The Box Office Report – June 24-26

Last week, in Box Office…

Green Lantern did poorly! Yes! I was so hoping that happened. And yet — it made the most sense. Even from last year this one looked like the worst of the bunch. Captain America looked like the best, and Thor looked like a wild card. X-Men I assume from experience will always throw out something that’s at the very least watchable. But, I was really hoping for this to fail (relatively). I was hoping it wouldn’t do the $60 million everyone was expecting it to. I was hoping it would do less than X-Men. And it did. It made $53.2 million. And since they were expecting 50, and estimated on Sunday it did 55, and it only did 53 — that ain’t good. And that’s great for me. Ha ha. (But, come on. You knew this was shit. I got done with that movie and was like, “Nothing happened.” You’ve seen this origin story so many times it’s not even interesting anymore. Which — oh man, Spider-Man‘s in trouble.)

Finishing second, as most expected, was Super 8. My exact words on this were: ” At best, you’re looking at a 40% drop and $21 million….I’m figuring around $20-21 million here…I’d skew higher than lower, if you had to pick.” It made $21.5 million. It’s drop was 39.4%. Just sayin’.

Finishing third was Mr. Popper’s Penguins, with an exactly as expected $18.4 million. Just shy of 18.5. For some reason, when I see a film that I think will do like $25 million, and everyone else says 15 — $19 million is always the number. Almost always. $19 million or $14 million. You’d be surprised at how often those two are the right numbers to pick. But, that’s almost exactly as it was tracking, which, makes sense.

Fourth was X-Men: First Class, which, I said, will do around $12-14 million. Green Lantern was huge competition, but I still hung in there and said “Closer to 11 or 12.” It made $11.9 million. Just sayin’.

Fifth was The Hangover Part II. I said standard $10-11 million, even though I was hoping for under 10. It made $10.1 million. Sigh. Fuck you, America.

Sixth was Kung Fu Panda 2, with $9 million. I said “at worst, $8 million this weekend. I’m figuring like $9-10 million, and hoping it just beats The Hangover.” Then I said, “Between $8-10 million, depending. I’d say 8-9 are the best bets.” $9 million. Just sayin’.

Seventh was Bridesmaids with $7.1 million. I won’t say it. (But I guessed that too.)

Eighth was Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, which made another $6.6 million (just missed $6.7 million). My quote: “$6 million, maybe 7.” Though I did say “It’s all pretty nebulous down here and is pretty easy to guess.” So I won’t take full credit for that one. (Out loud…I’m so fucking awesome.)

And ninth, because, even though it didn’t clear $5 million, it’s still worth mentioning. Midnight in Paris, the first Woody Allen film to be placed in over 1,000 theaters. It made $4.9 million. It’s about $8 million under it’s budget. It might actually make back its budget in theaters. Which, might also be a first for a Woody Allen movie.

That’s it for the grosses. Let’s see if there’s any big numbers worth mentioning. Thor is at $176 million domestically, which, I imagine is at least tripled when you factor in overseas, so, you’ll be seeing a sequel on that one for certain. It’ll suck too, I’m pretty certain.

Fast Five made $206 million domestically and countless more overseas. You’ll be seeing at least three more of those. I’m sure they’ll be watchable. This one was the best of the series, so, that’s a good sign. Too much money, but, best of the series. So, that’s something.

Rio‘s made $138 million off a $90 million budget. So, sadly, expect a sequel sometime around 2014. I’m sure that will also be terrible.

Soul Surfer has made $42 million. It’s budget was $18 million. Meaning? Big hit. Relatively. Not for Hollywood, though. I bet they treat that like when a child does something. “Oh, good job.” Like, oh, you won a poker tournament with a $5 buy-in. Let’s get back to the $20,000 a hand game. Idiots.

Jumping the Broom has made $37 million off a $6.6 million budget. The answer here is: if you want a future in Hollywood, just make black movies. Hell, you might be able to get your name in front of all of them. (But only if you dress in drag.) Still — these things always make money. And they don’t spend anything. Isn’t this how everything should be?

Something Borrowed has made $38 million domestically and $56 million (total) worldwide off a $35 million. Factoring in at least $20 million marketing, this film might actually see profit on the home video end. And that’s a shame. Because this film is an abortion.

Rango has made $242 million worldwide off a $135 million budget. I’m sure that qualifies as a hit. Even when you factor in marketing, it still made a little bit of money. I guess that’s good. It was better than average, which means, leaps and bounds better than the rest of the turds.

Source Code made $54 million domestically and $112 million (total) worldwide. Off a $32 million budget. Fuck year, originality! Score one for the original concept. More of this, please, Hollywood.

While we’re on the subject, let’s go to something sort of opposite. Limitless. This movie, on a $27 million budget, was — average. Standard March fair. Not good, not bad. Just — there. And, worldwide, it’s made $146 million. $79 million domestically. Jesus.

And finally — just to prove the little rubric true a little more — Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Big Happy Family, after making $25.1 million in its opening weekend (and, as we all know, Tyler Perry movies finish with just over double their opening weekend), sits at $52.9 million domestically (which, is total. Because black movies just don’t get international releases. Only we have to suffer with Tyler Perry movies). Score one for the rubric.

So that’s it for the recap. Onto the new releases…

The big film opening this week is Cars 2. Clearly this is Pixar’s weakest link in their storied history, and I’m sure this sequel will be no different. From what I know about Cars, it’s a film that, while not very good story-wise, makes a lot of money in merchandise. How can it not, right? That’s why I think this sequel is coming out. Plus, it looks like they’re taking a page out of Hollywood’s book and saying, “Well, if the concept isn’t interesting and is kind of creepy, we might as well just add action sequences instead to cover it up.” I respect that. Pixar will at least know how to do it mostly correctly. Judging by the reviews, things aren’t looking too good for this one (which I expected when they announced it). I’m curious to see if someone in the non-Pixar animated world will step up and take the Best Animated Feature prize this year. After all — they didn’t win it for the first entry. And Winnie the Pooh is coming out in a couple of weeks. Maybe Disney takes it back.

Anyway, the film should still do great business despite the shitty reviews. I might not see it in theaters, but that has nothing to do with the fact that it’ll probably not be good. Pixar’s earned everybody’s money until they have a string of at least three major failures. Until then, they’ve earned it.

Early figures are guessing this will do around — ha ha, I did it again. I put in a placeholder number, and it turned out to be exactly what they’re tracking. And I did that shit on Wednesday without looking up anything. They’re saying it’s gonna do around $65 million. Which makes sense. Up made $68 million, Wall-E made $63 million its opening weekend. It makes perfect sense to put it there. (Also, I guessed without even knowing those numbers. That’s how awesome I am.) You could say, with the poor reviews and the lack of interest in ths Cars films would make it skew lower to $60 million, but, after all this time of shitty sequels making more money just because the first one is a known commodity, you can easily make the case for it to do $70 million. So, just cut the middle, take the easy estimate of $65 million and call it a weekend. You could try to guess exactly by saying, “Well, bad reviews, kids films in 3D haven’t had the strong openings that were predicted of them. Maybe it’ll do $62 million.” Or you could say, “Kids will go anyway. It’s Pixar. It’s Cars. The young’ins will be there. $72 million.” Me? I don’t give a fuck. It’ll make money. It’s the summer. I don’t care about the opening weekend. I’m calling it $65 million and moving on, because I know, I’ll be at worst $10 million off. And that’s at worst. I’m very likely to be within $7 million at most within the actual number. So, what do I care? (Look at me, just like all the other people guessing.) Also, the first Cars made $60 million. That should be your low number. There is no way this makes less than the first one. I can guarantee you that. $65 million seems conservative but not a bad guess. Personally, from what I know about sequels, I’d skew closer to $70 million. But still, I’ll take $65 million now. Because if it’s closer to 70, I can still say I was right. Because everyone is saying 65 and sticking with that. I’ll say, it’s it’s anything (and I think there’s a nice chance it could be), it’s higher, and closer to 70. 67-72. No higher than that, I’d say.

The other big film opening this week is Bad Teacher. Cameron Diaz — an actress I realize I just do not like. She’s been in some good movies, but, hasn’t really been very good in them. Being John Malkovich is really the only one you can say. Gangs of New York — meh. Take it or leave it. She was fine, but — I don’t really count that as good. I count that as passable. Still, I just don’t find her interesting. And this is a script that made the Black List a couple years ago of all the great unproduced screenplays. I read it a few months back, and — I didn’t particularly love it. I thought it was pretty funny. Good enough for a 3-3.5 star film, but, knowing Hollywood, having them cast Cameron Diaz and their tendency to make Black List scripts worse and not better — I’m expecting a decent, but not great movie that everyone proclaims is “the funnyest thing eva!” (I assume everyone writes like a dumb teenage girl.)

They’re estimating this makes around $20 million. And I say that sounds about right. They’re using all the data that R-rated comedies have been hitting — but those two were Bridesmaids and Hangover. One clear overachiever (in a good way), and the other a giant piece of shit that America went to see anyway. This just seems like a film that’ll fall short, and Hollywood will be like, “Well, we can’t go to R-Rated comedies,” even though that’s all they wanted to do a month ago. If this fails — $16 million. At worst. I don’t foresee that happening. If it overachieves, which is possible but unlikely, it’ll do like $24-25 million. I can see a world where that happens, but, I’d skew toward going between $19-22 million here. That seems about right. It doesn’t really look that good, and Cameron doesn’t make good movies or really have the kind of star power to open on her own. So, I say stick to the tracking. Don’t go too far outside that range. If you’re going to, $24 million. It just sounds like this film will open to $24 million. $21-22 million makes more sense, but if it goes over, 24 feels like the right one. Under — all bets are off. The lower the better, then.

That’s it for the new releases. And now for the holdovers…

Green Lantern — I hope — should take a sharp plunge downward. Really bad word of mouth is gonna hurt this one, and it won’t do 50% business. At best, you’re looking at a 55% drop and around $23-24 million. At worst, you’re looking 60% drop and around $21-22 million. Almost definitely between $20-24 million. Personally, I feel like $22-23 million are the obvious numbers to guess. It’s just probability on that one. 57-60% makes the most sense. Why not take the odds? The odds are saying it fails, so we all win.

Super 8 should hold kind of well. I’m figuring around a 40% drop. That’ll be around $13-14 million. That makes the most sense. At worst you’re looking at $12 million, at best 15. I say take the middle numbers. Probability says so. Even if you go 45% drop, it’s $12 million. So go between 12-14. You’re almost certainly going to be right.

Mr. Popper’s Penguins has a lot of competition from Cars, but may be able to hold on a little bit. At best, it’ll hold to $11 million. At worst, you’re looking at mid-to-high $9 million, $10 million. So I say take $10 million. This is why holdovers are so easy. They’re almost guaranteed. I’d say don’t go higher than 11, because, that’s a 40% drop, and Cars is a huge alternative. Son’t go lower than 9 though. If it really fails, it’ll be like $8.9 million, and $9 million will be correct. So, mid-to-high $9 million, or $10 million. I guarantee you’ll be really fucking close.

X-Men should have a nice little drop once again, as all summer films do after the third week of release. At best you’re looking at like $7 million. At worst, high $5 million. I say — $6-6.5 million. Almost definitely. I guarantee you’ll be within a million dollars.

The Hangover. Easy drop puts it at $5 million and change. Should stay over 5, even though I’m hoping for under 5. At best, high 5, dangerously close to 6. I say, $5 million, hoping for high 4. At highest, go $5.6 million. You see how small we are with margins here. $5 million, and you’ll be incredibly close.

Kung Fu Panda should dip under $5 million, though maybe it’ll hit $5 million. $4 million and change is almost definite. Maybe it hits 5 is all I’m saying. Doubtful though.

Bridesmaids should definitely go under 5, but the way it’s been holding makes me think it could. But, no. Two other R-rated comedies out there. It’ll go under 5. As will everything else after it. So, that should do it for us.

Let’s see how close I get this week. I’m feeling pretty good about my guesses.

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