'Fate of the Furious' laps competition at box office

Apr 23, 2017 12

“The Fate of the Furious” sped into first place at the box office again, leaving new thriller “Unforgettable” and historical drama “The Promise” in the dust.

Universal Pictures’ eighth installment in “The Fast and the Furious” franchise earned $38.7 million in North American theaters over the weekend, down 61 percent from its debut, according to studio estimates Sunday.

The newcomers could not compete with the high-octane film, which had the biggest worldwide opening of all time last weekend. It has earned $908.4 million globally so far and is expected to cross $1 billion this week.

Holdovers dominated the charts on this quiet weekend in theaters. “The Boss Baby” took second place with $12.8 million, and “Beauty and the Beast” landed in third with $10 million.

Disney’s animal documentary “Born in China” opened in fourth place, with $5.1 million from 1,508 locations. The two other new movies fared worse.

Warner Bros. thriller “Unforgettable,” starring Katherine Heigl as a jealous ex-wife and Rosario Dawson as the new fiancee, opened at No. 7 with just $4.8 million. Critics were tough on the film, and audiences gave it a deathly C CinemaScore rating.

The directorial debut of longtime producer Denise Di Novi cost only $12 million to make, but the meager result still disappointed.

“Unfortunately, the movie just missed the intended audience,” said Jeff Goldstein, Warner Bros.’ president of domestic distribution. “We had higher expectations, and we’re disappointed we didn’t achieve them.”

There is a silver lining for the studio. The buddy comedy “Going in Style,” starring Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin, is chugging along after three weeks in theaters, taking fifth place with $5 million.

Meanwhile, the historical epic “The Promise,” starring Oscar Isaac and Christian Bale, bombed with a mere $4.1 million from 2,251 theaters.

The movie delves into the mass killings of Armenians in Ottoman Turkey that many countries and most historians call genocide. Turkey still denies genocide, saying the deaths stemmed from civil unrest and war.

It’s not a surprise the film, which was estimated to cost around $100 million to make, failed to gain traction, comScore senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian said.

“It didn’t really jump out as anything that would be a surprising box-office hit,” Dergarabedian said. “But it wasn’t really about the box office.”

Made outside the studio system and distributed by Open Road Films, the point of “The Promise” was to raise awareness around a global event that many know nothing about, he said.

Celebrities from Kim Kardashian West to Cher promoted the film on social media. Its makers said they will donate all proceeds to nonprofits and intend to use the PG-13-rated film as an education tool in schools.

“It was a tough weekend in general for the newcomers,” Dergarabedian said, noting that many moviegoers are likely saving up for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2,” which hits theaters May 5.

“It’s a quiet period,” he added. “This is the interlude between the spring movie season and what promises to be the biggest summer movie season ever.”

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to comScore. Where available, the latest international numbers for Friday through Sunday are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

1.”The Fate of the Furious,” $38.7 million ($163.4 million international).

2.”The Boss Baby,” $12.8 million ($30 million international).

3.”Beauty and the Beast,” $10 million ($22.9 million international).

4.”Born in China,” $5.1 million ($100,000 international).

5.”Going in Style,” $5 million ($4.6 million international).

6.”Smurfs: The Lost Village,” $4.9 million ($21.4 million international).

7.”Unforgettable,” $4.8 million ($1.7 million international).

8.”Gifted,” $4.5 million.

9.”The Promise,” $4.1 million.

10.”The Lost City of Z,” $2.1 million.


Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at international theaters (excluding the U.S. and Canada), according to comScore:

1. “The Fate of the Furious,” $163.4 million.

2. “The Boss Baby,” $30 million.

3. “Beauty and the Beast,” $22.9 million.

4. “Smurfs: The Lost Village,” $21.4 million.

5. “Mr. Pride vs Miss Prejudice,” $7.7 million.

6. “Going in Style,” $4.6 million.

7. “The Shack,” $4 million.

8. “Ghost in the Shell,” $3.7 million.

9. “Life,” $3.4 million.

10. “A Chinese Odyssey Part Two: Cinderella,” $3 million.

UFC's million dollar ring girl, Arianny Celeste

Apr 23, 2017 12

She’s a lean, mean, money making machine.

Arianny Celeste – UFC’s most tenured ring girl, with 11 years under her belt is worth more than a million dollars. An astonishing amount considering that a source told the New York Post that ring girls make between $30,000 and around $75,000 a year. (The UFC had no comment on this.)

“There’s this misconception that [ring girls are] talentless, no brains, and I think I’ve paved the way for girls in my position to see this is a great opportunity,” Celeste, who is based in Los Angeles told the newspaper.

“I saw an opportunity to be more than a ring girl,” she added. “I’ve built it into a business.”

The 31-year-old has leveraged the high-profile gig into side jobs as a model, TV host and brand ambassador with more than 2.9 million Instagram followers. She has sponsorships with 1st Phorm muscle supplements and Fit Tea, and she’s starred in a Bud Light Lime ad. In the next year, she plans to launch a music career, a T-shirt line and a fitness Web site.

One person who’s not impressed? UFC fighter Ronda Rousey.

“I don’t know if the ring girls get paid too much or the fighters don’t get paid enough,” the fighter said at a 2015 event. “But yeah, there’s definitely a lot more in what the fighters do than what they [ring girls] do. So I think that’s one thing that’s unfair.” (Entry-level fighters are reportedly paid around $8,000 per match.)

But Celeste disagrees arguing that ring girls work hard for their money, telling the Post that she regularly puts in 13 hours on fight days due to meet-and-greets and autograph signings.

“You’re there to make light of sometimes really scary situations and be full of energy,” she said, adding that the biggest part of her job is connecting with the audience.

Celeste has received flowers, pizza and even marriage proposals but she’s also had men following her which is a “creepy thing.”

She’s also not afraid of standing up to Rousey, reportedly called her a “big bully” and saying, “I don’t really like the way she carries herself. I don’t think she’s a good role model for women.”

Although their feud isn’t completely over Celeste claims to have “no ill will” towards the UFC champ.

Celeste was studying fitness management and nutrition at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas when she was picked at a UFC casting call in 2006 at age 21.

The league showed its confidence in her in 2012, when Celeste
and then boyfriend Praveen Chandra were both arrested on domestic violence charges. (All charges were later dropped.) At the time, UFC president Dana White said, “Arianny is our baby . . . We have her back and support her 100 percent.”

Right now, Celeste is single.

“I recently went through a breakup and it’s hard,” she said. But she knows what she wants — and what she doesn’t. “I’ve been seeing a lot of guys out there who try to put on a show. I’m looking for someone genuine.”

Click here to read more in the New York Post.

Ronda Rousey confirms engagement to Travis Browne with funny Instagram post

Apr 23, 2017 16

Ronda Rousey is engaged, and she doesn’t care who knows it!

The MMA fighter took to Instagram on Saturday to confirm her engagement to Travis Brown with a hilarious Instagram post.

💍😍❤️ @travisbrownemma

A post shared by rondarousey (@rondarousey) on Apr 22, 2017 at 11:57am PDT

RELATED: Ronda Rousey Shows Off Super Ripped Body Ahead of Amanda Nunes UFC Fight

“@travisbrownemma,” Rousey captioned a photoshopped pic of herself holding Brown in a wedding dress, as he holds a sign reading, “Just engaged.”

RELATED: Ronda Rousey Reveals Upcoming Fight Will Be One of Her Last: ‘I’m Wrapping It Up’

Browne reportedly proposed to the 30-year-old athlete under a waterfall in New Zealand.

“We’re getting married,” Rousey told TMZ earlier this week, showing off her massive sparkler. “[The wedding will be] soon, [but I have] no idea what goes into planning a wedding.”

John Cena and Nikki Bella go nude in celebration of YouTube mileston

Apr 23, 2017 23

John Cena and Nikki Bella are stripping down!

The newly engaged couple celebrated Bella’s 500,000 YouTube subscribers with a sexy nude video — well, it starts off sexy, anyway.

EXCLUSIVE: Nikki Bella Gushes Over Her Dream Wedding Dress, Details the Moment John Cena Proposed

“We are finally ready to have this huge celebration. Sorry it took a few days. It took a while to convince someone to do this,” the “Total Divas”star says in the video, pointing to her fiancé. “This is a very good idea because why? We got half a million subscribers! So, we are ready to give all of us to all of you.”

“I still don’t think this is a good idea,” Cena quipped, before giving in and pulling down his shorts as Bella removed her silk robe.

“I think my tube’s on YouTube!” the actor shouted as he and Bella pranced around in their censored birthday suits. “I think my, uh, yeah … everything is on YouTube!” Bella added.

Cena then bent over and let out a fake fart in Bella’s direction. “What the f**k? Are you kidding me?” she replied. “God, what did you eat? Someone else’s farts? You honestly ruin everything.”

WATCH: John Cena Gushes Over Getting Engaged to Nikki Bella During WrestleMania — See the Ring!

While Cena and Bella certainly don’t mind going nude for YouTube, many fans are wondering if they would consider televising their upcoming wedding.

ET caught up with the 33-year-old model in New York City on Thursday, where she opened up about wedding plans — including whether or not cameras will be present when they say “I do.”

Click here to see the video

Gisele Bundchen poses in tiny blue bikini in honor of Earth Day

Apr 23, 2017 14

Gisele Bundchen is showing her appreciation for Mother Earth the best way she knows how.

The 36-year-old supermodel took to Instagram on Saturday to send Earth Day wishes from a beautiful beach locale.

RELATED: Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen Celebrate Their Anniversary in Super Sweet Instagram Pics

“Happy earth day!” Bundchen captioned a photo of herself posing in a tiny blue bikini. “God bless our beautiful Mother Earth.”

RELATED: Tom Brady Makes Tacos With His Daughter Vivian — See the Pics!

The mother of two has been all about nature lately, sharing adorable pics from her family’s recent tropical vacation.

RELATED: Tom Brady Joins Instagram — See His First Post!

Bruce Springsteen takes part in surprise show at festival

Apr 23, 2017 15

Bruce Springsteen took part in a two-hour jam session during a surprise appearance at a film festival in his home state of New Jersey.

Longtime E Street Band member Steven Van Zandt and veteran Jersey shore rocker Southside Johnny were among those who played with Springsteen at the Asbury Park Music and Film Festival on Friday. Also taking part were some former E Street Band members and the Lakehouse Jr. Pros, a band featuring child musicians.

The concert followed the premiere of a documentary film chronicling the history of the Asbury Park music scene. The show featured several rock and R&B staples including Chuck Berry’s “Bye, Bye Johnny.” Jimi Hendrix’ “Voodoo Child” and Little Richard’s “Lucille.”

Springsteen said it was “great” to see the “old guys still cranking it out.”

Reese Witherspoon speaks out against elephant poaching

Apr 23, 2017 11

Sparkly, exquisite diamonds were the draw but Reese Witherspoon’s thoughts were with something much larger — elephants.

The Oscar-winning “Big Little Lies” star attended a party in New York on Friday night to celebrate Tiffany and Co. and said she backed the jewelry company’s commitment to stop global trafficking and demand for elephant ivory.

“I’ve had the great opportunity to work with elephants in my career, and spend a lot of time in Africa with elephants. I love that they are doing so much for conservation, and helping save the elephants,” said Witherspoon.

Between 20,000 and 30,000 elephants are killed every year for their tusks. Last year, Tiffany & Co. partnered with the Elephant Crisis Fund to raise money to fight for the elephants.

“They provide a lot of information about what they’re doing to ethically source diamonds, gold, and silver, so it’s a very responsible brand; not only beautiful, but very responsible,” Witherspoon said.

Fresh from a film shoot in South Africa, Dominic West also cheered the impact that the Elephant Crisis Fund has made on the poaching of elephant tusks. He just wished it would also apply to rhinoceroses. Poachers are also killing them for their horns. “Oh, they’re killing thousands every year in South Africa. It’s just appalling,” he said.

Also attending the Tiffany event were Jennifer Hudson, Claire Danes, Haley Bennett and Ruth Negga.

As for “Big Little Lies,” the HBO miniseries starring Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman that had its season finale earlier this month, Witherspoon said she was hopeful a second season would happen.

“We love playing these characters, and we loved being together with this great, extraordinary group of people, so hopefully it will happen. Fingers crossed,” Witherspoon said.

Memphis home once owned by Elvis Presley damaged by fire

Apr 23, 2017 12

A home once owned by Elvis Presley in the 1950s as he was skyrocketing to fame was damaged by fire Saturday.

The Commercial Appeal reports the Memphis home was unoccupied and undergoing renovations.

Memphis Fire Lt. Wayne Cooke didn’t have a damage estimate. He says the electrical fire started in the wall between the living room and dining room. He says firefighters responded just after 7:30 a.m. CDT and the fire was under control about 20 minutes later.

Presley purchased the home in 1956. He lived there just over a year as he skyrocketed to fame, appearing on “The Ed Sullivan Show” and recording “Hound Dog” and “Don’t Be Cruel.”

The newspaper says Rhodes College looks after the house, now owned by music industry veteran and philanthropist Mike Curb.

'Avatar' sequels now scheduled to start in December 2020

Apr 23, 2017 10

James Cameron has set the release dates for the next four “Avatar” sequels, with the first coming in 2020.

The movie’s Facebook page Saturday posted a photo of Cameron and his massive film crew, who have been working on all four films simultaneously. The post said “Avatar 2” will hit theaters Dec. 18, 2020, and “Avatar 3” comes a year later, on Dec. 17, 2021.

The franchise then takes a three-year hiatus before returning with “Avatar 4” on Dec. 20, 2024, and “Avatar 5” on Dec. 19, 2025. The first sequel had been expected in 2018 but Cameron this year said that timetable wouldn’t be met.

The original 2009 “Avatar” film has netted over $2.7 billion, centering on the conflict between humans and the blue-skinned alien race Na’vi of Pandora.

Hollywood agent and producer Sandy Gallin dies at 76

Apr 23, 2017 12

Sandy Gallin, an agent and talent manager who guided the careers of such luminaries as Barbra Streisand, Dolly Parton, Cher and Nicole Kidman, as well as being a TV, movie and Broadway producer, has died in Los Angeles. He was 76.

Gallin died Friday after a long battle with multiple myeloma, according to close friend Bruce Bozzi. “We lost a shining light this morning,” Bozzi wrote on Instagram in tribute.

Other Gallin clients included Neil Diamond, Joan Rivers, Mariah Carey, Whoopi Goldberg, Renee Zellweger, Lily Tomlin, Martin Lawrence, Paul Lynde and Howie Mandell.

He helped produce such films as 1991’s “Father of the Bride” and 1994’s “I.Q” starring Tim Robbins, as well as the TV shows “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel.” He earned a Primetime Emmy Award in 1980 for producing “The Miracle Worker,” starring Melissa Gilbert.

He also managed Michael Jackson after the pop star was accused of molestation and guided Milli Vanilli when the performers were stripped of their Grammy Award after it was discovered they had not sung on their hit album.

On Broadway, Gallin produced the 2002 Tony Award-nominated revival of “Man of La Mancha,” starring Brian Stokes Mitchell and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, and a revival of “Hedda Gabler” with Kate Burton.

Gallin was raised in New York City and was a graduate of Boston University. He broke into the agency business in the traditional manner, starting in the mail room of the G.A.C. agency. He took typing and shorthand in night school, became a secretary, then an agent.”I booked the Sullivan show for seven years,” he told The Associated Press in 1983.

“I saw how Ed operated, how he gave talent the best possible exposure. It was a brilliant operation.”

Gallin continued up the agency ladder, later joined with Raymond Katz in the powerhouse Katz-Gallin agency. He appeared in front of cameras in the mid-1980s as host for “Live … and In Person,” NBC’s hourlong extravaganzas. In later life, he sold houses and did luxury renovations.