The Box Office Report – June 17-19

Last week, in Box Office…

In what is a surprise to no one — especially me — Super 8 wins the weekend with $35.5 million. It also made an extra million or so from midnight showings. But, if I remember correctly — and maybe I’m just misremembering — but I do believe that most people said the film was gonna do like, $30 million for the weekend. And I feel like some intrepid young box office predictor said “I feel like this is a film that could surprise with close to $40 million…I’m gonna say like $38 million.” Wow. Imagine that. The person who suggested that must be a real sarcastic and roundabout son of a bitch too.

I did see Super 8. I didn’t go to the midnight showing like I’d planned. And that actually turned out to be the better decision, because it didn’t really need my money, nor did I really want to be giving my money to it. I was right in thinking that, once I saw the film and didn’t like it as much as everyone else was going to, that it would make more money than everyone was expecting. Still, though, it wasn’t a bad film. I was actually very entertained. My big problem with it was — aside from the whole attempt at doing the Spielberg thing, which failed miserably the second the kids started cursing in minute two of the film — it’s two separate movies. It starts off as just the kids making a movie, and that’s interesting. Not wonderful, but interesting. And before that can even get developed, boom, big action sequence. Which was well done, but, overdone too. I mean, you really didn’t need that much. And then — monster movie. I mean, really? Didn’t you get that out of your system with Cloverfield (a film I fucking despise, by the way, in case nobody knows this)? Why put the unnecessary CG of a monster in this movie? Seriously. It was entertaining though. I’ll give it a solid 3, and it was probably at least more entertaining than most “summer” films I’ve seen so far since May. But it’s not gonna be remembered in ten years. Hell, it won’t be remembered next year. So, whatever.

But, I was right when I said it would make more than everyone was predicting. (Insert catch phrase here.)

Finishing second last weekend was X-Men: First Class, which made another $24.1 million. That amounted to a 56% drop, which is probably a bit more than the studio wanted, but not too terrible. I think. I must have done the math wrong, since I had a 55% drop at $28 million and guessed slightly higher than that. A 55% drop was $24.8 million, and I should have guessed around $25-26 million if I wanted to go above the estimate. So, poor math is the reason for that prediction. I do that sometimes. But that’s what makes it human. Mistakes. I don’t really care. Plus, this number makes me happier. Because since I saw the film, I’m much less enthused with it than I was in the theaters. I actually think it wasn’t all that great a film. I think the fact that it was X-Men carried me through that one. So I kind of want it to make a bit less, so maybe they try a little harder on the next one.

Finishing third this weekend was The Hangover Part II — with too much money. Whatever it made is too much money. What was it? $17.7 million. It held better than expected. What the fuck, America? You people suck, you really do. It’s made $215 million domestically! DOMESTICALLY! WHAT THE FUCK, AMERICA? None of you are invited to my birthday party. And we have strippers who make balloon animals. So suck on that, you poor taste having motherfuckers. Seriously, fuck this movie.

Finishing fourth was Kung Fu Panda 2. Wasn’t there a time when this was subtitled The Kaboom of Doom? Or was I just drunk? I swore there was a subtitle here. Did DreamWorks go with focus groups who said it was too hard to remember and just went with simple numbers like they do with all their shitty franchises? Still haven’t seen this one. I’m sure it’ll be innocuous. I’m still against this franchise since the time when my friend said the first film was better than Wall-E. I still haven’t forgiven her for that one. Anyway, the film made $16.5 million, which, actually held better than expected, to a 30% drop. I thought 40% at best. Animated films just hold. They’ve already made their money back here, so it doesn’t matter one way or another.

Finishing fifth was — I don’t even have to look — Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Yup. I can write this article before the numbers even come in, it’s so easy to guess between May and August. It made — $10.9 million and just squeaked under $11 million by a few grand. People called like $8-9 million here, I called 10, which means, I was closer. I get to go to the Showcase Showdown. (Insert catch phrase here.)

Finishing sixth — still not even looking — was Bridesmaids. Did it make $9 million? Ooh, no — it made $10 million. $10.1 million, to be exact. I bet no one expected a 16% drop here, so I’m not even gonna look at what I guessed it would do. God-damn this movie continues to double fist dollars. Somebody got rich off of this one. And I feel like it was Apatow. Which actually kind of harshes the buzz.

Finishing seventh was — Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer. Wow. It did exactly what they tracked it as doing — $6.1 million. Hmm. I guess the Disney channel alone can make $6 million. That’s what Prom did. I wonder if they’re putting these movies out so they can make direct-to-channel sequels. Because that would be kind of brilliant.

Finishing eighth was Midnight in Paris, which I expected, with $5.8 million. I said $6 million. Granted, that was my low end estimate, but still, this is great for a Woody Allen picture. This is also the one picture he’s made since Match Point that people are going nuts over. I mean, Vicky Cristina got good reviews, but that movie was fucking horrible. Still haven’t seen Match Point either. But I think these reviews and the money (an the 88 minute run-time) may actually make this the first Woody Allen film I see in the theaters since Small Time Crooks (which I fucking love). Hmm…

What else we got? Anything over $5 million? Not even close. Nothing else even broke 3. Not even gonna bother with some totals because, it’s the summer — everything made a shit ton of money.

And now onto the new releases…

The big film opening this weekend is Green Lantern, which I’m so excited for, because it looks so god awful. This movie’s one redeeming value is going to be how campy it is. If it knows it’s ridiculous and plays to that, then it’ll be fun. Otherwise it’s gonna be fucking awful. And I’m excited. Because I’m waiting for a Marvel movie to fail. I said from last year that this one was gonna be the worst of the bunch. It was between this and Thor, and I said the Branagh direction and making it all Shakespearean and shit would probably make that one slightly more interesting. But once I saw that even the suit here was CG, I lost any small hope I had for this one. Not even the Martin Campbell direction was enough to keep me interested. Especially since he said (before the movie even came out too — never a good sign) he definitely was not gonna direct the sequel. I predict bad things for this movie. Not necessarily in its returns, but — a man can dream, can’t he?

Now, it’s funny. I wrote the majority of this upper article on Tuesday. And in it, I wrote shit like, “They’re predicting this one’s gonna make around (60 million) for the weekend.” I just put in placeholders for what they were actually going to guess. And I figured I’d replace it with whatever the tracking actually said. The thing is — $60 million is exactly what they’re tracking on this. Ha ha, I’m awesome.

$60 million just seems like the number to pick on this. It looks worse than X-Men, so I’m gonna be hoping it makes like $55 million or less, but that probably means it’ll make more and do like $65 million or more. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned, the worse the reviews, the dumber the movie, the more it’ll make opening weekend. Because people are stupid and will go see it. It doesn’t mean it’ll have legs and do well, but it usually means the idiots will be duped into seeing it. So let’s just use the $60 million as a road map and Price is Right this bitch. Higher  or lower. I’m hoping for lower, because, do you really want this to do more than X-Men did? I mean, it will, because at this point, weekends are bought by the studio. The more they spend on marketing, the more they make. But maybe, just maybe, it’ll bomb. And man, am I hoping for that day.

Anyway, I’m hoping this makes $50 million or less. Will it? Probably not. But I don’t care. It’s the summer. You expect it to make money, you just hope it makes either more or less. I’m taking the under.

The other big film opening this week is Mr. Popper’s Penguins, which — come the fuck on. Do they really think this will make money? (Yes). It totally will. Jim Carrey, as long as he keeps skewing younger with his stuff, will continue to make assloads of money.

However, tracking is really fucking soft here. So soft that I’ve heard estimates anywhere from $20 million to $13 million. THIRTEEN MILLION! Seriously? I guess it makes sense. The budget here is only $65 million. I imagine the marketing has been lukewarm, and I imagine the 95 minute runtime is because they really don’t have much of a movie to show for it. Plus, aren’t the penguins CG? Reviews have been standard Jim Carrey reviews though, which means this might just be an innocuous kids movie.

I really can’t see this bombing that badly. I mean, yes, I do see how it can only make like $15 million this weekend, but just for the sake of possibly looking like a genius, I’m gonna say $25 million. Just gonna go slightly higher. Why not? What harm can it do? It’s a fucking kids movie. I refuse to underguess on this. Still, watch it only do $15 million.

The other film opening — 500 theaters, so I have to mention it — is The Art of Getting By. Don’t worry, it won’t make any money, so I won’t be mentioning it past this.

And now, for the holdovers…

Super 8 is the big holdover this week, since it’s fixing to finish second, mostly depending on what Mr. Popper decides to do. But still, I was always picturing a good hold on this film because of the good reviews. You’re looking at, at most, a 50% drop and at lowest, and around $18 million. At best, you’re looking at a 40% drop and $21 million. Maybe it holds a bit better than that, but I wouldn’t go higher than $24 million, and that’s an absolute max. A 45% drop is around $19 million and is the best bet. But I’m figuring around $20-21 million here. That seems about right. I’d skew higher than lower, if you had to pick.

The other film that’ll factor into the top five is X-Men: First Class. It might even finish third, if Mr. Popper — well — doesn’t pop. It’s figuring to do around $12-14 million, but will certainly lose business to Green Lantern — superhero on superhero crime. So I’d skew lower than higher here. I’m guessing $13 million. That feels like the right number. So, it’ll probably finish fourth.

And … sigh … The Hangover Part II. Fucking Americans… it’s the only “comedy” (the quotations mean allegedly) that’s out, so it’ll hold. You’re looking at a standard $10-11 million here, but I’m kind of hoping it goes under 10. If I see a number that starts with 9, even if its 9.97, I’m happy. Anything above 10.5, I’m unhappy. 11 or higher, fuck you, America.

Oh, and Kung Fu Panda. This one’s fate seems to be directly tied to Mr. Popper’s fate. It made $16.5 million last week, and should hold to, at worst, $8 million this weekend. I’m figuring like $9-10 million, and hoping it just beats The Hangover. That’s really all I’m hoping. It won’t, but — keep hope alive.

And now — Bridesmaids. This, if it continues to hold as well as it has, should do around $7-8 million. It may overtake Kung Fu Panda, but I don’t think so.

And finally — Pirates. $6 million, maybe 7. It’s all pretty nebulous down here and is pretty easy to guess.

And just to see how close I get, I’m gonna put the actual predictions down at the bottom.

1) Green Lantern (They say around $60 million. I hope less, expect more.)

2) Super 8 (~$22 million, ish. Anywhere between $19 million and $24 million. I say skew closer to 24, but keep yourself grounded with the 19.)

3) Mr. Popper’s Penguins (They’re saying no higher than $20 million, some even say 13. I’m guessing higher and saying it might even finish second, but everyone says third, so we’ll put it third.)

4) X-Men: First Class (Almost definitely between $11-14 million. Closer to 11 or 12, since Green Lantern is big competition.)

5) The Hangover Part II (Around $10 million, give or take a million.)

6) Kung Fu Panda (Between $8-10 million, depending. I’d say 8-9 are the best bets.)

7) Bridesmaids (Probably around $7-8 million. Maybe it slips and does 6, but, anything here will be close.)

8) Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (Almost definitely around $5-6 million.Maybe even high 4.)

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