Celebrities remember Ol' Blue Eyes Plus: A monster opening for "Godzilla"

Frank Sinatra will be mourned in a funeral mass today at the Good Shepard Catholic Church in Beverly Hills. As fans around the world continue to pay tribute to the singer, who died of a heart attack last Thursday at the age of 82, six famous fans told Entertainment Weekly about Sinatra’s importance as a musician and as a man.

“Right from the beginning, he was there with the truth of things in his voice. His music had a profound influence on me, whether I knew it or not. He was one of the very few singers who sang without a mask.” –Bob Dylan

“He?s the benchmark by which originality, popularity, virtuosity and legend will forever be judged in American musical culture. Though many were called, of all that ever challenged, not one could conquer or eclipse the knocked-out, coo-coo, groovy blinding light from the Chairman of the Board?s supernova star on its journey through this universe.” –Dwight Yoakam

“Frank always had the three Cs — consistency, concentration and credibility. There is no one who had the sense of lyric, the phrasing, the intonation and most especially the role as Everyman as Frank Sinatra did.” –Mel Torme

“We have lost part of our capacity to self-reflect because Frank is gone. His music helped us understand our own lives more clearly because he was authentically honest about himself. I am so sad for all of us who are now without him.” –Shirley MacLaine

“Frank Sinatra was the 20th century. He was modern, he was complex, he had swing and attitude. He was the big bang of pop.” –Bono

“Tell Ol’ Blue Eyes to rest in peace. I got nothin’ but love for him.” –Snoop Doggy Dogg

A Monster Opening for “Godzilla”

As “Godzilla” invades theaters today, its place in the record books for highest-grossing opening weekend seems certain. The previous record-holder, “Jurassic Park: The Lost World,” took in $90.2 million over last year’s Memorial Day weekend. Not only will “Godzilla” debut on more screens (7,300 to “Lost World”‘s 6,000), but these theaters held paid “sneak previews” on Tuesday night, which gives the $120 million film an unofficial seven-day opening weekend. “The record has already been bought and paid for by the sheer number of screens,” says Entertainment Weekly assistant managing editor Mark Harris.

Experts seem united in their high opening predictions. Jae Kim of Paul Kagan Associates estimates a $90 million start, while the box office analysts at Reel Source expect $100 million. But after Memorial Day, the monster may turn meek. “It will be a blowout beginning, and a fast drop,” says Harris. “These action movies are targeted strongly to young men, who tend to go to movies they want to see in the first two weeks.” In fact, “Godzilla” seems likely to tread the same path as “The Lost World,” which made 40% of its total gross in its first weekend.

Another key factor: The novelty of oversize creatures wreaking havoc among humans is fading. “No matter how you slice it,” says Harris, “it’s still the third summer dinosaur movie in the last six years. There’s not the shock of the new like when ‘Jurassic Park’ opened.”

(Read more about Frank Sinatra. Or read about the making of “Godzilla.”)