MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

The Weekend Report, July 1, 2012

The pundits anticipated that audience hearts would once again be in the Highlands and Brave would be atop weekend box office.

They were wrong.

The incoming allure of childhood dreams gone awry and some animated pecs trumped the competition. Ted, the scatological take on the child-man, debuted at the top of the list with an estimated $53.8 million and the alternately hilarious and dark world of Magic Mike’s male strippers bowed second with $39.2 million. Two other films opened nationally that included Tyler Perry back in form with a $26.4 million launch for Medea’s Witness Protection slotting fourth while the family drama People Like Us wound up with scraps that amounted to $4.2 million.

New in the niches the Punjabi Jatt & Juliet scored an impressive $144,000 from 15 playdates. While Punjab films can’t compete with Bollywood that community largely centered in Canada has developed into rabid movie goers. Canada’s home grown Take This Waltz also displayed strength with a $138,000 opening at 31 venues (including two U.S. engagements) and French implort Cloclo (a bio of 1960s singing sensation laude Francois) failed to replicate La Vie en Rose with a $14,300 tally from eight Quebec exposures.

Among the exclusive bows there was considerably better response for France with Unforgivable grossing $27,600 from five screens. But the mouse that roared was Sundance prized Beasts of the Southern Wild with a potent $176,000 box office at an initial quartet.

Box office pumped up to more than 210 million and a 28% hike from seven days earlier. It was also an unexpected 3% improvement from 2011 in light of last year’s $97.8 million debut of Transformers: Dark of the Moon.

Tracking for Ted was always strong but nonetheless initial translations slotted it third in the lineup with about $30 million. That estimate ramped up to $40 million just prior to opening and put it competitive with Brave.

A studio spokesperson noted that current tracking has been wildly inaccurate and that’s no joke. Currently there are three major market research companies specializing in box office tracking and one would think they could do comparably well with political trackers capable of predicting elections minutes after polls close.

Ted’s box office set a new high for an R-rated comedy. The audience demos skewed 56% male with 52% of viewers aged 30 years and older.

Magic Mike saw its prospects rise following Thursday midnight sneaks that generated $2 million. Opening weekend drew a 73% crowd with 66% of buyers aged 25 years and older. Strong reviews and word-of-mouth bode well for hitting the other quadrants in the coming weeks.

Medea’s Witness Protection proved to be a stronger draw than other recent Tyler Perry efforts. While it drew on Perry’s traditional base with a 69% female skew and 69% of the crowd aged 25 years and older there was an upbeat note with 30% of buyers identified as non-African American _ a significant improvement in his slow crossover in the past decade.

Recent weeks haven’t been great for alternative adult fare and People Like Us is no exception. As with last week’s Seeking a Friend … its wide launch underwhelmed and in hindsight the picture might have been better served with a platform release as has been witnessed by Marigold Hotel, Moonrise Kingdom, Bernie and the current To Rome with Love.

Overseas a couple of films got a jump start on their domestic openings. Ice Age: Continental Drift was on a record breaking course with an estimated $78 million debut in 34 territories. And days ahead of its holiday launch The Amazing Spider-Man grossed $50 million in 13 nations primarily focusing on Asia.

 


Weekend (estimates) June 29 – July 1, 2012
Title Distributor Gross (average) % change * Theaters Cume
Ted Uni 53.8 (16,610) NEW 3239 53.8
Magic Mike WB 39.2 (13,390) NEW 2930 39.2
Brave BV 33.9 (8,150) -49% 4164 131.6
Madea’s Witness Protection Lions Gate 26.4 (12,230) NEW 2161 26.4
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted Par 11.8 (3,190) -40% 3715 180
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter Fox 5.9 (1,910) -64% 3109 29
Prometheus Fox 4.9 (2,510) -51% 1951 118.2
Moonrise Kingdom Focus 4.8 (5,640) 42% 854 18.4
Snow White and the Huntsman Uni 4.4 (1,874) -46% 2337 145.6
The Avengers BV 4.2 (2,380) -42% 1757 606.3
People Like Us BV 4.2 (2,030) NEW 2055 4.2
Men in Black III Sony 2.8 (1,490) -51% 1902 169.6
Rock of Ages WB 2.7 (1,130) -64% 2405 34.9
That’s My Boy Sony 2.2 (920) -71% 2363 34.4
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel Fox Searchlight 1.0 (1,950) -36% 534 40.4
Seeking a Friend for the End of the World Focus 1.0 (640) -73% 1608 6.6
To Rome with Love Sony Classics .71 (24,550) 97% 29 1.3
Battleship Uni .42 (1,370) -19% 308 63.9
The Hunger Games Lions Gate .39 (1,400) -38% 278 403.8
Intouchables Alliance/Weinstein .35 (4,020) -15% 86 5.5
Dark Shadows WB .38 (1,040) 45% 365 76.3
Safety Not Guaranteed Film District .37 (2,270) -21% 164 1.7
Bernie Millennium .31 (1,860) -37% 166 7.2
Your Sister’s Sister IFC .23 (2,480) 16% 94 0.7
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $203.90
% Change (Last Year) 3%
% Change (Last Week) 28%
Also debuting/expanding
Beasts of the Southern Wild Searchlight .18 (44,100) 4 0.23
Jatt & Juliet Speed .14 (9.610) 15 0.14
Take This Waltz Mongrel/Magnolia .14 (4,440) 31 0.14
Hysteria Sony Classics 77,500 (1,060) -48% 73 1.6
Unforgivable Strand 27,600 (5,520) 5 0.03
Cloclo Seville 14,300 (1,790) 8 0.01
Neil Young’s Journey Sony Classics 12,400 (4,130) 3 0.01
Runway Cop CJ Entertainment 5,900 (5,900) 1 0.01
Domestic Market Share (Jan. 1 – June 28, 2012)
Distributor (releases) Gross Market Share
Buena Vista (10) 919.9 17.50%
Sony (14) 755.7 14.40%
Universal (10) 736.1 14.00%
Warner Bros. (18) 579.9 11.00%
Lions Gate (9) 572.5 10.90%
Paramount (13) 517.1 9.80%
20th Century Fox (11) 482 9.20%
Relativity (5) 170.1 3.20%
Fox Searchlight (7) 86.1 1.60%
Weinstein Co. (8) 84.1 1.60%
Open Road (3) 72.2 1.40%
CBS (2) 63.6 1.20%
Summit (4) 47.1 0.90%
Focus (5) 41.1 0.80%
Other * (186) 138.5 2.60%
5266 100.00%
* none greater than 0.45%

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
American Sniper 18.3 3705 -40% 154.1
The Boy Next Door 5.6 2602 NEW 5.6
The Wedding Ringer 3.3 3003 -53% 31.4
Paddington 2.6 3355 -44% 30.2
Taken 3 2.1 2909 -51% 70.5
The Imitation Game 2 2025 4% 55.5
Selma 1.5 2046 -37% 35.2
Mordecai 1.5 2648 NEW 1.5
Strange Magic 1.3 3020 NEW 1.3
Into the Woods 0.95 2270 -43% 118.6
Also Debuting
Cake 0.27 482
Baby 0.12 85
Dolly Ki Dolly 34,000 60
Patas 19 20
Manny 12,000 5
Black Sea 12,000 5
Song One 9,500 27
Americons 6,300 14
The Humbling 6,200 16
Red Army 4,700 3
The Duke of Burgundy 3,450 3
Love Forecast 3,400 1
R100 2,290 8
We'll Never Have Paris 2,200 10
Tru Love 1,300 1
Son of a Gun 1,000 14
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