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The Zocalo Today

Wordle Welcome and thank you for dropping by. Babylon 5 brought many of us together -- and it remains with us, despite the fact that is no longer in production. The good thing is that the internet gives a LOT of ways to stay in touch. Don't be shy. Join in the discussion today or drop by Facebook or Twitter.

If you have questions or items for the news, drop me a line at



Closing out the troubled summer at the North American box office, James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy easily ruled the Labor Day holiday, earning a victorious $22.2 million in its fifth weekend for domestic total of $280 million. It will even break the curse that has plagued other summer tentpoles and hit $300 million domestically.

Globally, the Marvel Studios and Disney event pic has earned $553.6 million.

New Labor Day weekend entries As Above, So Below and The November Man did only modest business, coming in No. 5 and No. 6 behind Guardians, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, If I Stay and R-rated comedy Let's Be Cops with $10.3 million and $10.2 million, respectively. November Man, opening Wednesday, did a total $11.9 million in its six-day debut.

Hollywood is more than ready to say goodbye to one of the most disappointing summers in memory, although some prospered, such as Disney and market-leader Fox.

North American revenue for the season came in at an estimated $4.05 billion, marking an eight-year low and, when accounting for inflation, a 17-year low. And revenue is down 15 percent from last year's record haul of $4.75 billion, the biggest year-over-year decline that anyone can remember. Even Labor Day, never a big moviegoing holiday, was down more than 14 percent from last year. Summer attendance was also down by more than 5 percent.

Guardians has been one of the summer's few bright spots and is now the top-grossing film of 2014 to date domestically, eclipsing the $259.8 million earned by fellow Marvel and Disney tentpole Captain America: The Winter Soldier. And international returns remain strong, helping to make up for the gap for many films.

From Legendary Entertainment, As Above, So Below skewed notably younger, with 65 percent of the audience under the age of 25. The audience was split evenly in terms of gender.

The psychological thriller cost a mere $5 million to make, and follows a group of explorers who discover dark forces when they dive into the catacombs that lie beneath the streets of Paris. Universal is releasing the film, which targeted younger consumers with an aggressive digital campaign.

From director Roger Donaldson, The November Man follows an ex-CIA agent (Brosnan) who is brought back for one more mission and finds himself pitted against his former pupil. The movie, returning Brosnan in a James Bond-like role, skewed notably older, with 85 percent of ticket buyers over the age of 25.

The $20 million-plus movie was made and financed by The Solution Entertainment Group, Palmstar Media Capital and Merced Media Partners. Olga Kurylenko and Luke Bracey also star in November Man, which Relativity acquired for $3 million. Poor reviews likely November Man, although audiences liked it better, giving it a B+ CinemaScore. As Above, So Below earned a withering C- CinemaScore.

For the nostalgic set, Sony celebrated the 30th anniversary of Ivan Reitman's Ghostbusters by releasing the classic supernatural comedy in 784 theaters before the anniversary edition comes out on Blu-ray.

Among more limited releases, Spanish-language venture Pantelion and Lionsgate launched biopic Cantinflas in 382 locations to a pleasing $3.3 million. The movie stars Oscar Jaenda as Cantinflas, Mexico's greatest and most beloved comedy star of all time. Cantinflas opens in Mexico in September.

Cantinflas earned an A CinemaScore, and Pantelion is hoping it becomes nearly as successful as Instructions Not Included, the top grossing Spanish-language film of all time in North America. Among indie films, Jon Favreau's Chef crossed the $30 million mark at the domestic box office as it re-expanded nationwide, cooking up a sweet victory for the filmmaker and Open Road Films.

John Carney's Begin Again also took advantage of the Labor Day holiday to once again expand. The Weinstein Co. grossed $1.1 million for the four-day holiday for a domestic total of $15.6 million.

Here are the estimated top 10 films for the four-day Labor Day weekend at the domestic box office:

Title, Weeks in Release/Theater Count, Studio, Weekend Total, Percentage Change, Cume
1. Guardians of the Galaxy, 5/3,462, Disney/Marvel, $22.2 million, +29%, $280.5 million
2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, 4/3,543, Paramount, $15.7 million, -6%, $166.4 million
3. If I Stay, 2/3,003, Warner Bros./New Line/MGM, $111.6 million, -26%, $32.2 million
4. Let's Be Cops, 3/3,010, 20th Century Fox, $10.6 million, -2%, $59.7 million
5. As Above, So Below, 1/2,640, Universal/Legendary, $10.3 million
6. The November Man, 1/2,772, Relativity, $10.2 million, $11.9 million
7. When the Game Stands Tall, 2/2,673, Sony, $8 million, -5%, $18.7 million
8. The Giver, 3/2,805, The Weinstein Co./Walden, $6.3 million, +7%, $33.2 million
9. The Hundred-Foot Journey, 4/1,918, Disney/DreamWorks, $6.3 million, +19%, $41.1 million
10. The Expendables 3, 3/2,564, Lionsgate/Millennium, $4.6 million, -30%, $34.2 million

A new featurette for The Maze Runner has debuted, outlining the daily drill for those trapped in the Glade.

"Every day, the Maze Runners follow the same procedure," Ki Hong Lee explains to Dylan O'Brien, as he notes the importance of the map room, section assignments and gear. "Come back before the doors close," he concludes of the rules. "If you survive, we do it all again the next day." As for those who don't, well, we already know what happens to them.

The Fox film centers on Thomas (O'Brien), a teenager who wakes up in a region by roughly 50 other boys and surrounded by a deadly maze. He has no memory of his past and does not know why he has been brought there.

The big-screen adaptation of James Dashner's dystopian novel, directed by Wes Ball, also stars Kaya Scodelario, Will Poulter, Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Patricia Clarkson, among others.

The Maze Runner hits theaters Sept. 19.

Lucasfilm and Disney XD have released a new short from "Star Wars Rebels" which shows Ezra finding a downed TIE fighter on the plains of Lothal. The young rebel opens the ship's hatch -- pretending to help the ungrateful Imperial pilot -- and leaves with a few souvenirs.

"Star Wars Rebels" continues the epic tradition of the legendary "Star Wars" saga with all-new exciting, action-packed adventures. It is a dark time in the galaxy, as the evil Galactic Empire tightens its grip of power from world to world. As the series begins, Imperial forces have occupied a remote planet, ruling with an iron fist and ruining the lives of its people. The clever and motley crew of the starship Ghost is amongst a select few who are brave enough to stand against the Empire. Together, this ragtag group will face threatening new villains, encounter colorful adversaries, embark on thrilling adventures and become heroes with the power to ignite a rebellion.

The television debut of "Star Wars Rebels: Spark of Rebellion" is set for Friday, October 3 (9:00 p.m., ET/PT in the U.S.) on Disney Channels around the world, ushering in the series "Star Wars Rebels" beginning Monday, October 13 (9:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney XD.


Be sure to check out The Zocalo Today on Facebook as well as at ISN News: The Zocalo Today on Yahoo Groups.

Did you miss the news from yesterday -- or earlier in the week. Catch up by going to the August News Archive. I have broken up the huge file into months to make it easier to scan through. It will bring you up to date for all that has been going on in the world of science fiction. Go to:
August News.
July News.
June News.
May News.

7:30pm on AMC
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines
Now 25, Connor (Nick Stahl) lives with no record of his existence -- no way he can be traced by Skynet. Out of the shadows of the future steps the T-X (Kristanna Loken), Skynet's most sophisticated cyborg killing machine yet. Now Connor's only hope for survival is the Terminator (Arnold Schwarzenegger), his mysterious former assassin. Together, they must triumph over the technologically superior T-X and forestall the looming threat of Judgment Day.

8:00pm on CBS
Season 11, Episode 18: Crescent City
When a former NCIS agent is found dead in New Orleans, Gibbs and a colleague reunite to investigate.

8:00pm on The CW
Season 2, Episode 20: Seeing Red
When the mirakuru sends Roy into a blind rage, Oliver must find a way to stop him.

8:00pm on Syfy
Face Off
Season 7, Episode 6: Wizard of Wonderland
Teams must re-imagine characters from "The Wonderful World of Oz."

9:00pm on CBS
Season 11, Episode 19: Crescent City: Part II
Pride and Gibbs follow leads after evidence suggests the Privileged Killer has a copycat.

9:00pm on The CW
Season 9, Episode 19: Alex Annie Alexis Ann
Sheriff Mills calls Sam and Dean after a run-in with a vampire.

9:00pm on Syfy
Face Off
Judge Match
The judges pair up with two team members to compete in creating a pair of living chess pieces.

10:00pm on CBS
NCIS: Los Angeles
Season 5, Episode 22: One More Chance
Software for an unmanned aerial vehicle goes missing and the lead engineer's daughter disappears.

10:00pm on Syfy
Wizard Wars
Season 1, Episode 3: Rated Arrrgh!
Objects including tarot cards and a pirate costume must be used to create mind-blowing routines.


The killer Thomas Parnell's control over the Terminator army has brought both Skynet and the human resistance to their knees. With all of John Connor's other allies fallen or displaced in time, only he and the resurrected Marcus Wright remain to stand against this psychotic oppressor!

Just released: the cover for Superman: Earth One volume 3, which comes out February/March. This volume ties both of the previous books together, answering such questions as who pulled the trigger on Krypton, how the aliens who attacked him in book one were recruited, and deals with the consequences of his decision to knock over (for the greater good) a tyrant running a small island nation. In my admittedly subjective view, this volume is the best of the three.

Here is a quote from J. Michael Straczynski about emotions.
I had this theory that the more important and intimate the emotion, the fewer words are required to express it.

First it's in dating: "Will you go out with me?" Six words.
"Honey, I care for you." Five words.
"You matter to me." Four words.
"I love you." Three words.
"Marry me." Two words.
But what's left? What's the one most important and intimate word you can ever say to somebody? It's "goodbye."

While Michael O'Hare (Sinclair), Andreas Katsulas (G'Kar), Rick Biggs (Dr. Franklin), Tim Choate (Zathras) and Jeff Conoway (Zach Allen) are no longer with us, we will not forget their wonderful personalities and talent -- as well as their significant contributions to the BABYLON 5 universe. Be sure to visit In Memory Of for more information about memorial efforts.
Until we met again, in a place where no shadows fall.


Judy Levitt (Mrs. Walter Koenig) - September 1 (Unnamed Psi Cop in "A Race Through Dark Places" and "Dust to Dust")
Pat Tallman - September 4
Cinzia Zanetti - September 5
Robin Atkin Downes - September 6
Mira Furlan - September 7
Walter Koenig - September 14
Paul Williams - September 19
Robert Rusler - September 20
Gary Cole - September 20
Bear Burge - September 23
Jason Carter - September 23
Manny Case - September 23

Have I missed anyone? If you know the birthday of someone connected with Babylon 5, pass the information along. We want to include everyone in our Happy Birthday Wishes.

Here's a project you may want to get involved with!
About the Project:
New Starship Foundation, the nonprofit behind the Enterprise-D Bridge Restoration, with board members including the greatest talents in science fiction, presents THE HOLLYWOOD SCIENCE FICTION MUSEUM. This will be the first museum in the world to exclusively show the history of sci-fi films, TV, art and literature through props, sets and costumes, as well as show advancements in space travel and teach Real Science through Science Fiction. It will be an interactive museum with fully immersive environments and touch screens that will incorporate old and new footage from actors, filmmakers and NASA astronauts and scientists, and will present both the fact and fiction of sci-fi. This will eventually teach Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) based education in a fun new way to all ages. The museum will include exhibits from: Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, 2001, Alien, Metropolis, Thunderbirds, Firefly, Babylon 5, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate, Blake's 7, Ghostbusters, Farscape, The Time Machine, Godzilla, X-Men, Avengers, Superman, Planet of the Apes, Back to the Future, Day the Earth Stood Still, V, Batman, Six Million Dollar Man, Bionic Woman, Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers, as well as Fantasy like Lord of the Rings, Labyrinth, Legend, Munsters, Herbie the Love Bug, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Dark Crystal, Game of Thrones, Anime like Akira and Speed Racer, and anything else we can fit within our walls.

This Kickstarter is to acquire the funds to develop our 2015 Hollywood Sci Fi Museum, which will be smaller than the future museum, but still significant and unique. This "concept art" of the giant Millennium Falcon and Enterprise-D is for our 2018 Hollywood Sci Fi Museum.

Go to for more information.


John Hudgens has created many Babylon 5 videos, but I believe this is the most moving. It was first shown at the Phoenix Comic Con 20th Anniversary and honors many of the Babylon 5 family who have passed on.

Here is a link to John's Babylon 5 videos:

Richard Biggs memorial:

Andreas Katsulas memorial:

- This is the extended version that I did for Andreas' widow ater the original cut was released on the net. It's never been seen online until now.

For those of you who've never seen these, I hope you enjoy them - and for those that have (and emailed me many times over the years about releasing them), I hope they're as good as you remember. Working with Joe on these videos was one of the highlights of my career, and I'll be forever grateful to him for the doors these have opened for me. I'm proud to have them on my resume.

John Hudgens


Dates: September 12-14, 2014
Place: Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, Hawaii
Babylon 5 Guests: Pat Tallman, Claudia Christian, Walter Koenig
Other Guests from Stargate Atlantis, Battlestar Galactica, Games of Thrones and more
For more information, go to

Date: October 18, 2014
Place: Mac Daddys Family Entertainment Facility, Cape Carteret, NC
B5 Guests: Pat Tallman and Bill Blair
Pat will be a media signing guest. The facility located at 130 Golfin Dolphin Dr., Cape Carteret, NC 28584
For more information, go to

Dates: October 18-19, 2014
Place: Earls Court 2, Old Brompton Road, SW5 9TA
Guests: Katee Sackhoff, Nicola Bryant, Ralph Macchio, Christopher Cousins, Colin Baker, David Prowse and many more
For more information, go to

Spooky's Ultimate Horror Weekend
Dates: Oct. 24-26, 2014
Place: Doubletree Universal Studios, Orlando, FL 32819
Michael Rooker - Walking Dead & Jeremiah; Stephen Pearcy - Ratt; Dee Wallace Stone - ET & Cuju; Tyler Mane - Halloween & X Men, and Tobin Bell - Dexter
For more information, go to

Dates: October 31-November 2, 2014
Place: Mediterranean Conference Center, Valletta, Malta
Guests: Richard Piccardo, Dirk Benedict,Silvester McCoy and many more
For more information, go to

Dates: January 16-18, 2015 Place: Miami Airport Convention Center
Comic Guests: John Romita, Jr., Allen Bellman, Adelso Corona, Greg Kirkpatrick, Dan Scott
For more information, go to

Dates: December 5-7, 2014
Place: Monroeville Convention Center, Monroeville, PA
Guests: Linda Blair, Henry Winkler, Michael Dorn, Peter Mayhew, Terry Farrell, John Wesley Shippe, and more.
For more information, go to

Dates: May 21-24, 2015
Place: Maritim Hotel, Dusseldorf, Germany
Guests: Sam Jones, Aaron Douglas, Grant Bowler and more to come
For more information, go to

Wizard World Conventions has a large number of events planned for the year. Be sure to visit the page to see if there is a convention of interest near you.

Creation Entertainment has a large number of conventions planned for the next several months. They include stars from TWILIGHT, SUPERNATURAL, STARGATE, FARSCAPE, XENA, SERENITY, STAR TREK, etc. Check out their calendar to see if one will be in your neighborhood soon. Don't miss their Videos page as well. It is full of some priceless video from a number of conventions.

Be sure to visit the referenced sites to see if there have been changes in dates/guests attending. Visit our Convention Calendar for a full listing of upcoming conventions.


The front page of the The Zocalo Today changes daily, so be sure to check the back issues to make sure that you haven't missed anything IMPORTANT! I hope you will become a regular visitor to The Zocalo Today!

Take care and I look forward to hearing from you.
Sandra Bruckner (
ISN News: The Zocalo Today
Copyright - SBruckner, 1999-2014

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