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Paranormal Activity

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ENTERTAINMENT
October 21, 2010
"Paranormal Activity" is demonic possession caught on tape; a YouTube "Poltergeist" with time stamps, recording the evil that comes out when we're sleeping. The poster used a screen grab from the "real" video footage - a couple, staring in terror at a disembodied shadow on their open bedroom door. Pretty scary stuff. So how do they amp it up for the sequel? How about using a dog and a baby? Yup. That'll do it. The shadow is gone, replaced by a half-open door to a well-lit bathroom.
NEWS
October 23, 2010
Directed by Tod Williams. Brian Boland, Sprague Grayden, Molly Ephraim, Katie Featherston. Distributed by Paramount Pictures. Running time: 1 hour, 28 mins. Parent's guide: R (some language, brief violent material). Playing at: area theaters.
NEWS
October 29, 2009 | By GARY THOMPSON, thompsg@phillynews.com
THREE WEEKS have elapsed since "Paranormal Activity" crept into local theaters on little Internet feet. It's now the No. 1 movie in America, so it is no longer ethically possible for me to ignore it. In my defense, the first week's showings were at midnight, way past my bedtime. Also, the studio did not have a freebie screening for us critics, so I had to pay $10 to see "Paranormal Activity," and about a million commercials for crappy shows on the CW. Why do you people put up with this?
ENTERTAINMENT
September 3, 2011 | By Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune
A thin but fairly diverting entry in the low-fi fakeumentary horror genre, Apollo 18 explains what's really on the moon and why the U.S. space program decided against further study. Why? Because a Blair Witch Project filmmaking seminar set up camp there first, that's why! Spanish director Gonzalo Lopez-Gallego's exercise in "found" footage scares was produced by Timur Bekmambetov, who directed the popular assassins melee Wanted , which I hated. I didn't hate this one at all. Like Blair Witch and the Paranormal Activity pictures, Apollo 18 offers zero characterization and very little narrative.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 22, 2010 | By JOHN HORN, Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES - Throughout the making of Paramount Pictures' "Paranormal Activity 2," an unsettling specter floated over the production. The apparition had nothing to do with the earlier haunted house blockbuster, a micro-budget thriller that exploded into a pop-culture sensation and grossed more than $107 million in domestic theaters a year ago, becoming one of the most profitable releases in show business history. Instead, the sequel/prequel was haunted by memories of Hollywood's last effort to clone a similar scary story: Artisan's "Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2," which took in less than 20 percent of the preceding film's revenues and was so decisively despised by critics and audiences that it tainted 1999's original "Blair Witch Project" by association.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2011 | BY CHRISTY LEMIRE, Associated Press
LOS ANGELES - "Paranormal Activity 3" didn't just go bump in the night. It made a ton of noise at the box office with a record-setting, $54 million opening. The third film in Paramount Pictures' low-budget fright franchise, which was No. 1 at the box office, had the biggest debut ever for a horror movie, according to yesterday's studio estimates. It broke the previous record that part two set a year ago with $40.7 million. It's also the biggest opening ever for an October release, topping the $50.35 million Paramount's "Jackass 3D" made last year.
NEWS
April 18, 2014 | BY MOLLY EICHEL, Daily News Staff Writer eichelm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5909
MARLON WAYANS didn't want to make "A Haunted House 2. " Despite raking in over $40 million on a $2.5 million budget, Wayans was weary about revisiting his 2013 horror-comedy, in which he stars as Malcolm, who gets stuck in situations familiar to fans of such films as "Paranormal Activity," "Insidious" or "Sinister. " But a creepy doll changed his mind, leading to the sequel that hits theaters today. "I didn't want to whore out the franchise. If it's not organic and we can't find a good evolution for the character, I don't know if I want to do a sequel," Wayans said.
NEWS
October 24, 2011 | the Inquirer Staff
Paranormal Activity 3 , the latest installment in Paramount's low-cost, high-profit thriller franchise, chilled the competition with a $54 million debut weekend to take the top spot in the box-office sweeps. P.A. 3 outperformed its forerunner, Paranormal Activity 2 , which also claimed the top spot on its debut weekend a year ago, but took in only $40.7 mil. The original Paranormal Activity , produced for a reported $15,000 - yes, you read that right, 15 thou - entered Hollywood lore after word of mouth made it the progenitor of a lucrative line.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 24, 2012
Weeks    Per    Rank/Title/Studio Last Week   Total    Out   Location    1. Paranormal Activity 4 (Para.) $29.0 mil.   $29.0 mil.   1   $8,501    2. Argo (Warner Bros.) 16.4 mil.   43.0 mil.   2   5,065    3. Taken 2 (Fox) 13.3 mil.   105.8 mil.   3   3,801    4. Hotel Transylvania (Sony) 13.0 mil.   118.5 mil.   4   3,842    5. Alex Cross (Summit) 11.4 mil.   11.4 mil.   1   4,489    6. Sinister (Summit)
NEWS
October 19, 2012 | By JUSTIN LOWE, Hollywood Reporter
MOCKUMENTARY filmmakers Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman ("Catfish") know a thing or two about misdirecting an audience, as they proved again with 2011's "Paranormal Activity 3. " Together with returning screenwriter Christopher Landon, this time around they seem short on new ideas, however, relying more on the series' reputation for low-budget thrills to attract audiences. Regardless, by now Paramount's franchise is a brand unto itself, and it's unlikely that anything will stop the first few waves of fans boosting "Paranormal Activity 4" up the chart through Halloween at least.
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NEWS
April 18, 2014 | BY MOLLY EICHEL, Daily News Staff Writer eichelm@phillynews.com, 215-854-5909
MARLON WAYANS didn't want to make "A Haunted House 2. " Despite raking in over $40 million on a $2.5 million budget, Wayans was weary about revisiting his 2013 horror-comedy, in which he stars as Malcolm, who gets stuck in situations familiar to fans of such films as "Paranormal Activity," "Insidious" or "Sinister. " But a creepy doll changed his mind, leading to the sequel that hits theaters today. "I didn't want to whore out the franchise. If it's not organic and we can't find a good evolution for the character, I don't know if I want to do a sequel," Wayans said.
NEWS
February 3, 2014 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
Etched into the chipping paint on the cinder-block walls in the Gloucester County Jail are the thoughts and drawings and expletives of prisoners who have come and gone. Words like Freedom. As it stands, the recently closed jail in Woodbury - used now for storage and office space - doesn't have much of an afterlife. But some think its former occupants might. A Salem County paranormal research group spent the weekend testing that theory with 13 night-vision cameras, audio recorders, and a slew of other specialized equipment familiar to viewers of shows like Ghost Hunters.
NEWS
November 14, 2012 | BY STEPHANIE FARR, Daily News Staff Writer farrs@phillynews.com, 215-854-4225
A GROUP of Philadelphia police officers spends its free time investigating claims of disorderly conduct, harassment and criminal mischief, knowing the cases don't have a ghost of a chance of making it to court. Still, the officers set up video cameras at each scene and spend hours poring over evidence, looking for just one shadow, listening for just one voice. Once, a voice said "Mommy, I'm here," another time, "F--- you!" Even disembodied voices have trouble with authority.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 7, 2012
Weeks    Per    Rank/Title/Studio Last Week   Total    Out   Location    1. Wreck-It Ralph (Disney) $49.0 mil.   $49.0 mil.   1   $13,070    2. Flight (Paramount) 24.9 mil.   24.9 mil.   1   13,217    3. Argo (Warner Bros.) 10.2 mil.   75.9 mil.   4   3,680    4. Man With Iron Fists (Universal) 7.9 mil.   7.9 mil.   1   4,235    5. Taken 2 (Fox) 5.9 mil.   125.6 mil.   5   2,243    6. Cloud Atlas (Warner Bros.)
NEWS
October 28, 2012
Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Gordon S. Wood will speak Thursday at Congress Hall on a topic much in the air these days: elections. An emeritus professor at Brown University and a board member of the planned Museum of the American Revolution, Wood will discuss how the Founding Fathers approached the electoral process. Wood's most recent book is Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic (2010). He will participate in a reception beginning at 5:15 p.m. in the east wing of Independence Hall.
NEWS
October 19, 2012 | By JUSTIN LOWE, Hollywood Reporter
MOCKUMENTARY filmmakers Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman ("Catfish") know a thing or two about misdirecting an audience, as they proved again with 2011's "Paranormal Activity 3. " Together with returning screenwriter Christopher Landon, this time around they seem short on new ideas, however, relying more on the series' reputation for low-budget thrills to attract audiences. Regardless, by now Paramount's franchise is a brand unto itself, and it's unlikely that anything will stop the first few waves of fans boosting "Paranormal Activity 4" up the chart through Halloween at least.
NEWS
October 12, 2012 | BY GARY THOMPSON, Daily News Staff Writer
WHILE WE JOKINGLY wonder why people in haunted movie houses don't leave, we know we really don't want them to go. Not the viewers and certainly not Hollywood, which would be nowhere without haunted houses, as it makes most of its easy money in the horror arena. With that in mind, the industry has been looking for a bankable new franchise since the decline of the "Saw" series and the diminishing returns of the "Paranormal Activity. " It may have found a successor in "Sinister," a thoroughly familiar but slick and effective horror movie starring Ethan Hawke as Ellison Oswald, a true-crime writer who moves into the home where a horrible murder occurred.
NEWS
August 25, 2012 | By Roger Moore, McCLATCHY-TRIBUNE
The Apparition wafts out of the ether like the ghosts of bad movies past, the very picture of the cinema's Dog Days of August. It's a Paranormal Activity knockoff, without the found- footage conceit. And it's science vs. ghosts, in a limp salute to Paranormal and Ghostbusters before it. Ashley Greene of Twilight and Sebastian Stan of Captain America play a young couple who find themselves living in a haunted house in a mostly foreclosed desert subdivision.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 7, 2012
THE RIVER. 9 tonight, 6 ABC.   HOW FAR WOULD you follow Steven Spielberg? The second much-anticipated series credited to the uber-producer in two days - either the man never sleeps or he's been cloned - tonight's premiere of ABC's "The River," with its shaky, grainy camera shots, "found" footage and dearth of production numbers, bears little resemblance to NBC's "Smash. " But they're both about putting on a show. It's a long-running series, "The Undiscovered Country," that's made explorer and wildlife Dr. Emmett Cole (Bruce Greenwood)
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