Friday 11 February 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 6th - 8th July 2007

1. Transformers - $67.6M - $152.5M
2. Ratatouille - $29M - $109.1M
3. Live Free or Die Hard - $17.4M - $84.1M
4. License to Wed - $10M - $17M
5. Evan Almighty -  $8.1M - $78.1M
6. 1408 - $7.1M - $53.7M
7. Knocked Up - $5.1M - $132M
8. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer - $4.1M - $123.7M
9. Sicko - $3.6M - $11.5M
10. Ocean's Thirteen - $3.5M - $109.1M

Transformers is the no.1 film this week and has been since its release on Tuesday. The movie actually had some early previews on the Monday night and depending on how those number are added into the total, the movie crossed the $100M mark in four or five days. Its weekend total isn't record breaking but one must bear in mind that the film had been out three days by then, including a record breaking Tuesday and July 4th, which would have taken a serious chunk out of its weekend total. All that said, a $67.6M weekend is pretty damn fantastic. The film has performed even better than analysts had estimated and still has until Wednesday to add to that total before the release of Harry Potter & The Order of The Phoenix (which might not impact Transformers as much as expected).

What's even better for Transformers is its relatively low price tag - $150M, meaning it's already recouped it's production budget just from US grosses. Bay himself has offered a $10,000 bet to anyone who doesn't believe him regarding the budget. Compare that total to the rumoured $300M of Pirates 3 and $270M of Spiderman 3 and you begin to see how successful Transformers is going to be. (Hell, Evan Almighty cost more than Transformers!). Let's also not forget that Transformers is yet to open in a number of foreign markets and is still in it's first week of release in the US. The public wanted a summer action movie that wasn't yet another sequel and they got it. While Transformers will take a hit next weekend, it should still retain a solid total. This must surely be music to the ears of Michael Bay after the disappointment of The Island. A proposed sequel is already taking shape.

After a somewhat disappointing opening for Pixar's Ratatouille (the lowest opening since A Bug's Life) the film stepped into high gear over the July 4th holiday. The film is down 38% from last weekend and held its ground admirably during the week, performing much better than anticipated. In fact, after the $47M start, it passed the $100M mark today. The film performed consistently on Monday, Tuesday & Thursday, with a spike in takings for the July 4th Wednesday. Unlike Transformers, Ratatouille might be hit harder by Harry Potter next weekend but as with all Pixar movies, this one is in for the long haul. The question now is whether the movie will beat 'Cars' domestic total.

Curiously, even though Transformers offered near direct competition to Die Hard 4.0, the movie hasn't taken the expected huge hit. It's off roughly 48% from last weekend, which isn't bad at all. The film performed equally well in the international market and once final numbers are issued Monday, Die Hard 4.0 should have recouped its production budget (when those international numbers are included). While the PG-13 might have offended fans of the original movies, it seems to have bought in a whole slew of new, younger fans. Again, like Transformers, Die Hard 4.0's relatively low budget will really help maximise profit. Made for just $110M, the Bruce Willis starrer should see its US total cross the $100M barrier sometime this week.

The only other new release is Robin William's License to Wed, in which he plays a priest who runs a strict pre-marriage guidance class which Mandy Moore and her husband-to-be must pass. The film worked ok as a bit of counter-programming, racking up $17M since Tuesday. It won't stick around for long but should have been relatively cheap to produce.

So we move onto the holdovers. Evan Almighty is looking increasingly like it won't reach $100M before leaving the top ten. A disaster of biblical proportions for Universal who must surely be questioning (and firing) the person who greenlit the movie and assigned it that huge budget. On the flip side is 1408, which this weekend has doubled its production budget. Both movies are awaiting release in the major foreign markets, which should strengthen the success of 1408 and provide Evan Almighty with a little more cash against that $175M budget.

Knocked up has hit the slow down now but has nothing to worry about. The film crossed the $130M barrier this weekend and could end up with close to $150M before the end of its domestic run. The film hasn't opened anywhere else in the world so could easily see a global total come the end of 2007 of over $200M. Not bad for an R-rated $30M movie with a relatively no-name cast. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer crosses the $200M mark in the global market (including its US take) while Ocean's 13 crosses the $230M mark in the same market. Both movies are nearing the end of their domestic runs with neither movie surpassing the total box office set by their respective prequels. Sicko, which expanded onto another 300 screens this weekend, added another $3.6M to its total. The film is expected to expand further in the coming weeks.

Something to add - Pirates 3 finally crossed the $300M barrier this weekend. It currently sits at no.25 on the all time US box office takings chart.

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