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Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Report: January 23, 2011

Zonk Went the Strings of My Heart 

The debut of rom-com No Strings Attached led weekend box office sales with an estimated $20.3 million. It was the session’s only national debut in what proved to be a depressed marketplace.

Also new were several late year Oscar hopefuls. The endurance saga No Way Back struggled to a disappointing $1.3 million while there were encouraging results for the downsizing tale The Company Men of $720,000 at 106 venues. There were also good returns for Bollywood’s Dhobi Ghat of $410,000 from 79 screens. Canadian Oscar submission Incendies bow in the country’s English sector to a not very stellar $33,800 at 19 sites.

Box office revenues dipped 19% from the prior weekend and a more severe 27% from 2010. Last year Avatar remained firmly on top in its 38th day of release with $34.9 million with the opening of Legion trailing at $17.5 million.

Hardly the sort of thing to bolster Natalie Portman’s Oscar prospects, No Strings Attached was roundly dismissed by the nation’s critics and opened to dullish response. Exit polls skewed decidedly female and indifferent audience feedback suggests a steep second weekend drop. Last weekend freshmen The Green Hornet and The Dilemma both experienced hard hits in their sophomore sessions.

With Oscar’s finalists unveiling in two days it was good for the grosses of The King’s Speech, The Fighter and Black Swan. Box office was also first rate for True Grit which has to date been largely passed over by critics and industry honor rolls and pundits predict no variance from the Academy. But its $138 million domestic gross to date outpaces all the presumed contendors.

Though the Oscar folk won’t be altering its award schedule this year or next, one can expect the issue to crop up again in 2013. The awards continue to be anticlimactic and, worse, capricious with voting members prone to vote for the unexpected … they too worn down by a bone crushing consensus that augers for inevitability for its winner’s roster. The inarguable situation has to create a heightened sense of anxiety for all those associated with The Social Network and make the likes of Colin Firth and Christian Bale ponder whether they’ve worn out their current welcome and should refrain from perceived campaigning in the coming weekss

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Title Distributor Gross (average) % change * Theaters Cume
No Strings Attached Par 20.3 (6,730) NEW 3018 20.3
The Green Hornet Sony 18.2 (5,080) -46% 3584 63.6
Dilemma Uni 9.7 (3,290) -46% 2943 33.3
The King’s Speech Weinstein Co. 8.3 (4,960) -9% 1680 57.8
True Grit Par 7.8 (2,260) -29% 3464 138.5
Black Swan Fox Searchlight 6.1 (2,540) -27% 2407 83.5
The Fighter Par/Alliance 4.5 (1,960) -12% 2275 73
Little Fockers Uni 4.3 (1,460) -40% 2979 141.1
Yogi Bear WB 4.0 (1,580) -26% 2510 88.8
Tron: Legacy BV 3.8 (1,890) -33% 2018 163.4
Tangled BV 3.1 (1,690) -21% 1860 186.4
Season of the Witch Relativity 2.2 (960) -52% 2307 22.1
Country Strong Sony 2.1 (1,470) -42% 1441 16.9
Chronicles of Narnia: Dawn Treader Fox 1.3 (1,180) -42% 1135 100.6
The Way Back Newmarket 1.3 (1,950) NEW 678 1.3
Gulliver’s Travels Fox 1.2 (1,060) -45% 1100 40
Harry Potter & the Deathly Hollows, Part 1* WB .95 (1,310) -32% 725 291.4
Blue Valentine Weinstein Co. .93 (3,840) -33% 242 4.5
The Tourist Sony .91 (1,040) -46% 875 65.9
The Company Men Weinstein Co. .72 (6,790)   106 0.72
Megamind Par .59 (1,840) -11% 320 146.4
Barney’s Version eOne/Sony Classics .48 (6,190) 35% 77 1
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films)   $102.40      
% Change (Last Year)   -27%      
% Change (Last Week)   -19%      
Also debuting/expanding          
Dhobi Ghat UTV .41 (5,140)   79 0.41
Another Year Sony Classics .22 (4,930) 98% 45 0.73
Somewhere Focus .20 (2,440) -19% 83 1.3
Rabbit Hole Lions Gate .18 (1,760) -36% 101 1.3
The Illusionist Sony Classics 85,700 (5,710) 42% 15 0.38
Incendies eOne/Seville 33,800 (1,780)   19 2.5
Evangelion: 2.0 11 Arts 24,600 (1,640)   15 0.02
Un Vie Qui Commence Alliance 20,700 (1,480)   14 0.02
L’Autre Dumas Seville 11,800 (1,450)   8 0.01
The Woodmans Kino Lorber 5,400 (5,400)   1 0.01

One Response to “Weekend Report: January 23, 2011”

  1. IOv3 says:

    Yeah, you know The Social Network is not going to win right? Seriously, talk to David about this.

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Klady

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Tsangari: With my next film, White Knuckles, it comes with a budget — it’s going to be a huge new world for me. As always when I enter into a new thing, don’t you wonder how it’s going to be and how much of yourself you are going to have to sacrifice? The ballet of all of this. I’m already imaging the choreography — not of the camera, but the choreography of actually bringing it to life. It is as fascinating as the shooting itself. I find the producing as exciting as the directing. The one informs the other. There is this producer-director hat that I constantly wear. I’ve been thinking about these early auteurs, like Howard Hawks and John Ford and Preston Sturges—all of these guys basically were hired by the studio, and I doubt they had final cut, and somehow they had films that now we can say they had their signatures.  There are different ways of being creative within the parameters and limitations of production. The only thing you cannot negotiate is stupidity.
Filmmaker: And unfortunately, there is an abundance of that in the world.
Tsangari: This is the only big risk: stupidity. Everything else is completely worked out in the end.
~ Chevalier‘s Rachel Athina Tsangari

“The middle-range movies that I was doing have largely either stopped being made, or they’ve moved to television, now that television is a go-to medium for directors who can’t get work in theatricals, because there are so few theatricals being made. But also with the new miniseries concept, you can tell a long story in detail without having to cram it all into 90 minutes. You don’t have to cut the characters and take out the secondary people. You can actually put them all on a big canvas. And it is a big canvas, because people have bigger screens now, so there’s no aesthetic difference between the way you shoot a movie and the way you shoot a TV show.

“Which is all for the good. But what’s happened in the interim is that theatrical movies being a spectacle business are now either giant blockbuster movies that run three hours—even superhero movies run three hours, they used to run like 58 minutes!—and the others, which are dysfunctional family independent movies or the slob comedy or the kiddie movie, and those are all low-budget. So the middle ground of movies that were about things, they’re just gone. Or else they’re on HBO. Like the Bryan Cranston LBJ movie, which years ago would’ve been made for theaters.

“You’ve got people like Paul Schrader and Walter Hill who can’t get their movies theatrically distributed because there’s no market for it. So they end up going to VOD, and VOD is a model from which no one makes any money, because most of the time, as soon as they get on the site, they’re pirated. So the whole model of the system right now is completely broken. And whether or not anybody’s going to try to fix, or if it even can be fixed, I don’t know. But it’s certainly not the same business that I got into in the ’70s.”
~ Joe Dante

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