Thursday, 16 June 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 2nd - 4th April 2010

1. Clash of the Titans - $64.1M - $64.1M
2. Why Did I Get Married Too - $30.2M - $30.2M
3. How to Train Your Dragon - $29.2M - $92.3M
4. The Last Song - $16.2M - $25.6M
5. Alice in Wonderland - $8.3M - $309.8M
6. Hot Tub Time Machine - $8M - $27.8M
7. The Bounty Hunter - $6.2M - $48.9M
8. Diary of a Wimpy Kid - $5.5M - $46.2M
9. She's Out Of My League - $1.4M - $28.6M
10. Shutter Island - $1.4M - $123.4M

Another weekend and another new 3D film hits screens. A quick look down the location counts shows that Alice in Wonderland gave up 400+ of its 3D enabled screens to make way for Clash of the Titans. Titans is at 3,777 locations and you can bet as many as possible are 3D enabled. The good news for all films is that there's just one new release next weekend, giving them some breathing room.

Clash of the Titans is a remake of the 1981 sword and sorcery epic, fondly remembered for its creature work by Ray Harryhausen. Louis Leterrier takes the helm, coming off the back of the $135M grossing Incredible Hulk. Flavour of the year Sam Worthington takes on the role of Perseus, with Hades and Zeus being played by Ralph Fiennes and Liam Neeson respectively. Originally set for release last week, the decision to 3D-ify the movie at the eleventh hour caused a slight delay and allowed Titans to avoid a confrontation with How to Train Your Dragon (also in 3D). Unfortunately, as many reviews have been keen to point out, this post production 3D work isn't nearly as convincing as those films specifically shot on 3D cameras.

The $125M production got off to a strong start on Friday, $29M including midnight sneak previews, but faltered a little as the weekend wore on. While Titans ended the weekend with the second best April d├ębut (after Fast & Furious), it'll need a good follow up weekend and wants to reach $100M as quickly as possible. The increased ticket prices helped but with the aforementioned reviews commenting that the 3D either adds nothing or worse, takes away from the film, and the general poor word of mouth, Clash of the Titans does need to work fast before word of mouth hinders it. Internationally the film performed equally well but for Worthington, this could be more Terminator Salvation than Avatar.

Like clockwork, Tyler Perry turns out yet another movie just over six months since his last one. This time he's taken the sequel route, this being the follow up to 2007's Why Did I Get Married. That film opened to $21M before seeing a finish of around $55M. This sequel performed even better and like many other (all?) Tyler Perry movies, this one will have already recouped its production budget by the close of play on Sunday. Not one to rest on his laurels either, Perry already has one film in production and another two in various states of pre-production. His stage work and TV show (not to mention books) are other strings to his bow but success outside the US still eludes him.

After an odd start last weekend, How to Train Your Dragon has a pretty good hold (33% down on last weekend, better than Monsters Vs Aliens drop of 45%). The Dreamworks film is easily the best reviewed of its animated works and possibly its live action productions too. After opening well below the studio's recent animated releases, the film performed well during the weekdays and was off just a million dollars in Friday to Friday takings. How to Train Your Dragon needs another couple of decent weekends in order to clear its $165M production budget and a second weekend of nearly $30M isn't bad to be going on with.

Our final new entry this week actually opened on Wednesday which could be why it finished slightly lower down the weekend chart. The Last Song stars Miley Cyrus as she begin the long road to distancing herself from her Hannah Montana creation. This one isn't too much of a stretch as it features Cyrus as a girl sent to live with her estranged father for the summer and their attempts to reconnect through music. The Wednesday obviously saw some front-loading from Hannah Montana fans, and while the film took a hit from the weekend releases, it's already recouped its production budget of $20M. A decent life on DVD is assured but whether this will prove to be the break out hit that Cyrus is looking for remains to be seen.

Alice starts its descent as it shed screens for Clash of the Titans. That's the bad news out of the way as Alice in Wonderland becomes the first film of 2010 to cross the $300M mark. Factoring in its international tally as well, Alice is well on the way to $700M and is easily the biggest film of Tim Burton's career by far.
Having made an average kind of splash last weekend, Hot Tub Time Machine has a fall of just over 42%, not bad for a well reviewed R-Rated comedy. Word of mouth is pretty good and the decent second weekend hold proves it's working. Hot Tub cost $36M to produce, which is a figure the film should see by the end of next weekend. As suspected during the first weekend on release, this is a film that'll perform even better on DVD.

Defying the odds, The Bounty Hunter is down another 48% in its third frame on release. The $40M budgeted film recouped its production budget during the latter part of the week and should end up with around $65M when the dust has finally settled. This is Butler's second film in the top ten as he also lends his voice to How To Train Your Dragon.

While Diary of a Wimpy Kid recouped its production budget in its first weekend, it's failed to have much in the way of breakout legs, proving that the book's fans turned out the first weekend and then only the curious or those late to the party (or looking for a non-animated family film) showed up in subsequent weekends. Either way, Fox have already green lit a sequel for release roughly the same time next year.

Jay Burchel's She's Out of My League is looking at its last weekend on the charts. The $20M comedy recouped its budget last weekend. Burchel will appear next with Nic Cage in the potential summer blockbuster The Sorcerer's Apprentice. The Departed looks to remain as Martin Scorcese's biggest release, but only just. Shutter Island is around $9M shy of becoming his biggest ever release. The film is equally strong internationally, having taken $103M so far.

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