II No. 12
publication of the National Association of Theatre Owners
in In Focus
featuring backstage footage and onstage routines,
following the comedy tour headlined by Jeff Foxworthy,
Bill Engvall, Ron White and Larry the Cable Guy.
Directed by C.B. Harding (TVs The Osbournes).
Jan. 10. Warner Bros.
Portugese-language drama, set in the gang-controlled
slums of Rio de Janeiro, about a decade in the lives
of several young locals. Based on the novel by Paulo
Lins (Orfeu). Directed by Fernando Mereilles
and Katia Lund from a screenplay by Braulio Mantovani.
With Matheus Nachtergaele (Central Station),
Gero Camilo (Behind the Sun), and Leandro
Firmino da Hora. Also known as Cidade de Deus.
Flat. 130 min. R: Strong brutal violence; sexuality;
drug content; language. Jan. 17 in New York and
Los Angeles; wider Jan. 24. Miramax.
comedy about three men who pay a known ladies
man $5,000 to romance the uptight sister-in-law
who continually meddles in their lives. Directed
by Gary Hardwick (The Brothers) from
a screenplay by James Iver Mattson and B.E. Brauner.
With LL Cool J (Rollerball), Gabrielle
Union (Abandon), Meagan Good (3
Strikes), Robinne Lee (Hav Plenty,
National Security), Nicole Lyn (Bless
the Child), Kenya Moore (Trois),
Mark Swenson (Two Can Play That Game)
and singer Johnny Gill (I Spy). R: Sex-related
dialogue. Jan. 31. Focus.
about a young man from Harlem who fails to fit in
at the southern university he attends until
his unique musical talents allow him to lead the
school band to victory. Directed by Charles Stone
III (Paid in Full) from a screenplay
by Shawn Schepps (Encino Man, Son
In Law) and Tina Gordon Chism. With Nick Cannon
(Men in Black II), Orlando Jones (The
Time Machine), Zoe Saldana (Crossroads),
Leonard Roberts (He Got Game), Earl
Poitier (Remember the Titans), GQ (On
the Line), Jason Weaver (The Long Walk
Home) and J. Anthony Brown. Scope. 132 min.
PG-13: Innuendo; language. Jan. 10. Fox.
Swedish- and English-language drama, set in Denmark,
about a wife and mother who struggles to readjust
to life on the outside after she is
released from a psychiatric hospital. Ole Christian
Madsen directs from a screenplay by Madsen and Mogens
Rukov (The Celebration). With Sven Wollter
(A Song for Martin), Stine Stengade,
Lars Mikkelsen, Camilla Bendix, Ronnie Hiort Lorenzen
and Peaches Latrice Petersen. Also known as En
Kaerlighedshistorie. 93 min. Jan. 17 in New
York. First Run.
about a Jewish-American princess who
takes control of a hardcore hip-hop record label
and tries to assuage criticism of one of its acts
a rapper with a hit song called Shoot
Ya Teacha. Directed by Richard Benjamin (Milk
Money, Mrs. Winterbourne) from
a screenplay by Paul Rudnick (In & Out,
Isnt She Great). With Lisa Kudrow
(All Over the Guy, Analyze That),
Damon Wayans (Bamboozled), Jane Krakowski
(The Flintsones in Viva Rock Vegas),
Christine Baranski (How the Grinch Stole Christmas,
Chicago), Veanne Cox (Big Eden),
Charles Kimbrough (The Wedding Planner),
Richard Benjamin (Deconstructing Harry)
and Paula Garcés (Clockstoppers).
Jan. 31. Paramount.
comedy about a pair of mismatched security guards
trying to bust a smuggling operation that has something
to do with an indestructable metal alloy. Directed
by Dennis Dugan (Big Daddy, Saving
Silverman) from a screenplay by David Ronn
& Jay Scherick (Serving Sara, I
Spy). With Martin Lawrence (Black Knight),
Steve Zahn (Chelsea Walls), Bill Duke
(Red Dragon), Colm Feore (The
Sum of All Fears, Chicago), Timothy
Busfield (The Souler Opposite), Robinne
Lee (Hav Plenty, Deliver Us from
Eva) and Eric Roberts (Mercy Streets).
Flat. 90 min. PG-13: Violence; language; some sensuality.
Jan. 17. Sony.
about a famous American film director who dies while
making an epic in Beijing - and the production assistant
who must grant the filmmaker's last wish: a grandiose
funeral in the forbidden city. Directed by Feng
Xiaogang from a screenplay by Xiaogang, Li Xiaoming
and Shi Kang. With Ge You ("The Emperor's Shadow"),
Donald Sutherland ("The Art of War"),
Paul Mazursky ("Crazy in Alabama"), Rosamund
Kwan and Christopher Barden. Also known as "Da
wan." Flat. 108 min. PG: Thematic elements;
language; brief partial nudity. Jan. 17 in New York
and Los Angeles. Sony Pictures Classics.
drama about a sheltered middle-aged mother who,
after witnessing the near-fatal beating of a street
prostitute, concocts an elaborate plan to free
the young hooker from the vicious criminals who
exploit her. Written and directed by Coline Serreau
(Three Men and a Cradle, Mama,
There's a Man in Your Bed). With Catherine
Frot (The Dinner Game), Vincent Lindon
(The School of Flesh), Line Renaud
(I Can't Sleep), Rachida Brakni and
Aurélien Wiik. 109 min. Jan. 29 in New
York. New Yorker.
thriller about a youngster terrorized by a centuries-old
supernatural evil that may have been the basis
of the tooth fairy myth. Based on
the 2001 short Tooth Fairy written
and directed by Joe Harris. Jonathan Liebesman
makes his feature directorial debut from a screenplay
by Harris. With Chaney Kley (Legally Blonde),
Emma Caulfield (TVs Buffy the Vampire
Slayer), Emily Browning (the TV miniseries
Blonde), Grant Piro (Crocodile
Dundee in Los Angeles), Daniel Daperis (Angel
Baby), Peter Curtin, Andrew Bayly, Lee Cormie
and Joshua Anderson. Also known as Tooth
Fairy: Every Legend Has its Dark Side, The
Ghost of Matilda Dixon, and Dont
Peek. R: Language, some violence; sexuality.
Jan. 10. Sony.
about a groom-to-be who decides to keep secret
the fact that he woke up after his bachelor party
next to a beautiful female stranger. Directed
by Chris Koch (Snow Day) from a screenplay
by Greg Glienna, Matt Tarses (TVs Scrubs),
Pete Schwaba and Bill Wrubel. With Jason Lee (Stealing
Harvard), Julia Stiles (The Bourne
Identity), Selma Blair (The Sweetest
Thing), James Brolin (The Master of
Disguise), Thomas Lennon (Out Cold),
Lochlyn Munro (Dracula), Diana Scarwid
(What Lies Beneath) and Shawn Hatosy
(John Q). Jan. 17. MGM.
set in Australia, about a pair of minor-league
American gangsters who have to track down a kangaroo
that has made off with $1 million in mob money.
Directed by David McNally (Coyote Ugly)
from a screenplay by Scott Rosenberg (Gone
in 60 Seconds, High Fidelity)
and Steve Bing (Missing In Action 2).
With Jerry OConnell (Tomcats),
Estella Warren (Planet of the Apes),
Christopher Walken (The Country Bears,
Catch Me if You Can), Anthony Anderson
(Barbershop) and Marton Csokas (XXX).
Also known as Down and Under. Scope.
PG: Language; crude humor; sensuality; violence.
Jan. 17. Warner Bros.
featuring on-the-spot interviews, animated sequences
and vérité footage, about filmmaker
Terry Gilliam (Twelve Monkeys, Fear
and Loathing in Las Vegas) and the difficulties
he faced trying to mount a movie project titled
The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, which
was ultimately shut down six days into shooting.
Written and directed by Keith Fulton and Louis
Pepe. Featuring Gilliam, Johnny Depp, René
Cleitman, Bernard Bouix and Benjamin Fernández.
Narrarated by Jeff Bridges. Flat. 89 min. R: Language.
Jan. 31 in New York and Los Angeles. IFC.