Enjoy the popcorn and I’ll see you at the movies!

Blood and Guts Rule at Holiday Box Office
LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – Ahh, the last official week of summer. According to Hollywood, nothing says summer more than two horror movies goring it out for the top spot.
New release “Jeepers Creepers 2” will fight for the No. 1 slot held for the last two weeks by New Line’s “Freddy vs. Jason.”
Two years after the original “Jeepers Creepers” debuted on Labor Day weekend, MGM’s United Artists banner returns with a sequel it hopes will surpass the original, which earned $15.8 million over the opening four-day period. Helmer Victor Salva returns, this time throwing a pack of high school basketball players, cheerleaders and coaches to the Creeper, whose insatiable appetite for flesh can only be sated through a massive eating orgy. The R-rated film may have a harder time reaping the dough of its predecessor, considering that horror fans who haven’t already endured the carnage of “Freddy vs. Jason” might be drawn to that film’s campy feel and nostalgia for the creepers of days gone by.
Considering the lack of new product entering the marketplace this weekend, Paramount Pictures is expanding its summer hit “The Italian Job” from 64 theaters to 1,964 in an effort to claim some box office returns the studio believes were left on the table because of the crowded marketplace. Offering an alternative to the teen thrillers dominating the frame, “Job,” which has generated close to $98 million since its May 30 release, has a chance to cross the $100 million mark this weekend.
The rest of the top 10 should be filled out by well-performing holdovers, including Sony’s “S.W.A.T.,” which has held onto the second spot for the past two weeks and could do some significant business that would get it close to the $100 million mark. As well, Disney’s “Open Range,” which has earned $29 million in three weeks, and “Freaky Friday,” the recipient of $74 million in its four weeks of release, are likely to maintain a position in the top five. Sony’s Jackie Chan starrer “The Medallion,” which earned $8.2 million in its opening weekend, is not likely to generate much spark at the box office, though, as it is likely to decline at least 50% in its sophomore frame.
On the limited-release front, several films will by vying for some playability in their select markets.
Lions Gate will debut “Civil Brand” from director Neema Barnette. The film co-starring LisaRaye and Mos Def tells the tale of young black women behind bars who are forced to unite against a corrupt penal system. The R-rated film, bowing in 35 locations, could have a chance of doing some business considering its cast of top-selling rappers, including MC Lyte and Da Brat.
Sony Pictures Classics releases the R-rated “Once Upon a Time in the Midlands” in New York and Los Angeles. Written and directed by Shane Meadows (“A Room for Romeo Brass”), the quirky British comedy tale — done in a fashion resembling Sergio Leone’s spaghetti Westerns — centers on a man who proposes to his live-in girlfriend on national television only to be turned down in front of everyone he knows.
Innovation Film Group’s “The Legend of Johnny Lingo” debuts today in Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, Las Vegas and Salt Lake City. The unrated family film centers on the stories a father tells his son about the Polynesian cultures of the South Pacific.
Miramax’s “The Battle of Shaker Heights” — in effect, the final installment of the “Project Greenlight” documentary series that just concluded on HBO — will expand to the top 20 markets nationwide after bowing last weekend to a respectable $9,538 per-screen opening in five theaters for a box office total of $47,690.
In New York, Empire Pictures will release the Argentinean film “Suddenly,” which centers on a lonely, overweight girl who doesn’t begin to see the world until she is kidnapped by two lesbian punkettes. The unrated film is written and directed by first-timer Diego Lerman.