'Girls' Doesn't Quite Run the World

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The Call Sheet sifts through the day's glut of Hollywood news to find the stories even non-industry types care about. Today: a wildly talked-out about show wasn't watched that much, James Cameron is huge in China, and the Tribeca Film Festival picks some strange judges.

The much-ballyhooed Hot in Cleveland prequel Girls premiered on HBO last night in the wake of mountains of breathless blog coverage, and after all of that it did... just OK. The show raked in 1.1 million viewers, lower than Eastbound & Down's season/series finale, which came in at 1.6 million. So it's not exactly an enormous TV phenomenon, despite what internet coverage might suggest. It's just a modestly viewed HBO comedy. Oh well. That's that. Guess we'll just... Talk about something else now, I guess. Hm. Um... Anyone, I dunno, read a good book recently or anything? [Entertainment Weekly]

From a fizzle to a sizzle! (Shoot me.) James Cameron's big rerelease The Abyss: Now Even Longer Titanic 3D has earned the biggest opening for any film ever in China. Splish-splashing into theaters all across China this weekend, the film earned a whopping (for China) $67 million, well ahead of expectations. The big opening beats the previous record of $56 million, earned last year by Your Highness. No, just kidding, it was Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Well done, Mr. Cameron! Though, should we be concerned that the Chinese apparently love to watch Americans die in horrible accidents? Suspicious, don't you think? [The Hollywood Reporter]

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Ha. The Tribeca Film Festival, which begins on Wednesday, has announced the judges for its various competitions, and among respectable names like Susan Sarandon, Mike Newell, and Patricia Clarkson are some less likely choices. Like, won't you be so proud when you are awarded the Best New Narrative Director by... Kellan Lutz? Nothing says film savvy and artistic integrity quite like the Oscar statue made of fried chicken that is Kellan Lutz! Or how about getting your Documentary Short award from none other than, y'know, Justin Bieber's manager? I mean, that really says something about your documentary short, doesn't it? That Justin Bieber's manager/part time swagger coach thinks it's tight. Brave, strong choices, Tribeca. [The New York Times]

Emily Blunt has been hired to fight aliens in a new Tom Cruise movie. So, it's come to this. Finally Emily Blunt must pick up arms against Tom Cruise and save us all. What's that? She's fighting alongside Tom Cruise? Because he's "not an alien"? Aha. Hm. OK. The film is called All You Need Is Kill and is about a guy who has to keep repeating the same day, a day of battling aliens, over and over again until he gets it right. Emily will be a soldier who fights with him. (Psst, Emily. Maybe you're the one repeating the day and the trick to getting it right is that you have to kill the real alien, and he's, y'know, right next to you. Just a guess!) [Variety]

Shawn Levy, director of Real Steel and the pilot of TV's Pepper Dennis, has acquired the rights to the upcoming book by Time goofball Joel Stein. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Shawn Levy doing Joel Stein. That's... Well, that's gonna be something. Even better? The book is called Man Made: A Stupid Quest for Masculinity and is about "a guy trying to learn how to be a man so he can be a better role model for his infant son." So that ought to be terrific, huh? Lots of dude man jokes from Joel Stein all shaped and guided by Just Married director Shawn Levy. Look out, China! Here's your next record-breaker. [Entertainment Weekly]

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