Lovable ‘toon penguins defeat James Bond

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“Do you expect me to talk, Goldfinger?”

“No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to waddle over to that ice floe and guard your eggs fiercely.”:


A cadre of singing and dancing penguins beat out the monkey-suited international superspy James Bond at the B.O. this weekend, as Warner Bros. and Village Roadshow’s CG-animated “Happy Feet” skipped to No. 1 with $42.3 million thanks to a particularly strong Saturday run.

Bond’s No. 2 finish in Sony/MGM’s “Casino Royale” with $40.6 million — the second-best opening ever for a 007 pic — helped spur a particularly strong pre-Thanksgiving sesh as the holiday season took flight.

Comments

  1. mainja says:

    it did debut on fewer screens than happy feet, though. that must’ve been a factor.

  2. The Bond flick did debut in somewhat fewer theatres, and I think if they’d been on an equal number of screens then Bond might have edged out Mumble. What I find more interesting is this strong showing by a CGI-animal movie after a long string of box-office disappointments.

    Was it that ol’ Robin Williams magic? Was it the music? Or could it be, as the movie’s theme suggests, that humans really do respond better to dancing?

  3. Tim McEwen says:

    For those that know their 90s Australian comics, one of the co-creators of Bug & Stump, Mark Sexton, was production designer and storyboard artist on this movie and was an enormous influence of how it looks. Other Aust comics luminaries who worked on this were Matthew Hatton (CyberSwine and Zero Assassin) and Chew Chan (Lyrebird).

  4. R. Maheras says:

    On Sunday, my wife and I sat down in a fairly full cineplex theater to watch “Casino Royale,” and the next thing we know, “Happy Feet” starts showing on the screen. Everyone in the theater started yelling, and after about five minutes, some theater rep came running in saying that the films had been switched somehow, and that the Bond film was playing in the “Happy Feet” theater. After about 20 minutes they got it all sorted out, and we all got to watch “Casino Royale.” As we left after the film was over, everyone was given free passes for their trouble.

    (Spoiler alert) If you think about it, if those kids in the other theater saw the first five minutes or so of “Casino Royale,” they saw some pretty graphic violence, murder and mayhem. (End of spoiler alert)

    In all the years I’ve been regularly going to the movies, this is the only time I can remember a case where two films were switched. How nutty is that?

    By the way — I thought “Casino Royale” was pretty darn good, and easily the best Bond film I’ve seen in 30 years or so.

  5. What I find more interesting is this strong showing by a CGI-animal movie after a long string of box-office disappointments.

    Was it that ol’ Robin Williams magic? Was it the music? Or could it be, as the movie’s theme suggests, that humans really do respond better to dancing?

    I think the answer to this one is rather simple, unlike movies like The Wild and Flushed Away, the ads made Happy Feet look like a good movie. CGI’s nice and all but a good story trumps pretty after we’ve seen a half-dozen pretty films.

  6. In all the years I’ve been regularly going to the movies, this is the only time I can remember a case where two films were switched.

    Almost 20 years ago, I sat down in the theater to see Wings of Desire, and they started showing Platoon Leader instead. I went to tell them about the problem, but it’s amazing how many people sat in the theater and kept watching the screen.

  7. By the way — I thought “Casino Royaleâ€? was pretty darn good, and easily the best Bond film I’ve seen in 30 years or so.

    I really enjoyed the new Bond film, as well. In spite of the fact that the Blonde Bond is freakin’ SEXY, there was a lot of creative license done in this film that I hadn’t seen in earlier films. I admit, I was kind of disappointed at the lack of hot dancing women in the opening sequence and girl toys throughout the movie *sniff* but the creative license with the characters was refreshing. There was a lot of miss but also a lot of hit in this film. GEORGEOUS settings. The Love Interest was actually very fascinating as a person rather than being just a sex object (not that I object to the later, either, seeing as this IS double-O-seven). However, I wish the director hadn’t taken such creative leeway with the script, cut a bit on the action, and given the characters more dialog. I’m used to the witty tete at tete with the original Bond films, and that’s something I’d like to see more of from this particular brand of Bond in the future.

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