Sunday, December 31, 2006

Weekend Box Office Results for December 29-31, 2006
There's no chart this week because there were no forecasts. The (sorta) new film was Dreamgirls, which took in $18,000 per screen to finish #1 in that category among the films distributed widely. Night in the Museum took in $38m overall, winning the weekend, and reaching $116m overall.

Each of the top twelve increased from last week except Rocky Balboa.

The two new limited releases did great in all respects. Children of Men got 94% positive reviews, and took in $33,000 per screen. Pan's Labyrinth did slightly better in both departments, with 99% positive reviews and $35,000 per screen.

The season closed with a bang, as the last two weekends provided double-digit increases over last year. The year was up about 4% over 2005, which means that approximately the same number of tickets were sold, give or take.


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Manning passes Montana in a very weird way ...
... with a pass to defensive tackle Dan Klecko, who lined up as a fullback in a short yardage TD situation! Nobody covered him and Manning got it in his hands.


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The Pop Culture Palace is updated
Today's addition: songs #10 through 6 of 1958, with vids for each. My favorite in this batch: Eddie Cochrane in an authentic period performance which I've never seen before. "Rockabilly legend Eddie Cochran captured the teenage zeitgeist of the day with this slacker anthem (Summertime Blues). It's been covered by damn near everybody at one time or another, but the best versions were probably by The Who and Blue Cheer."

Also check out the video of recently deceased James Brown, normally the hardest-working man in show business, shirking his duties by singing a romantic ballad! He's not exactly Lionel Richie in this department, but he has his own take on it and sometimes sounds eerily similar to Otis Redding.


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Asked why they shot a cop-killer 68 times at the end of a manhunt, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd told the Orlando Sentinel ... "That's all the bullets we had."


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Oh Dear Lord! BEEEES!
Pictorial with commentary. Bees infest a back yard, and the humans get mighty ornery!


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Sports oddities - the career of Ben Sheets
I am a baseball fan, and in the back of my mind I think of Ben Sheets as one of baseball's best pitchers, which is probably not unreasonable on my part. I'm obviously not the only one who has formed that opinion, because he makes $10 million per year. But I stumbled on his entry in the Encyclopedia today and was shocked. Did you know ... (1) In six years in the majors, he has never won more than 12 games in a season, never been more than one game above .500 (his best W-L was 10-9), and has amassed a lifetime record of 61-69. (2) Even in his career year, when he struck out ten men per nine innings and had a 2.70 ERA, his record was below .500 (12-14).

Man, it sucks to be a Brewer.


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The oddest news stories of 2006
"In Bangkok, Thai coup leaders banned go-go girls from dancing near tanks."

Unusually enough, we have the same city ordinance in Austin, and it has filled our jails with women in white knee-high boots, including former 1960s icon Judy Carne, who was actually arrested during a Laugh-In reunion tour, thus sparking comparisons to Jim Morrison.


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President Bush Issues Resolutions for 2007 ...Vows to Invite Hugo Chavez to Lunch at Taco Bell
"I resolve to pay close attention to the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group’s report, as soon as it comes out on a books-on-tape version."


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Dave Barry's annual year in review, 2006 version
"In other entertainment news, a book by two San Francisco Chronicle writers revives suspicions about possible steroid use by San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds, alleging, with extensive documentation, that as recently as 10 years ago, Bonds was a woman."


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World War Three seen through Soviet eyes
"In a historic break with the past, Poland's newly elected government threw open its top secret Warsaw Pact military archives - including a 1979 map revealing the Soviet bloc's vision of a seven-day atomic holocaust between Nato and Warsaw Pact forces."


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Meanings and Origins of Phrases, Sayings and Idioms
Why don't tinkers give a damn, and what are hatters so mad about?


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Oprah vs Gore (Jimmy Kimmel Show)


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The Blues Brothers perform Soul Man live


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"Rob Corddry impersonates a family values congressman as part of of Comedy Central's 'Last Laugh '06."


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"Mere hours before he was to be put to death by hanging, former Iraqi despot Saddam Hussein was making a remarkable claim: just prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Jesus talked to him."


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Darwin Awards: 2006
"A winner from Brazil, who tried to disassemble a Rocket Propelled Grenade (RPG) by driving back and forth over it with a car. This technique was ineffective, so he escalated to pounding the RPG with a sledgehammer. The second try worked--in a sense. The explosion proved fatal to one man, six cars, and the repair shop wherein the efforts took place."


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