Here’s something that won’t be any surprise at all: Paramount is going to continue the mega-successful Paranormal Activity series. ‘Mega-success’ is relatively easy to achieve with these films, given that even the most expensive one came in well under the average small drama budget, and went on to earn more than $200m across the world.

We don’t have any details on the creative team yet (the guys behind Catfish, Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, made the third) but with the studio likely hoping to have a fourth film ready for an October release, we’ll probably get that info soon. Read More »

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The Sandlot’s Marty “Yeah-Yeah” York and Patrick “Ham” Renna reunite at LA Fitness in Hollywood where York is a personal trainer. [tmz via tdw]

What is Page 2? Page 2 is a compilation of stories and news tidbits, which for whatever reason, didn’t make the front page of /Film. After the jump we’ve included 40 different items, fun images, videos, casting tidbits, articles of interest and more. It’s like a mystery grab bag of movie web related goodness. If you have any interesting items that we might’ve missed that you think should go in /Film’s Page 2 – email us!

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It’s a crazy, mixed up world and we are thankful for movies that offer proof. Slashfilm’s Weekend Weirdness examines such flicks, whether in the form of a SXSW premiere for a provocative indie, a mini review or an interview. We just heard Robert Pattinson dies from being inside the WTC on 9/11 in his new classic Remember Me. Please email screengrabs.

Harmony Korine’s Trash Humpers has more in common with the irreverent filmmaker’s chicken-scratch collage book The Collected Fanzines than with his 2007 narrative Mister Lonely. Since it premiered unexpectedly at last year’s TIFF, speculation has persisted over whether or not Humpers contains anything resembling a traditional plot. The answer is a “no” complimented with beer-aided flatulence and the shattering of florescent light tubes. There is less plot and character development here than in the director’s experimental masterwork on fly-over-state human waste, Gummo. And stylistically, Humpers is less documentary-cum-social study and more like a nasty but minor freak-flag ode to “found” aesthetic; a film made to look like a VHS tape recorded by three giddy old people with destructive, and eventually murderous, tendencies.

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VOTD: 50 Movie Spoilers of 2009 in 4 Minutes

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The Fine Brothers love to spoil everything, In past years, we’ve featured their popular videos 100 Movie Spoilers in 4 minutes and Spoiling Every Best Picture Winner in Oscar History. After seeing all of the big movies of 2009, the brothers are back once again.  Their latest video spoils 50 movies released last year (including all ten best picture nominees) in one take, in under 4 minutes. Watch the video now, after the jump.

And if it isn’t completely obvious already, please be warned that the following video contains spoilers.
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Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: I celebrate all levels of trailers and hopefully this column will satisfactorily give you a baseline of what beta wave I’m operating on, because what better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? Some of the best authors will tell you that writing a short story is a lot harder than writing a long one, that you have to weigh every sentence. What better medium to see how this theory plays itself out beyond that than with movie trailers?

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This Week in DVD & Blu-ray is a column that compiles all the latest info regarding new DVD and Blu-ray releases, sales, and exclusive deals from stores including Target, Best Buy and Fry’s.

Rent It

PARANORMAL ACTIVITY
Costing only $15,000 to make, Paranormal Activity makes up for what it lacks in budget with pure ingenuity. The most obvious comparison is naturally The Blair Witch Project, with both films being presented as if they were genuine footage that’s been discovered after-the-fact. Where Paranormal Activity shines though, is its setting: a house. Not a forest, not an isolated mansion—a normal, everyday house. When it comes to fearing a supernatural presence, there’s no place people feel more vulnerable than their own home. Paranormal Activity takes advantage of this, and uses subtle filmmaking tricks to slowly ratchet up the tension as night after night goes by. I can fully understand why somebody would find the experience terrifying. I, however, did not. Though I certainly appreciate the film, and admire it for the incredible success that it’s found, Paranormal Activity might just be one of the least scary horror films I have ever seen, and that’s an issue that no amount of admiration or appreciation can cure. I get the distinct impression that those who found the movie frightening are people who went into it with a built-in apprehension of ghosts, which would certainly explain why it did nothing for me. I consider myself a total pansy when it comes to most forms of horror–I nearly pissed myself in terror when I saw The Grudge in theaters—but any movie that relies on my real life fear of the supernatural isn’t likely to garner much of a response. If you don’t share that problem, then you should only see Paranormal Activity if you’re prepared to stay awake every night for the next two weeks.
Blu-ray? Yes.
Notable Extras: DVD – An alternate ending. Blu-ray – Includes everything on the DVD, as well as a digital copy.

BEST DVD PRICE
Target Best Buy Fry’s
$15.99 $16.99 $15.77
Amazon – $15.99

BEST BLU-RAY PRICE
Target Best Buy Fry’s
$24.99 $24.99 N/A
Amazon – $24.99

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Is the Hollywood Movie Star Dead?

Land of the Lost

A Reuters piece that’s been making the rounds this weekend speculates that Hollywood may be thinking twice about banking on A-list celebrities in the future. The piece points to recent low-budget and star-free fare like The Hangover, District 9, and Paranormal Activity that each went on to be wildly successful, and contrasts them with big-budget, star-studded flops like A Christmas Carol, Land of the Lost, and Funny People. The overall lesson seems to be that star-power doesn’t have nearly the draw that it used to, and that budgets aren’t much of a factor for audiences either.

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paranormal activity poster

Paramount has issued a press release gloating that Paranormal Activity has just passed $100 million domestically. And they should gloat, with a film that was made for only $15,000, and purchased by Paramount for either $300,000 or $350,000, depending on what report you read. You can try to figure out the multiplier on that, but any way you add it up, it’s probably  the most successful investment in the company’s history.  Especially considering how little the company spent on marketing for the film. This week, the movie will have been in theaters nationwide for a month, and is still making over $8 million over a weekend, which is enough to beat out Warner Bros’ $30 million sci-fi thriller The Box in its debut.

The movie has become the top grossing R-Rated thriller of the past decade. Right now it stands as the fifth largest horror/supernatural movie release of all time, and is on track to unseat The Grudge for the #4 spot. Paranormal is also the #22 highest grossing film of the year, and is set to overtake Zack Snyder’s $130-$180 million budgeted adaptation of Watchmen in a week or two. Full press release after the jump.

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