Tuesday 15 February 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 3rd - 5th April 2009

1. Fast and Furious - $72M - $72M
2. Monsters vs. Aliens - $33.4M - $105.7M
3. The Haunting in Connecticut - $9.5M - $37.2M
4. Knowing - $8.1M - $58.2M
5. I Love You, Man - $7.8M - $49.3M
6. Adventureland - $6M - $6M
7. Duplicity - $4.3M - $32.4M
8. Race to Witch Mountain - $3.3M - $58.4M
9. 12 Rounds - $2.3M - $9M
10. Sunshine Cleaning - $1.8M - $4.8M

With the cast of the original film returning Fast And Furious, the fourth film in the series, races to the top of the charts with a stunning weekend take. Getting off to an amazing start on Friday with a single day take of over $30M, the film continued to perform strong as the weekend progressed. In terms of the rest of the series, Fast and Furious has already surpassed the entire domestic gross of the third film, Tokyo Drift ($62M) and comfortably bests the weekend take of the first two films ($40M and $50M). So what went right?

One can only assume it was the return of Diesel, Walker, Brewster and Rodriguez, reprising the roles that helped put them on the map back in 2001 with the original film. Since then each has had their share of success and failure, though as time has worn on it's been more of the latter (did anyone see Diesel's Find Me Guilty?). With little competition to face off against, Fast And Furious had the weekend sewn up but might face some competition next weekend from Observe & Report and Dragonball Evolution, two films which have the most potential to affect F & F's audience but with that start, Universal won't be too concerned. The question now is whether Diesel will have the same kind of success with the XXX reboot next year. If the numbers hold, it'll be Universal's biggest ever weekend.

Dreamworks Monsters Vs Aliens took a bit of a tumble on Friday, down 47%. For a normal film that would be quite an acceptable drop but family fair tends to hold better. Business picked up over Saturday and Sunday leaving the film down 43% on last weekend as a whole. While budgetary figures aren't available at the time of writing, Kung Fu Panda, the previous Dreamworks CGI movie cost around $130M to produce, and it's a fair bet to say this one cost around the same. With that in mind, it should be close to recouping costs by next weekend but could get hit a little harder than this week thanks to the release of the Hannah Montana movie. Expect Monsters Vs Aliens to end up somewhere between the take of Sharks Tale ($160M) and Madagascar 2 ($180M), with the global take potentially being much higher.

A Haunting In Connecticut acts like the vast majority of the horror genre and tumbles 63% on a Friday to Friday basis (58% for the weekend as a whole). Lionsgate can't fail to be happy though, Virigina Madsen is the only thing close to a major star in the film, keeping costs below $15M. Furthermore, the film was shot over two and half years ago and sat on the shelf since, so the studio would probably have been happy to see a final gross of $10M. Haunting will tumble hard again next weekend up against three wide releases but it's already achieved what it set out to do.

Holding well again is the Paul Rudd comedy I Love You, Man. Role Models, Rudd's last film finished up around $67M and this one should be no different, turning in a decent profit. Rudd's on a role at the moment, with the two films mentioned already, alongside voicing a role in Monsters Vs Aliens. Knowing has held a lot better than Cage's Bangkok Dangerous did in September 2009. That film was in and out the charts in three weekends. Knowing recouped its production budget this weekend and has just begun a rollout in foreign territories. All told, with the global box office factored in, Knowing should end up somewhere around $130M.

Our only other new entry is Adventureland, Greg Mottola's follow up to Superbad. With no Seth Rogen (or Jonah Hill and Michael Cera) to hang the film off, Adventureland fell flat straight out the gate. If it's lucky it'll score one more weekend in top ten but it's pretty much already over for the R-rated comedy.

Duplicity's unlikely to see $40M before exiting the top ten. The Julia Roberts/Clive Owen comedy hasn't been able to find much interest from the public and is a long way from Robert's heyday of $20M+ opening weekends. Race To Witch Mountain is still a long way short of its $80M budget but has the rest of the global market awaiting release. After an ok start Witch Mountain failed to make much headway and is almost certainly seeing its final weekend in the top ten. The same can be said of John Cena's 12 Rounds, which is unlikely to see more than $12M in total ticket sales. Rounding us out is an older release expanding into 400+ locations. Sunshine Cleaning, starring Amy Adams and Emily Blunt manages a top ten place and could see further expansion as a result of its placing this weekend.

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