Author Archives: Andy Burns

Don’t Be Weird, It’s Just Toronto’s Raina

Earlier this month, Indie 88 afternoon drive host Raina Douris was voted the best radio broadcaster in Toronto by NOW Magazine readers. For those of us in TO and who have been around the radio biz (which I have for quite a few years now), it’s a pretty awesome accolade. In my mind, it’s well-deserved. If we’re not listening to SiriusXM in our car on the ride home (and hey, we often are, since they pay the bills and satellite radio rules), we’ve got Indie 88 going. Though it’s only been broadcasting for a little over a year, the station is a fresh coat of paint on the alternative terrestrial radio format, and Raina’s a huge part of it. Plus, I like her as a person. We’ve met a handful of times, my favourite being a fun discussion about Talking Heads at a Toronto bar a few years ago. Oh, and did I mention she’s my daughter’s favourite DJ to boot.

Along with her day gig, Raina’s also a visual artist, and currently has a show going on at Fountain in downtown Toronto. I looked at her work at her website, liked what I saw, and sent her a message to see if she wanted to chat about her art, radio and more. She did, we did, and here’s what came out of our email conversation.

Raina-610x406

So, you’re the Queen of Indie Rock broadcasting in Toronto AND a visual artist – how’d that wind up happening?

Oooh! You flatter me! Thank you! Art was my first love. I’ve been drawing since I was old enough to hold a crayon. In grade one, we had to do a project on what we wanted to be when we grew up – I said “an artist.” I drew myself in a beret, holding a paint palette. But when it came time to choose a direction after I graduated from high school, and it came down to illustration vs. radio, I chose radio… partly because I knew that I would never stop making visual art on my own. And I haven’t.

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The Mockingjay Will Soar – Biff Bam Pop’s Box Office Predictions

Let’s be quick and to the point – we know The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 is going to top the box office with oodles of cash this weekend. How much will it bring is the only question. Here’s our prediction:

newmockingjay_largeBoth of the previous installments in the Jennifer Lawrence staring series of films have done gangbusters their opening weekends and Mockingjay should no doubt do the same. Look for a first place debut with $155 million, for the biggest opening of the year.

As for the rest of the top five, Big Hero 6 will be in second place with $21 million. Interstellar will be close behind with $19 million, with Dumb and Dumber To following in fourth place with $17 million. Gone Girl will close things out in fifth with $3 million.

So, to recap, here are our predictions:

1) The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 – $155 million
2) Big Hero 6 – $21 million
3) Interstellar – $19 million
4) Dumb and Dumber To – $17 million
5) Gone Girl – $3 million

Be sure to check back on Sunday to see how the weekend turns our!

Dumb And Dumber To To The Top – Biff Bam Pop’s Weekend Box Office Wrap-Up Report

It was an extremely tight race at the the box office this weekend, and things may shift slightly once the final numbers come in on Monday, but as of Sunday afternoon, the big new release managed to hit the top. Here’s what went down:

dumb-and-dumber-2-trailer-photos-2Despite a poor reaction from critics (not that it would matter with a film like this), Dumb and Dumber To had a strong debut, bringing in $38 million to claim the number one spot this weekend. It’s Jim Carrey’s biggest opening in over a decade, and proof that sometimes revisiting an old favourite can turn out financially well. I’m skeptical that the film will have legs, but it should manage to make close to $100 million before it ends its theatrical run.

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Andy Burns On…Jodorowsky’s Dune

Each week, one of Biff Bam Pop’s illustrious writers will delve into one of their favourite things. Perhaps it’s a movie or album they’ve carried with them for years. Maybe it’s something new that moved them and they think might move you too. Each week, a new subject, a new voice writing on…something they love.

Have I got the ultimate trip for you. Totally legal. Won’t leave you feeling jittery.

Jodorowsky’s Dune, man. Dig it.

Ok, that’s about all the hipster talk I can handle. But listen when I tell you that the documentary about the failed attempt at adapting Frank Herbert’s epic science fiction tale is one of the most compelling films I’ve ever seen. A movie that’s fingerprints are all over the science fiction of the last 40 years, even though it was never created.

That, my friends, is epic.

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Dumb and Dumber To Arrives – Biff Bam Pop’s Box Office Predictions

You’d have to be pretty dumb to think that the reunion of Jeff Daniels and Jim Carrey won’t find an audience this weekend; how well will the long-awaited sequel to a comedy classic perform? Here’s our prediction:

Dumb_and_Dumber_To_Poster

Dumb and Dumber To only took twenty years to make it to the big screen, and in the ensuing years, both Daniels and Carrey’s have seen their peaks and valleys. It’s been over a decade since Carrey’s opened a film to big box office, why Daniels’ greatest success has come via HBO’s The Newsroom. Long waits between sequels are a definite crapshoot, and Dumb and Dumber To is receiving some seriously scathing reviews, which won’t help its cause. However, except some goodwill for the film this weekend from nostalgic moviegoers. Look for a second place opening with $34 million.

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Biff Bam Popcast – The Babadook Edition

It’s a brand new edition of the Biff Bam Popcast! This time, we’re joined by Rue Morgue staff writer April Snellings to talk about the new horror film, The Babadook. April wrote the cover story on the film for Rue Morgue, so we’re lucky to have her with us for 40 minutes of horror talk. Also on this week’s panel – Glenn Walker, Steampunk Granny Marie Gilbert and Ms. Amanda Blue.

Big Hero 6 for the win! Biff Bam Pop’s Weekend Box Office Wrap-Up Report

It was an absolutely huge weekend at the box office, as the two top performing films combined to gross more than $100 million, a welcome number a after a lacklustre few months in theatres. Here’s what went down:

box1Big Hero 6, the new animated feature from Disney/Marvel had an outstanding debut, opening with $56 million to claim the number one spot this weekend. The family film has garnered rave reviews and has immediately captured the imagination of kids. Once again, Disney delivers big time.

Debuting in second place not far behind with $50 million is the new Christopher Nolan film, Interstellar. Reviews have been strong, big name actors like Matthew McConaughey and Anne Hathaway star and Nolan is an admired visionary, so it’s no surprise audiences responded in kind. Nolan’s last few films have been summer blockbusters, so it will be interesting to see how Interstellar holds up over the coming weeks.

As for the rest of the top five, Gone Girl was in third place with $6.1 million. Ouija followed in fourth with $6 million, while St. Vincent closed things out in fifth with $5.7 million.

So, to recap, here were our predictions:

1) Big Hero 6 – $42 million
2) Interstellar – $41 million
3) Ouija – $8 million
4) Fury – $7 million
5) Nightcrawler – $5 million

And here’s how the weekend turned out:

1) Big Hero 6 – $56 million
2) Interstellar – $50 million
3) Gone Girl – $6.1 million
4) Ouija – $ million
5) St. Vincent – $5.7 million

Next week sees the release of Dumb and Dumber To. Be sure to check back on Friday to see our predictions!

Oujia and Nightcrawler Do Battle – Biff Bam Pop’s Weekend Box Office Wrap-Up Report

It was a fairly uneventful weekend at the box office, as this week’s only notable new release really didn’t interest too many. Here’s what went down:

Ouija_2014_posterNightcrawler, the new thriller with Jake Gyllenhaal, debut with a lacklustre $10.909 million to hit the number on spot. Those decimal points are significant though, as Ouija was right behind it with $10.9 million. Things could change come Monday morning, but it’s clear that even with the good notices, Nightcrawler couldn’t get bums into seats this weekend.

As for the rest of the top five, Fury was in third place with $9.1 million. Gone Girl was in fourth place with $8.8 million, while The Book of Life closed things out in fifth place with $8.3 million.

So, to recap, here were our predictions:

1) Nightcrawler – $13 million
2) John Wick – $8.5 million
3) Fury – $7 million
4) Ouija – $6 million
5) Gone Girl – $5 million

And here’s how the weekend turned out:

1) Nightcrawler – $10.909 million
2) Ouija – $10.9 million
3) Fury – $9.1 million
4) Gone Girl – $8.8 million
5) The Book of Life – $8.3 million

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