Saturday, April 30, 2005

The Hitchhiker's movie is First at the US box office + You've seen the movie, now vote for it

It seems that the hitchhiker's movie is doing well for its opening week-end in the US. I found two different websites which claims that the Hitchhikers is now first in the US box office and would finish its opening week-end with $22 million dollars... far better than its opponent XXX 2.According to Box office prophets which analyses the results of the opening day Friday = "A $8.1 million opening night is a very good start for the Douglas Adams adaptation. The only caveat here is that it's a film with a small, but loyal, built-in fanbase and that could severely impact the internal multiplier over the remainder of the weekend (sorry, a 4.2 multiplier is not terribly likely). We'll give Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy a conservative 2.7 multiplier and a $21.8 million weekend."

Here are their projected estimates for the top ten :

1. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 21.8
2. The Interpreter 15.6
3. XXX: The State of the Union 11.2
4. The Amityville Horror 7.8
5. Sahara 5.7
6. A Lot Like Love 4.9
7. Fever Pitch 3.4
8. Kung Fu Hustle 2.9
9. Guess Who 2.2
10 Sin City 2.0

UPDATE : AND THEY WERE RIGHT!!! The Hitchhiker's movie is right at the top of the US box office with a cumulative gross of 21,7 millions dollars. The Interpreter is second with 14,2 millions dollars, and XXX2 is only third with 13,7 millions!

If you've already seen the movie and it wouldn't be a surprise now that the movie is in the movie theatres in US, UK and other countries like Australia, you certainly want to share your point of view about it.

You can vote for the Hitchhiker's movie on several websites : IMDB, Yahoo, and The Guardian. You can also post on this forum and others. Notice that the Hitchhiker's movie is rated B- by the critics and B by the users on Yahoo (the user note is based on 1700 votes). And the Hitchhiker's guide was the web favourite on yahoo at 4 o'clock GMT on saturday. Meanwhile, The Hitchhiker's movie was rated 7.4/10 on IMDB (for 988 votes). Finally on the Guardian website, the movie is rated 8.7/10 (400 votes).

Of course you can now find a lot of reviews online. Fraser, from the australian website from Fallingrocks, has even published an answer to the now famous MJ Simpson critics. You can read it here.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Disney considers two sequels + other reviews + BBC mini website about the movie

Disney considers two sequels !

Today's Financial Times reveals that "Walt Disney is considering production of two multi-million dollars sequels to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the cult satire due to be released today". They quote Robbie Stamp who said to them that a triology was being studied following positive preview responses to the movie : "There are more books in the series and we believe there could be a really good trilogy".

The Financial Times estimates the movie budget between $55-65m, and says it has already raised "a seven figure sum" for the estate of Mr. Adams". Stamp also told the FT that this first movie has already "broken new grounds in online marketing" with tie-ups with Nokia, Apple, JC Decaux and interactive outdoor advertising sites.

It's great news even if it's not completely surprising. The three first books could indeed be a great trilogy and the last two books are probably a little too strange for Hollywood. Of course, we'll have to wait yet to have confirmation and see if the Hitchhikers meets his audience in UK and US in the next few days.


The Financial Times also publishes a critic of the movie. Martin Hoyle from the FT is hard to pleased but he gives a 3/5 to the Hitchhiker's movie. He thinks that the reactions to the movie will form four main categories : purists, enthusiasts, sceptics and haters (the journalist includes in that last category the ones who already hated Hitchhikers). According to him, the purists will have one big regret : "it's not funny enough". He adds that "the film crams in almost too much of the original leaving little time to relish the dry wit.". Martin Hoyle likes the casting but is a little annoyed by Stephen Fry ("an avuncularly donnish form as The Book in comparison with Peter Jones' deader pan for radio"). And regrets Stephen Moore : "Alan Rickman simply doesn't do it". Martin Hoyle concludes his critics saying that Douglas would have been "pleased at the respect shown to his barmy brainchild".

There is also a good review on the World of KJ website. And you can find a list of other reviews here thanks to the Movie Review Query Engine here. You'll find some very enthusiastic movies from Movie vault, good but more critical reviews Hollywood Reporter,... You can also read this review from an Australian website Falling rocks (thanks to Fraser for this one).


It's online now for several weeks, but if you've still not seen it here is the BBC mini website about the movie.

The Quandary Phase begins the 3rd May. Incredible cast. Trailers online

Above the title and the BBC radio series website have both heavily updated a few days before the broadcast of the last instalments the utterly famous Hitchhiker's radio series = the Quandary and the Quintessential phases.

The Quandary Phase will begin at 6.30pm on 3 May. Each of the four weekly episodes will be repeated at 11.00pm on Thursdays (with the exception of 5 May). The Quintessential Phase will start on 31 May.

On the Above the Title website, you'll find a great video trailer and a video making of made by Kevin Davies. They have also an audio trailer and lot of pics.

As you certainly know, the cast for the two last phases is incredible. Sandra Dickinson and David Dixon (Trillian and Ford in the TV series) both appear in the new series. Jane Horrocks (Absolutely fabulous) is excellent as Fenchurch. Johnatan Pryce comes back (the famous english actor well known from "Brazil" already played in the second series). Stephen Fry (the Narrator in the movie) is also here. And there is even a Hollywood star Christian Slater ("Interview with a vampire") who plays Wonko the Sane in the Quandary Phase.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

See the movie 42 minutes before the release day + articles and interviews

The very first paid for a UK screening will be 42 minutes before midnight on Wednesday 27th i.e. 42 minutes before the official day of release. The screening will be at Empire Leicester Square and the link for info and to book tickets is:

This is definitely one to dress up for and it will be a real occasion (plenty of time for a couple of pan galactic gargle blasters beforehand to get in the mood).

But remember that tomorow plenty of people in the UK will have already seen the Hitchhiker's movie thanks to free screenings all across the UK tomorow. We should have a lot of reactions and reviews from now on.


Jenz spotted some great long interviews on filmfocus : Robbie Stamp (executive producer), Garth and Nick (director and producer of this movie ), Bill Nighy (an excellent Slartibartfast), Sam Rockwell (Zaphod), Zooey Deshanel (Trillian) and at last Martin Freeman (Arthur)

On the other side of the ocean, Jake (from in his news blog have listed a lot of interviews and articles about the movie.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Hitchhiker's movie exhibition will open on the 28th May at the Science Museum in London + DVD release date the 05th September? + an other great movie premiere report online

That's great news for the Hitchhiker's fans. The Science Museum in London will soon welcome an exhibition about the Hitchhiker's movie. And they will have some great stuff. The exhibition will run from 28 May to 27 November 2005.

"The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Exhibition’ has been specially created by the Science Museum and the team behind the film to link with the forthcoming major motion picture. It will recreate the fantastic voyage of Arthur Dent, and along the way take a look at some of the science which shapes our lives, the world and the universe.

This family exhibition will take visitors on a journey through the powerful narrative of Douglas Adams’ iconic story against a backdrop of large scale and richly designed sets from the motion picture. In order to create a deeply immersive experience it will be supplemented with the real props, costumes and creatures that were used in filming.

From Arthur Dent’s kitchen to the far reaches of outer space, visitors will come face-to-face with characters such as the Vogons, Ford Prefect and Marvin. However the exhibition will not only focus on Douglas Adams’ intriguing and irreverent creations, but also provide a fun and engaging exploration of the science featured in his work.

‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Exhibition’ has been developed by the Science Museum in partnership with Silver Knight Exhibitions part of MICE Group Plc, in association with Buena Vista International and Touchstone Pictures/Spyglass Entertainment. The exhibition will feature information about the filmmakers themselves and will take visitors behind the scenes of the production to see how the hugely-ambitious film was created, including insight into the work undertaken by Henson Creature Workshop.

Visitors will learn about Douglas Adams and the heritage of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, which originally appeared as a Radio 4 series in March 1978. Since then it has been transformed into a series of best-selling novels, a television series, records, cassettes and CDs, a computer game and several stage adaptations.

A phenomenon of science fiction culture, the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is set to inspire a whole new generation to think about science in a more creative way.
In addition to the exhibition the Science Museum will also be running a series of events for visitors linked to the science in the exhibition.

Now as it becomes a feature film with Buena Vista International, Touchstone Pictures/Spyglass Entertainment, the Science Museum brings you the only opportunity to journey through the magnificent world of Douglas Adams.

“Of all the things that we are doing in addition to actually, finally, making the movie, I think that the idea of an exhibition about Hitchhiker’s at the Science Museum would have pleased Douglas enormously. He loved the company of scientists!” said Robbie Stamp, Executive Producer of the film and the Science Museum exhibition."


The DVD should be released in UK the 05th september 2005 in a two DVDs box. I think the US release date should be about the same.


Nick Loven won a competition months ago to play a small part in the Hitchhiker's movie. And now he was invited to the movie premiere and afterparty! He made a great report with a lot of details and pics here.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Movie premiere reviews and reports + three new clips

Yestderday evening it was the world premiere of the Hitchhiker's movie. Some fans have been lucky enought to sand outside the movie theatre in London. Other ones like me only tried to watch the thing online, but with not much success in my case. Indeed they chose a windows media player streaming and it was not compatible with the last mac windows player version!!

Johnatan Cobb posted a link on the DAC forum with a lot of great pictures from the movie premiere. Getty Images took also some great pictures you can see on their website here. And Dave H has posted still on the DAC a long and very detailed report of the movie premiere. He has even been to the party afterwards with Kevin John Davies. Lucky bastards! I'm depressed now! well, anyway it is here


Movieweb features three new clips from the movie. One with Humma Kavula, an other one with Zaphod watching a tv spot about himself, and a last one where we see Marvin picking up two Hitchhikers. You can find them here. Look in the Video Spotlight section.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Movie premiere online + Planet Magrathea site shuts down + analysis of the Hitchhiker's movie box office potential


Here’s a chance to watch the HHGG premiere - not the film itself unfortunately ;-) – from the comfort of your own computer. Action from the red carpet at the Hitchhiker’s World Premiere will be here: from 18:15 this Wednesday 20th.


It's very sad but MJ Simpson has decided to shut down his Planet Magrathea website : "As of today I have decided to just say 'sod it' and pack the whole thing in. This is partly because I have recently been adding ten or more news items every day and it is becoming too much hassle. It is also partly because I have for some time been fed up with the negative attitude of the Douglas Adams estate who for four years have been happy to make money from projects that I have worked on or even initiated but have otherwise been thoroughly unhelpful and antagonistic towards me.... Now I have a similar antagonism from Disney/BVI who, it seems, are unable to accept negative criticism of their product. And my views on the quality of the product they have created do not need repeating here."

He has also decided to stop writing about Hitchhikers : "I may occasionally lurk on Hitchhiker's Guide-related sites or forums if I'm bored, but as of now I will never write another word, in print or on-line, about Douglas Adams or The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."
it's a very sad decision and I really hope he will change his mind.

Of course, we'll miss such an important source of information online about Douglas and Hitchhikers. But making his own website requires a lot of work, and we all have lives outside of Hitchhikers.
Jake Russel "has announced that will be taking over as best as possible for the recently deceased Planet Magrathea". Good luck for him.


Here is a good and long article talking about H2G2 and its box office potential, the pros and cons of the movie, and how it may fare in the US market (OFFLINE now sorry).

You can also read my own analysis on this blog (28th March 05 entry), that I wrote some weeks ago but it's not as good.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Movie premiere ticket on sale on ebay for charities + BBC loves the movie + free tickets and book in The Observer this sunday + whale clip


If you live in Europe and you want to win a ticket to the movie premiere the 20th April In London, you can bid for a charity auction on Ebay. The auction ends on monday at 12:45 UK time. 100% of the proceeds will be split between 2 of Douglas’s favourite charities, Save The Rhino International and The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund.... This auction, for a pair of premiere tickets, is the first of several auctions of HHGG film related items to benefit these charities.


The BBC has published a short review of the movie online and they love it : "t's hard to see how this could have been better. Reserve us a table at The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe now, please." .


I have been told that "In 'The Observer' this Sunday there will be a free copy of 'The Restaurant at the End of The Universe'. Plus there are 10,000 free tickets to (UK) national preview screenings of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy to be won."


According to MJ Simpson, "Men's mag Maxim has the whale monologue (introduced by Mos Def) as a video clip on its site. It's a very heavily truncated version and I honestly can't recall if it is that short in the film or whether part of the middle has been cut to keep this clip down to a reasonable length." Well I can't watch the clip, it doesn't work for me, but it's true that the whale speech is shorter in the movie even if I wouldn't use the words "heavily truncated". This is a two hours movie, so there are a lot of things in the movie which are shorter than in the books and radio series. Surprising? Not really.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Win tickets for movie premiere + first and exclusive clip on + Nick and Garth' interview in Time Out + transcript chat with Robbie Stamp

The guys at have a great competition on their website. You can win one of 20 tickets for the movie premiere in London next week the 20th April. Of course, the competition is open only to UK residents. scoop the first clip from the h2g2 movie. You'll see how Zaphod, Ford and Arthur can have painful ideas.

Garth and Nick are interviewed in this week "Time Out". The interview is also online here. They say interesting things about Zaphod's second head and Vogons... There is also a good pic of Rob Greig Hitchhiker's production notebook.

Jenz, from kindly published a transcript from the chat with Robbie Stamp a few days ago.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Chat with Robbie Stamp this evening on + 4 exclusive online docs + other movie reviews


Robbie Stamp, executive producer and friend of Douglas, will chat with you on website tomorrow evening, at 7.30 UK time. To join the chat, simply go to the login page and enter the VIP chat, which is now open to submit questions.


There is an exclusive feature on docs and interviews with Garth, Robbie and the actors talking different things in the movie. The first doc is about the guide. Along with some footage of the guide in action. (Thanks to Nick Moresco and Denis Gray for the news): There is also now a doc about aliens in the Hitchhiker's movie with a lot of interviews and footage. And another doc about the Universe. And finally another one about the robot MARVIN. These are great short docs with a lot of interesting footage. In fact the only annoying thing is the FM rock music you can hear during the doc.


MJ Simpson, one of the best known Hitchhiker's fans in the universe has published on his website an incredibly bad review about the Hitchhiker's movie. There were "extraordinary laudatory reviews" (to quote MJ) and now there is an extraodinary butchering review ;) MJ has published a long review here; a shorter one (& spoiler free) here.

Maybe you'll feel a little depressed after this review so I invite you to read other reviews about the movie : Jim Lynn and Sean Sollé (both from or this one on my forum. Kevin Davies, an Hitchhiker's legend already interviewed on this website, also loves the movie. There is also a long and more balance review here.

You all know that i like very much the movie if you've read my review; but please remember that there is no definitive review of the Hitchhiker's movie; and that you'll soon be able to make your own judgment. Reviews published are right now about 80% positive so there is not much to be depressed about.


At last, according to MJ, there is an article avalaible online on Variety website, entitled "Comic vision picks up 'Hitchhiker' Cult classic puts less hi-fi in its sci fi to keep quirky Brit tone" here.

Friday, April 8, 2005

articles in The Guardian & L'écran Fanstastique + win tickets in UK and US + reviews on and Floor42 + official polish website


The British Daily The Guardian has published today a good and long article about the Hitchhiker's movie. The article focuses on the struggle to get h2g2 on the screen (thanks to Perkin Jones). You can read it online here. You can also find a long interview with Robbie in this month' Starbust. (Thanks to MJ Simpson for this news)

I also wanted to spot the first french big article about the movie. It has been published in this month' "L'écran fantastique" (the oldest fantastic movie mag, it's been created in 1969). It's four page long, rather good, has quotes from Gart Jennings et Nick Goldsmith. Of course there are a few mistakes and the picture is introduced like a crossover of "Time bandits", "Winnie the Pooh", "Men in black" and "Galaxy quest". It has been writen by an english journalist Andrew Osmond and the translation is sometimes erratic.


If you live in the UK you can win tickets to a preview of Hitchhiker's guide movie the 27th April. You can win one of 200 pairs of tickets in one of 10 selected cinemas across the UK thanks to Orange. All you have to do is to answer to a very difficult question : "which author has created the Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy"? If you answer Arthur C. Clarke or JK Rowlins you'd better get our of here!!
If you live in the US, thanks to Matchflick, you can win passes for a promotional screening (NY only), tickets, posters, t-shirts,...


Jenz (from and Beeline (from Floor 42) were at the same movie preview than me. And they wrote their own reviews about the movie.

Jenz says that "Did I like it? Yes I did, very much. Did I laugh? Oh, yes indeed I did. Very much so.... So, was there anything disappointing about the movie? Yes, there are one or two details that I thought did not come across or should have been reconsidered in the movie, and that's a bit sad.... In relation to this fans anticipations and hopes, which have been huge and demanding since the beginning of this project, and also considering that it was an unfinished rough cut and not the final product, I give it 3,5 bordering to 4 out of 5".

According to Beeline ""It was simply mind-blowing! I can honestly say that I have never seen a movie that is anything even remotely approaching a similarity to Hitchhiker's .... I won't pretend it's perfect (I couldn't anyway - it was very much a rough-cut edit that the nice people at BAFTA showed us), but it would be hard to imagine how much better it could possibly be given the kind of thing Hitchhiker's is."


There is now an official h2g2 movie website for Poland. It's here. And don't forget to visit to the first Polish Hitchhiker's website

Tuesday, April 5, 2005

Character's blogs+ Empire review online + Vogon poetry at the BBC + stills on ING


That's a pure marketing operation but three of the h2g2 main characters have now their own blogs. Arthur, Zaphod and Marvin will certainly post some stuff on a regular basis till the movie release date and of course you can react to their posts like in a typical blog thing.


The UK magazine has published online its review about the Hitchhiker's movie. It's got 4 stars out of 5 (in fact the only one movie to get 5 stars this month is not a brand new movie - it's Otto Preminger's "Anatomy of a murder"!) : "Mostly harmless. A very British, very funny sci-fi misadventure that's guaranteed to win converts. Want to go to The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe now, please'. In the paper version, you've got also a six page feature about the movie. The only one mag till now to have such a feature about the Hitchhiker's movie is US mag Starlog (and if someone has got it, it would be great if he could email me and tell me what's inside).


Stephen Fry appeared a few days ago on the BBC chat show Parkinson. And we saw a good scene with Jeltz reading his poem to Arthur and Ford.


It's always a good time when ING publishes pics from the movie. Because they are high rez and well chosen. Here are the three new ones. It would even be better if there was not that many ads on the damn site!

Saturday, April 2, 2005

02nd April 05 : Hitchhiker's movie soundtrack is now on Itunes ! + Free screening of the movie in UK + other news


Incredible but true : the CD will be avalaible at the end of the months, but Itunes (Apple online music store) already features the complete soundtrack record with 33 songs. Joby Talbot has wrote of course most of them and you've got other songs by Betty Wright and Al Green. You've got instrumental music and vocal songs. The more amazing one is "Reasons to be miserable" sung by Stephen Fry! This is a reprise of one of the old Marvin's songs sung by Stephen Moore (the original Marvin in the radio and TV series) which were released in 1981.

You can go on Itunes and listen to extracts of all the songs. Or download some tracks or the whole record for a good price. To go on Itunes, you need to download the free program on Apple (for Apple OS X and Windows 2000 and XP). Then go on the online shop once installed and search for 'Hitchhiker's guide" in your local online shop (there are several versions of Itunes store according the country you live in).

1 "The Dolphins"(1:00) Joby Talbot
2 "So Long & Thanks for All the Fish" (2:26) Hilary Summers, Kemi Ominiyi & The R'SVP Voices
3 "Arthur Wakes Up" (2:53) Joby Talbot
4 "Shoo-Rah! Shoo-Rah!" (2:51) Betty Wright
5 "Here I Am (Come and Take Me)" (4:13) Al Green
6 "Destruction of Earth" (1:31) Joby Talbot
7 "Journey of the Sorcerer" (1:15) Joby Talbot
8 "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" (1:14) Joby Talbot
9 "Inside the Vogon Ship" (2:46) Joby Talbot
10 "Vogon Poetry" (0:48) Joby Talbot
11 "Space" (1:00) Joby Talbot
12 "Vogon Command Centre" (1:00) Joby Talbot
13 "Trillian & Arthur Reunited" (1:45) Joby Talbot
14 "Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster" (1:40) Joby Talbot
15 "Tea In Space" (1:08) Joby Talbot
16 "Deep Thought" (2:06) Joby Talbot
17 "Infinite Improbability Drive" (0:55) Joby Talbot
18 "Viltvodle Street Music" (0:45) Joby Talbot
19 "Huma's Hymn" (1:02) Joby Talbot
20 "Capture of Trillian" (4:27) Joby Talbot
21 "Vogcity" (1:02) Joby Talbot
22 "Love" (1:44) Joby Talbot
23 "The Whale" (1:53) Joby Talbot
24 "Planet Factory Floor" (2:29) Joby Talbot
25 "Earth Mark II" (6:29) Joby Talbot
26 "Magic Moments" (2:37) Perry Como
27 "Shootout" (3:23) Joby Talbot
28 "Finale" (1:50) Joby Talbot
29 "Blast Off" (0:16) Joby Talbot
30 "So Long & Thanks for All the Fish" (Reprise) (2:54) Neil Hannon
31 "Careless Talk" (1:42) Joby Talbot
32 "Vote Beeblebrox" (3:27) Andy Dunlop, Chuck Norman, Douglas Payne, Fran Balke, Hannah Thomas, Miggy Barradas & Neil Hannon
33 "Reasons to Be Miserable" (His Name Is Marvin) (3:37) Stephen Fry


Empire offers free screenings of the Hitchhiker's movie on Tuesday, April 26 at Vue Cinemas around the country, two days before the official nationwide release. If you live in UK you can miss such an offer ! All details here


The incredibly hyperactive executive producer Robbie Stamp has been interviewed by AOL. You can read AOL's article with a lot of quotes from Robbie here. There are a few new details about the movie which you certainly want to discover.


Duke of reports that the documentary "Life, the Universe and Douglas Adams", a very good documentary made two years ago by Rick Mueeler and Joel Greengrass, and narrated by Neil Gaiman, could possibly be included on the future Hitchhiker's movie DVD.

Friday, April 1, 2005

Zaphod to have two permanent heads after all! + Robbie Stamp to make a cameo as Wowbagger the Infinitely prolonged!


It´s official: The movie makers have decided to give Zaphod Beeblebrox a permanent second head - the artificial head from the BBC series! This was confirmed last night by Robbie Stamp, executive producer and long-time friend of Douglas Adams, during the Q&A at Popcorn Taxi in Sydney, Australia. "After getting so much negative feedback from old fans we have seen reason", he explained this unexpected move. "Apparently people like things to stay the way they once were, so we digitally added Mark Wing-Davies´ false head to Sam Rockwell´s shoulder. It wasn´t hard to do and the effect is as good as in the TV series. That should please even die-hard fans!"


This exciting bit of news was revealed last night during Robbie Stamp´s presentation and Q&A at Popcorn Taxi in Sydney, Australia. The executive producer and long-time friend of Douglas Adams revealed that he´d make a short appearance as Wowbagger, an alien with the task to insult the whole population of the galaxy, one by one and in alphabetical order. "Wowbagger has a short scene during the destruction of the earth scene where he´ll appear to insult a Disney executive.", Robbie Stamp explained. This sequence was apparently added recently after Disney insisted on keeping the rights to a "Hitchhiker´s" ride in Disney World, Orlando, Florida.