CATEGORIES Movie NewsIt's mid-January! Which means, well, not much -- unless you are a George Lucas fanatic. This Friday, the first non-"Indiana Jones," non-"Star Wars"-related Lucas project in 17 years will hit theaters.
George has been trying to get his Tuskegee Airmen epic, "Red Tails," off the ground for years, and this weekend it will finally see the light of day. However, "Tails" goes up against plenty of admirable foes, both new and old. For a closer look at what's in store this weekend, let's check out Moviefone's Weekend Movie Preview.
What's the story: "Red Tails" tells the true story of the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of African-American fighter pilots called into action during WWII. Despite the segregation issue in the United States at the time, the soldiers were still given the opportunity to fly. The film stars Terrence Howard, Cuba Gooding Jr., Bryan Cranston and, for some reason, Ne-Yo.
Box office prediction: If you haven't heard, this week George Lucas announced his retirement, sort-of. He's now done making blockbuster movies (but he left an out clause for "Indiana Jones 5"). So, will the Lucasfilm faithful flock to the theaters to see one last big-budget movie from Lucas that doesn't star Indy? Probably not, especially with competition from "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol" and last week's box-office winner, "Contraband." $11 million
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What's the story: For those keeping count, "Awakening" is the fourth film in the franchise. It sees the return of Kate Beckinsale's vampire warrioress Selene (she sat out the third film in the series, "Rise of the Lycans"), who escapes a government facility where she was cryogenically frozen for 12 years. Selene looks to try and stop humans from destroying Vampires and Lycans (advanced werewolves).
Box office prediction: The last "Underworld" with Beckinsale had a strong opening, at $26 million. However, its closest competition, at No. 2, was "Hoodwinked," which came in at $10 million. Although "Underworld" is the only sci-fi-based film out this weekend, it will still be facing an uphill battle with other action movies, "Haywire," in particular. $17 million
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What's the story? This Steven Soderbergh-directed film stars former MMA fighter Gina Carano as Mallory Kane, a highly trained government operative. However, when a mission goes wrong in Barcelona, she gets double-crossed and is forced to fight the people she originally trusted. If you've seen the trailer, you know her former team picked the wrong person to mess with.
Box office prediction: MMA has a very dedicated fan base, but -- as "Warrior" proved -- they might not be willing to pay to see anything MMA-related. Thankfully, "Haywire" has no shortage of stars. The cast includes Michael Douglas, Michael Fassbender, Antonio Banderas, Ewan McGregor and Channing Tatum. Although this movie might not make a lot of money opening weekend, expect it to grow strong as the weeks progress. $9 million
First up on the limited-release front is "Coriolanus," a modern retelling of the Shakespearean tragedy. Directed and starring Ralph Fiennes, the movie tells the story of the revered Roman general, Caius Martius 'Coriolanus,' who's kicked out of Rome after the public turns against him. To take revenge, he teams up with his enemy Tullus Aufidius (Gerard Butler). Speaking of war movies, Christian Bale stars in the Chinese epic, "The Flowers of War," while "The Front Line" tells the story of a battalion in the Korean war. Last but not least, for all the Anime fans out there, there's "Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos."