a completely subliminal way.”

Producer Elysa Dutton notes, “I think this urgency for love really resonates for people, especially at the age these characters are. First love is so exciting, and for Maddy, she’s missed a lot of firsts so she’s not going to miss this. Even though she knows this is potentially a life-threatening decision, there’s no choice for her but to take this risk, to really live.”

Both Sternberg and Robinson enjoyed the process of exploring this unusual and often awkward first love relationship—finding the normalcy within its inherent irregularities.

“I had never met Amandla before this film but I’d heard only great things, so I was really excited to work with her,” Robinson recalls. “She’s just a really cool person and I had a great time getting to know her.”

“Both Amandla and Nick were fantastic,” director Stella Meghie states. “Amandla is just angelic,” she continues. “Like Maddy, she’s intelligent and mature, and also romantic, and she definitely brought those sensibilities to the character. My main goal was to make sure that people would believe these two characters fall in love, and Amandla and Nick really clicked from the start. Their chemistry was just so natural and I think that shows in the film.”

Everything, Everything is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, and in select international territories by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures.

Tom Cruise-starrer ‘The Mummy’ boasts of weightless stunts in Zero G

All hell breaks loose when Egyptian princess Ahmanet’s sarcophagus is being flown from Iraq to London and ravens begin to crash thru the cockpit window, in Universal Pictures’ The Mummy (in Philippine cinemas on June 7, 2017). As one might imagine, things go downhill from there…and the plane begins to dive.

Director Alex Kurtzman and lead actor Tom Cruise were vocal from the jump with special effects department head Dominic Tuohy that they wanted everything to happen for real; this Zero G stunt was no exception.

For The Mummy’s pivotal plane-crash sequence, the cockpit action was shot on a stage at Shepperton Studios, while the VFX ravens were added digitally during post production. However, as soon as the sequence called for shooting the interior of the body of the plane during the crash, all movement was done practically, safely on stage.

“There is meticulous craftsmanship and attention to detail on our sets for this film,” raves Kurtzman. “Every set tells a story and reveals something about the character- these sets are a gift for any filmmaker. I constantly walk on these sets and my jaw just hits the floor. This cargo plane set build is a huge artistic and engineering feat.”

On stage S at Shepperton Studios, this huge 20-ton steel frame cargo plane set was constructed and mounted onto a hydraulic base…proving to be the most complex build for the production. This gimbal allowed for continuous rotation with the actors inside. Simultaneously, it provided a 15-degree tilt—front and back—to simulate take off and start of the crash.

This cargo plane set was built from the ground up by Tuohy and his team of 30. SFX began working on the plane build for 16 weeks, then began working with the stunts department. To accomplish this stunning feat of movie magic, there were skilled technicians drawing the rigs—as well as model makers, engineers, power technicians and senior technicians…many who have worked on Dominic’s team for more than 30 years.

Tuohy underscores the pride the crew took in their work: “We didn’t want this stunt to look contrived. We wanted it to use physics and real time. As far as I am aware, this is the first time this has been done for a film, and we embraced that.”

Never been done before for a film, the production then introduced a real plane at Novespace headquarters, housed in Bordeaux, France, into the mix to complete and film this Zero G sequence.

At Novespace a real Airbus A310 aircraft was flown, with 40 cast and crew members inside to experience the Zero G effect. The cast crew did 16 parabolic flights within a two-hour period, twice a day over two days. For the stunt, the pilots enacted a total of 64 parabolas (repeated weightlessness sessions). Each parabola allowed for the filming of a key sequence in the scene.

The 20 seconds of weightlessness audiences will see on film leads the crash sequence, with Nick trying desperately to grab parachutes from the plane wall and pass one to Jenny. Each take filmed was unpredictable as the cast and crew floated weightless around the plane cabin…at the mercy of physics.

Again the interior of the set was all rubber, this time with obvious weight and safety restrictions for the in-flight journey. This real plane set was 10% less wide and 40% lower in height than the cargo plane set rig that was built on the studio stage.

Tuohy concludes that the interplay between the Zero G flight and the cargo set had to be perfect. He ends: “We wanted to keep everything as real as possible, so the trick is for us to try and do that seamlessly between the real Zero G flight and the physical SFX done on stage.”

The Mummy is distributed by United International Pictures through Columbia Pictures.

 

MOVIE REVIEW: Wonder Woman (2017)

Let’s face it: DC Films had a rough couple of years. From the lackluster Batman V Superman, to the highly appalling Suicide Squad. Director Patty Jenkins had the biggest task of resurrecting the DC Universe back to its greatness. The best of her effort skyrockets Wonder Woman as, undeniably, the best DC film adaptation to date.

It is no wonder that the fate of a film largely relies to the capable hands of its director. Patty Jenkins, the woman responsible for Charlize Theron’s Oscar win in 2003 for Monster, uses her unprecedented intelligence and passion for the female psyche in bringing the back story of Diana Prince to the forefront. With rich visual stimuli and nuanced storytelling, Wonder Woman proves to give the audience a well-renowned classic heroine meant for the post-modernity of the 21st Century. It does not only celebrate Wonder Woman herself, but it also pays tribute to the army of Amazonian women responsible behind the creation of the Wonder Woman we all know today. It takes a strong woman to create a strong woman – feminism at its finest.

By now, I guess it is safe to say that the DC Universe is generally dark and grim. That’s just the trademark it chooses to be branded, leaning towards the trajectory that Christopher Nolan begun in his Batman trilogy – Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises – realism meets superheroism. In an actual world, wars and battles aren’t as glossy and vibrant as Marvel sells it (but yes, they sell it good) – DC chooses to hem reality within the fantasy. That brand got somehow lost in translation in Zack Snyder’s Batman V Superman as it proves to be too somber, dull and mundane, and yet got overly compensated in David Ayer’s Suicide Squad as it tried too hard to be colorful and glittery, but ultimately empty. Wonder Woman’s greatest strength is the balance of its elements and composition. Yes, it is dark, but it is entertaining, substantial and sharp.

The most surprising element of the film is its unparalleled humor. The film has an understated comic flare, reminding you that superhero films are indeed meant for enjoyment and pleasure. The film takes itself seriously, but never in a contrived fashion; it simply is just a passion project made with a great deal of responsibility and intellect, whilst respecting the tone and hue of the universe it is in. It knows when to be silly, and when to be a smart act. The equilibrium of these contrasting tonalities are beautifully painted by the visionary Jenkins.

I’ve said this before and I shall say it again: Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman is perhaps one of the best casting choices for a superhero film, ever. We got the pleasure of getting a glimpse of her story in Batman V Superman (yes, she’s the best part of that movie) – and now, a full blown festive entertainment as we get to know everything behind this Amazonian warrior. Gadot is fierce and intense, yet vibrant and luminous at the same time. She carries the film’s balance to perfection. There are moments when she’s Xena: The Warrior Princess, while borrowing the hilarious complexities of the naïve, fish-out-of-water Princess Giselle in Enchanted. Gal Gadot gives everything that Wonder Woman stands for.

A surprisingly refreshing performance from Chris Pine, too. His sublime comic timing serves as the film’s breather in its darker moments. For a character meant to highlight the lead heroine, his performance as Steve Trevor stands on his own without being overshadowed, yet gives such generosity in showcasing the film’s star.

Overall, Wonder Woman is the revamp of everything that DC Films initially hit and missed; after a couple of litmus testing, they finally got the tone right while still being distinctly DC. Thanks, in large part, to the film’s ultimate Wonder Woman, director Patty Jenkins, for bringing the DC Universe back on track.


4.75 out of 5 stars


WATCH: ‘Wonder Woman’s’ Gal Gadot greets fans from Philippines

Warner Bros. Pictures has released a short video of Gal Gadot greeting her Filipino fans as she invited them to watch her film, “Wonder Woman” which opened in Philippine cinemas June 1, 2017. Check out the video below.

“Mabuhay, Philippines!,” starts the Israeli actress in the video.

“I’m Gal Gadot and I play Wonder Woman in the first-ever live-action `Wonder Woman’ movie,” she continues. “From the gorgeous island paradise of Themyscira, to the World War I Europe, the film is full of action and adventure, as an Amazon warrior learns what it takes to become one of the greatest super heroes of all time.”

She concludes, “Don’t miss Warner Woman in cinemas this June.”

Joining Gadot in the international cast are Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Danny Huston, David Thewlis, Connie Nielsen, Elena Anaya, Ewen Bremner, Lucy Davis, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Eugene Brave Rock and Saïd Taghmaoui.

Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, raised on a sheltered island paradise and trained to be an unconquerable warrior. When an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers…and her true destiny.

Patty Jenkins directed the film from a screenplay by Allan Heinberg, story by Zack Snyder & Allan Heinberg and Jason Fuchs, based on characters from DC. Wonder Woman was created by William Moulton Marston.

The film was produced by Charles Roven, Deborah Snyder, Zack Snyder and Richard Suckle, with Stephen Jones, Geoff Johns, Jon Berg, Wesley Coller and Rebecca Steel Roven serving as executive producers.

“Wonder Woman” is distributed in 3D and 2D in select theaters and IMAX worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.