MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

The Weekend Report: Wolf at the Door

Wolf at the Door

There was a lack of Lupophobia at the multiplex as The Grey ascended to the top of the weekend movie charts with an estimated $19.5 million debut. Two other national bows figured into the top five with the romantic actioner One For the Money slotted third with $11.7 million and the suspenseful Man on a Ledge two notches back at $7.9 million.

Bollywood entry Agneepath was off to a solid start of $1.1 million and Oscar contender Albert Nobbs generated an OK $660,000 at 246 venues. Other debuting niche and exclusive entries were largely moribund including animated entry Back to the Sea with a $36,600 tally from 53 engagements and Chinese franchise All’s Well Ends Well 2012 struggling to $28,400 on 20 screens.

An exception  – literally and figuratively – was An Inconsistent Truth about globe warming doubters that grossed $21,800 from a single site in Nashville … thank you very much.

Despite the absence of a powerhouse debut business improved from last year. It was still 5% off of last weekend’s box office but 15% improved from 2011 when debuts of The Rite and The Mechanic ranked first and third with respective bows of $14.8 million and $11.4 million.

Pundits predicted that The Grey would be vying for top position with last weekend’s leader Underworld: Awakening. But the yarn of survival in the wild with ravenous wolves at the margins got a big uptick from generally upbeat reviews. The industry grumbling largely emanated from the distribution committee that is testy about the fact that the picture’s distributor was created by the Regal and AMC chains _ the nation’s first and second ranked circuits.

Meanwhile one exhibitor _ mid-West player Marcus Theaters _ created ripples when it refused to accept rental terms on One For the Money. Apparently one sore point was a promotion via Groupon for discounted tickets. The film, starring Katherine Heigl, skewed 79% female with 59% of viewers were 25-years and older.

Man on a Ledge lacked both controversy and commercial interest despite an aggressive promotional campaign. Exit demos showed that those that did go to the brink were split evenly male-female with 56% aged 25 years and younger.

Post the announcement of Oscar nominees Tuesday, the biggest beneficiaries were The Descendants that added 1,441 playdates, The Artist that cautiously expanded 235 screens and Hugo that otherwise would have disappeared into the either. Conversely it was bad news for the likes of Carnage, Shame and We Need to Talk About Kevin that figured into early award consideration but were MIA from the Oscar ballot.

Weekend (estimates) January 20 – 22, 2012
Title Distributor Gross (avg) % chng Thtrs Cume
The Grey Open Road 19.5 (6,130) NEW 3185 19.5
Underworld: Awakening Sony 12.2 (3,950) -52% 3078 44.8
One For the Money Lions Gate 11.7 (4,270) NEW 2737 11.7
Red Tails Fox 10.1 (3,920) -46% 2573 33.5
Man on a Ledge Summit 7.9 (2,640) NEW 2998 7.9
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close WB 7.0 (2,650) -42% 2630 20.9
Contraband Uni 6.5 (2,450) -46% 2650 56.4
The Descendants Fox Searchlight 6.3 (3,160) 167% 2001 58.6
Beauty and the Beast BV 5.4 (2,510) -39% 2145 41.2
Haywire Relativity 4.0 (1,630) -53% 2441 15.3
Mission Impossible – Ghost Protocol Par 3.4 (2,070) -38% 1654 202.5
The Artist Weinstein Co. 3.3 (3,660) 38% 897 16.7
Joyful Noise WB 3.2 (1,590) -46% 2021 26.7
The Iron Lady Weinstein Co. 3.2 (2,550) -14% 1244 17.5
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows WB 2.5 (1,640) -44% 1530 182.2
Hugo Par 2.2 (2,320) 139% 965 58.6
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo Sony 2.2 (1,820) -38% 1202 98.2
War Horse BV 1.9 (1,040) -38% 1861 75.6
Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked Fox 1.7 (1,630) -44% 1070 127
We Bought a Zoo Fox 1.4 (1,310) -49% 1089 71.7
The Adventures of Tintin Par 1.3 (1,860) -41% 702 74.2
Agneepath Eros 1.1 (8,410) NEW 132 1.2
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy Focus 1.0 (2,510) -41% 410 20.1
Albert Nobbs Roadside Attractions .66 (2,680) NEW 246 0.66
The Devil Inside Par Insurge .62 (860) -77% 722 52.7
A Dangerous Method Sony Class/eOne .52 (1,420) 36% 365 4
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $120.80
% Change (Last Year) -5%
% Change (Last Week) 15%
Also debuting/expanding
A Separation Sony Classics .26 (8,450) 55% 31 0.87
Shame Searchlight/Alliance .17 (2,120) -31% 80 3.3
Carnage Sony Classics .12 (1,710) -58% 70 2.2
We Need to Talk About Kevin Oscilloscope 61,800 (6,180) -16% 10 0.28
Coriolanus Weinstein Co. 48,700 (4,060) -20% 12 0.14
Back to the Sea Industryworks 36,600 ((690) 53 0.04
All’s Well Ends Well 2012 China Lion 28,400 (1,420) 20 0.03
Unitards Excel 23,200 (1,160) 20 0.02
An Inconsistent Truth Rocky Mountain 21,800 (21,800) 1 0.02
Declaration of War IFC 12,400 (2,070) 6 0.01
Wicker Tree Anchor Bay 4,600 (460) 10 0.01
Domestic Market Share (Jan. 1 – 26, 2012)
Distributor (releases) Gross Market Share
Paramount (8) 173.5 25.20%
Warner Bros. (9) 106.6 15.50%
20th Century Fox (5) 98.8 14.40%
Sony (7) 81.9 11.90%
Buena Vista (5) 79.4 11.60%
Universal (2) 51.1 7.40%
Weinstein Co. (4) 26.7 3.90%
Focus (2) 15.9 2.30%
Summit (2) 15 2.20%
Fox Searchlight (3) 15 2.20%
Relativity (2) 12 1.70%
Sony Classics (5) 3.8 0.60%
Other * (25) 7.7 1.10%
687.4 100.00%

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
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Oculus 2 2648 -59% 18
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Trailer Park Boys 3 0.45 144
2 States 0.36 136
Fading Gigolo 58,000 5
Make Your Move 30,100 142
That Demon Within 23,300 14
Tenali Raman 10,200 19
En Solitaire 9,900 14
Authors Anonymous 7,500 11
Lotoman 003 4,300 11
13 Sins 3,300 45
small time 2,300 11
Tasting Menu 1,900 5
Mi Verano con Amanda 3 1,700 10
Antboy 1,400 15
Manakamana 1,350 1
Une Autre vie 1,350 3
Fermieres 1,150 7
3-Day Estimates Weekend % Chg Cume
The Hunger Games 153.6 (37,130) NEW 153.6
21 Jump Street 20.4 (6,550) -44% 70.2
Dr. Seuss' The Lorax 13.0 (3,540) -43% 177.3
John Carter 5.0 (1,570) -63% 62.4
Act of Valor 2.0 (910) -46% 65.9
A Thousand Words 1.9 (1,050) -40% 14.9
Project X 1.9 (920) -53% 51.7
Safe House 1.4 (1,020) -50% 122.5
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island 1.3 (1,000) -44% 97.1
Casa de mi Padre 1.0 (2,170) -55% 3.9