Author Archive

The Weekend Report

Sunday, July 24th, 2016

It was another Kirk at the can as Star Trek Beyond steered the latest Enterprise to an estimated $59.4 million. Two other new national releases duked it out for positions four and five with the slightest edge for the horror entry Lights Out with $21.2 million. The animated franchise Ice Age: Collision Course was right behind at $20.8 million.

In limited wide release the Brit telly comedy staple Absolutely Fabulous translated well to the big screen with a $1.9 million box office at 313. The adversarial Hillary’s America received a stinging endorsement of $3.8 million pre-Philly convention, and slow rollouts of Café Society and Captain America held extremely well.

In the niches, it was another potent opening from India with Kabali opening to $4.2 million. Also strong were Filipino Imagine You & Me with a $232,000 tally from 28 venues and South Korean zombie apocalypse saga Train to Busan grossing $241,000 at a comparable 28 stations.

Among exclusive newcomers the inside-comedy dramedy Don’t Think Twice generated a laugh riot of $86,500 from a single Manhattan room.

Revenues were just shy of $200 million for a significant 21% boost from last weekend. It was a 31% improvement from 2015 when the second weekend of Ant-Man edged out the debut of Pixels with respective grosses of $24.9 million and $20 million.

Star Trek Beyond proved the truth of live long and prosper. The rebooted franchise from go-to reinventor J.J. Abrams had high-end expectations of $60 million and a critical response that was positive, if contained. Fan boys were 57% of the opening weekend audience with 73% of viewers aged 25-years and older. The core 18-34-year old demo was 31% of the big picture.

Beyond bowed day-and-date in 37 international markets to an estimated $30 million. The UK was the top grosser at $6.1 million with Germany contributing $4.5 million and Russia adding $3.3 million to the mix.

The weekend surprise was the showdown between Lights Out and Ice Age: Collision Course that wasn’t supposed to even be close. The low-budget chiller was tracking at a solid bow of about $15 million. Meanwhile, though, the fifth outing of the animated prehistoric critters has been steadily declining at the domestic box office, pundits projected $23- $25 million, competitive with The Secret Life of Pets.

The extra utz for Lights Out came from an unexpected female tilt of 54%. There was also a hefty 37% of tickets buyers aged 18-years and older with 18-34 year olds adding another 37% to the overall audience. The film also trickled out in 30 foreign flags to about $8 million with the only major territories Australia and Russia bowing respectively with $1.7 million and $800,000.

Ice Age may have cooled on the domestic front but its overseas box office is staggering; it’s the all-time biggest animated franchise with a tally in excess of $3 billion globally. It bowed internationally three weeks ago and going into the present weekend had amassed $150 million. The opening weekend domestic audience was 54% female with 69% identifying as families.

Weekend (estimates) July 22 – 24, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
Star Trek Beyond Par 59.4 (15,130) NEW 3928 59.4
The Secret Life of Pets Uni 29.3 (7,240) -42% 4048 260.7
Ghostbusters Sony 21.3 (5,370) -54% 3963 86.5
Lights Out WB 21.2 (7,530) NEW 2818 21.2
Ice Age: Collision Course Fox 20.8 (5,210) NEW 3992 20.8
Finding Dory BV 7.2 (2,800) -36% 2576 460.2
The Legend of Tarzan WB 6.4 (2,250) -44% 2844 114.8
Mike and Dave Fox 4.4 (2,040) -43% 2137 40.3
Kabali CineGalaxy 4.2 (17,590) NEW 237 4.2
Hilary’s America D’Souza 3.8 (3,140) 5006% 1217 3.9
The Infiltrator Broad Green 3.3 (2,120) -39% 1537 12.2
Central Intelligence WB 2.8 (1,770) -48% 1602 123.1
Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie Fox Searchlight 1.9 (5,970) NEW 313 1.9
The Purge: Election Day Uni 2.3 (1,370) -62% 1701 76.6
The BFG BV .92 (1,340) -76% 686 50.9
Café Society Lionsgate .86 (17,240) 140% 50 1.4
Independence Dy: Resurgence Fox .85 (1,170) -76% 730 101.2
The Shallows Sony .59 (1,150) -80% 513 53.6
Captain Fantastic Bleecker Street .57 (5,490) 98% 104 1.1
Hunt for the Wilderpeople Orchard .51 (2,560) -10% 200 2.3
The Jungle Book BV .41 (1,760) -21% 233 361.6
Sultan Yash Raj .40 (2,570) -49% 157 6
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate .30 (1,180) -56% 257 64.3
The Conjuring 2 WB .29 (1,230) -66% 235 101.8
Train to Busan Well Go .24 (8,610) NEW 28 0.24
Imagine You & Me GMA .23 (8,280) NEW 28 0.23
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $192.60
% Change (Last Year) 31%
% Change (Last Week) 21%
Also debuting/expanding
The Innocents Music Box .13 (2,060) -26% 62 0.62
Free State of Jones STX/Elevation .12 (900) -75% 135 20.8
Love & Friendship Roadside .11 (1,230) -44% 88 13.7
Swiss Army Man A24/D Films .10 (1,200) -61% 81 4
The Lobster A24/Mongrel 94,700 (1,410) -43% 67 8.9
Our Kind of Traitor Roadside 93,700 (1,060) -69% 88 3
Madaari Big Pictures 91,800 (1,700) 54 0.09
Don’t Think Twice Film Arcade 86,500 (86,500) 1 0.09
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics 53,600 (860) -57% 62 3.2
Dukot ABS 41,400 (1,150) 36 0.04
Our Little Sister Sony Classics 42,300 (2,120) 25% 20 0.13
For a Few Bullets China Lion 16,200 (1,080) 15 0.02
One Night Only Cheng Cheng 14,300 (890) 16 0.01
Summertime Strand 14,100 (2,350) 6 0.01
The Blackout Experiments Gravitas 6,900 (860) 8 0.01
Don’t Worry Baby Orion 4,300 (710) 6 0.01
Fight Valley Breaking Glass 3,200 (350) 9 0.01
Hooligan Sparrow Film Collaborative 1,900 (1,900) 1 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – July 21, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (10) 2014.7 30.90%
20th Century Fox (13) 1063.1 16.30%
Warner Bros. (16) 906.7 13.90%
Universal (13) 750.8 11.50%
Sony (15) 442.8 6.80%
Paramount (10) 403.2 6.20%
Lionsgate (14) 270.9 4.20%
Fous (8) 134.5 2.00%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.10%
STX (4) 62.1 0.95%
Weinstein Co. (8) 54.8 0.85%
A24 (7) 48.2 0.75%
Roadside Attractions (7) 34.3 0.55%
Sony Classics (11) 25.1 0.40%
Other * (212) 235 3.60%
6515.6 100%
* none greater than 0.35%

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, July 23rd, 2016

Star Trek Beyond|22.2|3928|New|22.2
Lights Out|9.1|2818|New|9.1
The Secret Life of Pets|8.6|4038|-43%|240
Ice Age Collision Course|7.5|3992|New|7.5
Ghostbusters|6.1|3963|-64%|71.4
Kabali|2.7|237|New|2.7
Finding Dory|2|2576|-39%|455
The Legend of Tarzan|1.8|2844|-46%|110.2
Hilary’s America: Secret History of the Dems|1.4|1217|3198%|1.5
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates|1.3|2137|-44%|37.3
||||
Also Debuting||||
Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie|0.66|313||
Imagine You & Me|84,500|28||
Train to Busan|72,200|28||
Don’t Think Twice|30,200|1||
Madaari|25,500|54||
Dukot|12,400|36||
For a Few Bullets|6,700|15||
The Blackout Experiments|5,400|8||
One Night Only|4,900|16||
Summertime|3,850|5||
Don’t Worry Baby|3,300|6||
Fight Valley|2,350|9||
Hooligan Sparrow|1,200|1||

The Weekend Report

Sunday, July 17th, 2016

The Secret Life of Pets remained top dog  with an estimated $50.5 million weekend gross. Nonetheless, it had stiff competition from the incoming distaff reboot of Ghostbusters that arrived alive with $46 million. The session’s other national newcomer The Infiltrator on the hunt for drug kingpin Pablo Escobar snuck into the top 10 with $5.2 million.

Top exclusive newcomers included Dinesh D’Souza’s election year screed Hilary Clinton: The Secret History of the Democratic Party that had faithful support of $77,500 from three precincts. Progressive moviegoers embraced Woody Allen’s Café Society with a resounding $350,000 endorsement.

In the niches, the Chinese So Young 2: Never Young bowed with $51,200 from 21 screens while Korea’s Seondal: The Man Who Sells the River grossed $32,700 at seven venues. In Québec. local production King Dave had a short reign of $28,600 from 20 screens.

Revenues for the frame inched toward $165 million and a 26% decline from last weekend. It was also a 17% abatement from 2015 when the launch of Ant-Man led with $57.2 million and Trainwreck bowed to $30.1 million.

The revived Ghostbusters tracked second to The Secret Life of Pets with expectations of a $45-$48 million opening that suggested a not-quite-blockbuster level but remained in the serious consideration category for a sequel. The opening audience was identified as 54% female with 55% aged 25-years and older.

Exit data wasn’t available for The Infiltrator but industry expectations were grim for the trackdown tale with high end predictions of $4 million. Its release placement was a head scratcher and an oddball choice as a counterprogrammer.

The weekend also featured several alternative expansions including an effective second round for Captain Fantastic. Also impressive has been the slow rollout of New Zealand’s The Hunt for the Wilderpeople. But the biggest seasonal surprise has been The Lobster, which has now grossed more in the domestic marketplace than its entire international box office.

Weekend (estimates) July 15 – 17, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
The Secret Life of Pets Uni 50.5 (11,540) -52% 4381 203.1
Ghostbusters Sony 46.0 (11,600) NEW 3963 46
The Legend of Tarzan WB 11.1 (3,120) -47% 3551 103
Finding Dory BV 10.9 (3,090) -48% 3536 445.4
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates Fox 7.5 (2,480) -55% 3008 31.3
The Purge: Election Day Uni 6.7 (2,270) -51% 2671 71
Central Intelligence WB 5.3 ((2,210) -35% 2381 117.5
The Infiltrator Broad Green 5.2 (3,230) NEW 1601 6.6
The BFG BV 3.7 (1,690) -53% 2182 47.3
Independence Dy: Resurgence Fox 3.4 (1,500) -56% 2290 98.5
The Shallows Sony 2.9 (1,220) -39% 2406 51.3
Sultan Yash Raj 1.0 (3,430) -59% 283 5.2
The Conjuring 2 WB .85 (1,500) -50% 566 101.1
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate .68 (1,300) -48% 523 63.5
Hunt for the Wilderpeople Orchard .55 (3,530) 43% 156 1.5
The Jungle Book BV .49 (1,780) 95% 276 360.8
Free State of Jones STX/Elevation .49 (960) -63% 506 20.4
Café Society Lionsgate .35 (70,600) NEW 5 0.35
Our Kind of Traitor Roadside Attract .29 (1,110) -59% 262 2.8
Captain Fantastic Bleecker Street .28 (7,690) 195% 36 0.4
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox .26 (1,040) -36% 250 155
Swiss Army Man A24 .26 (1,130) -62% 228 3.7
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: OotS Par .25 (1,370) -21% 185 80.8
Me Before You WB .25 (1,033) -41% 238 55.3
Warcraft Uni .19 (1,280) -57% 149 47
Les 3 p’tits cochons 2 Seville .18 (2,360) -59% 77 1.6
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $157.25
% Change (Last Year) -17%
% Change (Last Week) -26%
Also debuting/expanding
Love & Friendship Roadside Attract .17 (1,240) -43% 140 13.4
The Lobster A24/Mongrel .17 (1,670) -36% 101 8.7
The Innocents Music Box .16 (2,340) 23% 67 0.39
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .12 (960) -26% 127 3.1
Cold War 2 Well Go .10 (4,390) -36% 23 0.35
Hilary’s America: Secret History of Deec Party D’Souza Media 77,500 (25,830) 3 0.08
Wiener-Dog IFC 64,300 (870) -29% 74 0.38
So Young 2: Never Gone China Lion 51,200 (2,440) 21 0.05
Seondal: The Man Who Sells the River CJ 32,700 (4,670) 7 0.03
King Dave Seville 28,600 (1,430) 20 0.03
When Larry Met Mary Media Asia 11,400 (1,630) 7 0.01
Closet Monster Elevation 10,700 (10,700) 1 0.01
Don’t Blink – Robert Frank Grasshopper 8,900 (8900) 1 0.01
Equals A24 8,520 (2,130) 4 0.01
Lucha Mexico Kino 7,900 (360) 22 0.01
Undrafted Vertical 5,800 (360) 16 0.01
Phantom Boy Gkids 4,700 (4,700) 1 0.01
Five A-Z Films 3,900 (490) 8 0.01
Outlaws and Angels Momentum 3,300 (300) 11 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – July 14, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (10) 1988.3 31.70%
20th Century Fox (13) 1045.3 16.70%
Warner Bros. (15) 878.4 14.00%
Universal (13) 662.3 10.60%
Paramount (9) 397.3 6.30%
Sony (15) 375.9 6.00%
Lionsgate (13) 269.4 4.30%
Fous (8) 134.5 2.10%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.10%
STX (4) 61.3 1.00%
Weinstein Co. (8) 54.8 0.90%
A24 (7) 47.7 0.75%
Roadside Attractions (7) 33.6 0.55%
Sony Classics (10) 24.7 0.40%
Other * (208) 222.1 3.60%
6265 100%
* none greater than 0.35%
Top Global Grossers (January 1 – July 14, 2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Captain America: Civil War BV 1,150,794,980
Zootopia BV 1,016,476,807
The Jungle Book BV 936,471,154
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice WB 869,781,622
Deadpool Fox 782,038,982
Star Wars: The Force Awakens * BV 741,421,311
Finding Dory BV 666,260,852
The Mermaid Alibaba; Sony 552,537,068
The Revenant Fox 532,077,984
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 533,596,228
Kung Fu Panda 3 Fox; Dreamworks 518,997,505
Warcraft Uni; Legend 434,571,223
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 341,880,281
Independence Day: Resurgence Fox 310,567,172
The Conjuring 2 WB 295,800,627
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 272,730,049
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 243,496,359
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Par 223,406,522
London Has Fallen Focus; NuImage 203,893,315
The Secret Life of Pets Uni 198,356,132
The Monkey King 2 China Lion 190,755,793
From Vegas to Macau III Bona; Media Asia 186,923,621
Allegiant Lionsgate 179,885,634
* does not include 2015 revenues

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, July 16th, 2016

Ghostbusters|16.9|3963|New|16.9
The Secret Life of Pets|15|4381|-55%|167.6
Finding Dory|3.3|3536|-48%|437.7
The Legend of Tarzan|3.3|3551|-47%|95.2
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates|2.3|3008|-58%|26.1
The Purge: Election Year|1.9|2671|-52%|66.8
Central Intelligence|1.6|2381|-36%|113.8
The Infiltrator|1.5|1601|New|2.9
The BFG|1.1|2182|-55%|44.7
Independence Day: Resurgence|0.95|2290|-57%|96
||||
||||
Also Debuting||||
Café Society|0.12|5||
Hilary’s America: Secret History of Demc Party|41,200|3||
So Young 2: Never Gone|20,900|21||
Seondal: The Man Who Sells the River|10,900|7||
King Dave|9,300|18||
Closet Monster|5,200|1||
When Larry Met Mary|4,200|7||
Don’t Blink – Robert Frank|3,500|1||
Lucha Mexico|2,400|20||
Phantom Boy|2,000|1||
Equals|1,650|3||
Undrafted|1,500|15||
Outlaws and Angels|1,300|10||
Five|1,200|7||

The Weekend Report

Sunday, July 10th, 2016

The Secret Life of Pets bow wowed to an estimated $103.1 million to easily take the weekend crown. Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates opened fourth to $16.6 million.

Exclusive freshman included encouraging starts for the Japanese warmedy Our Little Sister and the doc Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You with, respectively, $25,700 from three screens and $19,100 at two sites. Most impressive was Captain Fantastic with $97,600 from four communes. The session’s two major expansions, New Zealand family adventure Hunt for the Wilderpeople and French drama The Innocents both clicked in wider release.

Activity in the niches was torrid with the Hindi Sultan opening with the year’s biggest gross for an Indian production with $2.4 million. There was also a solid bow of $107,000 for the Kannada film Godhi Banna Sadharana Mykattu at 31 venues. The latest Filipino rom-com The Achy Breaky Hearts had an excellent start of $213,000 with Chinese Cold War 2 strong at $160,000.

Revenues for the three days climbed to roughly $215 million for a 12% boost from last weekend. It was a slim 1% decline from 2015 when Minions debuted with $115.7 million and Jurassic World slipped into second with $18.2 million.

Expectations were high for The Secret Life of Pets with tracking suggesting an $80 million to $85 million launch. It was an understandable lowball as the animated film was not an established franchise. Its box office establishes it as the largest opening for an original animated feature. A studio spokesman said the universal appeal of four-legged friends proved a stronger magnet than anticipated.

Pets were unleashed two weeks ago in a handful of international markets and entered the current weekend with an overseas gross of $34 million. This weekend it debuted in India and its $490,000 box office contributed to a $7.8 million foreign gross. Studio exit polls identified the domestic audience as 64% female with 51% aged 25-years and older. Families accounted for 54% of ticket sales.

Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates was perceived as a modest counter-programmer with high end expectations of $15 million that it exceeded. It’s still premature to dub the modestly budgeted comedy as a sleeper but that potential exists. Its audience skewed slightly female at 52% with an even split for the over/under 25-year olds.

Mike and Dave also dipped into 19 international markets for a $3.7 million tally. Major territories included $1.9 million in Australia and $660,000 in Russia.

Finding Dory became the top-grossing 2015 release on Friday, when the domestic box surged past $6 billion. The current domestic box office is running at a 4% faster pace than 2015.

Weekend (estimates) July 8 – 10, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % change * Theaters Cume
The Secret Life of Pets Uni 103.1 (23,600) NEW 4370 103.1
The Legend of Tarzan WB 20.7 (5,760) -46% 3591 81.5
Finding Dory BV 20.5 (5,290) -51% 3871 422.7
Mike and Dave Fox 16.6 (5,580) NEW 2982 16.6
The Purge: Election Day Uni 11.7 (4,140) -63% 2821 58.1
Central Intelligence WB 8.2 (2,880) -35% 2841 108.4
The BFG BV 7.7 (2,280) -59% 3392 38.9
Independence Dy: Resurgence Fox 7.6 (2,490) -54% 3061 91.4
The Shallows Sony 4.8 (2,000) -45% 2406 45.8
Sultan Yash Raj 2.2 (7,880) NEW 283 3.2
The Conjuring 2 WB 1.7 (1,640) -55% 1052 99.4
Free State of Jones STX/Elevation 1.4 (1,080) -67% 1264 19.3
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 1.3 (1,550) -55% 864 62.2
Our Kind of Traitor Roadside Attractions .73 (1,830) -26% 399 2.2
Swiss Army Man A24 .67 (1,110) -54% 600 3.1
Me Before You WB .43 (1,350) -48% 318 54.8
Les 3 p’tits cochons 2 Seville .41 (5,080) -17% 81 1.2
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox .40 (1,380) -56% 288 154.5
Warcraft Uni .39 (1,720) -23% 228 46.5
Hunt for the Wilderpeople Orchard .37 (5,170) 107% 72 0.71
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Par .32 (1.090) -58% 293 80.4
Captain America: Civil War BV .31 (1,290) -60% 238 406.2
Love & Friendship Roadside Attractions .29 (1,820) -28% 161 13.1
The Lobster A24/Mongrel .29 (2,360) -23% 122 8.5
The Jungle Book BV .26 (1,320) -67% 197 360.2
The Achy Breaky Hearts ABS .21 (4,840) NEW 44 0.21
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $208.90
% Change (Last Year) -1%
% Change (Last Week) 12%
Also debuting/expanding
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .17 (1,670) -41% 103 2.9
Cold War 2 Well Go .16 (7,240) 22 0.16
The Innocents Music Box .12 (3,720) 209% 33 0.17
Godhi Banna Sadharana Mykattu Pushkar .11 (3,450) 31 0.11
Wiener-Dog IFC .10 (1,520) -10% 64 0.28
Captain Fantastic Bleecker Street 97,600 (24,400) 4 0.1
Zero Days Magnolia 47,200 (2,780) 17 0.05
Our Little Sister Sony Classics 25,700 (8,570) 3 0.03
The Dog Lover ESX Entertainment 20,300 (730) 28 0.02
Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You Music Box 19,100 (9,550) 2 0.02
Fathers and Daughters Vertical 17,900 (1,120) 16 0.02
Under the Sun Icarus 12,800 (12,800) 1 0.01
Dhilluku Dhuddu Praneeth 10,600 (410) 26 0.01
Foolish Plans AMC 7,400 (440) 17 0.01
Indian Point First Run 3,200 (320) 10 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – July 7, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (10) 1942.2 32.70%
20th Century Fox (13) 1011.1 17.00%
Warner Bros. (15) 831.5 14.00%
Universal (13) 495.5 8.30%
Paramount (9) 396.8 6.70%
Sony (14) 364.8 6.10%
Lionsgate (13) 267.4 4.50%
Fous (8) 134.5 2.30%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.20%
STX (4) 59.5 1.00%
Weinstein Co. (8) 54.7 0.90%
A24 (7) 46.2 0.80%
Roadside Attractions (7) 32.3 0.50%
Sony Classics (10) 24.3 0.40%
Other * (199) 213.1 3.60%
5943.3 100%
* none greater than 0.35%
Top Limited Releases (January 1 – July 7, 2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Eye in the Sky Bleecker/eOne 18,673,217
Hello, My Name is Doris Roadside Attractions 14,428,196
Love & Friendship Roadside Attractions 12,823,042
The Lady in the Van Sony Classics 10,021,175
Carol * Weinstein Co. 8,910,357
The Lobster Mongrel/A24 8,176,608
The Danish Girl * Focus 6,607,578
45 Years * IFC/Mongrel 4,563,579
A Hologram for the King Roadside Attract/eOne 4,212,494
The Meddler Sony Classics 4,206,238
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel 3,934,254
Where to Invade Next Drafthouse/Mongrel 3,827,261
Midnight Special WB 3,712,282
Anomalisa Par 3,683,877
Everybody Wants Some!! Par 3,442,160
The Mermaid Sony 3,229,457
Green Room A24/D Films 3,217,517
A Beautiful Planet Imax 3,183,975
Sing Street Weinstein Co. 3,119,256
2016 Oscar Nominated Shorts Magnolia 2,816,816
* does not include 2015 revenues

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

The Secret Life of Pets|38.2|4370|New|38.2
Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates|6.6|3871|New|6.6
Finding Dory|6.3|3871|-53%|408.5
The Legend of Tarzan|6.1|3591|-55%|66.9
The Purge: Election Year|4|2821|-67%|50.4
Central Intelligence|2.4|2841|-36%|102.6
The BFG|2.4|3392|-66%|33.5
Independence Day: Resurgence|2.2|3061|-54%|86
The Shallows|2.9|2406|-49%|42.5
Sultan|0.65|287|New|1.7
||||
||||
Also Debuting||||
The Achy Breaky Hearts|70,800|44||
Cold War 2|47,500|22||
Captain Fantastic|29,700|4||
Godhi Banna Sadharana Mykattu|28,400|24||
Zero Days|13,600|17||
The Dog Lover|10,700|27||
Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You|6,800|2||
Our Little Sister|5,800|3||
Fathers and Daughters|4,900|16||
Under the Sun |3,800|1||
Dhilluku Dhuddu|3,500|26||
Foolish Plans|2,700|16||
Indian Point|1,500|10||

The Weekend Report

Sunday, July 3rd, 2016

Finding Dory was top choice movie for the third weekend during the holiday frame with an estimated $41.8 million (all figures reflect 3-day box office). Three national newcomers followed: The Legend of Tarzan with $37.7 million, The Purge: Election Year grossing $30.8 and The BFG bowing to $19.2 million. The good news was the trio outperformed expectations. The bad newss? Expectations were low.

In limited wide release, Brit espionage thriller Our Kind of Traitor struggled to $950,000. In Québec, Les 3 p’tit cochons 2 continued to find humor among three dysfunctional brothers with a $544,000 tally at 69 venues. Swiss Army Man expanded to 636 playdates for $1.4 million. The weekend also saw promising starts for the French import of The Innocents of $26,700 from three engagements and the doc Life, Animated that grossed $22,700 also from three.

Revenues for the frame nudged toward $190 million for a slight 1% boost from last weekend. It was a whopping 41% improvement from 2015 when Inside Out prevailed over Jurassic World with respective box office of $29.8 million and $29.2 million. The top freshmen entries were Terminator Genysis at $27 million and Magic Mike XXL with $12.9 million.

Tracking gave The Purge: Election Day the edge over The Legend of Tarzan and the chiller franchise out-performed the vine swinger at Thursday previews. The situation reversed as the long weekend progressed. Tarzan had been perceived as this year’s John Carter commercially, but the venerable movie icon didn’t get lost in the jungle. Reviews were generally dismissive and industry top end estimates of $25 million were wrong.

The picture also opened day-and-date in 19 foreign climes to an estimated $19 million including $4 million in South Korea and $3 million in Russia. The domestic audience was 51% female with 69% of viewers aged 25-years and older with 41% aged between 18 and 34-years old.

Meanwhile, while the third installment of The Purge got trumped by Lord Greystoke, it still bettered the $30-32 million anticipated 4-day box office. Its audience was 53% female with 65% aged 25-years and younger … many of them unable to cast a vote in November.

The industry also didn’t quite know how to gauge the appeal of The BFG with high-and predictions of $20 million for the adaptation of the children’s bedtime classic. The yarn was sufficiently beloved to vanquish the “bean” counters and it didn’t hurt to have the Spielberg imprimatur attached. It also skewed female at 54% with 51% of the audience aged 25-years and younger and 60% of the crowd identifying as families. It also opened in two international markets with an estimated $2 million in Australia and $1.9 million from Russia.

Weekend (estimates) July 1 – 3, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
Finding Dory BV 41.8 (9,710) -43% 4305 372.2
The Legend of Tarzan WB 37.7 (10,590) NEW 3561 37.7
The Purge: Election Day Uni 30.8 (11,030) NEW 2796 30.8
The BFG BV 19.2 (5,710) NEW 3357 19.2
Independence Day 2 Fox 16.5 (4,030) -60% 4091 72.6
Central Intelligence WB 12.4 (3,910) -32% 3166 91.8
The Shallows Sony 8.8 (2,980) -47% 2962 35.1
Free State of Jones STX/Elevation 4.1 (1,470) -46% 2781 15.1
The Conjuring 2 WB 3.8 (1,890) -51% 2008 95.2
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 2.9 (1,640) -47% 1788 58.7
Swiss Army Man A24 1.4 (2,220) 1238% 636 1.6
Our Kind of Traitor Roadside .95 (2,550) NEW 373 0.95
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox .93 (1,480) -63% 630 153.5
Me Before You WB .81 (1,550) -58% 523 53.7
Captain America: Civil War BV .76 (2,070) -44% 367 405.4
TMNJ 2 Par .74 (1,030) -70% 719 79.5
The Jungle Book BV .67 (2,280) -47% 294 359.5
Les 3 p’tits cochons 2 Seville .54 (7,880) NEW 69 0.54
Warcraft Uni .49 (1,190) -78% 411 45.8
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV .36 (1,890) -80% 192 75.6
Love & Friendship Roadside 35 (1,870) -35% 189 12.5
The Lobster A24/Mongrel .31 (2,030) -24% 151 8
The Angry Birds Movie Sony .29 (1,160) -36% 251 105.6
The Nice Guys WB .26 (990) -35% 264 35.5
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .23 (1,470) -15% 158 2.6
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $185.30
% Change (Last Year) 1%
% Change (Last Week) 41%
Also debuting/expanding
The Neon Dream Broad Green .13 (700) -78% 185 1.1
Hunt for the Wilderpeople Orchard .13 (5,570) 66% 23 0.24
Sardaarji 2 White Hill .12 (2,540) -57% 48 0.54
Genius Roadside Attractons .11 (1,130) -48% 98 1
Wiener-Dog IFC 80,500 (2,240) 231% 36 0.1
Weiner IFC 82,600 (1,230) -20% 67 1.4
No One’s Life is Easy China Lion 33,400 (1,520) 22 0.03
The Innocents Music Box 26,700 (8,900) 3 0.03
Life, Animated Orchard 22,700 (7,570) 3 0.02
Bounty Hunters Dreamwest 18,400 (1,080) 17 0.02
Microbe & Gasoline Screen Media 12,000 (6,000) 2 0.01
Marauders Lionsgate 9,550 (680) 14 0.01
Buddymoon Gravitas 7,800 (710) 11 0.01
Blood Simple (reissue) Janus 7,700 (7,700) 1 0.01
Rosenne for President! IFC 3,100 (1,550) 2 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – June 30, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (9) 1835.9 32.60%
20th Century Fox (12) 980.4 17.40%
Warner Bros. (15) 744.1 13.20%
Universal (12) 446.2 7.90%
Paramount (9) 395.4 7.00%
Sony (14) 349.2 6.20%
Lionsgate (13) 262.3 4.70%
Fous (8) 134.5 2.40%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.20%
Weinstein Co. (8) 54.7 1.00%
STX (4) 52.9 0.95%
A24 (7) 43.4 0.80%
Roadside Attractions (6) 29.9 0.55%
Sony Classics (9) 23.7 0.40%
Other * (193) 208.4 3.70%
5630.4 100%
* none greater than 0.35%
Top Domestic Grossers (January 1 – June 30, 2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Captain America: Civil War BV 404,648,388
Deadpool Fox 363,070,709
The Jungle Book BV 358,834,598
Zootopia BV 340,551,819
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice WB 330,788,783
Finding Dory BV 330,349,602
Star Wars: The Force Awakens * BV 284,378,657
The Revenant Fox 182,765,375
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 152,597,455
Kung Fu Panda 3 Fox 143,467,597
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 105,367,614
The Conjuring 2 WB 91,433,538
Ride Along 2 Uni 91,251,872
Daddy’s Home * Par 85,902,195
Central Intelligence WB 79,437,074
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Par 78,747,502
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 75,280,329
10 Cloverfield Lane Par 72,425,310
Allegiant Lionsgate 66,255,109
The Boss Uni 63,226,106
* does not include 2015 revenues

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, July 2nd, 2016

The Purge: Election Year|14.4|2796|New|14.4
The Legend of Tarzan|13.9|3561|New|13.9
Finding Dory|13.4|4305|-42%|343.8
The BFG|7|3357|New|7
Independence Day: Resurgence|4.7|4091|-72%|60.8
Central Intelligence|3.7|3166|-35%|83.1
The Shallows|2.9|2962|-57%|29.2
The Conjuring 2|5.4|2008|-53%|92.6
Free State of Jones|2.6|2781|-56%|12.2
Now You See Me 2|0.85|1788|-50%|56.6
||||
||||
Also Debuting||||
Our Kind of Traitor|0.3|373||
Les 3 p’tits cochons 2|0.14|62||
No One’s Life is Easy|14,200|21||
Bounty Hunters|8,000|17||
The Innocents|7,500|3||
Life, Animated|6,100|3||
Microbe & Gasoline|4,000|2||
Marauders|3,800|13||
Buddymoon|2,900|11||
Blood Simple (reissue)|2,600|1||
Rosenne for President!|1,700|2||

Rush to Judgment: The Legend Of Tarzan

Wednesday, June 29th, 2016

The things that are wrong, or wrong-headed with the latest incarnation of The Legend of Tarzan, are myriad and numerous. One can readily cite a cumbersome, inelegant and periodically impenetrable storyline. There’s also a reliance on CG effects that distances one from the action and emotion, poorly developed characters, miscasting, typecasting and an infinite number of historic inanities that beggar description.

Nonetheless the lineage of the title hero is so fearsome that one cannot but forgive much of the film’s shortcomings. While not the sort of radical cinematic reinvention affected by Greystoke in 1984 from the seminal Johnny Weissmuller-Maureen O’Sullivan era, it is for good and ill the Tarzan for the current generation of filmgoers.

The story centers on John Clayton (Alexander Skarsgard) aka Tarzan, aka Earl of Greystoke returning to Africa after a decade of a more pampered existence in England. It’s the turn of the century when the Congo was a colony of Leopold II of Belgium.

Our hero is reluctant to accept the king’s invitation and the endorsement of an unidentified British Prime Minister (presumably Gladstone or Salisbury) to view alleged social reforms and modern institutions. However, he has a change of mind following entreaties from American emissary George Washington Williams (Samuel Jackson) to expose the truly unspeakable conditions that are the reality. There’s also the lingering sense that the taciturn Lord may hanker to revisit the wilds of his youth voiced volubly by his bride Jane (Margot Robbie).

The real scenario is that territory administrator Leon Rom (Christoph Waltz) wants to deliver the Ape Man to a tribal leader who has a grudge to settle. In exchange diamonds will be delivered to bail out the bankrupt kingdom.

It’s a rather simplistic bit of early twentieth century geopolitics that proves unnecessary to the screen’s more traditional jungle adventure mode.

The underlying clumsiness of the scenario is that The Legend of Tarzan is structured as a sequel for an iteration that has no origin. Nonetheless it falters in its attempts to insert the backstory via flashback vignettes. They prove to be insufficient and over-stated simultaneously. In the latter case one has to ask: Is there anyone on earth that doesn’t know the bare bones of the Tarzan saga? The one element that might have been worth examining was how he got his name which according to his literary creator means “white skin” in the language of the apes.

All that aside, the century of books, movies and television that have kept this literary icon perpetually popular work to the movie’s advantage. One readily knows the holes that need to be filled in and likely, unintended, it establishes an investment in the movie to its benefit.

It’s a Tarzan movie and what we want is vine swinging, communing with the beasts of the jungle and the vanquishing of evil bipods. In that regard the picture delivers despite the fact that the animals especially feel engineered rather than fur and blood creatures transposed into the action via more primitive bygone special effects. One can simply put aside the obvious and enjoy the heartfelt moment when the jungle lord nestles with lions he’s known since all were cubs or gets into the ring with a gorilla monarch that was a playmate of his youth.

Skarsgard is effective as a mysterious, brooding hero rather than as the traditional naïf. The rest of the cast have higher hurdles to clear; chiefly Robbie whose character is asked to do little more than enthusiasm or Waltz whose bag of nasty tricks has become decidedly familiar. Jackson simply appears out of his time.

The Gabon exteriors are appropriately breathtaking and a lively tonic to the film’s soundstages.

It would be nice to see this set of artists return for another chapter as assuredly they must have learned from their experiences how to do it better. Whether that happens or not, one can be certain that the screen has not seen the last of the Lord of the Apes.

The Weekend Report

Sunday, June 26th, 2016

The story was Dory as the Blue Tang clan of Finding Dory boop boop ditem whatem an estimated $73.2 million in its second weekend. That was bad news for Independence Day: Resurgence, fizzling into second with $41.6 million. The session’s other two national openers saw upbeat results for The Shallows, churning $16.2 million while Civil War lesson Free State of Jones struggled to $7.5 million.

The fashionista provocation The Neon Demon hardly sparkled with a gross of $582,000 from 783 playdates. Exclusive freshmen included good initial results for the union of dysfunction and Dachshund in Wiener-Dog of $23,000 from two screens and a $69,700 tally for New Zealand family comedy Hunt for the Wilderpeople from five engagements. But the big whoop goes to the offbeat Swiss Army Man, which grossed out $113,000 in three exposures. Among imports only Panjabi Sardaarji 2 displayed commercial power with a $218,000 box office.

Revenues for the frame were about $190 million for a 20% decline from last weekend. It was a slim 2% improvement from 2015 when the third weekend of Jurassic World edged Inside Out with respective draws of $54.5 million and $52.3 million.

A whole new generation was unfazed by the continuation of 1996’s Independence Day. Resurgence proved ironic on the domestic front where expectations peaked at $50 million and ebbed as opening day neared. Bad signs included the choice not to general press screen the film, and spots that favored comedy ahead of action. Studio exit demos identified the audience as 58% male with 64% of viewers aged 25-years and older.

International results were more encouraging for IDR with estimates of $100 million from 57 markets. China bowed to $36 million but nonetheless finished second behind a $43 million gross for Now You See Me 2. It also settled for the bridesmaid spot to The Secret Life of Pets in the UK with $7.3 million. It was leader of the pack in South Korea and Mexico with respective openings of $7.4 million and $6.7 million.

While lacking the big bite of Jaws, The Shallows was a shark picture trackers pegged to open at $10-$12 million. Clearly there was an audience for cheap thrills over expensive pyrotechnics. Its female protagonist contributed to a 54% female tilt with an split between over/under 25-year olds.

Nascent STX opened its first prestige picture Free State of Jones without sufficient TLC to win over audiences or critics. Tracking suggested an $9-$10 million weekend but the heavy focus on headliner Matthew McConaughey in the Civil War message picture missed the mark with alternative and upscale viewers.

Weekend (estimates) June 24 – 26, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
Finding Dory BV 73.2 (16,990) -46% 4305 286.5
Independence Dy: Resurgence Fox 41.6 (10,220) NEW 4068 41.6
Central Intelligence WB 18.4 (5,240) -48% 3508 69.3
The Shallows Sony 16.2 (5,470) NEW 2962 16.2
The Conjuring 2 WB 7.6 (2,500) -49% 3033 86.8
Free State of Jones STX 7.5 (2,650) NEW 2815 7.5
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 5.6 (2,030) -41% 2745 52
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 2.5 (1,470) -53% 1679 151.1
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Par 2.4 (1,220) -55% 1947 74.8
Warcraft Uni 2.1 (1,080) -71% 1952 43.9
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 1.9 (3,890) -55% 495 74.4
Me Before You WB 1.8 (1,150) -55% 1538 51.1
Captain America: Civil War BV 1.4 (1,820) -41% 753 403.9
The Jungle Book BV 1.2 (2,530) -19% 478 358
The Neon Demon Broad Green .58 (740) NEW 783 0.58
Love & Friendship Roadside Attr .46 (1,630) -38% 281 11.8
The Angry Birds Movie Sony .45 (1,020) -73% 443 104.9
The Lobster A24 .42 (2,000) -31% 210 7.4
The Nice Guys WB .41 (1,410) -50% 291 35
Zootopia BV .28 (1,210) -70% 233 340.4
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .27 (1,340) -37% 203 2.3
Sardaarji 2 White Hill .25 (4,000) NEW 62 0.25
Udta Punjab White Hill .22 (2,130) -65% 102 1.05
Genius Roadside .21 (1,390) -29% 152 0.8
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $184.00
% Change (Last Year) 2%
% Change (Last Week) -20%
Also debuting/expanding
Swiss Army Man A24 .11 (37,730) 3 0.11
Weiner IFC .10 (1,170) -20% 88 1.2
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel 84,200 (1,260) -42% 67 3.7
Hunt for the Wilderpeople Orchard 69,700 (13,940) 5 0.07
Three Well Go 58,100 (3,230) 18 0.06
Tickled Magnolia 57,500 (3,190) 162% 18 0.95
Raman Raghav 2.0 Big Pictures 53,900 (870) 62 0.05
Oka Manasu 9PM Entertainment 25,400 (350) 72 0.03
Wiener-Dog IFC 23,000 (11,500) 2 0.02
Eat That Question Sony Classics 17,400 (8,700) 2 0.02
Les Cowboys Cohen Media 13,600 (3,400) 4 0.01
The Kind Words Strand 7,900 (7,900) 1 0.01
Septembers of Shiraz Momentum 6,500 (720) 9 0.01
Right Now, Wrong Then Grasshopper 5,100 (2,550) 2 0.01
The Duel Lionsgate 4,300 (390) 11 0.01
Yarn Bond 3,100 (3,100) 1 0.01
Vigilante Diaries Anchor Bay 2,000 (1,000) 2 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – June 23, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (9) 1711.3 32.10%
20th Century Fox (12) 924.2 17.30%
Warner Bros. (14) 696.3 13.10%
Universal (11) 438.6 8.20%
Paramount (9) 391.4 7.30%
Sony (14) 323.1 6.10%
Lionsgate (13) 252.9 4.70%
Focus (8) 134.4 2.50%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.30%
Weinstein (7) 54.6 1.00%
A24 (5) 42.6 0.80%
Roadside  (6) 42.4 0.80%
STX (3) 28.9 0.55%
Sony Classics (9) 23.1 0.45%
Other * (185) 204 3.80%
5337.2 100%
* none greater than 0.4%

Reviews: Free State of Jones and Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Saturday, June 25th, 2016

Free State of Jones harkens back to the Civil War era and its aftermath for an arcane and fascinating piece of time that eluded even Ken Burns. Set in Jones County, Mississippi, It centers on disaffected Southerners struggling through a war and a cause unrelated to their daily existence but nonetheless demanding sacrifice they find unduly oppressive.

Newton Knight (Matthew McConaughey) is a conscript assigned to sweep the battlefields for fallen soldiers. It’s a perilous task that has honed his survival instincts to the nth degree. But the tipping point comes when a teenage relative arrives and is brought low in his very first skirmish.

Knight decides to go AWOL; taking the corpse of his kin back home for a proper burial. He tells his comrades this is not his war. It’s a conflict for plantation owners and slave holders exempt from military duty by age or vocation.

Back home he finds family and neighbors victim of Confederate laws that demand a tithe of crops and stock to the war effort. By law it’s ten percent; in practice it’s closer to everything. So he decides to stand with the largely female population against the authorities and that defiance makes him a marked man. The protagonist finds refuge in the swamps along with fellow deserters and runaway slaves. It’s his version of Sherwood Forest and this Robin Hood abets the poor by forcefully opposing the minions of the wealthy grandees. Knight winds up declaring a portion of the state an independent domain with a charter of principles though devoid of a legal/political body, which gives the film its title.

Based on historic documents, the film is a compelling look at strength and resistance of a little-known time. The attention to detail is staggering; tirelessly recreating a bygone time through stark images from cinematographer Benoît Delhomme and evocative production design by Philip Messina.

As vibrant as Free State of Jones can be, it falters through a dense narrative that descends into secondary concerns. A 1950s trial of Knight’s ancestor for misogamy fails to provide contemporary resonance and the era of Reconstruction following the Civil War comes short of extending the grim history.

There’s unquestionably sufficient material here for several films or a TV miniseries and writer-director Gary Ross appears hellbent on cramming every bit of research he’s collected into a single feature. He winds up being his own worst enemy; under-cutting the potency of the saga with minutia that’s arresting but not always dramatic.

Free State also gets a considerable boost from McConaughey’s finest film work. It’s precise, nuanced and largely free of histrionics. He provides much-needed humanity and a first-person perspective on decency and tolerance in an era when such qualities weren’t in ample abundance.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople

Hunt for the Wilderpeople is a family film with a wicked sense of humor, a manhunt through the wilds and even a car chase, as well as New Zealand’s highest-grossing native movie. Cherubic 13-year old Ricky Baker (Julian Dennision) is a troubled native boy who’s been bounced through social services and has reached the end of the chain. His last chance is the remote cabin of the big-hearted Bella and her gruff companion Hec (Sam Neill). The system couldn’t be happier to be rid of him.

Ricky’s belligerence and monosyllabic stance is no match for Bella’s unconditional love. Besides his vain initial attempts to escape are thwarted by his total lack of skill in the bush. But the fairytale is short-lived. Bella succumbs to a heart attack and social services returns him to the urban environment.

The set-up is equal parts saccharine and social conscience. But writer-director Taika Waititi is more of a social satirist keen to bend conventions and thumb his nose at preconceived expectations. His collaboration on the “Flight of the Conchords” series led to What We Do in the Shadows, a hilarious pseudo-documentary about vampires attempting to live the “square life.”

Ricky’s resistance to returning to civilization is abetted by serendipity. Hec is sufficiently self aware that he’s ill-suited to take over guardianship. But when he twists his ankle in the wilds they fail to meet their date with the authorities. They are assumed to be fugitives and that’s just fine with Ricky. Hec just has an inbred resistance to the system.

The skewered perspective and good natured quality of Hunt for the Wilderpeople is simply disarming. Dennison is a natural and without over-playing his hand, Neill revels in playing against time as a taciturn backwoodsman. There’s also a drop-dead funny turn from Waititi as the minister presiding over Bella’s funeral. The film sets the natural rugged beauty of New Zealand against the small-minded bureaucracy of any good “progressive” democracy. It’s a universal reality that’s readily relatable and effortlessly funny.

 

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, June 25th, 2016

Finding Dory|23.6|4305|-48%|236.9
Independence Day: Resurgence *|16.7|4068|New|16.7
The Shallows|6.7|2962|New|6.7
Central Intelligence|5.6|3508|-56%|56.6
Free State of Jones|2.6|2815|New|2.6
The Conjuring 2|5.4|3033|-54%|81.7
Now You See Me 2|1.7|2745|-40%|48.1
X-Men: Apocalypse|0.7|1679|-49%|149.4
TMNJT 2 |0.65|1947|-57%|75.4
Me Before You|0.65|1538|-58%|49.9
||||
* includes Thursday previews||||
||||
Also Debuting||||
The Neon Demon|0.24|783||
Sardaarji 2|73,700|62||
Swiss Army Man|48,300|3||
Three |20,000|18||
Hunt for the Wilderpeople|18,900|5||
Raman Raghav 2.0|15,700|62||
Oka Manasu|10,200|72||
Wiener-Dog|8,350|2||
Eat That Question|5,400|2||
Les Cowboys|3,650|4||
The Kind Words|1,800|1||
Right Now, Wrong Then|1,700|2||
Septembers of Shiraz|1,550|9||
Yarn|1,400|1||
The Duel|1,250|10||
Vigilante Diaries|1,200|2||

The Weekend Report

Sunday, June 19th, 2016

Finding Dory propelled to a record estimated $136.4 million. There was also good news for the other national debut—pumped-up action comedy Central Intelligence—with a  finish of $34.4 million. The frame’s only significant expansion was Genius , which maintained its bottom line. The Lobster continues to be a surprise success with a current cume of $6.7 million, rivaling its international run of $8.5 million.

Horror yarn Clown neither provided chuckles nor chills with a $27,300 tally at 100 venues. Best of the exclusive newcomers was the nonfiction Tickled with a coochy-coo $20,600 from two screens. In the niches, two Indian imports demonstrated significant heft. Punjabi Udta Punjab grossed $644,000 while Telugu Gentleman bowed to $458,000.

Overall revenues for the session swam to roughly $235 million and a 53% hike from last weekend. It was still 6% behind the 2015 level was Jurassic World’s second weekend grossed $106.6 and Inside Out bowed with a potent $90.4 million.

Expectations were bold for Finding Dory with cautious levels around $120 million that bettered Toy Story 3’s animated opening record of $110.3 million. The 13-year interval since Finding Nemo only made absence fonder (though the new film isn’t a strict sequel) with Thursday previews also setting records. The picture also opened in 29 international waters with an estimated $50 million including $17.5 million in China and $7.6 million in Australia.

Dory skewed female with 55% of domestic viewers with studio exit demos identifying families comprising 65% of the audience. Roughly 57% of the crowd was aged 25-years and younger.

Counterprogramming proved effective for Central Intelligence with the buddy action comedy coming close to top-end predictions of $35 million. Exit demos saw a surprising 51% female tilt. The plus 25-year old audience accounted for 57% of viewers with 32% of aged between 18 and 34-years old.

Weekend (estimates) June 17 – 19, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % chng Thtrs Cume
Finding Dory BV 136.4 (31,690) NEW 4305 136.4
Central Intelligence WB 34.4 (9,810) NEW 3508 34.4
The Conjuring 2 WB 15.6 (4,650) -61% 3356 71.8
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 9.2 (2,850) -59% 3232 40.9
Warcraft Uni 6.5 (1,910) -73% 3406 37.7
TMNJ 2 Par 5.2 (1,680) -64% 3086 71.9
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 5.2 (1,960) -48% 2632 146
Alice Through BV 3.9 (2,090) -30% 1880 69.6
Me Before You WB 4.2 (1,580) -54% 2645 46.4
Captain America: Civil War BV 2.3 (1,590) -47% 1434 401.3
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 1.6 (810) -75% 2021 103.1
The Jungle Book BV 1.3 (1,390) -52% 953 355.7
Zootopia BV .91 (2,980) 63% 305 339.5
The Nice Guys WB .81 (1,550) -59% 522 34.2
Love & Friendship Roadside .76 (1,520) -47% 497 11
Udta Punjab White Hill .64 (5,800) NEW 111 0.64
The Lobster A24 .61 (1,910) -38% 319 6.7
Gentleman Atmus .46 (3,610) NEW 127 1
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .44 (1,320) -29% 335 1.8
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising Uni .32 (700) -85% 464 54.5
Genius Roadside .29 (2,230) 197% 131 0.43
Money Monster Sony .20 (710) -71% 286 40.3
Popstar: Never Stop Uni .18 (860) -89% 211 9.4
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $229.53
% Change (Last Year) -6%
% Change (Last Week) 53%
Also debuting/expanding
Weiner IFC .13 (1,590) -21% 80 1
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel .12 (1,300) -37% 91 3.5
The Meddler Sony Classics 66,800 (710) -49% 94 4
The Wailing Well Go 46,500 (2,110) -65% 22 0.65
Clown Weinstein 27,300 (270) 100 0.03
Tickled Magnolia 20,600 (10,300) 2 0.02
Au Nom de ma fille A-Z Films 16,700 (1,280) 13 0.02
Raiders! Drafthouse 10,300 (690) 15 0.01
Proof of Innocence CJ 10,200 (10,200) 1 0.01
My Love, Don’t Cross That River Film Movement 5,800 (2,900) 2 0.01
Seoul Searching Wonder Vision 5,700 (5,700) 1 0.01
The Last King Magnolia 4,300 (1,430) 3 0.01
Cosmos Kino 3,400 (3,400) 1 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – June 16, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (9) 1493.1 29.90%
20th Century Fox (11) 912.4 18.30%
Warner Bros. (14) 615.4 12.30%
Universal (11) 426.9 8.50%
Paramount (9) 393.4 7.90%
Sony (13) 318.4 6.40%
Lionsgate (13) 238.3 4.80%
Fous (8) 134.3 2.70%
Open Road (4) 69.4 1.40%
Weinstein Co. (7) 54.6 1.10%
STX (3) 42.4 0.85%
A24 (5) 41.6 0.85%
Roadside Attractions (6) 27.4 0.55%
Sony Classics (9) 22.1 0.45%
Other * (181) 200.8 4.00%
4990.5 100%
* none greater than 0.4%
Top Global Grossers (January 1 – June 16,2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Captain America: Civil War BV 1,145,722,250
Zootopia BV 1,008,705,316
The Jungle Book BV 914,919,915
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice WB 869,087,267
Deadpool Fox 778,191,797
Star Wars: The Force Awakens * BV 741,421,311
The Mermaid Alibaba; Sony 552,493,009
The Revenant Fox 531,557,282
Kung Fu Panda 3 Fox; DreamWorks 518,403,862
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 484,664,146
Warcraft Uni; Legendary 337,050,505
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 319,730,868
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 223,231,243
London Has Fallen Focus; NuImage 203,893,315
The Monkey King 2 China Lion 190,755,793
From Vegas to Macau III Bona; Media Asia 186,923,621
Allegiant Lionsgate 179,835,477
Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip * Fox 165,150,302
The Huntsman: Winter’s War Uni 164,134,837
Daddy’s Home * Par 154,763,061
* does not include 2015 revenue

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, June 18th, 2016

Finding Dory *|54.9|4305|New|54.9
Central Intelligence|13|3508|New|13
The Conjuring 2|5.4|3356|-67%|61.6
Now You See Me 2|2.8|3232|-67%|34.5
Warcraft|1.9|3406|-82%|33.1
Me Before You|1.5|2645|-50%|43.7
TMNJ2|1.5|3086|-63%|68.2
X-Men: Apocalypse|1.4|2632|-50%|142.2
Alice Through|1.3|1880|-24%|67
Captain America: CW |0.6|1434|-51%|399.6
|||||
* includes Thursday previews|||||
|||||
Also Debuting|||||
Udta Punjab|0.19|111|
Gentleman|0.14|127|
Clown|10,400|100|
Tickled|7,350|2|
Au Nom de ma fille|5,000|13||
Raiders!|3,500|15||
Proof of Innocence|3,350|1||
Seoul Searching|2,600|1||
My Love, Don’t Cross That River|2,200|2||
Cosmos|1,550|1||
The Last King|1,250|3||

Weekend Estimates

Sunday, June 12th, 2016

The Conjuring 2 manifested an estimated $40.4 million, with game-inspired Warcraft at $24.3 million, while Now You See Me 2 prestidigitated $22.8 million. The session’s only significant expansion was Maggie’s Plan.

In the niches, Hindi Te3n opened an okay $263,000. In exclusives a pair of docs—The Music of Strangers and the auto-portrait De Palma—proved potent. Literary biopic Genius wrote a good start of $102,000 at 16 venues.

Revenues for the frame generated close to $160 million and surpassed last weekend by 15%. It was however 44% behind 2015 when the opening of Jurassic World grossed a record-breaking $204.6 million.

Tracking clearly favored The Conjuring 2, the follow up to 2013’s surprise chiller success. The spooky tale out-performed expectations that were in the mid-$30 million level and cemented the appeal of high gloss, modestly-budgeted horror fare. Studio exit polling pegged the opening crowd with a slight female tilt of 52% with 57% of viewers aged 25-years and older. Roughly half the audience was aged between 17 and 24-years old.

The Conjuring sequel also opened in 44 international territories to a hefty estimated $50 million. The focus was Latin America with Mexico posting top returns of $9 million. Other top locations included South Korea with $4 million and Australia posting $2.7 million.

Warcraft may be the videogame adaptation that finally breaks through the genre’s movie jinx. It’s already opened extensively internationally where the gross climbed to $80 million after two weeks. On the domestic front tracking expectations were also on the low side in the area of $20 million to $22 million. It was decidedly the session’s boy movie with 66% of viewers with 54% of eyes aged 30 years and younger.

The film opened to a staggering $157 million in China with a total overseas weekend gross of $186 million to easily lead as the global box office champ.

Also inspired by a left field success Now You See Me 2 was expected to finish second behind The Conjuring 2 in the neighborhood of $25 million. It brought in a crowd that was 52% female and 60% aged 25-years and older.

Weekend (estimates) June 10 – 12, 2016
Title Distributor Gross (average) % change * Theaters
The Conjuring 2 WB 40.4 (12,100) NEW 3343
Warcraft Uni 24.3 (7,150) NEW 3400
Now You See Me 2 Lionsgate 22.8 (7,060) NEW 3232
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows Par 14.7 (3,610) -58% 4071
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 10.1 (2,810) -56% 3585
Me Before You WB 9.2 (3,340) -51% 2762
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 6.8 (2,200) -34% 3083
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 5.6 (1,940) -50% 2898
Captain America: Civil War BV 4.4 (2,080) -44% 2101
The Jungle Book BV 2.7 (1,830) -38% 1496
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising Uni 2.1 (1,340) -56% 1581
The Nice Guys WB 2.1 (1,840) -39% 1147
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Uni 1.7 ((740) -63% 2313
Love & Friendship Roadside Attractions 1.5 (1,790) -31% 826
The Lobster A24 .96 (1,710) -34% 560
Money Monster Sony .71 (970) -62% 731
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .66 (2,110) 361% 311
Zootopia BV .57 (1,460) -24% 391
A…Aa Blue Sky .36 (3,580) -72% 101
Te3n Big Pictures .26 (2,530) NEW 104
Housefull 3 Eros .22 (1,980) -68% 112
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice WB .19 (870) -34% 215
Weiner IFC .18 (2,520) -11% 71
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel .17 (1,380) -43% 124
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $151.30
% Change (Last Year) -44%
% Change (Last Week) 15%
Also debuting/expanding
The Wailing Well Go .13 (3,660) -41% 35
The Meddler Sony Classics .13 (950) -50% 136
Genius Roadside Attractons .10 (6,380) 16
Sing Street Weinstein Co. 66,200 (600) 41% 111
A Bigger Splash Fox Searchlight 58,700 (1,030) -64% 57
De Palma A24 29,100 (9,700) 3
The Music of Strangers Orchard 25,400 (8,470) 3
Puerto Ricans in Paris Focus 22,900 (560) 41
Blackway FreeStyle 16,300 (1,020) 16
Diary of a Chambermaid Cohen Media 10,800 (5,400) 2
Oka Ammayi Thappa Tollywood 5,900 (270) 22
From Afar Strand 5,200 (5,200) 1
Germans & Jews First Run 4.200 (4,200) 1
Be Somebody 71 Studio 3,000 (300) 10
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – June 9, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (8) 1463.2 30.70%
20th Century Fox (11) 897.8 18.90%
Warner Bros. (13) 542.8 11.40%
Universal (11) 392.7 8.30%
Paramount (9) 362.8 7.60%
Sony (13) 307.3 6.50%
Lionsgate (13) 208.3 4.40%
Focus (7) 133.9 2.80%
Open Road (4) 69.3 1.50%
Weinstein Co. (7) 54.5 1.10%
STX (3) 42.4 0.90%
A24 (5) 40.1 0.85%
Roadside Attractions (5) 25.3 0.50%
Sony Classics (9) 21 0.45%
Fox Searhlight (4) 18.7 0.40%
Bleecker Street (3) 17.9 0.40%
Other * (170) 161 3.40%
4759 100%
* none greater than 0.35%
Top Limited Releases (January 1 – June 9, 2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Eye in the Sky Bleecker/eOne 18,455,324
Hello, My Name is Doris Roadside Attractions 14,301,689
The Lady in the Van Sony Classics 10,021,175
Carol * Weinstein Co. 8,910,357
Love & Friendship Roadside Attractions 8,016,875
The Danish Girl * Focus 6,607,578
The Lobster Mongrel/A24 4,598,123
45 Years IFC/Mongrel 4,563,579
A Hologram for the King Roadside Attract/eOne 4,154,086
Where to Invade Next Drafthouse/Mongrel 3,827,261
The Meddler Sony Classics 3,771,153
Midnight Special WB 3,712,282
Anomalisa Par 3,683,877
Everybody Wants Some!! Par 3,442,160
The Mermaid Sony 3,229,457
Green Room A24/D Films 3,200,431
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel 3,132,460
Sing Street Weinstein Co. 2,918,919
2016 Oscar Nominated Shorts Magnolia 2,816,816
Ip Man 3 Well Go 2,758,588
* does not include 2015 revenue

Friday Estimates

Saturday, June 11th, 2016

The Conjuring 2 | 16.4 |3343 |New| 16.4
Warcraft | 10.7 |3400 |New |10.7
Now You See Me 2 | 8.3| 3232| New |8.3
TMNJ2 | 4 |4071| -68% |50.2
Me Before You | 3.1 |2762 |-61% |30.6
X-Men: Apocalypse| 2.7| 3585| -58%| 129.1
The Angry Birds Movie | 1.8 |3083 |-32% |93.3
Alice 2 | 3.1 |2898| -49% |58.5
Captain America: Civil War |1.2 |2101| -44% |393.7
The Jungle Book | 0.7 |1496| -37% |350.6

Also Debuting
Te3n | 73,700| 105
Genius | 25,900 |16
De Palma| 11,200 |3
The Music of Strangers | 6,400 |3
Puerto Ricans in Paris | 6,100 |41
Blackway | 5,100 |16
Diary of a Chambermaid | 3,200| 2
Oka Ammayi Thappa | 2,000 |22
From Afar | 1,900| 1
Be Somebody | 1,250| 10
Germans & Jews | 1,200 |1

Los Angeles Film Festival 2016 Wrap

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

The Los Angeles Film Festival will wind down tonight with Desierto. The Mexico-France co-production grapples with the hot button issue of illegal border crossings into the U.S.

The good news for my LAFF 2016 experience is a relatively strong program, albeit based upon my limited personal experience. I’ll just add the fact that I didn’t see as many films as I had hoped. Still, such films as Blood Stripe, Kicks and 11:55 fulfilled a mandate of diversity without employing it as a crutch.

This year’s juried award winners included Blood Stripe, about a female Marine coping with her tours of duty in Afghanistan. Documentary winner Political Animals focused on gay politicians in California. The latter film also won the audience award with the audience nod going to Green/is/Gold, a tale of brothers taking control from errant parents.

The festival move to Culver City was a marked improvement from the Downtown years. In addition to a more convivial environment such niceties as parking and access proved to be relatively low-stress experiences. The downside for the event is it’s not well run. Screenings begin 20 to 30 minutes late and that ought to be addressed with a better training program for its volunteers. There’s disarray within the Arclight complex with no sense of anyone steering the fest. An element as simple as signage is frustratingly absent. It resulted in one instance of being directed to the wrong auditorium. The “wrong” movie was likely better than the one planned out in my schedule but serendipity isn’t a sufficient defense.

Another major hurdle for the LAFF is bringing up its profile. My ad hoc survey found that almost no one outside the media and Film Independent membership was aware that a major film festival was going on this week. Its media sponsor the Los Angeles Times ran an opening day story and only two subsequent profile pieces on individual films. It felt very much like a disconnect between the corporate decision makers and reporters unenthused by the program.

The seemingly more receptive alternative L.A. Weekly appeared to be boycotting the LAFF. Last week’s issue, where one would anticipate a guide to the “hot” titles not to be missed, merited not a single mention about the event or its contents. My other ad hoc survey revealed that about 80% of attendees were Film Independent members. That might be a sufficient base to sustain the program. Preaching to the converted does little to expand the audience for alternative moviegoing.

The limited media exposure the LAFF received stressed diversity in respect to the films directed by minorities, women and other under-represented folk. There’s no question that emphasis is laudable and necessary. Still when you lead with your rationale, the content is going to suffer. The actual films got shunted off to the side or were referenced not in terms of quality or invention but in how they fit into a programming niche.

There’s long been an “us” and “them” stance embodied by Film Independent. Its annual Spirit Awards show revels in taking easy swipes at Hollywood studios and mainstreamers. Yet it strategically takes place on Oscar weekend to ensure that high profile names will be available and its broadcast revenue secured.

The choice to create a combative pose is simply not honest. There’s enormous overlap between the myriad haves and have-nots of the film industry that often blur the lines that are supposed to separate the sectors. The time has come to embrace the inter-relationship and champion the best, not the neediest.

The Weekend Report

Sunday, June 5th, 2016

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows led the weekend with an estimated $35.3 million debut. Two other films bowed nationally, with better-than-expected results for the drama Me Before You of $18.1 million and a disappointing turn of $4.6 million for boy-band music-and-fame satire Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping.

Best of new exclusives were single-screen exclusives The Witness with $13,600, and The Fits, generating $10,300. Expansions saw solid returns for Maggie’s Plan and the continued strength of The Lobster is providing the biggest surprise among alternative titles. In the niches, Indian imports saw potent results for Telugu A…Aa of $1.3 million as well as Hindi Housefull 3 with $697,000. Korean occult horror The Wailing ($40 million overseas) bowed with $211,000 at 32 villages and latest Filipino rom-com Love Me Tomorrow grossed $142,000.

Session revenues generated about $135 million and dipped 19% from last weekend. It was flat with 2015 when the debut of Spy was on top with $29.1 million and another freshman, Insidious Chapter 3, was close behind with $22.7 million.

The first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie opened on April Fools 1990 to results that surprised everyone. The new-gen reboot in 2014 and follow-up Out of the Shadows provided solid but not spectacular returns. But this has not been a sequel-friendly season as evidenced by new X-Men and Neighbors.

Turtles also opened day-and-date in 40 international territories to an estimated $34 million. Top territories included the UK with $5.3 million, Russia grossing $4.8 million and Mexico celebrating $4.5 million.

On the domestic side the audience tilted 54% male with 52% of the audience aged 25-years and younger per studio exit polling. Data wasn’t available that reflected family attendance.

There was obviously sufficient awareness of Jojo Moyes’ YA novel Me Before You to spur results that bettered tracking indicators and top end industry expectations of $15 million. The three-hankie affair drew an 81% female audience that was 72% aged 25-years and older. The key 17-34-year demo accounted for 36% of viewers.

Me Before You opened in a handful of overseas engagements to an estimated $7.7 million with the Brit tale grossing $2.7 million in the UK. South Korea was also strong with a $1.6 million tally.

It appears that a significant swath of the crowd didn’t get the joke when it came to Popstar… expecting a more conventional musical saga. Expectations were modest, if higher than its opening box office. Its crowd was 60% male with 55% aged 25-years and younger and 75% aged between 17 and 34.

Title Distributor Gross (average) % change * Theaters Cume
TMNJ2 Par 35.3 (8,670) NEW 4071 35.3
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 22.3 (5,370) -66% 4153 116.5
Me Before You WB 18.1 (6,680) NEW 2704 18.1
Alice Through the Looking Glass BV 10.7 (2,850) -60% 3763 50.8
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 9.7 (2,790) -48% 3484 86.6
Captain America: Civil War BV 7.6 (2,470) -50% 3084 389
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising Uni 4.7 (1,940) -50% 2417 48.5
Popstar: Never Stop… Uni 4.6 (2,000) NEW 2311 4.6
The Jungle Book BV 4.2 (2,130) -40% 1990 347.5
The Nice Guys WB 3.5 (1,840) -47% 1888 29.1
Love & Friendship Roadside 2.1 (2,530) -14% 819 7
Money Monster Sony 1.8 (1,370) -58% 1323 38.2
The Lobster A24 1.5 (2,660) 98% 560 3.6
A…Aa Blue Sky 1.3 (9,850) NEW 134 1.8
Zootopia BV .80 (1,990) -1% 400 337.2
Housefull 3 Eros .70 (5,130) NEW 136 0.7
Batman v. Superman WB .28 (1,060) -55% 270 329.9
The Man Who Knew Infinity IFC/Mongrel .27 (1,350) -58% 198 3
The Meddler Sony Classics .24 (1,050) -54% 232 3.6
The Wailing Well Go .21 (6,590) NEW 32 0.29
10 Cloverfield Lane Par .20 (2,290) 82% 86 72.3
Weiner IFC .19 (3,310) -10% 58 0.53
The Darkness High Top .18 (870) -75% 208 10.4
A Bigger Splash Fox Searchlight .16 (710) -70% 220 1.7
Maggie’s Plan Sony Classics .15 (4,450) 11% 34 0.4
Weekend Total ($500,000+ Films) $128.90
% Change (Last Year) 0%
% Change (Last Week) -19%
Also debuting/expanding
Love Me Tomorrow ABS .14 (2,330) 61 0.14
Iraivi Praneeth 85,700 (2,090) 41 0.09
Sing Street Weinstein Co. 45,300 (790) -71% 57 2.9
The Final Master United 25,800 (1,170) 22 0.03
Into the Forest Elevation 19,700 (2,190) 9 0.02
Art Bastard Cavu 16,100 (8,050) 2 0.02
The Witness FilmRise 13,600 (13,600) 1 0.01
The Fits Osilloscope 10,300 (10,300) 1 0.01
Approaching the Unknown Vertical 6,200 (560) 11 0.01
Urge Lionsgate 4,900 (410) 12 0.01
The President Corinth 4,400 (4,400) 1 0.01
Domestic Market Share (January 1 – June 2, 2016)
Distributor (releases) Box Office Market Share
Buena Vista (8) 1427.3 31.30%
20th Century Fox (11) 865.4 19.00%
Warner Bros. (12) 507.6 11.10%
Universal (9) 375.3 8.20%
Paramount (9) 318.4 7.00%
Sony (15) 289.8 6.40%
Lionsgate (12) 206.5 4.50%
Focus (7) 133.6 2.90%
Open Road (4) 69.2 1.50%
Weinstein Co. (7) 54.4 1.20%
STX (3) 42.4 0.95%
A24 (5) 37.9 0.80%
Roadside Attractions (5) 22.3 0.50%
Sony Classics (7) 20.3 0.45%
Fox Searhlight (4) 18.4 0.40%
Bleecker Street (3) 17.9 0.40%
Other * (163) 155.8 3.40%
4562.5 100%
* none greater than 0.35%
Top Domestic Grossers (January 1 – June 2, 2016)
Title Distributor Box Office
Captain America: Civil War BV 381,349,157
Deadpool Fox 362,973,734
The Jungle Book BV 343,222,661
Zootopia BV 336,429,682
Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice WB 329,619,773
Star Wars: The Force Awakens * BV 284,378,657
The Revenant Fox 182,765,375
Kung Fu Panda 3 Fox 143,213,757
X-Men: Apocalypse Fox 94,173,232
Ride Along 2 Uni 91,251,872
Daddy’s Home Par 85,902,195
The Angry Birds Movie Sony 76,902,726
10 Cloverfield Lane Par 72,082,998
Allegiant Lionsgate 66,184,051
The Boss Uni 62,797,695
London Has Fallen Focus/VVS 62,524,260
Miracles from Heaven Sony 61,143,691
My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 Uni 59,948,926
Barbershop: The Next Cut WB 53,383,303
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghai Par 52,897,721
* does not include 2015 revenue

LAFF Report 2016

Saturday, June 4th, 2016

The Los Angeles Film Festival falls under the umbrella of Film Independent, its schedule filled with films by unheralded filmmakers, but that often star well-known faces in calling-card productions. The event has evolved from an old-style film showcase into a schedule with little notice of studio releases, foreign films or circuit auteurs.

Since the demise of Westwood as a moviehouse oasis, Los Angeles-based movie events have few choices of location. Staples Center and LA Live enticed the festival to the downtown Regal Cinemas in 2010, as well as an unsuccessful venue for the Spirit Awards, which sent them back to the big tent on the beach in Santa Monica. For 2016, the Arclight Culver City has 12 screens, and during the weekend three are dedicated to the festival while as many as six offer LAFF programs on weekdays.

My first taste of LAFF 2016 was Friday and signs were positive. The pulse of the neighborhood quickened without heightening the anxiety level. An amiable and engaged quality circled the hospitality area, and folks waiting in line to see the evening shows sported smiles. My plan was to see The Hollars, a family saga starring and directed by John Krasinski. There was another film I’d hope to catch but its publicist informed me earlier in the day that it was sold out and I’d have to see it at the press-industry screening on Monday.

Shortly after finding the appropriate queue the person in front of me kindly told me that I’d need a hard ticket and pointed me to a table where they were being handed out. I hopped over, gave my name and showed my press pass. However, they couldn’t find my name and hadn’t initially heard me when I mentioned I was “with the press.” It turned out this was a table dedicated to Film Independent members and the distributors thought the press table was somewhere off to the left.

In fact there didn’t appear to a press table or representative. And there were a lot of people that “didn’t know.” Eventually someone with seeming authority told me The Hollars was a “members only” screening and the press seats had been filled.

Not to overly indulge in sour grapes but nowhere in the communications from the press office or in the daily emails of screenings was there any indication that members screenings precluded the press. A subsequent check of email did uncover a note sent at 8:02 p.m. apologized that press passes wouldn’t apply to that 8:45 p.m. screening.

I’m headed back to LAFF shortly hopeful that its feel-good ambience will spill over to the functionaries.

Friday Box Office Estimates

Saturday, June 4th, 2016

Title Distrib Gross Theater % Change Cume
Teenage Ninja Mutant Turtles: Out of the Shadows | 12.4| 4071 |New |12.4
Me Before You | 7.8 |2704|New| 7.8
X-Men: Apocalypse | 6.6| 4153 |-61%| 100.7
Alice Through the Looking Glass | 3.1| 3763 |-63%| 43.2
The Angry Birds Movie | 2.6| 3484 |-48% |79.5
Captain America: Civil War | 2.1 |4084| -49%| 283.5
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping| Uni| 1.8 |2311 |New| 1.8
Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising Uni|1.5 |2417| -48%| 45.3
The Jungle Book | 1.1| 1990 |-37%| 344.3
The Nice Guys | 0.95| 1888| -46%| 26.6

Also Debuting
A…Aa | 0.39 |134
Houseful 3 | 0.18| 136
The Wailing | 52,900| 32
Love Me Tomorrow |ABS |43,700| 61
Iraivi | 33,900| 41
The Final Master | 8,300| 22
Into the Forest | 7,000 |9
Art Bastard | 6,700 |2
The Witness | 4,400 |1
The Fits | 3,850| 1
Approaching the Unknown | 2,200| 11
Urge | 1,800 |11
The President | 1,400| 1