Tag Archive: Billy Crystal


It was a good weekend for Disney/Pixar and Brad Pitt. “Monsters University”, which features the voices of Billy Crystal and John Goodman, topped the box office with $82 million, for the studio’s biggest opening since “Toy Story 3”. Marc Forster’s zombie film “World War Z” starring Brad Pitt shattered expectations, earning $66 million to take second while Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel” tumbled to take $41.2 million in its second weekend.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

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Tow big releases face off against “Man of Steel”. Marc Forster’s and Brad Pitt’s troubled zombie film “World War Z” finally hits theaters while Disney/Pixar goes back to the well again with “Monsters University” featuring John Goodman and Billy Crystal. Which film will come out on top?

The Pixar brand has taken a hit lately. After the masterpiece that was “Toy Story 3” we got “Cars 2” and the disappointing “Brave”. Now comes “Monsters University”, a prequel to “Monsters, Inc.” That movie is considered one of Pixar’s better movies. But prequels are inherently unnecessary .We already know Mike and Sully become best friends. And, as I’ve written before, without Boo, I think you take away the catalyst to the first movie’s charm. Reviews have been OK, but not great and with “Despicable Me 2” looming, one has to wonder if this will fail to reach the heights of other Pixar films. Opening weekend, however, should be strong.

Opening weekend: $75-80 million

“World War Z” has had such a troubled past with various rewrites and reshooting the third act. But reviews have been surprisingly decent and the trailers play up the end of the world aspect instead of the zombies. Brad Pitt is a big star, but “Inglourious Basterds” was the last film he was in that opened to more than $20 million, and he was really part of an ensemble. The film should battle it out with “Man of Steel” for second place.

Opening weekend: $45-50 million

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Here’s the final trailer for Disney/Pixar’s “Monsters University”.

The film features the voices of Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Helen Mirren, Alfred Molina, Dave Foley, Sean P. Hayes, Joel Murray, Peter Sohn, Charlie Day, Nathan Fillion, Bobby Moynihan, Julia Sweeney, Aubrey Plaza, Tyler Labine, John Krasinski, Bonnie Hunt, Beth Behrs and John Ratzenberger.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

This can’t be as bad as “Parental Guidance” right? Billy Crystal has signed on to star in “Winter’s Discontent”, which according to Firstshowing.net: When Herb Winter’s wife of fifty years dies, the faithful but sexually frustrated widower moves into a retirement community to start living the swinging single life.

Originally “Borat” director Larry Charles was attached, but now “Death at a Funeral” director (the original one) Frank Oz is helming the film. Hopefully this turns out to be more in the vein of “When Harry Met Sally” and “City Slickers” than “Parental Guidance”.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Here’s the latest trailer for Disney/Pixar’s “Monsters University”.

The film features the voices of Billy Crystal and John Goodman and is a prequel to the beloved film “Monsters Inc.”

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Disney/Pixar’s “Monsters University” added three more actors to its voice list. Nathan Fillion (“Serenity”), John Krasinski (“The Office”) and Bonnie Hunt (“Cars”) are joining Billy Crystal, John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Helen Mirren, Dave Foley, Sean Hayes, Joel Murray, Peter Sohn, Aubrey Plaza, Tyler Labine, Bobby Moynihan, Julie Sweeney, Alfred Molina, Beth Behrs and John Ratzenberger in the anticipated sequel.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

This summer will see the release of two high profile animated films. “Despicable Me 2” sees Steve Carell return to voice Gru, everyone’s favorite bumbling villain. Pixar goes back to the vault again, this time for “Monsters University”, a prequel to “Monsters Inc.” and with Billy Crystal and John Goodman returning to voice Mike and Sully. Which of these films will stand tallest? Here’s my very early preview of the two anticipated films.

Let me start by saying both have great potential to be the biggest letdowns of the summer. “Despicable Me 2” has the advantage of still having the minions and the child characters returning. The question will be whether this will be another installment of the same antics from the first film or can they bring something truly new to the table? Where “Despicable Me 2” has a very big advantage is even if it’s just more of Gru doing pretty much the same things from the first film, it’ll still be funny and still draw in a large audience. “Monsters University” doesn’t have that luxury. A friend pointed this out to me and I went back and watched “Monsters Inc.” and completely agree with him. The first film’s funniest movies had the little girl as the catalyst. What I mean to say is no little girl and that film becomes a lot less funny and endearing. The prequel presumably takes humans out of the equation. So, will Mike and Sully be able to carry this film when they really didn’t carry the first film? I’m worried that they won’t be able to. Pixar’s track record as of late hasn’t been great. That’s not to say films were terrible, but after a string of films like “Wall E”, “Up” and “Toy Story 3”, dealing with “Cars 2” and “Brave” frankly was a huge step down from Pixar’s standards. And I’m not sure that this film will do anything to break that streak.

Of course, “Monsters University” does have the advantage of having a more unique premise. Taking the beloved characters back to college, meaning they can target a whole new brand of humor that we haven’t seen from Pixar. From the looks of “Despicable Me 2”, all we’re getting is Gru vs. another villain once again. So if Pixar’s script is fresh and its ideas new, “Monsters University” does have the much higher upside in terms of creativity.

It’s still way too early to tell if either of these films are going to be a stinker or a classic, but if I had to choose one, I’d choose “Despicable Me 2”. I just worry that Pixar is cutting out what made the first film so funny and won’t have enough creativity to replace it.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

I’ll admit it. Part of me remained very skeptical about “Monsters University”. I mean Disney/Pixar decided to make “Cars 2”. And “Brave” was an OK entry. I was thinking perhaps they’ve lost their golden touch. Here’s the newest trailer and let me tell you, I think Pixar may have regained that magic.

The film presents the plot in a pretty natural way. And it seems very funny and the new characters look to be strong too. Billy Crystal and John Goodman return to voice Mike and Sully.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Director Rob Reiner, writer William Goldman and actors Billy Crystal, Robin Wright, Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Carol Kane, Wallace Shawn and Chris Sarandon came together Tuesday for a screening of “The Princess Bride” in celebration of its 25th anniversary. Naturally, questions came up about whether a sequel ever was close to coming to fruition. The answer is no…but not for the reasons you’d expect.

“I’m desperate to make it and write it and I don’t know how,” Goldman said.  “I would love to make it, more than anything else I’ve not written.”

Crazy, right? Who knows, maybe he’ll conquer the problem one day. Goldman, to his credit, did OK for himself, writing “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” and “All The President’s Men”.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.

Surprising choice to host Oscars

They also tried Anne Hathaway and James Franco. They’ve tried Hugh Jackman. And yet, the ceremony isn’t exactly fun. Here’s a choice that could shake things up. Seth MacFarlane will be hosting the Oscars. Nope this is not a joke. The “Family Guy” and “Ted” star will be hosting the Oscars. Hopefully, he can bring some edgy stuff, like Ricky Gervais did for the Golden Globes.

MacFarlane is the type of choice the Oscars needs to bring in younger audiences and to keep the show entertaining. As long as they let MacFarlane have a little freedom of course. We know he can do a musical number. And it’d probably be a safe bet to see the Family Guy characters and Ted make an appearance too.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at eggen.lukas@gmail.com.