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David Poland

By David Poland

Weekend Estimates by Baby New Klady

Weekend Estimates 2017-12-31 at 10.17.12 AM

Okay… nothing much changed since yesterday.

Star Wars is doing great by every standard other than Force Awakens and Jim Cameron. I believe that the complaining is marginal. 10% or less of the audience. They are loud and the media loves any story, however misshapen. The future of the franchise will probably be clearer after the next film, which will not be the end of any trilogy, for better or worse.

Jumanji may save Tom Rothman until summer. Of course, the entire studio could be sold by then.

Pitch Perfect 3 is not what Universal hoped… but is still likely to be quite profitable.

Fox marketing isn’t covering itself in glory on the Burbank Death March out the door. Neither film is a complete disaster. Neither film could be called a hit.

Molly’s Game has done fairly well in its opening week (opened on Christmas, last Monday) on 271 screens. Hard strategy to rely on awards making the movie more commercial.

Focus is playing the same game, even more so, with Phantom Thread, which is doing solid PTA-type business on 4 screens.

And then there is The Post, another film from Fox. Nine screens against a full national release campaign. The $60k per-screen is nice, but hardly breathtaking. It’s no unfair to compare the current part of this run to American Sniper… but regardless of how anyone feels about the film, I am not feeling like The Post is an American Sniper in the making. Or a Lincoln. There is definitely a mid-sized audience out there for this movie and they will show up when it goes wide. But if you ask me, they left $10m – $20m on the table by not going out the week before Christmas. The upside is that January is week on dramas. We’ll see.

Here is an awards chart…

BP hopefuls 2017-12-31 at 12.28.48 PM

24 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Baby New Klady”

  1. movieman says:

    Is “Lady Bird” officially A24’s top domestic grosser, or am I forgetting something?
    “Moonlight” finished up at $28-million; “The Witch,” $25-million.
    Any chance it could reach $50-million by Oscar night?

  2. EtGuild2 says:

    It is movieman! And possibly. I think $50 million is the goal….it’s well ahead of SPOTLIGHT and MANCHESTER, but by Oscar night may be a lift.

    Here, in tradition for me on this blog, are thoughts on annual studio performance:


    They played it safe and reaped the rewards. Only one movie, THOR 3 really overperformed (though COCO did internationally thanks to the mind-boggling China performance; it’ll outgross Pixar’s entire prior filmography combined by a wide margin) and one, CARS 3 underperformed, though the latter will make up for it in merchandising. What more could you ask for?

    2018 Outlook: With Infinity War, Incredibles 2, Han Solo, two other MCUs, live-action Mulan, a Wreck it Ralph sequel and more (including the well positioned Wrinkle In Time), it should break its 2016 all-time record by a huge margin.

    *Universal: A-

    The crappy last quarter doesn’t negate the sensational first quarter with Get Out, Split, 50 Shades and Dog’s Purpose generating massive profits. They had the unlikely biggest comedy hit of the year in Girl’s Trip and witnessed massive overseas success with Furious 8 and Despicable Me 3. They overperformed more than anyone, Mummy failure be damned.

    2018 Outlook: Kinda risky with a whole boatload (Insidious, 50 Shades, Pacific Rim, JW, Mamma Mia, Halloween, Scarface, Purge 3) of sequels and reboots and no obvious massive hit outside of JW. Still, they shouldn’t be underestimated after the last few years.

    *Warner Brothers: B

    They were killing it through September (aside from arguably the biggest misfire of the year in King Arthur) with “It” somehow ending up as the most profitable horror movie of all time, plus WW, DunKirk, Annabelle 2. Then They lost money on at least 4 of their last 5 releases including one, Justice League, with long-term repucussions.

    2018: Same as always. Big risk with the potential for big reward (Tomb Raider, Ocean’s 8, Ready Player One).

    *Sony: B-

    They likely lost money…again! But they found a spark in JUMANJI 2 and their MCU-crossover. And nothing, aside from Dark Tower, can really be classified as a money losing bomb. As good as you could have hoped after the last few years….

    2018 Outlook: Poor. Do they have a $150 million guaranteed grosser on the slate? Nope! Barbie, Venom, Holmes and Watson and Equalizer 2 carry more risk than reward. At least nothing looks like a money sink!

    *Fox: C-

    After starting decently with Logan and Boss Baby, a collapse presaging their sale. Alien, Ferdinand, Greatest Showman and Apes 3 were misfires. Orient Express and Kingsman were moderate hits, but when “Logan” is your most profitable yearly release by a wide margin, it’s not a good thing.

    2018 Outlook: Decent! X-Men could carry them to success. If they care….

    *Paramount: F

    What is there to say?

    2018 Outlook: Nearly as bad, with MI6 and Cloverfield potential bright spots and an unnanounced November “event” movie.

  3. David Poland says:

    You are correct, Movieman.

  4. movieman says:

    A fun read–and very insightful, Ethan.
    Reminded me of Film Comment’s annual “Grosses Gloss” (or whatever they’re calling it these days).
    Used to always look forward to that feature.
    Until, like pretty much everything else in FC these days, it became well-nigh unreadable.

  5. EtGuild2 says:

    Thanks movieman. I await DP’s insight as I’m in the spitballing crowd. And yeah FC is a crapfest nowadays.

  6. JS Partisan says:

    1) The Last Jedi is doing good, for a successful Marvel Studios movie. If you think Iger and Co. are into Marvel Studios success, then I simply disagree. 1.5bn is great money, for everyone but SW. If you disagree, then let’s all remember how happy they apparently weren’t, when Rogue One didn’t top Civil War.

    2) We have no idea what percent of the audience is until Solo, or episode IX comes out. That’s when we know. Solo, may not be a good gauge either, because fans like myself are looking at it as a palate cleanser.

    Im just frustrated with the same people that hated the prequels, and ignored how those movies meant a lot to kids. Are the same fucking people who love TLJ and do not understand how the rest of us hardcore fans hate that movie, or really dislike it at the very least.

  7. Doug R says:

    You know what was in Fatman & Batman’s top 10 and Grace Randolph’s number 1? Wonder Woman! Don’t see it in the Oscar chart.

  8. Bodhizefa says:

    JS, you are not on corporate’s level if you believe Disney isn’t going to be happy with a $1.5 billion Last Jedi. Force Awakens was lightning in a bottle in that it was both the first Star Wars film in 15 years, and it was also the first FUN Star Wars film since the original trilogy, which is almost 35 years ago! Last Jedi is the box office norm that Disney will move forward with and this is how they will budget their films accordingly. They will have ups and they will have downs, but as far as Episodes go, this is what they will use and learn from to judge how to finance future Episode installments.

    Also, lay off the hate, man. We’ve had so much of that in 2017 that it feels unnecessary on a film blog comment section. We’re all here to have fun and pretend we’re all smart, so let’s not make it a hate fest, k?

    Much love and Happy New Year’s to you all.

  9. Bodhizefa says:

    One last thing — I am certainly curious how kids who grew up with the prequels are perceiving the new films. As someone who grew up with the original trilogy, I felt the prequels were cold and horribly cast/acted — basically everything the original trilogy was not. They were boring and without any direct propulsive momentum in their storytelling. What is the general consensus on the prequels these days? Have people softened on them? And what is the opinion of the generation that grew up with them? Do you have fond nostalgia for them?

    I am astounded at the difference in casting and warmth in the new series vs the prequels. It is everything I wanted in a new Star Wars series and everything the prequels were not. Yes, Luke has changed over the years. But so do we all. And we all have opportunities to rise above our depths. The Last Jedi is a beautiful film for me for all those reasons.

  10. djiggs says:

    There is one undiscussed aspect of Last Jedi’s “down” box office when compared to The Force Awakens: the absence of Harrison Ford as Han Solo. I do think that Ford’s role in Force Awakens can be seen as a factor (minor or major?-I am not sure) in TFA’s huge box office. I am surprised that nobody has mentioned his absence in articles about Last Jedi’s box office.

  11. Pete B says:

    Bodhizefa, I couldn’t agree more with you regarding the casting in the prequels. If you only had them to judge Natalie Portman’s acting ability, you’d never guess she was nominated for Oscars, let alone won one. And the less said about Hayden Christensen the better.

  12. Sideshow Bill says:

    I’m a hardcore Star wars fan and I loved The Last Jedi. It definitely has some problems but I overall loved it. I also know several other “hardcore fans” who really like it. You’re not thinking straight, JS. You’re blinded by your hate into making unverfiable blanket statements. But that’s what people like you do. You mistake your opinion for fact.

    I hope you continue to be frustrated all the way through the New Year. Lord knows you’ll figure out a way.

  13. Geoff says:

    @djiggs, I would think most folks would have thought that an increased presence by Mark Hamill as Luke in the movie and the marketing campaign would mitigate that for the most part – besides, Hamill is MUCH better at doing the promotional rounds than Ford ever was. Still waiting on Lando to return of course….

  14. Geoff says:

    @Bodhizefa, it’s not doing $1.5 billion and $1.4 billion isn’t even a guarantee at this point – both TFA and Rogue One did 80% of their domestic gross by the end of their third weekend, New Year’s weekend THIS weekend. TFA had very strong word-of-mouth while Rogue One had middling word-of-mouth – I don’t think anybody is really thinking that word-of-mouth is particularly good this time around, it’s negligible at best. So short of UNUSUALLY good legs this time of year following the previous two, The Last Jedi tops out around $660 million domestic and around equal that overseas, around $1.3 billion which would be mind-blowingly good for any franchise that’s not Marvel or has the word “Furious” in the title…..but that’s a 35% DROP (worldwide so you’re not seeing any international growth either) just two years after it was re-booted. As I have said, adjustments will be made….

  15. brack says:

    Geoff – Rogue One finished its run in 140 Days with the same dollar amount as TLJ was able to do in a mere 18 days, and TLJ is going to be staying in theaters for a while still. It hasn’t even been released in China, where it will probably do similar numbers to TFA, and if history is an indicator, it will do slightly better there.

    Also, TLJ has no competition at all until the very end of January with the final Maze Runner, which isn’t a huge box office force. TFA had The Revanant and Ride Along which opened to big numbers in Jan of 2016. Even if the weekend percentage drops aren’t the best this month, TLJ has plenty enough left in the tank both domestically and foreign to get to 1.5b. So far it’s not dropping hard at all save for some front loading of the expected kind.

    TLJ has a good amount of time domestically to make given the weekend holds so far, even if you want to compare it to Rogue One, which TLJ is surely destined to improve in that respect, and will probably close with around $700m total. Internationally it needs to do about $800m total, which seems very doable given how long both TFA and Rogue One stayed in theaters during their runs.

  16. Stella's Boy says:

    I have no dog in this fight. I’ve seen half of Force Awakens and none of Rogue One or Last Jedi. Not my cup of tea. But I find it hard to accept that $1.4 billion or so isn’t a huge success. Are new SW movies only truly successful if they make as much as or very close to Force Awakens? Since Last Jedi will make much more than Rogue One isn’t it a success even if it falls short of Force Awakens? Sometimes I feel lost when it comes to how we are labeling the box office of these huge franchise movies.

  17. Joe Leydon says:

    People who dislike The Last Jedi keep talking about a big bad “backlash” that will affect the next Star Wars movie. But I wonder if the backlash hasn’t already occurred? Djiggs raises a good point: Some people may have been upset about the killing of Han Solo in The Force Awakens, so they didn’t show up for TLJ. But how many others — the alt-right crowd and other insecure white dudes — saw how many females and POC were involved in TFA, figured (rightly, as it turned out) those numbers would only rise in TLJ, and decided the franchise was no longer their brand of jam? In other words: Maybe the fallout has already happened, and ticket sales will remain more or less flat (and might even rise) for the next exciting episode?

    One other thing: As I have posted elsewhere, we’re never going to know what might have been in store for Leia in the next movie had Carrie Fisher not died. I suspect the original game plan was to have one member of the Original Trilogy trio die in each of the first three new films. But what might have happened if Fisher had passed away midway through the filming of TLJ? Would they have revamped that game plan, and kept Luke around for the next film? Or…?

  18. Doug R says:

    Yeah, but Hayden Christensen was a big step up from Jake Lloyd.

  19. Pete B. says:

    ^ Quite true Doug, but that’s like saying herpes is a step up from gonorrhea. You really don’t want either.

  20. brack says:

    It appears that TLJ is playing out like most planned trilogies where there’s a dip in the box office for the second film, most likely due to the nostalgia effect wearing off, and also older fans checking out as certain characters are checking out.

    But I think things will ‘bounce back” with Episode IX where there’s probably going to be some interesting character dynamics, possibly more Rey and Kylo Force “FaceTime”ing/mind meldings, plus the fact fhat Kylo couldn’t pulll the trigger on his mom, I’m very curious how Carrie Fisher’s death will be handled, and how it will effect the next film. Do they kill her off/goes on a mission/dies offscreen, etc.

    There’s no denying (for me anyway) that the Kylo and Rey scenes are some of the best In this new trilogy, Frankly I wonder if Kylo really wants to rule the galaxy or if he just has these family issues that point him towards a nihilistic standpoint.

  21. brack says:

    Ethan – thanks for the compliment in the other thread, I love movies and I can be testy at times but I try not to be snarky, if folks like yoh and other was to why I keep coming back. I learn a lot from everyone here.

    /end sappy rant

  22. Bulldog68 says:

    I’m thinking that with plans for a new Star Wars movie almost every year, Episode IX will not have the added value of being a trilogy closer the way Return of the Jedi and Phantom Menace was, or even any recent last installment franchise offering, so maybe looking for a box office bump might have one come up empty.

    Thus far, this new Star Wars saga doesn’t seem to have a very definitive end point. Sure they want to defeat Kylo Ren, but what’s the attraction to Episode IX thus far other than fining out more about Rey?

    I really liked TLJ, but unless I missed something, Episode IX is basically a clean slate with no real direction preset from the it’s prequels. Could be a good thing, but could also be a Walking Dead type scenario, where you find yourself not giving your fans a story with a defined end goal to root for.

  23. Night Owl says:

    “It hasn’t even been released in China, where it will probably do similar numbers to TFA, and if history is an indicator, it will do slightly better there.”

    Yeah don’t hold your breath on that one. Earlier indicators range from weak to weaker. China is just not on board. Also domestic is slowing faster. $650 million is a good goal but not a sure thing. The Hollywood Reporter was drunk when they put out that “$750-800M domestic expected” story after release. Drunk. Still if it’s “just” $1.4 billion or so worldwide? That’s pretty damn rarified air. The expectations on Star Wars movies are just nuts. Just because they’re the foundation of our (Western world) childhoods doesn’t mean they are going to challenge Avatar. It’s a big world.

    Star Wars is taken so seriously by many that I think the box office gets taken too personally (See also: League, Justice). Yes LJ has done incredibly…and yes it will likely lose domestically to Jurassic World among others. For some the second part is unthinkable. Also true: more people overseas went to see Furious 7 than the Force Awakens. No one has to burn their Yoda t-shirt over it. This just doesn’t feel healthy.

  24. brack says:

    I’m not talking F&F numbers, but anywhere from $125-$150m would be considered a win and the international box office is holding up better than domestic so far.

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Leonard Klady's Friday Estimates
Friday Screens % Chg Cume
Title Gross Thtr % Chgn Cume
Venom 33 4250 NEW 33
A Star is Born 15.7 3686 NEW 15.7
Smallfoot 3.5 4131 -46% 31.3
Night School 3.5 3019 -63% 37.9
The House Wirh a Clock in its Walls 1.8 3463 -43% 49.5
A Simple Favor 1 2408 -50% 46.6
The Nun 0.75 2264 -52% 111.5
Hell Fest 0.6 2297 -70% 7.4
Crazy Rich Asians 0.6 1466 -51% 167.6
The Predator 0.25 1643 -77% 49.3
Also Debuting
The Hate U Give 0.17 36
Shine 85,600 609
Exes Baggage 75,900 62
NOTA 71,300 138
96 61,600 62
Andhadhun 55,000 54
Afsar 45,400 33
Project Gutenberg 36,000 17
Love Yatri 22,300 41
Hello, Mrs. Money 22,200 37
Studio 54 5,300 1
Loving Pablo 4,200 15
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