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
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Guardians of the Galaxy 3.8 3462 -21% 262.1
As Above/So Below 3.2 2640 NEW 3.2
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2.7 3543 -41% 153.3
If I Stay 2.6 3003 -62% 23.1
The November Man 2.2 2776 NEW 3.9
Let's Be Cops 2 3010 -39% 51.1
When the Game Stands Tall 1.4 2673 -52% 12.1
The Giver 1.3 2805 -37% 27.6
The Hundred-Foot Journey 1.1 1918 -30% 35.9
The Expendables 3 0.85 2564 -55% 30.5
Also Debuting
Cantinflas 0.81 382
Ghostbusters - 30th Anniversary 0.49 784
Rabhasa 0.1 86
Double Di Trouble 38,300 33
Life of Crime 30,600 35
Kundo: Age of Rampant 28,900 26
Swearnet 28,300 88
Raja Natwarlal 22,100 74
Peruchazhi 14,100 13
The Congress 7,560 13
The Last of Robin Hood 7,100 2
Starred Up 2,900 2
Temporary Family 2,800 5
Through a Lens Darkly 2,750 1
Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie 2,700 7
Last Weekend 1,350 1
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