Russell Brand’s “Arthur” Disappoints At The Box Office.

If you decide to do a movie about a lovable drunk, you better make sure that drunk is really lovable. Unfortunately, Russell Brand didn’t gain the affection of critics or moviegoers with his take on the remake of the film “Arthur” this weekend. The film took in an estimated $12, 605,000, getting pummelled by the bunny blockbuster “Hop” – which took in $21,696,000. Even though it did manage to take the number two spot, it barely made that … the surreal film ‘Hanna’ took in $12,323,000.

The reviews for “Arthur” were tough. On one hand, many argued the film never needed to be visited a second time. And then there were some reviews that were so tough and eloquent I could barely understand them! Take this one, which I start out totally understanding and then nod in agreement to whilst I start interpreting via the dictionary.com:

Worse than film school formula, Arthur’s transparently the product of some powerful Hollywood agents responsible for foisting Brand on American culture. Arthur’s inamorata is another agent-foisted ingenue, Greta Gerwig, whose smiley-face slow readings intrude mumblecore lassitude on commercial efficiency. –Armond White

In any case, I am trying to stay objective, but in the interest in full disclosure I must admit I have been scorned by the Russell Brand machine in the past. Years ago, I was hired by MTV to be his warmup comic and announcer for a performance in NYC that would be airing on Comedy Central. Upon arriving at the event, I was led to his tourbus to wait for him to come outside. (It was about 30 degrees and raining, and I was brought out there without a coat.) I was told that during my warmup I should tell no jokes and not be funny. (I later learned that some headliner comics - or at least their people – don’t want the opening acts to be that funny.) After being somewhat surprised about this instruction, I later had my ‘opening act’ reduced to 2 minutes, and still later, to be just an offstage annoucement that people should turn off their cell phones and that they would not be allowed to leave to go to the bathroom during the performance, since the cameras didn’t want to show people leaving the theater. The whole night left me somewhat tainted against the Russell Brand experience. All that said, I still got paid about $500 bucks for about 2 minutes of work. So, in that respect, I say: Thank you.

So, in summary, “Arthur” didn’t do so well at the box office.

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