MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

The Weekend Report: April 8, 2012

Sink or Swim

The appetite for The Hunger Games continued with the hearty survivalists adding an estimated $33.7 million to take the weekend box office crown and push its cache to more than $300 million domestically.

The frame’s newcomers (so to speak) trailed in second and third positions. The belated Pie story American Reunion bowed to $21.4 million while the reconstituted Titanic buoyed to $17.4 million with the addition of 3D lifeboats.

On the Indian circuit the Hindi Houseful 2 cracked the top 10 with $722,000 at 121 venues while Telugu Racha displayed comparable strength with $273,000 at 41 locations. Niche release We the Party garnered a less than festive $34,500 at 59 sites.

On the exclusive front there was ample encouragement for the danceable Damsels in Distress with a $61,300 box office at four bandstands and the sly Italian import We Have a Pope grossed $30,600 at three vestries. Also strong was the Turkish spectacle Fetih 1453 (Conquest 1453) with a $31,200 box office from four screens. Conversely the non-fiction Comic-Con Episode IV didn’t get much geek love with a $7,100 gross at a trio of locations.

Weekend revenues added up to roughly $125 million to slip back 17% from seven days earlier and was 10% off of last year’s Easter weekend. However, it bumped up 6% from its calendar equivalent when the second weekend of Hop led the session with $21.2 million and newcomers Hanna and Arthur bowed respectively with $12.4 million and $12.2 million.

It’s been nine years since the American Pie franchise hit the big screen (there have been subsequent direct to disc editions). And rather like the Fast and Furious series getting the original cast back for American Reunion seemed like a potent re-boot at the brain storming sessions. Pundits pegged its opening potential in the low to mid $20 million range and the picture came in at the low end of prognostications.

Exit demos showed the film skewing slightly male with 51% and decidedly older 61% of the audience aged 25 years and older. International openings appeared more upbeat with an estimated $19.3 million in 28 territories including $5 million plus bows in Australia and Russia. Regardless, don’t expect the merry pranksters to be quickly renewed.

Reissues long ago ceased to be a significant part of the release schedule but with the added carrot of stereoscopic perspective and (secondarily) the centennial of its historic demise Titanic was primed for a new assault. About half of the domestic crowd was younger than 25 years old and while North American response was solid, international returns floated the boat to $35.5 million from an aggressive push in 53 nations.

The marquee continued to shrink with just seven pictures grossing in excess of $1 million and only Salmon Fishing in the Yemen demonstrating the slightest bit of crossover appeal. Bully added a screen but experienced a 37% decline. Even with its recent lowed classification it appears that strong armed tactics won’t get crowds into the multiplex for this worthy effort.

Weekend (estimates) April 6 – 8, 2012
Title Distributor Gross (avg) % chng Thtrs Cume
The Hunger Games Lions Gate 33.7 (8,150) -42% 4137 303.1
American Reunion Uni 21.4 (6,710) NEW 3192 21.4
Titanic 3D (reissue) Par 17.4 (6,520) NEW 2674 25.8
Wrath of the Titans WB 15.1 (4,250) -55% 3545 59
Mirror Mirror Relativity 11.0 (3,050) -39% 3618 36.5
21 Jump Street Sony 10.2 (3,380) -31% 3009 109.6
Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax Uni 5.0 (1,660) -36% 3003 198.2
Salmon Fishing in the Yemen CBS 1.0 (1,880) 2% 524 4.6
John Carter BV .81 (800) -60% 1015 68
Houseful 2 Eros .72 (5,930) NEW 121 0.73
Safe House Uni .57 (1,180) -27% 482 124.7
The Raid: Redemption Sony Class/Alliance .56 (3,169) 106% 176 1.3
Act of Valor Relativity .53 (750) -47% 708 68.8
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island WB .51 (780) -37% 651 99.4
A Thousand Words Par .46 (910) -49% 507 17.4
Jeff Who Lives at Home Par Vantage .40 (890) -41% 447 3.4
October Baby IDP .36 (1,070) -53% 339 3.6
Project X WB .31 (700) -62% 444 54
The Vow Sony .28 (580) -15% 479 123.9
Racha Hari .27 (6,660) NEW 41 0.27
Casa de mi Padre Lions Gate .26 (900) -57% 283 5.5
This Means War Fox .21 (660) -50% 321 53.4
Friends with Kids Roadside Attractions .20 (970) -57% 206 6.7
The Artist Weinstein Co. .18 (820) -35% 222 43.9
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $118.50
% Change (Last Year) -10%
% Change (Last Week) -17%
Also debuting/expanding
A Separation Sony Classics .14 (980) -37% 141 6.7
Footnote Sony Classics .12 (1,870) -49% 65 0.8
The Deep Blue Sea Music Box .10 (1,910) -41% 51 0.49
We Need to Talk About Kevin Oscilloscope 75,800 (1,170) 12% 65 1.6
Bully Weinstein Co. 73,100 (12,190) -37% 6 0.23
Damsels in Distress Sony Classics 61,300 (15,320) 4 0.06
We the Party Arc Entertain. 34,500 (580) 59 0.03
Fetih 1453 Neo Classics 31,200 (7,800) 4 0.03
We Have a Pope IFC 30,600 (10,200) 3 0.03
The Hunter Magnolia 18,800 (4,700) 4 0.02
Comic-Con Episode IV Wrekin Hill 7,100 (2,370) 3 0.01
Surviving Progress First Run 5,200 (2,600) 2 0.01
Keyhole Monterey 3,350 (3,350) 1 0.01
The Moth Diaries Alliance 3,150 (1,050) 1 0.01
Domestic Market Share (Jan. 1 – April 5, 2012)
Distributor (releases) Gross Market Share
Universal (6) 423.1 15.60%
Sony (10) 394.3 14.60%
Warner Bros. (12) 339.5 12.50%
Lions Gate (4) 335.5 12.40%
20th Century Fox (8) 298.4 11.00%
Paramount (11) 237.2 8.80%
Buena Vista (7) 184.7 6.80%
Relativity (4) 113.5 4.20%
Weinstein Co. (7) 76.1 2.80%
Open Road (2) 58.5 2.20%
CBS (2) 57.7 2.10%
Summit (4) 46.9 1.70%
Fox Searchlight (3) 45.9 1.70%
Focus (3) 21.9 0.80%
Sony Classics (9) 14.5 0.50%
Other * (94) 59.3 2.20%
2707 100.00%
* none greater than 0.04%
Top Domestic Grossers (Jan. 1 – April 5, 2012) *
Title Distributor Box Office
The Hunger Games Lions Gate 269,339,165
Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax Uni 193,174,350
Safe House Uni 124,170,160
The Vow Sony 123,638,760
21 Jump Street Sony 99,377,305
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island WB 98,845,000
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol * Par 86,947,437
Act of Valor Relativity 68,218,000
John Carter BV 67,153,347
Contraband Uni 66,648,834
Chronicle Fox 63,830,636
Underworld: Awakening Sony 62,821,862
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows * WB 62,796,108
The Woman in Black CBS 54,005,603
Project X WB 53,735,000
The Devil Inside Par 53,291,928
This Means War Fox 53,241,000
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo * Sony 52,301,310
The Grey Open Road/eOne 51,507,039
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance Sony 50,880,997
* does include 2011 box office

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Dumb and Dumber To 14.2 3154 NEW 14.2
Interstellar 8.4 3561 -50% 77
Big Hero 6 8 3773 -49% 83.7
Beyond the Lights 2.3 1789 NEW 2.3
Gone Girl 1.3 1959 -28% 149.4
St. Vincent 1.1 2332 -31% 30.3
Fury 1.1 2382 -34% 73.2
Ouija 1 2382 -48% 46.1
Nightcrawler 0.9 2103 -47% 22.8
Birdman 0.7 857 3% 9.8
Also Debuting
Rosewater 0.39 371
Saving Christmas 0.35 410
Foxcatcher 75,600 6
Kil Dil 58,200 77
Don't Go Breaking My Heart 2 35,100 10
Edsa Woolworth 28,500 49
Pilla Nuvvu Leni Jeevitham 17,000 43
The Homesman 13,200 4
Mary's Land 10,600 3
Matthew 18 6,100 42
Les Combattants 3,650 10
Le jour se lève (reissue) 3,200 3
Wolves 2,300 12
The Sacrifice 1,450 1
Dilli 1984 1,200 9
Always Woodstock 1,100 7
3-Day Estimates Weekend % Chg Cume
No Good Dead 24.4 (11,230) NEW 24.4
Dolphin Tale 2 16.6 (4,540) NEW 16.6
Guardians of the Galaxy 7.9 (2,550) -23% 305.8
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 4.8 (1,630) -26% 181.1
The Drop 4.4 (5,480) NEW 4.4
Let's Be Cops 4.3 (1,570) -22% 73
If I Stay 4.0 (1,320) -28% 44.9
The November Man 2.8 (1,030) -36% 22.5
The Giver 2.5 (1,120) -26% 41.2
The Hundred-Foot Journey 2.5 (1,270) -21% 49.4