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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Estimates by Furiouser

Weekend Est 2 2015-04-12 at 10.17.32 AM

Not a very eventful weekend. The Avengers 2 junket got more media attention than any of the films in release.

But a solid hold for Furious 7. The film’s domestic lead over its predecessors in the franchise continues to expand week by week, which is impressive. Just tree weekends in, this is already the highest grosser of the series, with literally hundreds of millions (2) still possible worldwide. I didn’t think a billion was possible… but it clearly is at this point.

Home is actually running ahead of How To Train Your Dragon 2 right now. Beating the domestic number would be a very positive event for DWA, especially given that Dragon was a sequel and it was a summer film. I doubt that Home will come close to Dragon 2 internationally, which speaks to the ultimate profitability. But if it comes close, that’s still a big win. That would give DWA winners at Fox for three years in a row: The Croods, Dragon 2, and now, Home. It would also kick current thinking in the teeth… that familiar brands are the best way to go. If DWA can keep producing one new strong, original franchise player a year, it could quickly put Rise of The Guardians (Santa, Easter Bunny, etc), Mr. Peabody & Sherman, and the spin-off of Madagascar in a different light.

The Longest Ride simply failed to hit the marks (Nicholas Sparks meets Nashville) it was seeking. It is by no means a disastrous opening. Just not a great one.

Insurgent is now, officially, a mature series. The number ain’t going to change much on the last two films… domestically. But there is still some hope for real growth internationally. Indications are (someone will kindly correct me if I am wrong) that there are a lot of territories out there to still open and Insurgent is already close to Divergent‘s international total. If Mojo’s charts are accurate, high- grossing countries like China, France, Germany, Russia and Mexico are all still untapped and international could add another $100 million before its all done, taking the franchise to or close to the $400m worldwide mark.

Indie expansions are getting a lot of play this month. $5.7 million for the weekend and a cume coming up on $10 million seems like a ton for Woman in Gold, a Nazi artwork-return drama. The expansion of nearly 6x the screens of opening weekend led to just under 3x the opening, which is a very solid number.

Also from The Weinsteins, Radius’s trend-setting choice not to day-n-date It Follows continues to pay off. Our estimate for this weekend is much higher than some, but whether the film is down a little or up a little, the numbers are very good… under the circumstances. With word-of-mouth like this, it makes you – or it should make you – wonder what would have happened had this been released in a normal way and had a bigger initial sampling group. I am glad that this opportunity was not  squandered by Radius… but we are heading to the next iteration of indie distribution, where opportunities like this – great movie, great critical acclaim, popular genre – are never day-n-date VODed and that bigger theatrical distributors are more anxious to buy these kinds of films. Radius is a terrific company, but they have had quite a few films fall into their VODing hands that were really strong commercial plays. These have been some of the most successful VOD films… but could have been more.

The trend set by Radius is seen with Clouds of Sils Maria, a truly great movie that IFC is releasing in theaters without a VOD date set, much less launched on the same day or within a week. The result this weekend was a strong $28,700 per-screen on three (by estimate).

And Danny Collins, from first-time distrib Bleecker Street, has taken its time and is seeing some payoff from their seeding of the film. Pacino’s made four “small” films in a row (Stand Up Guys, The Humbling, Manglehorn, and Danny Collins). The Humbling had a messed-up run at award season and might comeback theatrically… we can hope. Good movie. Barry Levinson directing. Buck Henry script. Stand Up Guys didn’t do much. IFC is bringing out Manglehorn, but that strong David Gordon Green film will challenge audiences in a commercially unfriendly way. So it looks like Danny Collins will be the top grosser of the group. Pacino is having a career resurgence thanks to his daring, interesting choices. I hope audiences will get to see it.

Also continuing to expand well is While We’re Young from A24, adding about 8x the screens and doing about 3x the gross. Solid against the expectation on these kinds of expansions.

A24 also has the most excellent (and most horribly titled, for commercial purposes) Ex Machina, which did an estimated $61,750 per screen on 4, behind only Spring Breakers in the distributor’s short history. This is another film, like It Follows, that feels like it could have been a lot bigger with some more marketing firepower (read: money) behind it. I will try to find out the story behind Universal selling domestic rights to A24, because it seems like someone over there blew the pooch on this one.

Also in exclusive release, documentary Dior and I did an estimated $22.3k per on 2 from Orchard.

13 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Furiouser”

  1. pops3284 says:

    Fast is probably gonn get to 1 billion worldwide. its incredible how this franchise has grown in each and every movie

  2. AlexW says:

    Insurgent already opened pretty much everywhere internationally 3 weeks ago. Including all the countries mentioned up there.

  3. Mark says:

    Yes, it opened almost everywhere, except China and Japan. Boxofficemojo stopped updating most of the international boxoffice charts by country last year.

  4. dinovelvet says:

    Is CHILD 44 being dumped or what? Looks like its getting a 500 theater release next weekend, anyone know the story there?

  5. Russ Banks says:

    Dino, the story is that it’s a bad movie with no obvious marketing hooks. Yes, it’s based on a ‘best-selling’ book, but in this case, that doesn’t seem to mean much. The book was never a phenomenon. You’ve got not-particularly-well-known actors doing questionable accents in a Cold War-era Russian setting, in a movie about child murders. It’s hard for something like that to stand out these days, even if it’s good.

  6. James K says:

    “The Humbling” won’t be coming back theatrically, it already came out on dvd & blu.

  7. Bulldog68 says:

    Does anyone know why True Story with Jonah Hill and James Franco is basically a dump? Looks like a serviceable enough low budget flick.

  8. movieman says:

    Paul Blart, monkeys and teen horror go wide-wider-widest next Friday.
    Tom Hardy and Jonah Hill/James Franco get relegated to runty little breaks (i.e., not nearly enough screens for them to make it into my podunk town).

    Once again, life proves eminently unfair.

  9. Daniel says:

    Actually Dave Furiouser has only been out for two weekends. Not three. All the more impressive I guess. Will it hit 400 domestic?

  10. pat says:

    Are they still planning on making three more Insurgent movies? Because I can’t see the next one even topping 100 million domestic.

  11. chris says:

    There would have been an audience for “Child 44″ if it weren’t terrible, Russ Banks. It was not a “bestseller” in quotation marks. It was a legitimate bestseller and not only that: It’s a cinematic thriller that should work as a movie. That it’s being dumped without screenings or much advertising has to mean it’s dreadful.

  12. Stella's Boy says:

    That sucks about Child 44. Such a great cast and an interesting story. Wrong director? And True Story is an excellent book, so it’s a same if that one is a stinker. I was really looking forward to both. Time to lower expectations.

  13. chris says:

    I wonder if you’re right about the director, Stella’s Boy. Espinosa seems like a decent choice (although someone along the lines of Morton Tyldum or Tomas Alfredson or Alberto Rodriguez might have been a better fit).

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