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David Poland

By David Poland poland@moviecitynews.com

Weekend Estimates by September Over Yet? Klady

Weekeend Estimates 2016-09-25 at 11.06.40 AM

Nothing has changed. Storks claiming $21.4 million for the 3 day may be high… could be true… still not a hit in this genre. Sully holding well, but not exceptionally so. Bridget Jones’ Baby is ugly domestically… hoping it looks better by international norms. Snowden in hiding (which I find unfortunate). Blair Witch doing the same business the original should have (aka, almost none). Suicide Squad passes $320m domestic next weekend… $730m worldwide… Guardians of the Galaxy did $773m worldwide and was seen as the most explosive hit of the season… this is when media feelings really show up, when the history is written, not at the box office.

Disney fails to open Queen of Katwe. The film deserved better. It was never going to rock the box office, but it would have been better served by selling the movie that is there, not the movie Disney dreamed it could be (and clearly is not). This is the kind of movie that other distributors with the ability to go wide handle with white gloves. Disney’s white gloves only have four fingers.

And now that Katwe is release, there is exactly one non-big-Disney-brand movie on the company’s schedule between now and the end of 2018. (Someone noted this somewhere this week… in a comment, I think. Sorry to be cribbing.) And that sole film is a Disney Nature doc.

If Disney had laid off Queen of Katwe, The Light Between Oceans, Pete’s Dragon, McFarland USA, Million Dollar Arm, The Hundred Foot Journey, and more, they would have all done a lot better. Disney’s marketing department just isn’t exercising the muscle of releasing quality movies that are not franchise movies anymore.

When Alan Horn came to the studio, he assured producers that the studio was not getting out of the business of making “middle” movies. He may or may not have been lying. My guess is that he was given a few shots to make is work… and it never has paid off, so they have abandoned the category completely… which no other studio has done, no matter how the media obsesses on the idea that everyone has.

More of this to come in a separate piece.

Anyway… another meh Sunday.

16 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by September Over Yet? Klady”

  1. EtGuild2 says:

    Took my nephew to STORKS. It seems like Warner Animation was trying to create a Lord/Miller movie without Lord/Miller, which makes some sense given LEGO and that this date lines up with CLOUDS WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work. It retains the manic energy of those, but it isn’t funny, or coherent, which makes it grating.

    Can’t believe how bad THE DRESSMAKER is, btw.

  2. Dr Wally Rises says:

    It’s odd that David keeps shrugging at Sully’s performance week on week. For perspective – it’s already the biggest drama for adults at the box office this year. The most successful drama at the box office since The Revenant. Then you have to go back another year to find another higher grossing mainstream drama (American Sniper). And it’s holding like a champ. It’s withstood one expensive star driven male-oriented action vehicle (M7) with a drop of just 37%. It has another one to contend with next week with Deepwater Horizon. $140 million is in play which would make it the highest grossing film of Hanks’ live action career not to be directed by Spielberg, Howard or Zemeckis. Sully is doing great.

  3. Hallick says:

    Yeah, I’m not sure what Sully is supposed to be doing right now that would make it impressive here. $200 million already?

    I double-hope Bridget Jones’ Baby is tanking internationally as bad as it’s tanking in the US.

  4. matt says:

    DP, can you elaborate on how Disney could have improved Katwe’s opening? I haven’t seen the movie but from the trailers and reviews it looks like a stellar film and saddened to see it didn’t open better. Curious to know your thoughts on how Disney could’ve reached its audience better.

  5. Christian says:

    KATWE is pretty good, not great, which I realize doesn’t necessarily have any bearing on its box-office prospects, at least on opening weekend. But the film may be a tad oversold.

    Does anyone know if Art House Day figures are being reported? There were a few different films that the various participating theaters played: “Time Bandits,” “Phantasm,” and the documentary “Danny Says.”

    My “Phantasm” screening at AFI Silver in Maryland was maybe half full, in the theater’s second-largest auditorium (theater 2). I didn’t count audience members, but I noted that it was almost all dudes. That breakdown doesn’t really surprise me for a cult film like “Phantasm,” but I was struck when I saw “The Long Goodbye” at AFI Silver over the summer (in theater 3, the smallest of the venue’s three auditoriums) that attendance was 23 men and 2 women. I never thought of Altman as primarily a draw among men. Maybe attendance at that screening, and/or at “Phantasm,” was just a fluke, but it was imbalanced enough that I noticed.

  6. John says:

    Dave, aside from release dates, there isn’t much similar about SUICIDE SQUAD and GotG. One has Will Smith, the most iconic Batman villian and a cameo by the biggest star in the DC universe (not to mention an insane number of weeks for reshoots to change the tone and the most unorthodox method of editing). The other had a talking raccoon and a guy from Parks & Recreation in an adaptation of a comic no one had ever heard of. If anything, GUARDIANS overperformed like a mofo, based mainly on how beloved it was.

  7. David Poland says:

    Nothing wrong with the Sully numbers. But they are not blazing. Not a low budget movie. Not a clear foreign audience. Right now the #23 Tom Hanks performance.

    It’s doing very solid September business. Take the win.

  8. David Poland says:

    John – Suicide Squad is seen a widely despised. Guardians is seen as widely loved.

    If you don’t see that there is something discomforting about their totals being fairly close, I can’t explain.

  9. EtGuild2 says:

    It’s also the best live action Hanks result since at least 2009, and likely the best September live-action result since 2001. For this time of year, this is like describing $400 million in June as “very solid.” Mmm hmm….

  10. Stella's Boy says:

    I can’t believe how much money Sully has made. It feels like the miracle landing happened last week. I’ve seen the footage so often it haunts my dreams. I would never have guessed so many people were clamoring to see something that happened so recently, something they probably saw several times on TV. The number sure seems impressive. Its opening weekend is better than the star-studded Magnificent Seven.

  11. EtGuild2 says:

    Dave undersells certain movies, for whatever reason. DON’T BREATHE has been written up as a decent, if somewhat run of the mill horror gross, when it’s holding like a prestige costume drama. It’s Screen Gems’ all-time #3. For R-rated genre fare, unless I’m really missing something here, it will likely pass SAW II to become the top thing outside of Paranormal/Conjuring since, aptly, PANIC ROOM.

  12. Geoff says:

    “Dave, aside from release dates, there isn’t much similar about SUICIDE SQUAD and GotG. One has Will Smith, the most iconic Batman villian and a cameo by the biggest star in the DC universe (not to mention an insane number of weeks for reshoots to change the tone and the most unorthodox method of editing). The other had a talking raccoon and a guy from Parks & Recreation in an adaptation of a comic no one had ever heard of. If anything, GUARDIANS over-performed like a mofo, based mainly on how beloved it was.”

    Suicide Squad cost about $40 million less than GOTG (which to be fair was much more effects-heavy) to make and wasn’t released in China – no matter how you spin it, that’s a damn good showing despite what the reviews said.

    And it had literally been eight years since Will Smith had a breakout hit so he was as much as a question mark as anything….as was it being a film centered on the “villains” of that comic book universe which had not been done before. You could say that The Joker is a brand name but the character had never been featured before in a film that did NOT feature him going toe-to-toe with Batman so who’s to say if that was a guarantee? Could a Loki movie work without Thor? You HAVE to give some points for being first.

    And honestly are we STILL going to go on and on about how “risky” it was for GOTG to feature a talking racoon and tree?? The star of the movie was still a good-looking white dude with strong comic timing which had already worked with the casting of Downey….and after this year’s box office, talking animals are about as mainstream as it gets right now. 😉

  13. EtGuild2 says:

    There’s one thing we can all agree on regarding GOTG/SS, at least. Neither compares, in terms of box office profitability at least, to the Merc with a Mouth, released by that juggernaut of comic studios, Fox-Marvel :p

    I’d love to get my hands on data regarding how those three movies stack up in terms of ancillaries, since they’re the three most unexpectedly large hits in the history of the genre. I suspect GOTG is well ahead, but there’s no way of knowing.

  14. Geoff says:

    “There’s one thing we can all agree on regarding GOTG/SS, at least. Neither compares, in terms of box office profitability at least, to the Merc with a Mouth, released by that juggernaut of comic studios, Fox-Marvel :p”

    I think that’s a very safe assumption – Deadpool cost less than a third of either of the other films and was also R-rated. And going to several Halloween stores this weekend, Deadpool is pretty big on that front too: there was an Avengers section, a Suicide Squad section, a Batman section, and a Deadpool section.

  15. EtGuild2 says:

    Is it weird that I’d be disgusted by a kid wearing a SS outfit, but totally fine with a Deadpool one provided they’re a tween?

  16. Geoff says:

    “Is it weird that I’d be disgusted by a kid wearing a SS outfit, but totally fine with a Deadpool one provided they’re a tween?”

    I guess it depends on WHICH Suicide Squad character – if one my daughters wanted to dress up Harley Quinn, I would not be having that.

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