Sunday 22 July 2012

U.S Box Office Report - 20th - 22nd July 2012

The vast majority of this report was completed prior to the terrible events that took place in Colorado on Friday morning. My thoughts and sympathies are with those involved and affected by what occurred there. As a mark of respect, Warner Bros. opted not to issue weekend figures for The Dark Knight Rises, and they were joined in this by Rentrak, the industry-standard box office tracker, who announced they too, would not be issuing any box office figures until Monday.

This is now the full, updated report.

1. The Dark Knight Rises - $160.8M - $160.8M
2. Ice Age: Continental Drift - $20.4M - $88.8M
3. The Amazing Spider-Man - $10.8M - $228.6M
4. Ted - $10M - $180.4M
5. Brave - $6M - $208.7M
6. Magic Mike - $4.2M - $101.9M
7. Savages - $3.3M - $40M
8. Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection - $2.2M - $60.2M
9. Moonrise Kingdom - $1.8M - $36M
10. To Rome With Love - $1.4M - $11.1M

This report contains a history of Batman's journey on the screen, starting with his first appearance in 1943 and ending with the The Dark Knight Rises. Should you wish to skip this part of the article, please scroll down to the ---------------------. Thank You.

The Avengers aside, this is the weekend that cinemagoers have been waiting for since 2008, as Christopher Nolan returns with the final part of his Dark Knight trilogy. Studios know better than to risk a release up against it, and for those films already in theatres, the best they can do is hold on and hope for the best. The Dark Knight Rises was set to open incredibly wide and would be looking to surpass the $158M opening made by its prequel, while also hoping to take The Avenger's amazing three day record. Elsewhere, Ice Age: Continental Drift would be hoping to play as solid alternate programming, aiming to recover somewhat from its disappointing last frame, but ultimately, this weekend was all about the Batman.

The character of Bruce Wayne, and his crime fighting alter ego, Batman were the creations of Bob Kane and Bill Finger, and first appeared in issue 27 of Detective Comics, published in May 1939. Like Spider-Man, the character would prove to be incredibly popular and remain so throughout numerous iterations. Unlike many other superheroes, Batman made his screen debut just four years after his first comic appearance, in a fifteen part serial produced by Columbia pictures. Not only is it notable for being the character's first on-screen appearance but it also put into place the idea of a proper bat-Cave (the comic book interpretation at that point was to have a secret tunnel linking to an old barn acting as Batman's lab and Batmobile storage area). Kane and Finger adapted the idea of the serial's bat-cave into their stories. Furthermore, Alfred, Wayne's butler, was originally visualised as a clean shaven, somewhat overweight man. However, when the writer and illustrator saw the serial's version of Alfred (played by the trim, moustached William Austin) this too was adapted into their comic. The serial would portray the caped-crusader as a US agent battling the Japanese villain Dr.Daka during World War 2. This was followed in 1949 by a Batman and Robin 15-part serial, which featured Vicki Vale and Commissionaire Gordon.

By the mid-60s, a Batman TV series was proposed and the character made his small screen debut on January 11th, 1966. Airing on a twice weekly basis, the show would run for two and half seasons, clocking up 120 episode in all. The original idea had been to have a Batman movie lead on to a TV show but the network were reluctant to shoulder the cost of a movie on their own (a TV production's budget could be shared among a number of parties). The plan therefore, was to release a Batman movie in between the first and second seasons of the TV show - the hope being its success on the small screen would compel people to pay to see the character on the big one. Batman: The Movie would mark the character's theatrical feature debut and go on to be quite successful. Unfortunately, the TV show quickly descended into repetition and farce, and was finally cancelled midway through its third season. An idea to save costs by removing Robin and Gordon made some headway, but the show's creator William Dozier, and star, Adam West, were against this, which ultimately led to its cancellation (NBC picked up the show for a fourth season but backed out when they discovered they'd need to rebuild all the show's sets). By the late 70s, Batman's appeal was waning, and a proposed Batman in Outer Space failed to make much progress. In 1979, producers Michael Uslan and Benjamin Melniker purchased the rights to the character with the idea of making a darker, grittier Batman picture - much like the original comic book version. But studios weren't interested, wanting instead a return to the camp Batman of the mid-60s. By late '79, two more producers joined the project, Jon Peters and Peter Gruber, with the idea being to model a Batman film in the same vein as the recently released Superman picture. This too failed to get much studio interest but in 1981, a new Batman feature was announced and Warner Bros. decided to get involved.

By June 1983, a script, The Batman, was in place, and would focus on the origins of Batman and his sidekick Robin. Screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz took his inspiration from the short comic series, Batman: Strange Apparition. A concept artist was hired and things appeared to be going forward - the film was announced in late 1983, with a mid-1985 release date in mind. Directors Joe Dante and Ivan Reitman were both in talks to helm the feature, which would be re-written nine further times by nine different writers - none of which would ever make it into production. A new start was what was needed and after seeing financial success with Pee-Wee's Big Adventure, Warner Bros. hired its director, Tim Burton, to helm a Batman movie. The director set then-girlfriend Julie Hickson to write a 30 page treatment, finding Mankiewicz's script to be too camp. With Batman enjoying something of a reinvigoration thanks to the success of the comic series/graphic novel, The Dark Knight Returns in 1986, the idea for a darker story began to take shape. A further treatment was commissioned (written by Steve Englehart), which was then turned into a script by Sam Hamm. However, even with the blessing of Bob Kane, Warner Bros. still wouldn't push forward with pre-production, and it was only after Burton struck gold again with 1988's Beetlejuice, that the greenlight was finally given. With funding now in place, the director set about assembling a cast, opting for the controversial choice of comedian Michael Keaton (with whom Burton had worked on Beetlejuice) for the role of the caped crusader. This generated much condemnation on all sides, including from Bob Kane and Adam West, who felt he should be the one to play Batman. Keaton, however, was here to stay and would be joined by Jack Nicholson's Joker (the actor scoring an incredible deal which, rumour has it, saw him profit from further films in the series despite not appearing in them) and Kim Basinger (replacing an already cast Sean Young who left the production prior to shooting due to injury) as reporter and Bruce Wayne love interest, Vicki Vale. While shooting went over-budget and over-schedule, the studio felt they had something special on their hands.

The success of Batman upon its release in 1989 can not be overstated. Not only was it huge at the box office, breaking Ghostbuster 2's weekend record by over $10M, it was the global phenomenon of the year. When 1989 drew to a close, the picture was the year's biggest film, besting even the third Indiana Jones film in North America. In all, Batman made $251M domestically, with a further $160M overseas. It would go on to be hugely successful on video too, generating sales of over $150M. Perhaps more importantly, Batman proved that a comic book character could spawn a financially viable film, and in many eyes, paved the way for almost every adaptation that would follow in the ensuing decades. Warner Bros.  quickly set Burton back to work on what would become Batman Returns. But progress didn't go quite how they expected, with the director having mixed feelings about returning. While Sam Hamm worked on a  new script, Burton left to direct Edward Scissorhands. To lure the director back, they offered him a huge amount of creative control, relegating at least two of its producers to an executive credit in the process. The returning director bought in Heather's scripter, Daniel Waters. He was tasked with knocking Hamm's draft into shape, giving new villain Penguin a master plan, and updating Catwoman for the 1990s. Further proposed additions included the fleshing out of Harvey Dent, the script sewing seeds of his downfall and subsequent transformation into Two-Face (the later proposed for the next picture) and Robin, who was reinvented as a mechanic. In fact, the role of Robin was actually cast, with Marlon Wayans (who signed on for this film and a sequel) going all the way through to costume-fitting before the character, along with Dent, was removed from the script. Keaton would once again portray Batman, having won over the naysayers with his first performance. Danny Devito would play Penguin, while Michelle Pfeiffer took on the role of Selina Kyle, aka Catwoman. In a more contemporary villainous role, Burton cast Christopher Walken as Max Schrek, a powerful industrialist who hopes to manipulate the Penguin for his own ends. While the film opened stronger than the original, it ended up making considerably less - $162M in North America, $104M overseas, becoming 'only' the third biggest film of 1992. The studio weren't impressed, less so by the backlash, which saw McDonalds pull out of a proposed tie-in over parental complaints of the film's violence and sexuality. But while Batman Returns wasn't as successful, it still made a lot of money. The property was too good to let fall by the wayside.

New blood was what the studio felt was needed, and Tim Burton stepped into a producer role on Batman Forever. St Elmo's Fire helmer Joel Schumacher took over the reigns and hoped to base a new film on Batman: Year One, which covered the origins of the character. Warner Bros. however, wanted a sequel, and a more family friendly one at that, blaming the second film's darker tone for its failure. Michael Keaton would also not be returning, due to the direction this new picture was set to take. Those considered to take over the role included Johnny Depp, Daniel Day-Lewis and William Baldwin. In the end, Schumacher cast Val Kilmer, having been impressed by the actor's work on Tombstone. Kilmer signed on without reading the script or even knowing who was directing the project. Despite portraying Harvey Dent in the original film, Billy Dee Williams was not asked to reprise his role here, the studio instead opting to choose Tommy Lee Jones, as the now transformed Harvey Dent/Two Face. He'd be joined by The Riddler, a role Robin Williams was eager to play, but which ended up going to Jim Carrey. As Batman's love interest, Nicole Kidman beat out Robin Wright and Jeanne Tripplehorn, who in turn had replaced Rene Russo, the actress finding herself out of the running when the younger Kilmer took over from the older Keaton.  Finally, having been signed for two Batman films yet finding his character removed from the first of those, Marlon Wayans was released from his contract, to be replaced by Chris O'Donnell in the guise of Robin. Upon release, the movie once again set a new weekend record ($52M) and would go on to become the second biggest release of 1995, beaten only by Toy Story. In all, Batman Forever made $336M in total global ticket sales, far outstripping Batman Returns. Work begin almost immediately on Batman & Robin, the studio looking for a 1997 tent pole release.

While Schumacher would return, Kilmer couldn't make the picture work with his schedule for shooting The Saint. Truth be told, the director may not have been that disappointed given the difficulties he had with the star on the previous film. Warner Bros suggested the up and coming actor, George Clooney, who'd made a great splash with his work on the TV show ER, and was just starting to break through on the big screen.  Robin would return, joined by Alicia Silverstone's Batgirl. The villains of the piece this time around included Uma Thurman's Posion Ivy and Arnold Schwarzneggers's Mr Freeze - though many would argue that Schumacher may have been the biggest bad guy of all....Batman & Robin did at least get off to a good start, but a rapid decline caused by poor word of mouth quickly doomed the flick into becoming the lowest performer of the series so far - making a global total $236M against a budget of $125M. While not an outright failure, the studio considered the idea that Batman & Robin could be the final picture in the series and halted development  on Batman Triumphant. Having begun so well, the character had become all but a caricature of Bob Kane's creation. With a number of other superheroes now vying for the public's attention, a serious amount of work would need to be done to distance any new Batman feature from what the series had become. With this in mind, they hired Requiem for a Dream director Darren Aronofsky to helm a 'fifth' picture, based around Batman: Year One. Working with Frank Miller, the two opted to throw out everything and essentially reboot the series. Aronofsky approached Christian Bale for the lead but the studio opted to move forward with a Batman Vs Superman feature instead (which amounted to little). The director left the project and the studio began developing other features, leaving the Dark Knight on the shelf. Meanwhile, around the turn of the century, a British director began to make waves with his second feature, Memento....

Christopher Nolan had actually made his feature debut with the film, Following, but it was his memory loss thriller, Memento, that made people sit up and take notice. He then went on to direct Al Pacino and Robin Williams in the remake of Insomnia. It was on the strengths of those two pictures that Warner Bros. hired Nolan and screenwriter David S Goyer to once again bring Batman to the silver screen. The director wanted to take the character back to his roots, to unearth the events that caused Bruce Wayne to become Batman, to see the character develop in a similar way to how Superman had in the original movie. Furthermore, he wanted this new version to be grounded firmly in reality, and to surround who ever played the lead role with actors of the highest calibre, to give the film an epic feel. Work began in January 2003 on what would become Batman Begins. By later that year, Nolan was ready to cast the caped crusader. Early hopefuls included Billy Crudup, Jake Gyllenhaal and Cillian Murphy, who would go on to play the Scarecrow in this new film. The lead role would eventually go to Christian Bale, who had already expressed an interest when Aronosky had been developing Year One. Helping to acheive that epic feel, the director surrounded Bale with Michael Caine (as Alfred), Morgan Freeman, Liam Neeson, Tom Wilkinson, Gary Oldman and in minor roles, Ken Watanabe and Rutger Hauer. For a new Batman, came a new suit and batmobile, both a little more practical, and while fans were initially resistant, they soon warmed to the changes after seeing them in action.

The studio kept pre-release hype at a fairly subdued level but as the release date approached, things ramped up - buoyed no doubt by impressive trailers (not to mention the secrecy surrounding the project). Batman Begins opened June 15th 2005 to much critical acclaim, and a good, but not great $48M weekend. However, word of mouth quickly carried the film to $72M by day five. Nolan's reboot dug its heels firmly into the top ten for six weeks in total, never seeing a frame to frame drop above 49% until week 15. In all, Batman Begins made $205M in North America, and a further $162M overseas. It would also take on a life of its own on DVD, making well over $165M to date and go on to become the template for other comic book adaptations and reboots. The Bat, was back. Prior to the movie's release, Goyer started work on a two-picture treatment that would bring The Joker and Harvey Dent into this new world. Nolan at that point was unsure if he would return, but was interested in reinterpreting what was arguably Batman's grandest foe. While the script was being shaped, the director re-teamed with Bale and Caine on The Prestige. July 2006 would see Warner Bros. announce the start of production on The Dark Knight, with a release date set for two years hence. Bale, Caine and Morgan Freeman would all return, as would Oldman's Lt.Gordon and Cillian Murphy's Scarecrow, albeit it in a cameo role. They'd be joined by a recast Rachel Dawes (Maggie Gyllenhaal replacing Katie Holmes), Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent and, in a decision seen as more controversial than Michael Keaton's appointment as Batman back in 88-89, Heath Ledger as The Joker. Nolan had wanted to work with Ledger for some time, but many felt he was completely wrong for the role. First shots of Ledger in costume did little to sway feeling but people had faith in Nolan and the actor's portrayal of the Joker became central in the picture's viral promotion campaign. Indeed, the Joker's daring bank robbery which opens the film was the first footage to debut, being attached to Imax prints of I Am Legend, and featured no mention of Batman.

With public and fanbase apparently accepting Ledger, disaster struck when the young actor was found dead shortly after filming was completed, an apparent accidental overdose caused by prescription drugs. This sad occurrence arguably opened the picture up to an even wider audience, and raised its profile like no marketing campaign could ever hope to achieve. The Dark Knight opened on July 18th 2008 and made more during its first 24 hours than Batman Begins had earnt during its entire debut weekend. Critical opinion was even stronger too, and the white hot word of mouth pushed the film to a record breaking 3-day total of $158M. Even with that amazing start, the movie dropped only 52% a week later, adding a further $75M. By the end of weekend four, The Dark Knight had made over $440M in North America and would stay in theatres for a further 29 weeks, finishing its domestic run with $533M in ticket sales, making it, at that point, the third biggest picture of all time. Overseas the numbers weren't quite as strong but were still incredibly impressive, clocking in at $468M, allowing Nolan's second Batman feature to cross the $1B point in total global ticket sales. Again, business on the home market was strong.


Warner Bros. were quick to announce a third, and perhaps final Dark Knight film, aiming for a 2011 or 2012 release window. Nolan was hesitant about returning, and would only agree to it if he could find a way to make another film work, fearful that he would get bored half way through developing. By December of 2008, he had a rough outline of a story, but was committed to direct Inception, which would go on to be a smash hit in the summer of 2010. Throughout this period, development on a new Batman film took something of a hiatus, Nolan claiming he preferred to work on one film at a time. It was February 2011 before the director felt he had the right take on where he wanted the film to go, and after committing to helm the project, Warner Bros. announced that Jonathan Nolan and David S Goyer were working on the screenplay for The Dark Knight Rises (the later would exit the project midway through scripting to work on Man of Steel). The studio were keen to employ the Riddler as the main protagonist, suggesting Leonardo Di Caprio, who had worked with the director on Inception. Instead, Nolan went the other way, deciding to have Bane as Batman's main adversary - explaining that he was someone who could match the caped crusader both physically and mentally. For the role, Tom Hardy, another Inception veteran, was chosen, and he began an intense training process to get ready to play the imposing villain. Joining him would be Anne Hathaway, whose role was initially kept a secret , even to the actress herself, who only discovered she would play Selina Kyle/Catwoman after a lengthy discussion with the director. However, this being Christopher Nolan's take, her character would be grounded in reality and be an expert cat burglar as opposed to how Michelle Pfeiffer came to be the character in Batman Returns. Two other Inception players were also added to the cast - Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon Levitt, though who they were playing would not initially be revealed, leading to widespread speculation. Caine too would be back, as would Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman. Nolan was also quick to shoot down stories relating to The Joker and Two Face making any kind of cameo in this new feature. With the script and cast in place, filming began on May 6th 2011, on an estimated budget of $250M.

Shooting went fairly smoothly but given the huge production, it wasn't long before on-set footage appeared online. Along with the film's scale, viewers got a glimpse of a new vehicle - a bat plane. As with The Dark Knight, a viral campaign began while the film was still in production (in fact, the official website went online around time shooting commenced) and a short teaser was attached to the final Harry Potter movie in July 2011, showing an injured Gordon urging for the return of Batman. The first proper trailer was attached to the Sherlock Holmes sequel in December (and broke download records at iTunes), with another attached to The Avengers in May 2012. In between this, the studio put a six minute prologue with Imax screenings of Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (similar to what they had done with The Dark Knight and I Am Legend). The short gave the public their first proper glimpse at Hardy's Bane, but also raised an issue with his voice, with many claiming the dialogue was almost indecipherable - something that was rectified in later footage. Further viral campaigns revealed more information about The Dark Knight Rises and as summer began, many felt it would become the biggest film of 2012. Then The Avengers was released, to record breaking numbers across the board, even surpassing the $533M made by Nolan's second Batman film. What this meant in real terms was that The Dark Knight Rises would now have its work cut out if it wanted to be the no.1 release of 2012. The Avengers had the advantage of opening at the start of summer, and the increased ticket prices thanks to being in 3D. TDKR on the other hand, opened at the tail end of blockbuster season, and would have to contend with The Amazing Spider-Man. Not only that but Nolan opted to shoot in Imax over 3D (around an hour of 'Rises' is in the format) meaning the film couldn't rely on higher 3D ticket prices. With Imax screenings pretty much sold out, their were fears that some people may wait out this weekend and see the picture in the best format possible, when tickets become available again . One further potential thorn was running time, reducing the amount of screenings that could take place in one 24 hour period. However, all this looked to be academic as the release date approached and anticipation hit fever pitch. Reviews, while not as strong as the prequel, were still very, very good, and the movie entered release with an 87%  Rotten Tomatoes rating. Warner Bros. opened the film incredibly wide, at 4,404 locations, just 64 or so  less than the all time record holder, Twilight: Eclipse. And so, the scene was set, for the conclusion of Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy.

Early signs of a strong showing came with the announcement that The Dark Knight Rises had made $30.6M from midnight screenings. That figure meant it had surpassed The Avengers midnight gross by almost $12M, and was in fact the second best start for any film - only The Deathly Hallows Part 2's made more money in the same time period. While it may not have added anything to the film itself, it would have pushed its takings much higher. The race was now on as to whether Nolan's picture could take the opening day record, also held by the final Harry Potter film with $91M. The TDKR did fall short of that figure when Friday numbers were issued, settling for a still very impressive $75M, around $5M shy of The Avenger's first full day on release. At this point it became apparent that had TDKR been in 3D, it might well have cleared the Marvel picture's first day figure. That aside, this is obviously the best first day for a Batman film by some margin (The Dark Knight did $67M) but the question was whether the new release could maintain that momentum over the remainder of the frame. Word of mouth was strong, something reflected in its A- cinemascore rating, but as the Friday figure proved, there was a lot of front-loading involved too, more possibly than The Avengers due to the built-in anticipation caused by this being a sequel.

Saturday saw a sharp drop in attendances, highlighting the affect of the aforementioned front-loading - that need to see the picture as soon as possible. Business dipped by 44% from one day to the next but consequently, Sunday saw a much stronger hold than was expected too, a drop of only 11% on the previous day. All told, The Dark Knight rises finished its first weekend with a haul of $160.8M - making it the most successful '2D film' opening of all time - and the third best opening of any picture, behind Deathly Hallows Part.2 and The Avengers. Were we to factor 3D into the equation, it seems The Avengers' record would still stand, but the difference between the two would have been closer to $20M. While the gap between this opening and that of The Dark Knight's is barely $2M, there will be few to class it as a disappointment - and it is worth remembering that this is a sequel to one of the biggest releases of all time. Indeed, we seem to be almost at some kind ticket buying saturation point (be it 2D or 3D) were by no matter how anticipated a film may be, it will struggle to sell any more tickets in that three day 'weekend' period, than we are seeing here. Inevitably, there will be speculation as to how much the terrible events of Friday may have affected the film's performance, but in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't matter. Going forward, TDKR now needs strong weekday figures and a solid hold next frame to prove how well the word of mouth is working. By its second Friday, The Dark Knight had made $261M and witnessed a weekend frame to frame fall of 52%. Overseas, the picture debuted in 17 markets and saw an impressive $88M. Expect that figure to rise next weekend when it adds a further forty territories.

Of all the remaining top ten, Ice Age: Continental Drift was probably the one that would be least affected by The Dark Knight Rises. It needed a better second frame too, as it didn't get off to quite the start the studio had hoped it would, making roughly what the first movie made in 2002 - and that was without the aid of 3D ticket prices. The film did see some ok weekday figures and approached its second weekend with $68.4M in the bank. In comparison, by the same time in their release (Day 7), the original film had made $57.2M while the third picture had hit $80M. Ice Age 4 made $6.7m on its second Friday, down 60% on its first day in theatres, much higher than the studio would have liked, with only a fraction of the damage caused by the new release. Over Saturday and into Sunday it remained steady, but underwhelming, leaving it with a 3-day total of $20.2M, $88M overall. For a family film, a second frame drop of 56% is very worrying and studio eyes will now turn to next weekend, in hope of a recovery. Even at this relatively early stage, it's safe to say that this will be the lowest performing of the series, and will probably end up with a domestic total somewhat similar to Rio ($143M) - if it's lucky. But this release was never about how well it played in North American. Given that Dawn of the Dinosaurs made a staggering $690M overseas, Fox would have been far more eager to see how well Continental Drift would play in the same market. It seems their faith has been rewarded as the film's current international figure stands at $442M - and that's after only three weeks on release. With Pixar staggering Brave's roll out (The UK, for example, won't see the flick until mid-August), Ice Age 4 has plenty of time to clean up and erase any concerns about it disappointing the studio domestically.

Of course, it was always going to be The Amazing Spider-Man that posed the bigger threat (if any) and stood to get hit the hardest, by The Dark Knight Rises. Opinion on the film's success so far continued to be open for debate, but there was no escaping its half a billion dollar and rising global total. The Sony flick had seen a decent frame to frame drop last weekend, amongst one of the better for a superhero flick, and continued to play alright during the week. By Thursday, the webslinger was sitting on a domestic tally of $217M, a very strong figure but the gap between it and the previous Spider-Man film continued to grow, as by day 17, that picture was sat on $282M. The initial clash on Friday saw Spider-Man take $3.4M, down 66% on the same day last week and was a clear indication that there was new kid in town. Even with The Dark Knight Rises' obvious front loading, the reboot didn't stand much of a chance and finished the weekend with $10.7M - a very nasty drop of almost 70%. It's unlikely the movie can recover from that kind of fall, especially with releases such as Total Recall, The Watch and The Bourne Legacy all waiting in the wings, ready to steal any business they can from Spider-Man (and The Dark Knight Rises). The picture now has a domestic total of $228.5M and looks set to end up with around $260M come the end of its theatrical run, which, for almost any other feature, which would a staggering amount, but for Spider-Man, comes off as a little disappointing. Abroad, the film is still going strong, clearing $385M this weekend - thanks in part to the somewhat limited global roll out for The Dark Knight Rises.

In an example of just how badly Spider-Man got hit by TDKR this frame, it looked at one point as though Ted might actually make more money. The Seth MacFarlane comedy obviously took a knock, managing a Friday haul of $3.2M, leading to a weekend total of $10M. That figure means the film is down 55% on last frame, its highest drop yet, but it does seem to be working on some great word of mouth - becoming what appears to be the only major sleeper of summer 2012. After initially looking slim, $200M, is a shoe-in for the film within the next fortnight or so. Next weekend will offer the first direct competition in the guise of The Watch, a sci-fi comedy starring Ben Stiller, Jonah Hill  and Vince Vaughn. At this point, Ted has made $180.4M from a budget of $50M.

Brave appeared to be largely unfazed by Batman this frame, its fifth on general release. On Wednesday, day 27, it became the tenth Pixar film to cross the $200M barrier and looks set to finish up above Wall-E ($223M) but below the original Cars movie ($244M). This frame saw it make $1.9M on Friday, leading to a weekend total of $5.9M and a running total of $208.7M in North America. Internationally it is north of $50M but that figure is expected to rise rapidly over the coming weeks as it expands into more and more territories.

After settling for sixth place last frame, Magic Mike moved ahead of Savages when the weekend's actual figures were issued on Monday. After it looked like it might be a quick burn out for the Channing Tatum stripper drama, it managed to recover somewhat, thanks in part to better Friday (night) numbers. Further proof of that came this weekend as Magic Mike crossed the $100M mark, becoming Tatum's third film this year to do so. He might even have made it four, albeit from a cameo role, had G.I Joe: Retaliation kept its original June release date. The star becomes only the second person to have three $100M hits within the space of a year (though technically not the same year), the other being Sam Worthington with Avatar, Clash of the Titans and Terminator: Salvation. Adding $4.3M this frame, Magic Mike now has a four week total of $102M.

The violent Oliver Stone drama, Savages made $3.3M this weekend, that puts it down a high 64% on last weekend, which saw a half decent hold on the film's opening frame. Savages was produced for around $45M, a figure its domestic release should just about cover. Platoon remains Stone's biggest ever release ($138M, which would equate to $284M in 2012 dollars), followed by the sports drama Any Given Sunday.

Tyler Perry's twelfth film as director, Madea's Witness Protection, managed $2.3M this frame, bringing its running total to $60.2M. It's looking likely the movie will end up as the second biggest of his releases, narrowly besting Madea's Family Reunion to take the spot. This may well be its final frame in the top ten, but is yet another profitable release for Lionsgate and the one man media empire.

Rounding out the top ten are two smaller films, Woody Allen's To Rome With Love and Moonrise Kingdom. Both pictures continue to play well despite being at less than a thousand locations (in fact, Rome shed 192 theatres this frame, bringing its count to 552). With 'To Rome', and last year's Midnight In Paris, Allen is having something of a renaissance. This frame it added $1.4M, for a cumulative gross of $11.1M. Meanwhile, Moonrise Kingdom has made $36M so far in its release (it added $1.8M this weekend). Director Wes Anderson is already well on the way with his next project, The Grand Budapest Hotel, which will star Johnny Depp, along with numerous actors from Anderson's regular crew.

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