Volume VI No. 3
publication of the National Association of Theatre Owners
in In Focus
Drama, inspired by a true story, about a professional dancer who begins
teaching ballroom dancing to inner-city teens in the New York City public
school system. Music video director Liz Friedlander (REM’s “The
Great Beyond”) makes her feature directorial debut from a screenplay
by Dianne Houston. With Antonio Banderas (“Legend of Zorro”),
Alfre Woodard (“Something New,” “16 Blocks”),
Dante Basco (“Biker Boyz”), Jo Chim (“Resident Evil:
Apocalypse”), Marcus T. Paulk (“Roll Bounce”), Elijah
Kelley (“28 Days”) and Rob Brown (“Coach Carter”).
Flat. April 7. New Line.
Hindi-language drama, set in 1930s India,
about a young woman – forced into poverty
by the social restrictions placed on local
widows like herself – who falls for
a man from a lower caste. The conclusion
of Deepa Mehta’s “elements trilogy,” which
also includes “Fire” and “Earth.” Written
and directed by Mehta (“Bollywood/Holly-wood”).
With Lisa Ray (“Bolly-wood/Hollywood”),
Vinay Pathak (“Fire”), Seema
Biswas, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, John Abraham
and Waheeda Rehman. 117 min. Scope. April
28 limited. Fox Searchlight.
Drama about an ex-convict who finds himself
returning to his gangster ways after the
vehicle carrying his infant son is carjacked.
Written and directed by Vondie Curtis-Hall
(“Gridlock’d”). With Tyrese
Gibson (“Annapolis”), Meagan
Good (“Venom”), Eric Lane (“Barbershop”),
Laura Miro (“Memoirs of a Geisha”),
Arnold Vosloo (“Agent Cody Banks”)
and Larenz Tate (“Ray”). Scope.
April 28. Focus.
Animated comedy about a New York Zoo lion
who must be rescued by his pals after he
is accidentally shipped to the wilds of Africa.
Longtime visual effects supervisor Steve “Spaz” Williams
(“The Mask,” “Eraser,” “Spawn”)
makes his feature directorial debut from
a screenplay by Ed Decter & John Strauss
(“The Santa Clause 2,” “The
Lizzie McGuire Movie”) and Mark Gibson & Phil
Halprin (“The In Crowd,” “Snow
Dogs”). Featuring the voices of Kiefer
Sutherland, Eddie Izzard, Jonathan Kimmel,
Dominic Scott Kay, Chris Edgerly and Joseph
Siravo. April 14. Buena Vista.
Comedy-fantasy about a pair of teen girls who discover a lonely 17-year-old mermaid
in the pool of their beach club. Based on the novel by Alice Hoffman (“Practical
Magic”). Elizabeth Allen makes her feature directorial debut from a screenplay
by John Quaintance (TV’s “Joey”). With Emma Roberts (“Blow”),
Joanna “JoJo” Levesque (“R.V.”), Sara Paxton (“Sleepover”),
Arielle Kebbel (“The Kid & I”) and Bruce Spence (“Star
Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith”). Flat. PG: Mild language;
sensuality. March 3. Fox.
Swedish-language drama, set in 1950s Stockholm,
about a rebellious teen transferred to a
rigid boarding school where the older students
ritualistically abuse the younger ones. Directed
by Mikael Håfström (“Derailed”)
from a screenplay by Hans Gunnarson. With
Andreas Wilson, Fredrik af Trampe, Henrik
Gustaf Skarsgård, Linda Zilliacus and
Jesper Salén. 83 min. March 10. Magnolia.
Macedonian-language drama about a boy who – having
been tormented by his peers, neglected at
home and rattled by the growing pains of
his nation – escapes into a fantasy
world of his own creation. Directed by Svetozar
Ristovski from a screenplay by Ristovski
and Grace Lea Troje. With Marko Kovacevic,
Dejan Acimovic, Slavica Manaskova, Nikola
Djuricko, Salaetin Bilal (“Behind Enemy
Lines”), Mustafa Nadarevic and Nikola
Hejko. 108 min. March 17 limited. Picture
Thriller about a college student who unwittingly
opens the door to a deadly evil by pirating
a mysterious wireless signal. An English-language
remake of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Japanese
thriller of the same name. Directed by Jim
Sonzero from a screenplay by Wes Craven (“Wes
Craven’s New Nightmare”), Vince
Gilligan (“Home Fries”) and Ray
Wright. With Kristen Bell (“Spartan”),
Ian Somerhalder (“Rules of Attraction”),
Christina Milian (“Be Cool”), Rick
Gonzalez (“Roll Bounce”) and Samm
Levine (“Broken Lizard’s Club Dread”).
Scope. March 3. Weinstein.
Drama, set in Depression-era Los Angeles, about a young writer from Colorado
who finds himself forced to choose between his work and his love for a Latina
waitress. Based on the 1939 novel by John Fante. Written and directed by Robert
Towne (“Tequila Sunrise,” “Without Limits”). With Colin
Farrell (“The New World”), Salma Hayek (“After the Sunset”),
Eileen Atkins (“Vanity Fair”), Donald Sutherland (“Pride and
Prejudice,” “Fierce People”), William Mapother (“Lords
of Dogtown”), Idina Menzel (“Rent”) and Tamara Craig Thomas
(“Fun with Dick and Jane”). March 10 limited. Paramount Classics.
Comedy about a thirtysomething man who meets
the woman of his dreams – but comes
to suspect she might be part of a scheme
his parents have cooked up to get him to
move out of their house. Directed by Tom
Dey (“Shanghai Noon,” “Showtime”)
from a screenplay by TV writers Tom J. Astle
(“The Tracy Morgan Show”) and
Matt Ember (“Titus”). With Matthew
McConaughey (“Two for the Money”),
Sarah Jessica Parker (“The Family Stone”),
Zooey Deschanel (“The Hitchhiker’s
Guide to the Galaxy,” “Winter
Passing”), Katheryn Winnick (“Fabled”),
Justin Bartha (“National Treasure”)
and Bradley Cooper (“Wedding Crashers”).
PG-13: Sexual content; partial nudity; language.
March 10. Paramount.
Romantic comedy about a bride-to-be who recruits
what she believes to be a Catholic priest
to help her overcome an urge to cheat
on her fiancé, unaware that the “priest” is
actually just a guy who thinks she’s
hot. Directed by Laurent Firode from
a screenplay by Joan Carr-Wiggin. With
Rachael Leigh Cook (“Stateside”),
Kenny Doughty (“The Great Raid”),
Paul Hopkins (“Mambo Italiano”),
Elizabeth Whitmere (“Head in the
Clouds”), Valerie Mahaffey (“Seabiscuit”)
and Claire Brosseau (“Confessions
of a Dangerous Mind”). Flat. PG-13:
Sexual content; language. March 10 limited.
Drama, set in rural
coastal Maryland, about a struggling oyster
fisherman dealt a severe economic blow when
his 12-year-old daughter requires an expensive
ear operation. Written and directed by Doug
Sadler. With Tara Devon Gallagher, Cherry Jones
(“Ocean’s Twelve”), Robert
Knott (“Pollock”), Shawn Hatosy
(“The Cooler”), Sarah Paulson (“Serenity”),
Irving Jacobs (“Head of State”)
and Don Harvey (“She Hate Me”).
90 min. March 17 limited. Skouras.