OK, so we had a bang-up start of the year last week with The Devil Inside.  That movie went on to make over $33 million and probably would have made $50 million if kids weren’t getting turned away and kicked out (yes, cynics, that happens).  The trailer online jumped from 2 million views to over 3.5 million over the weekend.  Too bad the movie was pretty terrible and will probably drop over 70% next weekend, but the movie has more than made its $1 million budget back.  This weekend, Disney releases yet another classic in 3D, we see the return of Dolly Parton to film, and Mark Wahlberg plays Mark Wahlberg.

Beauty And The Beast The Latest Disney 3D Classic Re-Release

Beauty and the Beast came out 20 years ago.  Is that right?  20 years?  Actually, it’s 21, but still.  Disney is celebrating the movie’s achieving legal drinking age with a 3D conversion much like they did with last September’s The Lion King, which went on to make so much money it went back into the top 10 all-time domestic chart.

Here’s the re-release trailer:

Beauty and the Beast was the first animated feature to get nominated for Best Picture, and was the only one until the expanded Best Picture race included Up in the 2009 Oscars and Toy Story 3 the next year.  Three original songs by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman got nominated, with the title song sung by Angela Lansbury taking home the prize, against Bryan Adams’ “(Everything I Do) I Do It For You” from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and a John Williams tune from Hook.

Here’s the original trailer:

The movie was the 3rd-highest grossing film of 1991, and looks to capture more money this weekend, and it just might replicate The Lion King‘s success and be the #1 movie.

Contraband Brings Us Full-On Mark Wahlberg Action

I don’t think anything looks particularly distinctive with Contraband, starring Mark Wahlberg, Giovanni Ribisi, and one of my favorite women who always appears in horrible movies, Kate Beckinsale.  This film is about a smuggler who goes legit, only to be dragged back in by his brother, and something about money being dropped into an ocean, and Ribisi and Wahlberg fighting each other:

And there’s a host of special TV spots from Universal Pictures highlighting the movie’s talking points.  One is Skills:

One is Professional:

One is Adrenaline, complete with reviews:

I like the TV spots a lot better than the official trailer.  The “Skills” one has over 3 million views. The official trailer has 6 million views, so combined the movie’s various ads have over 10 million.  This is impressive but I don’t think it’s going to translate into a huge weekend.  It’s a bit too vague and looks like every Wahlberg B-movie that has come before it.  His movie Shooter opened in March of 2007 to $14 million, and I think this one will probably do slightly more.

Joyful Noise Is Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah In A Battle Of The Divas

Dolly Parton hasn’t appeared in a feature that anyone has heard of since 1992’s Straight Talk, and if you didn’t ever hear of that one, 1989’s Steel Magnolias.  She’s been nominated for Oscars twice, for songs, with 1980’s Nine to Five and 2005’s Transamerica.  Here, she teams with Queen Latifah, who was nominated for her acting in Chicago and has gone on to make some pretty forgettable movies since.

Joyful Noise is like a church-choir version of Glee, with talk of competitions and young people singing pop classics.  Check out Akeelah and the Bee‘s Keke Palmer all grown up, she’s gorgeous.  Anyway, here’s the trailer:

It’s got under 100,000 views, which means it’s barely registering.  But it doesn’t need to reach everyone, it just needs to reach the right people.  Warner Bros. continues the Glee-type marketing with the special trailers highlighting the songs, like “Man in the Mirror:”

And “Maybe I’m Amazed:”

And something like over 30 TV spots.

The Take On The Three Movies

It will be an interesting and varied weekend for the movies, and I’m certain Beauty and the Beast will win the weekend.  The Lion King made $30 million in its re-release opening weekend, so look for something a little smaller here, but enough to beat Contraband and Joyful Noise.