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The Box Office Report — December 9-11

Last week, in Box Office…

It was a slow week in Tinseltown (named such to make up for the fact that it doesn’t have Christmas). Nothing new opened and absolutely no one went to the movies. Know how I know?

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1 won the weekend with only $16.5 million (another 60% drop). Typically the film that wins this weekend makes at least $20 million. Yeesh, that’s a slow weekend. The good news for the film is that it’s made just shy of $250 million domestically after three weeks. That’s double the budget they spent for both parts of this finale. It’s kind of like being dealt a straight flush, and then betting out the rest of the hand, knowing other people will call you and you’re guaranteed to make a shitload of money. It must feel good.

The Muppets also dropped 60%, which is sad, but okay. It made $11.1 million in second place, bringing its domestic total to $56.4 million after two weeks. Considering that’s above the film’s reported budget, I think they’ll be fine. On a side note, I saw this movie last weekend, and it was fucking magical. Great job, everybody involved with this. It’s what a Muppet movie should be. (The end was a bit rushed though, I feel.)

Hugo finished third, having a nice 33% drop (aka 67% hold) and making $7.6 million, bringing its domestic total to $25 million after two weeks in relative limited release. Something tells me though that this film will still not get the audience it deserves and it won’t end up making much of its budget back (which is really sad, because it’s beautiful).

Finishing fourth was Arthur Christmas, with $7.4 million. It held pretty well, just like Hugo, but like Hugo, has only pulled in $25 million after two weeks. The difference — this was released in double the theaters Hugo was released in. Ouch.

Happy Feet Two finished fifth with $5.9 million. Pretty sure I said $6 million on this. It’s made $51.7 million after three weeks, which is really just shocking. Even still. I’m still surprised by this. It hasn’t even crossed $100 million internationally yet. What happened here? Please, somebody explain to me what happened here.

Jack and Jill finished sixth, with (sigh) $5.4 million. It’s still $15 million shy of its budget, so that’s good. Fuck this movie. I will not be mentioning in this space again.

The Descendants just missed $5 million. $4.8 million. 574 theaters too. Good job. It’s made $17.7 million so far, which, if we’re counting, is almost as much as Arthur Christmas. Says something, doesn’t it?

J. Edgar is up to $32.6 million. That’s almost its budget. Which is nice, since it’ll get a bit of a bump in January once it gets nominations.

My Week with Marilyn has made $3.9 million so far. Slow and steady there. (Also pretty sure they didn’t spend more than $10-15 million to make it.)

Moneyball and The Ides of March — just to come back to some films that have been out for a while — actually increased business this week. I thought that was interesting. Either way, though, Moneyball has made just shy of $75 million off a $50 million budget. So good for it. And Ides of March has made $40 million, which I’m assuming is off a $20-30 million budget, so that’s doing just fine as well.

I like to see good movies do well.

Anyway, that’s it for the recap. I’ll mention everything else down there. Now for the new releases…

The big release this week is New Year’s Eve. With no competition at all, it’s going to win the weekend. If this film can make $12 million, it will win the weekend. Considering the original made (wait, seriously?) $56 million in its opening weekend (though, much like a Tyler Perry movie, had a short life span and only ended up doing double that. Which, still — that’s a shitload of money. Why did you do it, America?), I’d expect this to easily win this weekend. (Or even four times, seemingly.)

However — strangely (and strangely is only based on the strange fact that the original opened so strongly) — the estimates on this are less than $25 million. Which, for one, is fucking tremendous. I hope this doesn’t do $30 million business. But, the way they’re marketing this (heavily. Really fucking heavily), makes me think this will still do better than the estimates.

I hope not, of course. The highest estimate I saw was $25 million, so, I’ll say $25 million. I’ll hope for less, cautiously expect more (because this is America, and people are stupid. Don’t you know the theme of this article by now?), and wait and see what happens.

The other release this week is The Sitter. R-rated babysitting comedy with Jonah Hill. Considering the way these things have been hitting this year, this looks like a sure thing. Then again, I actually really enjoyed the trailer and think this could be funny if they didn’t give away everything already from that trailer, so knowing that, it’s probably going to bomb completely. Whenever I like a comedy, that’s almost a sure sign that either it didn’t make money, or will get unnecessary sequels that repeat the exact same formula, or America will slowly start obsessing over it and copying from it and quoting it for years and it will eventually make me hate it. Thanks for that, douchebags.

The trailer was pretty funny, but now I’m seeing bad reviews for it. Which means my cautiousness with this earlier in the year may have been warranted. As for the estimates — I’m seeing around $10-13 million. That’s the area I’d expect for this. Let’s say $12 million. Why the fuck not? It’s gonna finish in second anyway, unless Twilight does exact or positive business, and that’s not happening, so $1 million or 2 here or there doesn’t mean anything (to us. To the studio releasing it… sure).

Okay, that’s the big shit. I honestly don’t really care about those. I’ll see them, but I don’t really care about them.

What I do care about, are these films.

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy opens this week in four theaters. It won’t make any money, but it is one of my most highly anticipated films of the year, which I’m hoping is nominated for a shitload of Oscars and gets Gary Oldman the Oscar he so richly deserves. (Also have pretty much penciled it in for a spot on My Top Ten list, probably in the top five. That’s how good I figure this is going to be.) My point here is — go see this, people. Okay, it’s only in 4 theaters, but if you live near one of those theaters — fucking go see it.

Young Adult also opens this week in 8 theaters. I honestly don’t know what to make of this. I didn’t particularly like the trailer, yet I’ve loved all of Jason Reitman’s work before this. I’m not sure why I’m so hesitant about this one. It’s probably best that I continue to remain hesitant, because by all accounts, I’ll end up really enjoying this. I’m sure it’ll be good — go see it, people. Or, wait until next week, because apparently it’s getting a wide expansion. Either way — keep it in mind. Marinate on it.

We Need to Talk About Kevin also opens in what I’m assuming is like two theaters. Tilda Swinton is getting Oscar buzz for this. Though, she seems to be getting Oscar buzz every year for whatever indie movie she does. I’ve been hearing about this since January, though (was it Sundance? Or Cannes? Either way, a while), so I’m excited to see if its good, or is just the subject of internet hype, the way most indie films tend to be.

W.E. also opens this week. I mention it because it’s Madonna’s directorial debut, and from all accounts, is terrible. I just felt like I should mention that.

Anyway, that’s the new releases. Onto the holdovers…

Twilight should probably not hold very well at all. I’m figuring a 50% drop, maybe a bit more, putting it to about $7 millon and change. That sounds about right. Don’t go higher than $8 million and change here.

The Muppets, I figure for around the same kind of drop, putting it at around $6-7 million. $7.5 million is an absolute ceiling on this.

Hugo should float above $5 million. How much, I don’t know. So let’s say $5-6 million. (Though it did add more theaters, so it’s possible this does closer to $7 million. Let’s hope for that.)

Arthur Christmas, maybe it hits high $4 million, but I’m not sure if it does $5 million. With nothing really out, let’s say it does. Don’t go higher than $5 million and change though. I doubt this hits 6.

Which means everything else is below $5 million unless it does positive business.

Wow. That was easy.

So this is what it’ll be. Totals don’t matter, since the spots are so easy to guess.

1. New Year’s Eve

2. The Sitter

3. The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1

4. The Muppets

5. Hugo

6. Arthur Christmas

7-10, let’s just say, for the hell of it — any four of the Police Academy movies. Take your pick. (Though, clearly Assignment: Miami Beach and Mission to Moscow are gonna be on there. That’s like saying Seventh Inning Fetch is the best of the Air Buds. I mean — clearly.)

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