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DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

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  • DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

    The 'Flush' brush-off

    D'Works takes writedown on Aardman pic

    By Jill Goldsmith
    Variety
    November 16, 2006

    DreamWorks Animation said Wednesday it will likely take an unspecified write-down in the fourth quarter on "Flushed Away," the Aardman Animation pic that opened early this month.

    The film has taken in about $40 million since its unimpressive bow. Studio said it cost $149 million. It still awaits release in some foreign markets, including the U.K. and France.

    In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, DreamWorks said it "is currently unable to predict the ultimate amount of the writedown, which could be material."

    Wall Street analysts see a number anywhere from $45 million to $90 million.

    Daily Variety reported earlier this week that the five-picture deal between DreamWorks and Aardman, of "Wallace & Gromit" and "Chicken Run" fame, could be history, and the Brit producers might seek a new distributor for their next pic, "Crood Awakening."

    DreamWorks is expected to have better luck with its upcoming pics, including "Shrek 3," "Bee Movie," "Kung Fu Panda" and "Madagascar 2."

    Separately, DreamWorks formally filed to sell 11.58 million shares in a secondary offering that investor Paul Allen triggered last month. The company said the offering would be for up to $330 million worth of stock.

    Anticipation of the sale, which will flood the market with DreamWorks shares, has kept a lid on the stock price.
    DreamWorks shares closed Wednesday down 1.06% to $27.91.
    http://www.variety.com/article/VR111...goryid=13&cs=1
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

  • #2
    Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

    This is unfortunate news. Flushed Away and W&G are freekin fantastic, on par with Pixar..... so this is annoying that the box office just isnt there.
    I am grateful... grapefruit! ~ Bjork (upon winning Best International Female Artist at the BRIT Awards)
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    • #3
      Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

      Perhaps even a fart-favoring public is not quite ready to shell out their hard-earned money for an escapist fantasy that takes them down the toilet and into a sewer of singing pastel turds.

      Could be there is still hope for us...

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      • #4
        Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

        DreamWorks sunk their own product with the large inflatible toilet standees that graced theatre lobbys for weeks inadvance of its release.

        The film is very well done, the voice cast stellar, a quite funny script and fun songs. And of course the requisite amount of Disney jabs and other pop-culture salutes. But with toilets and sewers.
        "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

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        • #5
          Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

          Did you see the NYC live publicity stunt where Hugh Jackman and some chick jumped into a giant prop toilet and down a slide? Though there is some poetic commentary there on modern media, it is emblematic of the problem with selling this concept. Too postmodern.

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          • #6
            Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

            I could've sworn that those pastel singers were just slugs....

            The big problem with Flushed Away is that it's coming at a VERY VERY bad time... too many movies splitting the family market. Between Open Season, Santa Clause 3, and even anticipation for Happy Feet and other upcoming fare, the family market is too diluted.

            Flushed Away is #3 at the box office. It's been in the top three since its debut. If it's doing badly, it's not the fault for it being a bad movie...
            -Tim

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            • #7
              Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

              That "chick" was multi-Academy Award nominee Kate Winslet. She & Hugh should fire their publicists for this photo alone.


              CREDIT: Jackson Lee/Splash News and Pictures
              PUBLISHED: MONDAY OCTOBER 30, 2006 06:00AM EST
              UPDATED: MONDAY OCTOBER 30, 2006 05:15PM EST
              http://people.aol.com/people/gallery...9463_7,00.html
              "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

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              • #8
                Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                Not to mention that she's wearing the British flag as she goes down the toilet!

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                • #9
                  Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                  Keep in mind Santa Clause 3 is suffering from a simular problem... but luckily it has a lower production cost...

                  The marketing of this DreamWorks project is in question... I feel a Vet's Day opening weekend was not that great this year... Had it opened closer to Thanksgiving these films would have done better.
                  Check out my other blog:

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                  • #10
                    Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                    Originally posted by cellarhound View Post
                    Keep in mind Santa Clause 3 is suffering from a simular problem... but luckily it has a lower production cost...

                    Exactly... and that's the #2 movie.
                    -Tim

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                    • #11
                      Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                      Originally posted by FrumiousBoojum View Post
                      Exactly... and that's the #2 movie.
                      And you would really expect a Toilet movie to be #2.
                      Critter Country's a mess ev'r since the Country Bears were kicked out. Ya can't cover pooh with honey and 'spect people ta like it.
                      An Adventurers It's Time to Put the Spotlight Back on Bring Back the REAL Disney Gallery
                      Life for Me! ~ ~ ~ Melvin, Buff, and Max!!! ~~~~ Dump the Dream Suite!
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                      • #12
                        Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                        FYI

                        On rottentomatoes.com ( http://www.rottentomatoes.com/ ) which, if you're not familiar with it, summarizes 100 to 200 critical reviews (print, web, television, etc) into a score of 0-100.

                        Current top three movies for last two weeks:

                        #1 Borat : 97%
                        #2 Santa Clause 3 : 11%
                        #3 Flushed Away : 78%

                        Tim Allen and the Santa Clause franchise have a following even if the movie is not well reviewed. Disney's marketing is a force to be reckoned with, even Chicken Little (37%) made $314+ million worldwide.

                        Other animated notables:

                        Cars: 77%
                        Finding Nemo: 98%
                        Shrek 1 & 2 : 88%
                        Open Season : 49%
                        Happy Feet : 77% (early numbers with only 20 reviews)

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                        • #13
                          Re: DreamWorks' 'Flush' brush-off - Variety 11/16/06

                          Originally posted by FrumiousBoojum View Post
                          I could've sworn that those pastel singers were just slugs....
                          They are. The other poster was wrong or just trying to make a statement. The movie was quite good too I doubt that poster has seen the movie. Just for thier own statements.
                          Micechatter #5053 Looking for our new home in the WDW area! We need to get closer to our "Laughing Place"!
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