Friday 11 February 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 30th Nov - 2nd Dec 2007

As mentioned, this would be my last box office report of 2007. The break in reports was due to a trip with to see family in Australia and introduce them to our daughter.

1. Enchanted - $17M - $70M
2. This Christmas - $8.4M - $36.8M
3. Beowulf - $7.8M - $68.6M
4. Awake - $6M - $6M
5. Hitman - $5.8M - $30.2M
6. Fred Claus - $5.5M - $59.7M
7. August Rush - $5.1M - $20M
8. No Country For Old Men - $4.5M - $23M
9. Bee Movie - $4.4M - $117.6M
10. American Gangster - $4.2M - $121.7M

A short box office report this weekend as there's not really any big news. With only one minor new release (had anyone heard of Awake until a few weeks ago?) and just a bit of shuffling around, it's easy to see why the post-thanksgiving weekend is one of the quietest of the year. The big winner last weekend retains the top spot - Enchanted, which opened to nearly $50M and some great reviews continues to capitalize on that with some equally excellent word of mouth. The movie will recoup its production budget by next weekend so Disney are quids in from there on out. Enchanted should easily see $100M before christmas. Expect a sequel to be greenlit the moment the writers strike is over.

This Christmas, something of surprise hit last weekend, drops about 53% of its business but still stays pretty strong for a movie that's on less than 1900 screens. While Tyler Perry had nothing to do with this film, you can't fail to see his influence on it, especially the impressive opening weekend. It's actually tracked about the same as well, with a decent opening and then a loss of roughly half its business in its second frame. No one will be disappointed with its numbers though as both the studio and analysts had the film ending its run with less than $20M - a figure that came and went by last Sunday! Worthy of note regarding Tyler Perry - None of his movies have been release outside the US to any real extent yet This Christmas is already being trailered in the UK.

Beowulf has slowed right down now and its doubtful that the film will see $100M in the domestic market, especially with a number of big films lining up for release shortly. It's safe to assume that a good percentage of that weekend take originated from Imax 3D showings where the film has been doing some impressive business. An expensive excercise for certain, but funding the potential way we'll view movies was never going to be a get rich quick scheme. The film has a global total (including US figures) of $111M. How many people are staying away simply because they can't see the film in 3D? Has the biggest selling point of the movie been its downfall? Next up for the system is Zemekis' A Christmas Carol, starring Jim Carrey as Scrooge and all three ghosts.

Our only new entry is the Hayden Christensen and Jessica Alba thriller Awake, about a patient undergoing surgery who finds himself wide wake and feeling everything, but completely paralysed. The situation is further complicated by the fact that Alba, as his wife, is wrestling her own demons. The movie wasn't screened for critics, which is never a good sign for a non-horror movie, so that total is ironically higher than it probably would have been had it been screened. With a limited amount of new releases in the coming weeks, Awake might hang around for a while but no one is really going to notice it any further than they already have.

Hitman, which had a decent, if unimpressive opening last weekend begins its tumble down the charts. With the movie being heavily front loaded (fans of the game all turning out first weekend) its doubtful whether it'll have much of a life past the first few weekends in December and stands little chance of recouping its $70M budget until DVD sales are factored in. A shame really as the film originally looked like the one that could have broken the bad-videogame-adaptations cycle. The most successful adaptation was the first Tomb Raider movie ($131M) followed some way behind by Pokemon ($85M).

Enjoying a boost last weekend, Fred Claus approaches $60M and will finish its domestic run with around $75M when the dust has settled. The film did well to recover from its low start and has seen some decent week to week drops in box office. No one is quite sure what went wrong with Fred Claus, it had the trailers (to some degree), the actors and the time of year all on its side - Elf-like business was certainly within its grasp. Could it be a case of too many movies in too few weekends or just a general apathy to the entire idea by the public?

With only one new release this weekend it was a toss between which movie would be pushed out the top ten - August Rush or The Mist. Sadly it seems the Frank Darabont movie was the casualty as August Rush managed to just about hang in there, thanks largely to its family-friendly hook. The film has taken $20M so far and will end up with around $30M by the end of its domestic run. The good news for The Mist is that this weekend sees it recoup it low production budget of $17M.

Our real hit, and has been for a few weeks now, is No Country for Old Men, which is still on less than a 1000 screens but continues to bring in impressive amounts of money. Deemed as a real return to form for the Coen Brothers, No Country has had one of the best screen/takings average of most films in top ten since its release. There's every chance that this will continue to expand and with awards season just around the corner, expect some further buzz to help push the movie even higher, perhaps to become the Coen Brothers biggest ever release (which is currently O Brother, Where Art Thou with $45M). Lets hope they get the film out there further before interest wanes and people decide to wait for DVD.

Bee Movie is continuing to hang in there, having enjoyed a thanksgiving boost last weekend. The film is now closing in on American Gangster and may actually finish its domestic run a few million dollars higher. The issue which has been in place from the start is one of budget. American Gangster has already recouped its budget so ending with something around $125M isn't going to be any kind of disappointment. Bee Movie is still $30M+ short of its production budget and the film doesn't have much of a market left - If you wanted to see the movie you'll have already done so. Factoring in global ticket sales the film won't make a loss, but it also won't be the Pixar-worrier than Dreamworks may have hoped for.

This is my last box office report of 2007 - I'm off to Australia on Thursday and won't be back until New Years Day. The report will be left in the more than capable hands of Lord Cookie & Charles. I just want to thank everyone who has glanced, clicked on by accident, read or replied to the box office reports this year, it means a great deal to me that people are willing to give up a few minutes each week to check them out. I'll be back in the New Year with a round up of the biggest of 2007 along with potential news about some kind of Summer 2008 sweepstake game. All the best and thanks again!

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