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By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Estimates by Cap 2 2 Klady

Weekend Estimates 2014-04-13 at 10.13.07 AM

So… Captain America 2 dropped off about the expected amount, but Rio 2 did not. The first Rio had a 68% bump on its first Saturday… this one 28% (according to Mojo). Fox, which is now releasing DreamWorks Animation, also saw a 78% Saturday bump in the first Peabody weekend. So what happened? Well, the educated guess would be that Rio (which, for he record, opened a little better than its sequel) was a tweener, never really getting as hot as you might have expected with the younger audience that runs to the multiplex for animated movies in huge numbers. There may also be some general softness in the marketplace for animation with 3 titles in the last 2 months an a week… not to mention an underperforming Muppets movie. The only one to really excel was The Lego Movie and a big part of that gross was a non-traditional (stoned) adult animation audience. Interestingly, there have been more animated releases in these last 10 weeks than we will have all summer long.

One other note on Rio… where was the talent on this one? I saw Tracy Morgan on some show, mentioning that he was selling this movie for a second or two (the new norm on the Jimmy circuit… and for that matter, on Stewart and Colbert, as he was). I guess Anne Hathaway has been in hiding and when she stuck her nose out, the only story was that she was sticking her nose out. But never heard a peep from Jesse Eisenberg, Jamie Foxx or Leslie Mann. I know the later two have movies in the next 3 weeks to promote and perhaps Jesse is not allowed to appear intentionally in public while bald, but Rio was not the kind of hit that suggested that the second film could sell itself. And it really didn’t… even though the outdoor was fantastic.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier will pass the total domestic gross of Captain America by next Saturday, maybe even Friday. Still a bit to go, worldwide, to come up to the post-Avengers Marvel standard of $650m and above (2 films and counting) and has a reasonable shot at getting there from its current $477 million. It’s running slightly ahead of Thor 2 domestically, though Thor 2 was leading into the riches of Thanksgiving weekend, and is well ahead of Thor 2 internationally at this point in the run, though Cap 2 was released much more aggressively. I haven’t done a territory by territory breakdown, but Cap probably has another $70 million and change in him domestically and would then only need another $75m from international to make the $650m mark worldwide.

Oculus did what horror usually does… dies by the end of the weekend. But with a $5 million budget and tight marketing, $20m and change domestically and ancillaries makes for a profitable piece of business.

Draft Day did okay. Smells like mostly female-driven ticket buying. Will the guys, especially over 35s, show up in the next couple weeks before the actual NFL draft based on word-of-mouth?

Is The Raid 2 suffering from indie glass ceiling? The expansion worked out film this weekend, but it was softer going into the expansion. Sony Classics is playing the release plan a bit differently this time and will be hoping that this weekend – the biggest grossing weekend of either of the 2 Raid films – will lead to strong word-of-mouth and a bit of a hold. Last time, they dropped 38% of their screens the week after their widest expansion. If they hope to beat the gross of the first Raid, they can’t do that this time… but audiences need to show up. As one of the few companies in this arena that doesn’t do VOD on top of theatrical, films like this, that Magnolia or IFC would VOD a week before opening theatrically, add interesting case studies that studios, like big Sony, will examine as they consider day-n-date options for smaller releases moving forward.

300: Rise of an Empire hopes to get to 1/2 the domestic gross of 300 by next weekend so they can quit. But the international crowd showed up, nearly matching the gross of 300 overseas and suggesting that there may be a little more blood that can be squeezed out of this stone, albeit at a lower price with direct-to-Netflix or DVD or some such thing likely for domestic consumption.

Under The Skin did some decent numbers, considering the challenging content. The Lunchbox and Le Week-End are both solid adult audience movies that deserve more of an audience, but are getting nice support in sticking around by their distributors.

Only Lovers Left Alive and The Railway Man were the per-screen leaders of the weekend, with both on just 4 screens, proving the love for Jim Jarmusch and Colin Firth out there. Also nice numbers for Finding Vivian Meier. Joe, a strong film from David Gordon Green, starring Nic Cage, is out there looking like no one outside of media knows its out there. Likewise, Dom Hemingway. As noted regarding Raid 2, it’s very hard out there for the bigger indie distributors to get theatrical going these days now that indie audiences have become used to the VOD option on every film.

Would we really expect the duo of Nymphomaniac films to do under $1.5m combined in years past? Volume II opened to less than half what V1 did domestically. Meanwhile, the film will be profitable against a $5m cost of production, thanks for $9.5 million in theatrical overseas for the first film alone. But what are the VOD numbers? And how do the VOD numbers cannibalize the theatrical? Clearly, this system works for companies working on tighter margins, like Magnolia and IFC. But are the Sony Classics and Fox Searchlights going to be squeezed into either playing the VOD game or getting out of the business of the “smaller” titles and the theatrical market for these films gets weaker and weaker?

19 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Cap 2 2 Klady”

  1. JS Partisan says:

    And that’s another notch on the Marvel belt.

  2. Bulldog68 says:

    “The only one to really excel was The Lego Movie and a big part of that gross was a non-traditional (stoned) adult animation audience. Interestingly, there have been more animated releases in these last 10 weeks than we will have all summer long.”

    Isn’t that something? We go from a clusterfuck of animated options to virtual dead zone after Rio2 for a full 8 weeks or so when Dragon 2 drops. Amazing. May was the birthplace of Shrek and Nemo, surprising that some studio isn’t capitalizing on that this year. maybe it’ll lead to a serious pent up demand for family fear and Dragon will be a phenom the way Despicable Me 2 ended up being.

    Also, The Purge opened big and burned off fast last year, so I’m surprised they are opening the sequel on July 18th, when we have a Friday June 13th available this year. I guess they wanted to avoid Jumpstreet.

  3. LYT says:

    The presumption that adult fans of the Lego movie were stoned seems a bit deliberately assholish. Like Ninja Turtles, Star Wars, Muppets and anything else the current nerd/geek culture grew up with, Lego has a huge appeal to both nostalgia and current fans of the co-branded video games.

  4. JS Partisan says:

    Stoned? Really? David, that’s some nonsense, that could only come from you.

  5. jepressman says:

    Still I would prefer to rewatch Twelve Angry Men or L.A.Confidential rather than any Marvel superhero movie.

  6. EtGuild2 says:

    “It’s running slightly ahead of Thor 2 domestically, though Thor 2 was leading into the riches of Thanksgiving weekend, and is well ahead of Thor 2 internationally at this point in the run, though Cap 2 was released much more aggressively.”

    The comparison worldwide is THOR 2 by $2 million, and by about $14 million internationally. Not sure I’d call a 4% difference “well ahead.” The problem going forward is, “Spider Man” drops in Europe next weekend.

    “Stoned? Really? David, that’s some nonsense, that could only come from you.”

    JS, I’m going to back David up on this one ;)

  7. Martin s says:

    Ended up seeing Winter Soldier, again.

    My gawd, was I being lenient before. This really is a case of mob mentality proclaiming what’s good. Evans, Mackie and three fight scenes. The rest…holy crap.

    Everything occurs by magic. It’s amazing, because this is the kind of writing novices used to get killed for.

    I’m not referring to things that could be explained due to editing omissions, such as how the fck Widow replace the British woman, how did they get the Falcon pack from a military base with the NSA scouring for them, and wtf was the point of Shandling’s character since he had no consequences on the storyline.

    I mean, how did an Apple store computer have the programs and power to run those applications? If they use electrode’s to erase Winter’s mind, why does he have long hair? They shave patients heads for correct placement and flammable risk, but not him? And if he’s only let out for small periods, how has his hair grown at all? How is Fury walking with a severed spine and collapsed lung? Why would everyone meet at a cemetery with a guy on the run, when they just implied their all in the sites of the govt?

    And why was Zola still on reel-to-reel when they can hook up a USB and he was still part of the Hydra plans, as suggested. That’s decades of dust on those forty y/old decks, so that shit would burn and smoke the minute they heat up. I mean, if they’re going to imply someone went down there and plugged a USB, why not show a data transfer to digital? They could have still had the kewl tape decks visual along with juxtaposing information progress to continue the anqtiquated/modern metaphor.

  8. Foamy Squirrel says:

    I’m fine with most of the Cap-logic stuff.

    The USB socket was (for me) shorthand that the tape crap was mostly for show rather than use, and the cut for obtaining Falcon’s pack was obviously NOT an editing omission – c’mon dude, missing a gag cut is a rookie mistake.

    I’m okay with omissions like “How did Widow replace Jenny Agutter?” because it’s something that the character is known to be capable of doing, but depicting how it was done doesn’t advance the story (I know she’s also capable of making PB&J sandwiches, but I don’t want them to waste running time showing me) and takes out the element of surprise. I tend to find it more interesting which people complain about “How did Batman get from the prison and into Gotham?” but don’t complain about omissions like this.

    The Shandling one I give you though – did they even have his character info scrolling on the bottom (it was a cable news feed wasn’t it?) so people who hadn’t watched IM2 knew who he was?

  9. Martin s says:

    Foamy – You’re right about the gag, I did catch that but on second watch I get over those things. Thriller tension is about stacking the scenes on top of each other. So either SHIELD/HYDRA’s watchful eye is that big of a threat, or it’s not.

    So depending on what the needed is they way they went. Stillwell calls them top priority and here comes the full weight of SHIELD/HYDRA onto our heroes…except when it comes to getting the Falcon gear, mall computers, etc…

    I guess it’s about tone. They wanted to be taken seriously but didn’t want to be confined to logic. You’re right that a lot of assumptions are made in regards to what the audience can accept from their characters, (of course Widow could switch out with the Brit, of course Cap could break into a base), but when the beats are played out that way, you kill any real tension which is why the HeliCarrier ending is just pablum.

  10. EtGuild2 says:

    “If they use electrode’s to erase Winter’s mind, why does he have long hair?”

    Because it’s in the comics, and Sebastian Stan is a smoldering hot dude who Marvel wants audiences to like since he’ll likely replace Chris Evans in 4 years after Evans plays a superhero for the 8th time in “Avengers 3.”

    Stan, btw, is a delightfully odd interview, probably due to his unique background. But I don’t think he has the gravitas to carry a movie.

  11. nick says:

    me being stoned as anything while watching lego movie DEFINITELY contributed my enjoyment of the film as a whole

  12. JS Partisan says:

    Jep, and yes, every Marvel fan ignores those movies. Sure we don’t, but thanks for sharing such a deep and penetrating concern.

    Martin, every Bourne movie. Literally. Every. Bourne movie. Please, feel free to continue to ignore that all movies have their conceits.

    Oh yeah. You know that “Mob Mentality” comment is bullshit. You can use that for any movie that you do not like, and that’s why it’s ridiculous.

  13. Triple Option says:

    The logic gaps didn’t bother me for Cap Am2 but two of the supposed big reveals did. I’m talking Redford and Fury. Total Hack Job! They were so obvious that I thought they were going to do something after to catch us off guard. Nope, just a PT Barnum plan “Just throw up marvel on the screen and these same tricks used since the onset of the cold war. It’ll be fine.”

    Martin S, you had posted in another thread about the failure of the Marvel plan and that if it had worked they would’ve been buyers not sellers. I hadn’t seen it as such until you mentioned that. I was thinking it was an interesting trick to allow the various studios and video game makers to share the onus of designing and re-imagining the company image and standing in the marketplace through licensing out its name and content but now I’m wondering if they really are such geniuses.

    I saw The Raid 2 and was surprised at how inaccessible the film was. I was expecting breakout hit but who’s gonna watch this one?? The first film was very violent but the tension and action had me leaning forward and clutching my chair handles in amazement. Raid 2 was sooo brutal it wasn’t enjoyable. It was kung fu meets nc-17 slasher horror. How that thing got a freckin’ R rating is beyond me.

    There were times I felt some big titles that featured WB or Speilberg got a pass for coming in lower that what I would’ve thought a film deserved but here’s a showing where the little guy catches a break. Unless that was all on Sony. Either way, I’d think the MPAA just set precedent that they’ll not be able to walk back. I wonder if that won’t do anything to them??

    Were they already planning Rio 2: The Stage Musical? A lot of colors and birds swirling around in musical kaleidoscope numbers but I found it to be an utter snooze. Put that puppy on when you want to put the kids down for naptime. I’ve never seen so many toddlers lugged out a theater and not bouncing around pretending to be characters from the movie.

    I also found Anne Hathaway’s voice out of place. Not because it didn’t sound Latin American, but some other animated films seem to have more captivating voices. I’m sure a lot of voice actors would love to be featured on camera but you can’t take for granted how good some are. I wonder sometimes about the need for big name talent in animated films. 1st graders aren’t going to give a crap about who’s won an Academy Award but the parents who are buying the tickets might.

    I think the most recent Shrek movie featured a guy who was working for the animation company doing placeholder dialog to actually be a main character in the film and he was perfect. I thought Nicolas Cage and Emma Stone were great and distinctive in The Croods. But when I’d pick ever single elementary teacher or librarian who read stories to my class over Hath’s, I think there’s a problem.

  14. elemacd says:

    Glad to hear ‘The railway man’ had an auspicious limited opening.

  15. Sam says:

    The failing may well be mine, but I read that paragraph on Grand Budapest Hotel three times and still don’t know whether Tenenbaums, Fantastic Mr. Fox, or Moonrise Kingdom is the #1 Anderson grosser that Budapest Hotel is on track to beat.

  16. SamLowry says:

    Yep, it was Rumpelstiltskin–totally excellent job by writer and story artist Walter Dohrn.

    As for RIO, it’s pretty bad that you have to go all the way down the cast list to the nerdy ornithologist to find someone with an actual connection to Brazil. And Anne Hathaway as the voice of the wild rainforest? Hasn’t she surpassed Julie Andrews as the whitest performer in the history of cinema?

  17. EtGuild2 says:

    Hatha-Hater! ;)

    And because of “Havoc,”she can’t be the whitest actress ever. Never forget (NSFW):

    http://i.imgur.com/hhvN3.jpg

  18. christian says:

    RIO I & 2 is the esthetic equivalent of an old beach towel…Who could actually get excited making or watching it?

  19. cadavra says:

    Well, I saw LEGO cold sober and it gave me a headache, so maybe “stoned” would indeed have been a better option.

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