Thursday 16 June 2011

U.S Box Office Report - 3rd - 5th December 2010

1. Tangled - $21.5M - $96.5M
2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt. 1 - $16.7M - $244.2M
3. Burlesque - $6.1M - $26.9M
4. Unstoppable - $6.1M - $68.8M
5. Love and Other Drugs - $5.7M - $22.6M
6. Megamind - $5M - $136.7M
7. Due Date - $4.2M - $90.9M
8. Faster - $3.8M - $18.1M
9. The Warrior's Way - $3M - $3M
10. The Next Three Days - $2.6M - $18.3M

The weekend after Thanksgiving is generally one of the quietest of the entire year - meaning even the decent films witness some horrific falls. We've got one minor new release, which is only out to 1600 locations, and one potentially major release opening in a limited capacity.

After fighting tooth and nail last weekend, Tangled had to settle for a close second place finish up against Harry Potter. This weekend it's Potter's turn to take a back seat to the Disney Rapunzel re-imagining. Tangled narrowly misses out on crossing the $100M barrier in twelve days but a 77% fall from last Friday's haul does it no favours (down 56% overall). It recovered somewhat over the remainder of the weekend but the film really could have done with a stronger second frame, especially with The Voyage of the Dawn Treader just around the corner. What's going to keep coming back regardless of the film's initial success is its colossal budget, estimated to be $260M. The film needs a strong domestic showing and then an equal or better international take to sort out the shortcomings. Luckily there's the lucrative holiday season still to come.

In its third weekend on general release Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows crosses the $240M mark but will struggle to see $300M. Chances of it becoming the biggest film of the franchise are now questionable. Warner Bros. must still be cursing that the 3D conversion couldn't be completed in time as that would put the film much closer to $300M at this point. Internationally the film has taken over $400M and shows no sign of slowing down yet.

Having made something of a middling debut last weekend, Burlesque is down 49% this frame. The Christina Aguilera/Cher musical looks destined to become a cult classic but will end its run well short of its $55M production budget. It's unlikely to lose money in the long run and may actually do Aguilera a lot of good should she choose to branch out into acting again. Unstoppable sees another acceptable weekend to weekend drop. The Denzel Washington actioner may have cost $100M to produce but it's already recouped two thirds of that figure domestically. Elsewhere the film is going down a storm and currently has an international tally of around $45M.

Similar to Burlesque, Love & Other Drugs didn't have the best start last weekend. Fortunately the Anne Hathaway comedy drama cost just over half of what it cost to produce Burlesque and that's a figure it should just about manage to cover domestically. On a quieter opening weekend the film could have easily debuted higher. It's worth noting that the film is at around 2,400 locations, six hundred less than Burlesque and over a thousand less than Tangled.

It's the 3D screens that kept Megamind in good stead. While it may have to share some of them with Tangled, not having to share them with Harry Potter helped it perform well over Thanksgiving and is now pushing it towards $140M. Megamind finished in eighth place on Friday but recovered over the remainder of the weekend. Expect a $150-160M finish. Treading water, Due Date crossed the $90M mark this weekend. With $70M already collected from overseas theatres, a $200M global finish isn't out of the question.

The Dwayne Johnson R-rated action flick, Faster, barely made it through opening weekend. While it may have only cost $24M to produce (and hence won't lose CBS films any money), it's Johnson's reputation and ability to open anything other than a family film that could be the film's lasting legacy. Outside of Southland Tales, which opened and closed at just 63 locations (and $123K), Faster is Johnson's first film to open below $12M.

Our only new release is the curious cowboy/martial arts hybrid, The Warrior's Way. Dong-gun Jang plays Yang, an assassin who is forced to hide in a small mid-western town when he refuses a job. He's joined by Geoffrey Rush and Kate Bosworth, amongst others. Released into just 1622 locations, the film made just $1.1M on Friday. Saturday and Sunday saw no improvement, leaving the $42M budgeted film with a three day total of just $3M. At this point, even a second weekend in the top ten is looking unlikely.

Inexplicably, The Next Three Days, manages one more weekend in the top ten. Given its $30M budget, this one will turn a profit for the studios (and third party distributors) but it's still not a return to form for Russel Crowe.

Of note in limited release, Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan took a stunning $1.4M from just 18 locations, meaning it pretty much sold out every single screening. Expansion is scheduled in the coming weeks.

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