MCN Columnists
Leonard Klady

By Leonard Klady Klady@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Review (3-Day)

Easy to Be Die Hard

It was a good weekend for A Good Day to Die Hard as it nosed out the competition to take top spot on the holiday charts with an estimated $24.9 million (all figures represent the 3-day portion of the Presidents Day frame). In an unexpectedly competitive session the three-hanky Safe Haven slotted third with $21.5 million; a jot behind the $23.4 million holdover of Identity Thief.

Two other films made national debuts. Kidcentric animation Escape from Planet Earth slipped into fourth with $15.9 million and trailing the field was the supernatural rom-com Beautiful Creatures grossing $7.4 million.

In the niches the Punjabi Singh vs. Kaur had a solid $117,000 bow at 24 venues and Korea’s The Berlin File had the best ever opening for that cinema with a gross of $142,000 from a scant 20 screens.

Exclusive debs saw the strongest response for Chile’s Oscar short-listed No with an initial box office of $69,700 from four engagements. Also potent was Like Someone in Love from Denmark with $21,300 at three sites.

Weekend revenues popped up to roughly $140 million for a sizeable 36% boost from seven days back. However, it wasn’t sufficient to stave off a 12% erosion from 2012 when holdovers of Safe House and The Vow led the field and newcomers Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and This Means War sputtered at the starting gate.

After a six-year hiatus, the fifth installment of the Die Hard franchise was expected to blow away the competition. Most of the new-title jump started the weekend with Thursday Valentine’s Day bows and the winner (by a whisker) was Safe Haven. A Good Day to Die Hard should wind up with about $37 million at the end of the long weekend but trackers were indicating considerably strong business in the region of $45 million.

The film not surprisingly skewed male with a 55% share according to exit demos. But it was also disappointingly older with 65% of the audience aged over 25.

Conversely, there were Nicholas Sparks’ Safe Haven that topped tracking projections. Again it came as little surprise that the initial crowd was 71% female but the edge came from a surprisingly fierce younger crowd, with 68% of weepers aged 25 and younger.

Escape from Planet Earth nicely filled the gap for family animated fare.

Strong holdover business left Beautiful Creatures with little more than scraps to forage over. The hybrid yarn proved difficult to market with its mix of traditional romance and offbeat occult elements and the film suffered from the second (or third) choice dilemma. Its demos revealed an audience that was 57% female and a carbon copy 57% aged 25-years and more junior. However, its potential crowd largely opted for the more traditional romance.

Apart from a surge for the Oscar shorts package, the contenders crowd was doing its best to keep up a little steam for the big event seven days hence. Expect some token theatrical bump for the big winners while the major rewards are now being engineered for ancillary exploitation.

Weekend (estimates) February 15 – 17, 2013
Title Distributor Gross (avg) % chng Thtrs Cume
A Good Day to Die Hard Fox 24.9 (7,010) NEW 3553 33.2
Identity Thief Uni 23.4 (7,390) -32% 3165 70.7
Safe Haven Relativity 21.5 (6,660) NEW 3223 30.3
Escape from Planet Earth Weinstein Co. 15.9 (4,840) NEW 3288 15.9
Warm Bodies Lionsgate 9.1 (3,130) -20% 2897 50.3
Beautiful Creatures WB 7.4 (2,520) NEW 2950 10
Side Effects Open Road 6.3 (2,410) -32% 2605 19.1
Silver Linings Playbook Weinstein Co. 6.0 (2,730) -6% 2202 98.4
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters Par 3.5 (1,650) -40% 2103 49.7
Zero Dark Thirty Sony/Alliance 3.0 (1,950) -26% 1522 87.9
Mama Uni/eOne 2.8 (1,680) -35% 1648 68.2
Argo WB 2.2 (2,410) 19% 903 126.8
Lincoln BV 1.6 (1,600) -14% 1007 176.2
Django Unchained Weinstein Co. 1.5 (1,460) -36% 1017 157
Life of Pi Fox 1.5 (2,270) -16% 647 110.8
Quartet Weinstein Co. 1.3 (3,960) 40% 333 6.9
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey WB 1.0 (1,600) -34% 605 299.8
Les Miserables Uni .84 (1,240) -46% 676 145.5
Wreck-It Ralph BV .78 (1,540) -27% 506 185.5
Amour Sony Classics .68 (2,220) 82% 306 3.9
The Impossible Lionsgate .46 (1,020) -52% 422 17.5
Parental Guidance Fox .45 (750) -58% 603 75.1
Parker FilmDistrict .42 (600) -77% 705 17
Rise of the Guardians Par .40 (1,190) 59% 338 101.4
2013 Oscar Shorts ShortsHD .38 (1,250) -1% 305 1.5
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $135.20
% Change (Last Year) -12%
% Change (Last Week) 36%
Also debuting/expanding
The Berlin File CJ Entertainment .14 (7,080) 20 0.14
Singh vs. Kaur Gurfath .12 (4,880) 24 0.12
No Sony Classics 69,700 (17,680) 4 0.07
The Gatekeepers Sony Classics 42,500 (10,620) 1% 4 0.21
Lore Music Box 37,400 (4,670) 19% 8 0.08
Like Someone in Love IFC 21,300 (7,100) 3 0.02
Murder 3 Fox Intl 15,200 (1,270) 12 0.02
The Power of Few Steelyard 8,600 (4,300) 2 0.01
Saving Lincoln Lane Street 8,100 (880) 9 0.01
Okkadine Supreme 4,400 (200) 22 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – February 14, 2013)
Distributor (releases) Gross Percentage
Universal (5) 209.9 18.70%
Weinstein Co. (5) 156.9 14.00%
Warner Bros. (8) 143.4 12.80%
Lions Gate (9) 112.6 10.10%
Paramount (8) 111.1 9.90%
Sony (4) 94.9 8.50%
20th Century Fox (6) 91.6 8.20%
Buena Vista (5) 62.9 5.60%
Open Road (3) 51.4 4.60%
Film District (3) 18.2 1.60%
Relativity (2) 17.6 1.60%
Alliance/eOne (3) 14.3 1.30%
Focus (3) 13.4 1.20%
Other * (43) 21.8 1.90%
1120 100%

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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