Night Moves
MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

The Weekend Report

Tidal Bowl Sunday

Goodnight Irene!

Pounding rains that shuttered most of the multiplexes in the Northeast U.S. hobbled weekend box office. Grosses sank to levels that are normally associated with the man-made catastrophe Super Bowl; and new national releases hoping to cash in on late season largesse received a blank check.

The winner by default was The Help that retained the crown with an estimated $14.5 million. The distaff actioner Colombiana took the bridesmaids slot with $10.2 million. Even more disappointing were the fourth and fifth ranks for spooky Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and silly Our Idiot Brother with respective entries of $8.4 million and $6.5 million.

Regionally French comedy blockbuster Rien a declarer fell short of a smooth Atlantic crossing with $53,300 at 26 cinemas. But hardest hit were a clutch of exclusive and limited upscale releases that included Circumstance, Brighton Rock and Higher Ground that saw many screenings cancelled due to inclement weather and now face grim prospects to regain momentum once the storm passes.

Overall revenues squeaked to a little better than $90 million that represented a 28% decline from last weekend and a 22% fall from 2011. A year ago two newcomers battled for bragging rights with Takers nosing out The Last Exorcism by $150,000 with $20.5 million.

The bright spot however is that summer 2011 will be an improvement on last year’s box office with the current weekend bringing its gross to slightly more than last year’s $4.05 billion total. The season’s final eight days should be sufficient to provide 4% to the plus that would be about equal to the 2009 finish. And, yes, admissions will continue to shrink.

In Hartford, Hereford and Hampshire (not to mention New York, Boston and Philadelphia) hurricanes hardly happen. But when they do it has crippling effect on box office and reports of virtual movie going blackouts on Saturday, Sunday or both extended to as far south as Washington, D.C. The industry largely expects that winter blizzards will intrude on business several times a season but one has to go back to the 1994 California earthquake to find a comparable box office impact caused by forces of nature.

Once the debris clears, the armchair quarterbacking can truly assess why Irene appeared to keep the audience from buying tickets for Our Idiot Brother to a far greater extent than Colombiana or Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark.

Keep safe, keep warm.

Weekend (estimates) August 26 – 28, 2011

Title Distributor Gross (avg) % chng Thtrs Cume
The Help BV 14.5 (5,220) -28% 2778 96.8
Colombiana Sony 10.2 (3,890) NEW 2614 10.2
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Fox 8.6 (2,550) -47% 3374 148.4
Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark Film District 8.4 (3,050) NEW 2760 8.4
Our Idiot Brother Weinstein Co, 6.5 (2,550) NEW 2555 6.5
Spy Kids: All the Time in the World Weinstein Co, 5.8 (1,750) -50% 3305 21.8
The Smurfs Sony 4.6 (1,620) -41% 2861 125.8
Conan the Barbarian Lions Gate 3.1 (1,020) -69% 3015 16.5
Crazy, Stupid, Love WB 3.0 (1,930) -37% 1577 69.7
Fright Night BV 3.0 (970) -63% 3114 14.2
30 Minutes or Less Sony 2.5 (1,220) -60% 2071 31.6
Final Destination 5 WB 2.5 (1,190) -68% 2085 37.9
Harry Potter & the Deadly Hollows, Part 2 WB 2.3 (1,750) -49% 1328 370.6
One Day Focus 2.3 (1,350) -54% 1725 9.6
Cowboys & Aliens Uni 2.3 (1,460) -46% 1559 93.4
Captain America: The First Avenger Par 2.1 (1,490) -49% 1424 168.6
The Change-Up Uni 1.2 (1,340) -57% 904 34.5
Midnight in Paris Sony Classics .71 (1,090) 29% 652 51.6
Sarah’s Key Weinstein/A-Z .66 (2,350) -15% 281 4.2
Horrible Bosses WB .62 (1,330) -52% 465 113.8
Transformers: Dark of the Moon Par .61 (1,180) 1% 518 349.4
The Guard Sony Classics .40 (3,710) -5% 107 1.8
Super 8 Par .29 (1,210) 189% 242 126
Mr. Popper’s Penguins Fox .24 ((1,110) -20% 219 67
Senna PDA/Mongrol .23 (6,850) 46% 34 0.61
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $85.50
% Change (Last Year) -22%
% Change (Last Week) -28%
Also debuting/expanding
The Whistleblower IDP/eOne .13 (1,930) -13% 68 0.6
Another Earth Fox Searchlight 90,600 (960) 9% 94 1.1
Devil’s Double Lions Gate 85,700 (1,030) -42% 78 1.2
Rien a declarer Seville 53,300 (2,050) 26 0.05
Circumstance Roadside 39,700 (5,640) 7 0.04
Brighton Rock IFC 28,200 (2,560) 11 0.03
Chasing Madoff Cohen Media 26,800 (2,440) 11 0.03
Higher Ground Sony Classics 23,400 (7,800) 3 0.02
Way Back Home ABS 21,600 (3,090) 7 0.02
Redemption Road FreeStyle 18,200 (700) 26 0.02
La Run K Films 13,600 (760) 18 0.01
Suing the Devil River Rain 8,300 (590) 14 0.01
The Family Tree Entertainment 4,200 (2,100) 2 0.01
Shut Up Little Man TriBeCa 2,250 (1,125) 2 0.01
Politics of Love FlickBag 1,950 (975) 2 0.01
Domestic Market Share (Jan. 1 – Aug. 25, 2011)
Distributor (releases) Gross Market Share
Paramount (14) 1409.1 19.80%
Warner Bros. (22) 1323.2 18.50%
Universal (14) 905.1 12.70%
Sony (19) 869.5 12.20%
Buena Vista (13) 833.9 11.70%
Fox (13) 729.5 10.20%
Weinstein Co. (9) 203.8 2.90%
Lions Gate (11) 133.2 1.90%
Relativity (5) 125.5 1.70%
Fox Searchlight (9) 107.8 1.50%
Focus (6) 85.6 1.20%
Sony Classics (12) 71.3 1.00%
Summit (6) 69.9 1.00%
CBS (3) 57.5 0.80%
Film District (1) 54 0.80%
Other * (230) 154.8 2.20%
7133.7 100%
* none greater than 0.4%
Top Global Grossers * (Jan. 1 – Aug. 25, 2011)
Title Distributor Gross
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows, Part 2 WB 1,284,440,397
Transformers: Dark of the Moon Par 1,100,104,396
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides BV 1,041,010,194
Kung Fu Panda 2 Par 630,537,304
Fast Five Uni 607,183,426
The Hangover 2 WB 580,768,459
Cars 2 BV 510,434,944
Rio Fox 483,787,468
Thor Par 448,515,250
The King’s Speech * Weinstein/FilmNation 408,711,643
X-Men: First Class Fox 352,157,104
The Smurfs Sony 344,875,919
Captain America: The First Avenger Par 318,341,218
Tangled * BV 296,514,084
Black Swan * Fox Searchlight 287,879,561
Bridesmaids Uni 274,974,902
Rise of the Planet of the Apes Fox 274,271,376
Rango Par 243,100,005
Super 8 Par 238,534,641
The Green Hornet Sony 227,892,167
Just Go With It Sony 215,073,990
Battle: Los Angeles Sony 202,921,199
Green Lantern WB 201,404,280
Bad Teacher Sony 198,384,847
Gnomeo and Juliet BV/eOne; Pathe 195,014,691
* does not include 2010 box office

One Response to “The Weekend Report”

  1. Well at least it wasn’t a big weekend for the box office anyway, if some superhero movie had had its opening weekend squashed by the storm I would be bummed.

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Lucy 17 3173 NEW 17
Hercules 11 3595 NEW 11
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes 4.7 3668 -55% 160.4
The Purge: Anarchy 3.4 2856 -65% 44.8
Planes: Fire & Rescue 2.8 3839 -57% 28.6
Sex Tape 1.9 3062 -68% 22.8
And So It Goes 1.3 1762 NEW 1.3
Transformers: Age of Extinction 1.3 2476 -54% 233
Tammy 1.1 2562 -54% 75.8
22 Jump Street 0.8 1613 -46% 183.9
Also Debuting
A Most Wanted Man 0.71 361
The Fluffy Movie 0.51 432
Kick 0.37 179
Magic in the Moonlight 0.12 17
She's Dating the Gangster 70,000 46
Alludu Seenu 29,100 86
The Divine Move 13,000 11
Happy Christmas 4,150 4
A Master Builder 3,100 2
Thirumanam Ennum Nikkah 2,800 13
Eyjafjallajokull 1,800 4
Come Back to Me 1,500 8
A Letter to Momo 1,100 1
Very Good Girls 1,100 9
3-Day Estimates Weekend % Chg Cume
It was supposed to be a horse race (notwithstanding Belmont) but at the finish line the singular teen romance The Fault in Our Stars left the competition in the dust with an estimated $48.1 million debut. Conversely, the frame’s other major release Edge of Tomorrow proved disappointing in a distant second at $28.9 million.
Exclusive newcomers were strong, including a solo Manhattan campaign of $9,400 for Citizen Koch. Much-ballyhooed abortion-themed rom-com Obvious Child proved fertile with $84,100 at four dispensaries.
In the niches, Indian import Holiday partied fair at $373,000 while Pinoy romantic comedy Maybe This Time grossed an impressive return of $552,000 on a trifling 51 screens.
Revenues for the session exceeded $160 million and ebbed 3% from last weekend’s tally. It was 8% improved from 2013 when the debut of The Purge posted $34 million and holdovers of Fast & Furious 6 and Now You See Me duked it out for place position with respective box office of $19.6 million and $19 million.
Industry tracking pitted The Fault in Our Stars against Edge of Tomorrow with the former demonstrating a slight edge as it picked up momentum toward opening day. The adaptation of John Green’s YA novel of teens who strike sparks in a cancer support group had a prognosis of $35 million.
The tide truly turned when Fault generated $8.2 million and Edge took in $1.8 million from Thursday previews. Crystal ball-gazers upped the ante to $55 million but the picture took another surprise turn with an unexpected 31% drop from Friday to Saturday business. Strong WOM in exit polling bodes well to broaden the opening weekend crowd, a predictaly 82% of women and was 79% aged 25-years and younger.
Edge of Tomorrow appeared to suffer from the amusement park factor with the movie crowd opting to skip this particular fun ride. Tracking had pegged the pic to open at between $32 million and $34 million. Reviews were upbeat for the futuristic mayhem with a Groundhog Day twist that opened a week earlier in 27 international territories to $18.7 million.
Exit demos also indicated that the sci-fier wasn’t particularly stepping on Fault’s toes with a 61% male tilt and 73% of the audience aged 25-years and older. A studio spokesman expressed confidence for a strong second weekend hold but history and upcoming competition definitely have the picture bucking considerable odds. International prospects are already ahead of Edge of Darkness’s likely final domestic tally with a second weekend estimated at $82 million that included a $25 million bow in China, $16.6 million in South Korea and Russia with $8.6 million.
Open Road's Chef expanded effectively again, prepping $10 million domestically.
Weekend (estimates) June 6 - 8, 2014
Title
Distributor
Gross (average)
% change *
Theaters
Cume
The Fault in Our Stars
Fox
48.1 (15,160)
NEW
3173
48.1
Maleficent
BV
33.6 (8,520)
-52%
3948
127.5
Edge of Tomorrow
WB
28.9 (8,280)
NEW
3490
28.9
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Fox
14.9 (4,090)
-54%
3639
189
A Million Ways to Die in the West
Uni
7.2 (2,270)
-57%
3160
30.1
Godzilla
WB
6.0 (1.920)
-50%
3110
185.1
Neighbors
Uni
5.2 (1,940)
-36%
2674
137.8
Blended
WB
4.0 (1,370)
-51%
2928
36.5
Chef
Open Road
2.5 (1,940)
32%
1298
10.3
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Sony
1.9 (1,290)
-46%
1481
196.3
Million Dollar Arm
BV
1.8 (1,120)
-49%
1643
31.4
Belle
Searchlight
.75 (1,580)
-40%
476
7.6
Rio 2
Fox
.72 (1,030)
-35%
702
125.6
Maybe This Time
ABS
.55 (10,820)
NEW
51
0.55
The Other Woman
Fox
.48 (980)
-65%
489
83.2
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
BV
.43 (1,360)
-31%
317
255.9
Holiday
Big Pictures
.37 (2,590)
NEW
144
0.37
Heaven is for Real
Sony
.37 (830)
-54%
446
88.8
Words and Pictures
Roadside Attractions
.29 (2,940)
269%
98
0.54
Grand Seduction
eOne
.28 (3,020)
-13%
97
0.82
The Lego Movie
WB
.26 (960)
-5%
274
255.8
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Fox Searchlight
.24 (1,280)
-37%
185
57.8
Ida
Music Box
.21 (2,540)
-10%
84
1.3
The Immigrant
Weinstein
.19 (1,320)
-39%
145
1.4
Divergent
Lionsgate
.19 (650)
-43%
298
149
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films)
$156.60
% Change (Last Year)
8%
% Change (Last Week)
-3%
Also debuting/expanding
Fed Up
Weinstein Co.
83,600 (950)
-49%
88
1.2
Obvious Child
A24
84,100 (21,030)
4
0.08
Cold in July
IFC
68,900 (970)
-38%
71
0.25
Night Moves
Cinedgm
48,500 (1,520)
126%
32
30,800
Lunchbox
Sony Classics
50,700 (1,100)
-9%
46
4.1
Filmistaan
UTV
35,500 (1,480)
24
0.04
WolfCop
Echolands
34,900 (4,360)
8
0.03
Ping Pong Summer
Gravitas
26,400 (1,760)
15
0.03
Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon
Weinstein Co.
23,200 (5,800)
4
0.02
Only Lovers Left Alive
Sony Classics
22,800 (760)
-53%
30
1.6
Tracks
Mongrel
13,800 (2,760)
5
0.01
Citizen Koch
Variance
9,400 (9,400)
1
0.01
Trust Me
Paladin
5,100 (565)
9
0.01
Burning Blue
Film Arcade
4,600 (380)
12
0.01
The Case Against 8
Submarine
4,300 (1,430)
3
0.01
Test
Variance
2,400 (800)
3
0.01
Domestic Market Share (Jan. 1 - June 5, 2014)
Distributor
Box Office
Market Share
Warner Bros. (12)
728.5
16.80%
Buena Vista (11)
677.1
15.60%
20th Century Fox (11)
615.2
14.20%
Sony (11)
577.7
13.30%
Universal (10)
540.5
12.50%
Paramount (8)
322.2
7.40%
Lionsgate (13)
285.4
6.60%
Open Road (6)
95.1
2.20%
Fox Searchlight (5)
83.7
1.90%
Weinstein Co. (12)
76.5
1.80%
Relativity (5)
75.5
1.80%
FreeStyle (6)
68.9
1.60%
Focus (6)
39.2
0.90%
eOne/Seville (14)
35.3
0.80%
Other * (142)
107.9
2.60%
4328.7
100.00%
* none greater than 0.4%
Top Domestic Grossers (Jan. 1 - June 5, 2014) *
Title
Distributor
Box Office
The Lego Movie
WB
255,590,340
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
BV
255,447,104
The Amazing Spider-Man 2
Sony
194,388,396
Godzilla
WB
179,093,006
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Fox
174,401,266
Divergent
Lionsgate
148,811,524
Frozen *
BV
137,534,677
Ride Along
Uni
134,965,071
Neighbors
Uni
132,600,495
Lone Survivor
Uni/eOne
125,026,404
Rio 2
Fox
124,909,565
Mr. Peabody & Sherman
Fox
110,162,081
300: Rise of an Empire
WB
106,601,189
Noah
Par
100,950,258
Maleficent
BV
93,846,968
Non-Stop
Uni
91,869,306
Heaven is for Real
Sony
88,412,645
American Hustle *
Sony/eOne
82,661,672
The Other Woman
Fox
81,725,819
The Monuments Men
Sony
78,132,865
* does not include 2013 Box Office