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CinemaCon BuzzMeter: What’s Hot and Cold in Las Vegas

Theater owners are looking for the next big movie. Here’s the latest buzz from the annual CinemaCon convention in Las Vegas, where major studios are previewing their upcoming slates:

CINEMACON BUZZMETER
WHAT’S HOT AND COLD AT THIS YEAR’S EXHIBITOR CONFAB IN VEGAS:
“THE BIRTH OF A NATION”
The story of Nat Turner’s slave revolt looks certain to be a major Oscar player. (Fox Searchlight)
“FINDING DORY”
Based on the half screened for CinemaCon, Pixar has recaptured the mix of humor and pathos that made “Finding Nemo” a smash. (Disney)
“JASON BOURNE”
The tormented black ops agent is back, with what’s touted to be his best chase scene ever and plenty more questions about his identity and mental health. There’s no reason to think audiences won’t be ready for another dose of the Matt Damon thriller. (Universal)
“PASSENGERS”
Chris Pratt, Jennifer Lawrence sizzle in the outer space thriller from “The Imitation Game” director Morten Tyldum. (Sony)
“THE SECRET LIfe OF PETS”
Chris Meledandri may have his next “Despicable Me”-size smash with this look at what dogs, cats and domesticated animals do when their masters are at work. (Universal)
“THE CONJURING 2”
James Wan’s horror sequel had the audience eating out of the palm of its hand. A big pop of applause at the end. (Warner Bros.)
“INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE”
London gets destroyed, Jeff Goldblum nails some one-liners, and mankind is brought to the brink of extinction. (Fox)
“THE LEGEND OF TARZAN”
A large-scale movie movie that the audience of exhibitors was clearly eager to get on their screens. The extended trailer, starring Alexander Skarsgard as the King of the Jungle, bought a rousing round of applause.(Warner Bros.)
“DEEPWATER HORIZON”
A large-scale movie movie that the audience of exhibitors was clearly eager to get on their screens. The extended trailer, stAlexander Skarsgard as the King of the Jungle, bought a rousing round of applause.(Lionsgate)
“MAGNIFICENT SEVEN”
With “Training Day,” “The Equalizer,” and now this blood-drenched Western, Antoine Fuqua and Denzel Washington are a match made in box office heaven.(Sony)
“STORY OF YOUR LIFE”
Alien invasion thriller from “Sicario’s” Denis Villeneuve looks moody and visionary. Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner star in the film.(Paramount)
“SUICIDE SQUAD”
The crowd seemed eager for a different spin on the comic book genre, and David Ayer’s super-villain movie looks ready to give it to them. (Warner Bros.)
“LA LA LAND”
Unabashedly romantic, intriguing, and risky, this old school movie musical offers a singing and dancing Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling. (Lionsgate)
“BAD MOMS”
Mila Kunis comedy about misbehaving PTA members scored big laughs for its off-color jokes. (STX)
“FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM”
A little been there, done that, but the crowd was nevertheless eager for more “Harry Potter” on their screens. Of course they are,it’s a multi-billion dollar franchise. (Warner Bros.)
“LIGHTS OUT”
This footage was jump-scare city, yielding lots of audible reactions throughout (and even some uneasy laughter to shake off the tension). (Warner Bros.)
“THE NICE GUYS”
Russell Crowe already had the audience worked into a bit of a lather with his funny intro. The laughs kept coming with writer-director Shane Black’s raunch, co-starring Ryan Gosling. (Warner Bros.)
“X-MEN: APOCALYPSE”
Big canvas superhero stuff theater owners are eager to get up on their screens. The extended trailer made sure to feature plenty of Jennifer Lawrence.(Fox)
“ALLIED”
Trailer for spy romance with Brad Pitt, Marion Cotillard was sensual, stylish, reeking of Oscar pedigree. (Paramount)
“BILLY LYNN’S LONG HALFTIME WALK”
The war drama may plunge Ang Lee in the Oscar hunt, but Sony didn’t give theater owners a look at the ultra-high frame rates that are supposed to be revolutionary. (Sony)
“FREE STATE OF JONES”
Civil War drama starring Matthew McConaughey showcased gripping battle scene, but could be too downbeat to do big box office. (STX)
“THE NEON DEMON”
This looks to be Nicols Winding Refn in “Black Swan” territory. Striking compositions, an against-type Elle Fanning. Interest piqued. (Amazon)
“BAYWATCH”
Lots of girls in bikinis and an enthusiastic Dwayne Johnson, but the jokes were overly bro-y. (Paramount)
“MANCHESTER BY THE SEA”
Amazon curiously screened a crucial scene that marks the film’s emotional crescendo, so without context, exhibitors couldn’t quite relish its true power. (Amazon)
“WHAT NOW?”
Weird hybrid of a concert film and an action parody, but Kevin Hart has some killer lines. (Universal)
“GHOSTBUSTERS”
Kate McKinnon got off some good lines, but the materials lack the big laughs needed to guarantee success. (Sony)
“JOHN WICK”
More of the same.(Lionsgate)
“LOVE & FRIENDSHIP”
Not that some theater owners aren’t cinephiles, but this Jane Austen costume drama left theater owners cold. (Amazon)
“SING”
Think “American Idol” with cuddly creatures doing the belting. Animated film may be too esoteric for tykes. (Universal)
“TROLLS”
It’s an odd property to transform into a film, but that said, it’s colorful, vibrant and packed with lush textures. (Fox)
“ASSASSIN’S CREED”
Gamers may be stoked, but will mainstream crowds show up?(Fox)
“WARCRAFT”
The trailer for this video game adaptation will be a “worldwide event.” That seems way too optimistic. (Universal)
“JACK REACHER: NEVER GO BACK”
Did anyone ask for this? Tom Cruise should hurry up and make “Mission: Impossible 6.” (Paramount)
Hot, extremely positive
ice cold

 

Pictured above: Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling star in “La La Land,” the new musical from “Whiplash” filmmaker Damien Chazelle.

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