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‘Shazam!’ slays ‘Hellboy’ reboot at the box office

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'Shazam!' slays 'Hellboy' reboot at the box office

A rush of newcomers couldn’t shake “Shazam!” from the top spot, as the superhero comedy led the box office for the second straight weekend with $25.1 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.

Lionsgate’s “Hellboy” reboot, the animated Laika Studios release “Missing Link,” the college romance “After” and even the long-delayed “Mary Magdalene,” originally to be released by the Weinstein Co., all opened in theaters. But the strongest new release of them all was, predictably, the Will Packer-produced one: “Little.”

The body-swap comedy “Little” came in second with $15.5 million for Universal Pictures. Made for just $20 million, “Little” is just the most recent profit-maker for Packer, the “Girls Trip” producer.

MAGICAL ‘SHAZAM!’ IS BOX OFFICE HERO

The film, directed by Tina Gordon Chism, stars 14-year-old Marsai Martin as the child an abusive tech executive (Regina Hall) reverts to after a magical spell is cast on her. Martin, the “black-ish” star, also executive produced the film, the youngest ever so credited in Hollywood history.

“Little” drew a largely female (65 and African American (43%) audience. Jim Orr, Universal Pictures distribution chief, credited the cast, Chism’s direction and Packer’s overall know-how.

“He’s done it with different kinds of films. ‘Breaking In’ was a thriller, ‘Girls Trip’ was an R-rated comedy. ‘Little’ is kind of an all-ages film, PG-13 rated,'” said Orr, whose studio signed a first-look deal with Packer in 2013. “He’s a brand. And he has a great idea of what is going to be successful at the box office.”

‘STAR WARS’ STAR MARK HAMILL THINKS FANS ARE GETTING ‘FATIGUE’ FROM FRANCHISE

It was an out-of-body weekend at the box office. The body-swap comic-book adaptation “Shazam!” — about a teenage boy (Asher Angel) who can turn into an adult-sized superhero (Zachary Levi) with a simple command — held solidly in its second week. Capitalizing on good reviews and word-of-mouth, “Shazam!” is Warner Bros.’ New Line’s latest DC Comics success. It has grossed $94.9 million through Sunday with a worldwide total of $258.8 million.

Lionsgate and Millennium’s “Hellboy” had been expected by many to vie with “Shazam!” on the weekend. But on the heels of terrible reviews (just 15% “fresh” on Rotten Tomatoes), it flopped with $12 million against a $50 million budget.

That’s significantly less than the 2004 original ($23 million opening) and the 2008 sequel ($34.5 million opening). Those films were directed by Guillermo de Toro and starred Ron Perlman; the new “Hellboy” stars David Harbour (“Stranger Things”) and is directed by Neil Marshall.

DISNEY’S LIVE ACTION ‘DUMBO’ DOESN’T SOAR AT BOX OFFICE

“Missing Link” also missed. It opened with a disappointing $5.8 million, marking a new low for Laika, the maker of eccentric animated tales such as “Coraline,” ”ParaNorman” and “Kubo and the Two Strings.” ”Missing Link,” distributed by United Artists Releasing, is about the discovery of a creature in the Pacific Northwest. Its voice cast includes Zach Galifianakis, Hugh Jackman and Zoe Saldana.

Expectations had varied widely for Aviron Pictures’ “After,” an adaption of Anna Todd’s 2014 best-seller. The young-adult drama fared well with $6.2 million in 2,138 theatres.

‘CAPTAIN MARVEL’ BREAKS $1 BILLION AT GLOBAL BOX OFFICE

And “Mary Magdalene,” starring Rooney Mara as Mary and Joaquin Phoenix as Jesus, finally opened, more than three years after production. Harvey Weinstein had once conceived of the film, directed by Garth Davis (“Lion”) as his next Oscar contender.

After the fallout of Weinstein and the bankruptcy of the Weinstein Co., IFC Films acquired the biblical biopic. Critics dismissed it (44% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes) and audiences mostly did, too. It grossed about $62,000 on 62 screens.

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.

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1. “Shazam!” $25.1 million.

2. “Little,” $15.5 million.

3. “Hellboy,” $12 million.

4. “Pet Sematary,” $10 million.

5. “Dumbo,” $9.2 million.

6. “Captain Marvel,” $8.6 million.

7. “Us,” $6.9 million.

8. “After,” $6.2 million.

9. “Missing Link,” $5.8 million.

10. “The Best of Enemies,” $2 million.

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CNN’s Anderson Cooper mocks Trump for speaking in third person: He’s ‘not supposed to talk like Elmo’

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CNN's Anderson Cooper mocks Trump for speaking in third person: He's 'not supposed to talk like Elmo'

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper closed his show on Wednesday night by mocking President Trump for his “unusual tic” of speaking in the third person, comparing him to the “Sesame Street” character Elmo.

President Trump spoke to reporters earlier in the day and attacked the Mueller probe as a “witch hunt.”

“We just went through the Mueller witch hunt, where you had, really, 18 angry Democrats that hate President Trump. They hate him with a passion,” Trump said.

Cooper cried foul on numerous fronts.

“Him! He is him! Why is he doing this?” Cooper asked. “Also, grammar aside for a moment, if he says ‘witch hunt’ one more frickin’ time, Glinda is gonna float down from Oz and tell Lee Greenwood to hit the yellow brick road because Dorothy has arrived with the Lion, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow. Of course, the Scarecrow doesn’t have a brain, but even if he did, the third-person-in-chief wouldn’t be worried.”

The CNN anchor then played a clip of Trump boasting about China’s respect of “Donald Trump and for Donald Trump’s very, very large brain” during a 2018 news conference.

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“The president of the United States is not supposed to talk like Elmo… Speaking in the third person, it was a habit for President Trump long before he moved to 1600 Sesame Street,” Cooper continued.

He then invoked a 2012 tweet in which Trump congratulated himself for high ratings when he starred on “The Apprentice.”

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Chris Pratt ‘refused to audition’ for ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ in the beginning, casting director says

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Chris Pratt 'refused to audition' for 'Guardians of the Galaxy’ in the beginning, casting director says

Chris Pratt almost wasn’t Peter Quill aka Star-Lord.

Sarah Finn, the casting director behind 22 Marvel movies, revealed the shocking news while attending the “Avengers: Endgame” premiere in Los Angeles on Monday.

“[Director] James Gunn has been very generous about this in saying that I, to the point of annoying him, kept insisting that Chris Pratt was the guy for the part,” Finn explained to Variety before admitting that “Chris didn’t want to play the part and refused to audition.”

CHRIS PRATT AND KATHERINE SCHWARZENEGGER ATTEND THE FIRST RED CARPET TOGETHER AT ‘AVENGERS: ENDGAME’ PREMIERE

Chris Pratt, pictured here at the "Avengers: Endgame" premiere on April 22, 2019, initially "refused to audition" as Peter Quill aka Star-Lord in the 2014 film "Guardians of the Galaxy."

Chris Pratt, pictured here at the “Avengers: Endgame” premiere on April 22, 2019, initially “refused to audition” as Peter Quill aka Star-Lord in the 2014 film “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
(Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic via Getty Images)

“I finally got him to audition and James Gunn said he didn’t want to see him, and that was really a challenge,” she continued.

Luckily, Finn was able to bring the two together and it all worked out perfectly.

“It was honestly one of those eureka moments that we talk about in casting when it absolutely feels right and you know it’s right. James turned to me within 10 seconds and said, ‘He’s the guy,'” she recalled.

Pratt first-appeared as Quill in the 2014 film “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Of the 39-year-old actor accepting the role, Finn said that “it was great when he decided that he was interested.”

Chris Pratt as Peter Quill aka Star-Lord in "Guardians of the Galaxy."

Chris Pratt as Peter Quill aka Star-Lord in “Guardians of the Galaxy.”
(Marvel Studios)

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“Now it’s legend. He’s the perfect person,” she noted. “But at the time we were embarking on a movie that had a raccoon and a talking tree, and a property that people weren’t familiar with.”

On Monday, Pratt stepped out with fiancée Katherine Schwarzenegger for the “Avengers: Endgame” premiere, marking their first red carpet appearance as a couple.

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Trump Fed pick Stephen Moore slams reporting from CNN, other media: ‘Pulling a Kavanaugh against me’

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Trump Fed pick Stephen Moore slams reporting from CNN, other media: 'Pulling a Kavanaugh against me'

President Trump’s pick for the Federal Reserve board, ex-CNN contributor Stephen Moore, blasted the reporting about him from his former employer and other outlets Wednesday, accusing them of “pulling a Kavanaugh” against him.

During an interview on WZFG radio, Moore, previously a Fox News contributor, was asked about CNN’s KFILE reporting on various columns he had written from 2000-2003 in which he apparently mocked women’s involvement in professional sports.

“I was so honored when I got the call from Donald Trump but you know, all it has been since then is one personal assault after another, a kind of character assassination that has nothing to do with economics,” Moore said. “You know, my divorce 10 years ago, or something I wrote 25 years ago. They have six full-time investigative reporters looking into me at The Washington Post and the New York Times, and CNN.”

“I kind of wear it as a badge of honor, that they’re so afraid of me, that they want all these people looking into my past because they’re worried that I’m going to prevail here,” he continued. “They have not attacked me on my economic ideas.”

LARRY KUDLOW: ECONOMY HAS BEEN ‘BOOMING’

Moore agreed with the radio host that the coverage of him this week has been “National Enquirer stuff” and went even further: “They’re pulling a Kavanaugh against me.”

That was in reference to the hostile coverage Brett Kavanaugh, then a Supreme Court nominee, received during his confirmation process last year.

CNN KFILE senior editor Andrew Kaczynski responded to Moore’s attack, saying, “I don’t even know what ‘pulling a Kavanaugh’ means.”

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“Look, when you’re a nominee or pick for a public administration, your record is going to get scrutinized. Things that you say, things that you did–those are going to be reported on,” Kaczynski said on CNN. “I know this morning he was referring to this as a smear campaign, covering comments he made about women, and covering things that he said in columns. That is not a smear campaign. That is reporting on his record. So, it’s a little odd that he finds just commenting things that he has done and said to be such a problem for him.”

CNN did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.

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