Thursday, 16 June 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 11th - 13th March 2011

1. Battle: Los Angeles - $36M - $36M
2. Rango - $23.1M - $68.7M
3. Red Riding Hood - $14.1M - $14.1M
4. The Adjustment Bureau - $11.5M - $38.5M
5. Mars Needs Moms - $6.8M - $6.8M
6. Hall Pass - $5.1M - $34.9M
7. Beastly - $5M - $16.9M
8. Just Go With It - $4M - 93.9M
9. The King's Speech - $3.6M - $129M
10. Gnomeo and Juliet - $3.5M - $89M

Another three releases this weekend and once again Hollywood hope to provide something for everyone. Two films offer competition to two of last weekend's releases while the other new release hopes to be the first blockbuster of 2011.

Battle: Los Angeles is the blockbuster hopeful and is being pitched somewhere between Skyline, Black Hawk Down and Independence Day. The film sees the planet invaded by a very hostile alien force and stars Aaron Eckhart and Michelle Rodriguez as two US soldiers taking on the aliens at street level. Directed by Jonathan Liebsman, who cut his teeth on such films as Darkness Falls & The Texas Chainsaw Massacre prequel, it only cost around $70M to produce. Initial trailers were very impressive but sadly the film couldn't live up to its look, at least not critically (it's currently 32% fresh at Rotten Tomatoes). Of the new and returning releases, B:LA proved to be the strongest, with a Friday haul of $13.5M, on its way to an impressive $36M opening frame. With that aforementioned budget, B:LA is off to a great start and even with the inevitable fall next weekend (related to poor word of mouth one expects) it should be well on the way to profit, if not already in profit thanks to its simultaneous overseas release.

Having opened well last weekend, Rango finds itself down 39% in its second frame, for a $23M finish. The Johnny Depp CGI comedy had opened last Friday with a slightly disappointing take but saw a huge boost come the Saturday. It'll face no direct competition until Hop at the start of April, by which point it should be nearing $100M. With a budget of around $140M, Rango needs to continue to dig in like a Pixar film and hope for better than expected frame to frame drops.

Last weekend Beastly attempted to modernise the Beauty & The Beast legend. A week later and it is the turn of Amanda Seyfried in Red Riding Hood to bring the age old tale to the Twilight crowd (it's even directed by Twilight helmer Catherine Hardwicke). Unlike Beastly, Red Riding Hood doesn't attempt to modernise the film but rather re-tell the tale with a werewolf-black magic twist (scoring a PG-13 rating for its efforts). Reviews for the film were even worse than Battle: Los Angeles, which at least had the action spectacle to fall back on. Red Riding Hood faced competition from the aforementioned Beastly (and to a lesser degree, The Adjustment Bureau) but given its niche appeal, it got off to an ok start, though surely on the lower side of expectations. This one cost WB around $42M to produce and next weekend's drop will give us a better idea of how much this one might lose the studio.

Holding slightly worse than Rango is The Adjustment Bureau. The romantic thriller starring Matt Damon and Emily Blunt opened to a strong $21M over its first three days. A week later the film dropped 45%. It's scoring some good word of mouth and has themes that span at least a couple of demographics. With a budget of $51M, the Adjustment Bureau already has a running total of over $38M .

Our final new entry this weekend is a very expensive flop for all concerned. Mars Needs Moms is produced by Robert Zemekis and utilises the same motion capture techniques seen in Polar Express and Beowulf - something that still doesn't seem to have quite won favour with the public. The film is based on the book of the same name and features the nine year old Milo (mo-capped but not voiced by Seth Green) on a quest to rescue his kidnapped mother from aliens. With just a $1.7M opening day, Mars Needs Moms limped to just $6.8M for the weekend. This one cost ImageMovers $150M to produce, a huge figure for any film, and stands little chance of even seeing a $20M return. This marks the final film in ImageMovers current slate, the company has now ceased production and will relaunch in 2012 with Yellow Submarine.

Hall Pass has begun to shed locations now in this, its third week on release. The film is within grasping point of its $36M production budget but it's unlikely to see a great deal more. This is another disappointment for the Farelly Bros who haven't seen a final tally above $45M since 2001's Shallow Hal (a $70M finish).

Beastly took something of a whack from Red Riding Hood this weekend and dropped 48% in its second frame on release. Fortunately this one cost just $17M to produce, a figure Beastly will surpass in the coming days. While it won't lose CBS Films any money, it's unlikely to become the first big hit for the fledgling studio.

While it may have to wait until it is outside the top ten, Just Go With It will surpass $100M sooner rather than later. The film has already made a further $35M from its overseas release and its just getting started.

The King's Speech drops 41% this weekend - the highest drop of its entire run. The film has made an impressive $129M domestically with a further (even more astounding) $186M overseas. With Rango, and to a lesser degree, Mars Needs Moms, providing for the family market, Gnomeo & Juliet has nowhere to go but down. The film has a current global total of over $130M.

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