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2006 & Spring Bloom at Box Office
by Christopher Stone

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And God also created ADAM & STEVE

And God also created ADAM & STEVE
At long last, 2005 is a wrap, a done deal, and 2006 is in full swing at the box office. Last year's Ten Best lists and seemingly endless award shows are finally in the rear view mirror, and, for better or worse, 2006's time has come.

Box Office Bouquet

The calla lillies are in bloom again.... Spring 2006 releases are a mixed box office bouquet of comedy, drama, and sequels as always this blooming season is but a warm-up for the Big Event: the all-important Summer Box Office Season. Here are a few blooming flicks that I hope will be worth your effort, money, and time.

ADAM & STEVE (March 31): Fifteen years after a disastrous one-night stand, Adam & Steve are re-introduced by matchmaking friends. At first, not remembering one another from their 1980s' debacle, the men pursue true love's way. This same gender comedy looks to be the flip and flippant fun side of last year's heartbreaking BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN. Have fun, but don't expect any Oscar nominations here.

INSIDE MAN (March 24): No, the title doesn't reflect ADAM & STEVE's sex life. This is director Spike Lee's bank heist caper starring Denzel Washington, Clive Owen, and Jodie Foster.
Will Matchflickers pay for another peek of Sharon?

Will Matchflickers pay for another peek of Sharon?
This marks Denzel's fourth go-round with director Lee, as well as Foster's first box office vehicle since last year's moribund FLIGHTPLAN. If crime and hostage taking are your box office bag, then you'll want to be an inside man or woman when Spike's latest joint plays at your favorite multiplex.

ICE AGE: THE MELTDOWN (March 31) If you like your comedy frosty, computer generated, and familiar, this snappy sequel is your ticket to springtime fun. Ray Romano, John Leguizamo, Denis Leary, and Queen Latifah give voice to this ICE AGE sequel. A word to the wary and the wise: even in the midst of the Ice Age meltdown, Republicans were denying the existence of Global Warming. Denial's just another word for nothing left to lose.

DOWN IN THE VALLEY (April 21): Edward Norton is among the most interesting and talented men in the motion picture business, and so it is with hopeful expectations that we note his new independent offering as star and producer. In this drama, set in Los Angeles' San Fernando Valley, Norton plays a delusional man who fancies himself a cowboy. No, he's not looking to hook up with a cowpoke, he crazily believes himself to be one. Supporting Norton is an exquisite cast that includes
Edward Norton is a delusional Valley Boy this Spring

Edward Norton is a delusional Valley Boy this Spring
Rachel Wood, David Morse, Rory Culkin, and Ellen Burstyn.

BASIC INSTINCT 2 (March 31): At 48, is Sharon Stone still guy candy enough to lure movie goers to the box office for another pulchritudinous peek? Or is she a little long in the molars to thrill? You be the judge.

Coming fourteen years after the box office bonanza that was BASIC INSTINCT, this sequel may be a decade or so too late to duplicate or exceed the original's box office bite. Are the still curious sufficient in number to fill multiplex seats and give Stone's sagging motion picture career a much-needed lift? That, as well as Stone's legendary loins, remains to be seen.

TAKE THE LEAD (April 7): Considering the enormous renaissance of ballroom dancing in documentaries, network television, and in ballrooms, I can't think of a better time for Antonio Banderas to dance onto the screen as real life dance instructor Pierre Dulaine. The big screen's Zorro is likely to make a bigger mark with fancy foot work than he did last fall with his sword. Call it MAD HOT BALLROOM meets DANCING WITH THE STARS if you must, but TAKE THE LEAD is likely to fox trot exhibitors straight to the bank. LEAD is my pick for Spring Break's premiere date flick.


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The Business of Show
Every other Friday

Does advertising, public taste, or overindulged stars determine a movie's box office fate? Christoper Stone explores what's going on behind the box office.

Other Columns
Other columns by Christopher Stone:

The Cautionary Box-Office

Box-Office Holiday Season Heads Up. Part Two

Box-Office Holiday Season Heads Up, Part 1

Quality Is Independent

Oh, the Horror!

All Columns

Christopher Stone
Christopher Stone is the author of the international best seller Re-Creating Your Self. With Mary Sheldon, he co-authored three highly successful hardcover books of guided meditations.

He is a member of the Writers Guild of America, West.

If you have a comment, question, or suggestion, you can send a message to Christopher Stone by clicking here.

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