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What's the Deal With Bee Movie?

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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BETTER AT NOTHING? Seinfeld

Dreamworks's latest animated atrocity, Bee Movie, opens up today and America rejoices. Not because they actually want to see the Jerry Seinfeld fueled cute-fest, but because it marks the end of the in-your-face, over the top, incredibly irritating publicity campaign for the hyped cartoon.

"They're definitely pulling out all the stops," says Jeff Bock of Exhibitor Relations. Those "stops" include nearly killing Seinfeld at Cannes and even plugging the movie during a guest spot on 30 Rock.

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Seinfeld's ubiquity hasn't sat well with some of his fans, and given the mediocre reviews Bee Movie's racking up, we might have us a case of colony collapse disorder this fall.

Despite the apparent Jerry overload, Bock thinks Dreamworks knows what it's doing. "They're doing a smart thing in advertising him. They know the kids are going to show up, but he's getting the older adults. If they can get that audience, like the Simpsons movie did, I wouldn't be surprised for it to do really well."

How well is "really well" for a movie that cost $150 million make? "For this film to do $50 to $60 million, that wouldn't surprise me," says Bock. "You have to consider a opening of at least $40 million." He added that Shrek-type numbers, $100 million on opening weekend, seem unachievable. But if Bee Movie does hit that mark, he says, we'd have a franchise on our hands. And lots more Seinfeld in our lives.

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