Tag: box office reports

Think Like a Man muscles in at No. 1 with $33M

Think Like a Man muscles in at No. 1 with $33M

The date-night movies “Think Like a Man” and “The Lucky One” finally have knocked “The Hunger Games” off its No. 1 box-office perch.

“Think Like a Man,” based on Steve Harvey’s dating-advice best-seller, debuted as the top weekend draw with $33 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. That’s almost double what studio executives had expected for the Sony ScreenGems ensemble movie, which features Michael Ealy, Taraji P. Henson and Gabrielle Union.

The Warner Bros. drama “The Lucky One,” starring Zac Efron in an adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’ romance novel, opened at No. 2 with $22.8 million. It also came in a bit above studio expectations going into the weekend.

“Think Like a Man” was produced for about $13 million and took in nearly that much on opening day Friday alone, with business getting even better on Saturday. Sony executives had figured the movie might pull in about $17 million for the whole weekend.

“It was a wild ride. It just got better and better as the night went on Friday. Then to be up so much on Saturday,” said Rory Bruer, head of distribution at Sony.

Lionsgate’s blockbuster “The Hunger Games” took in $14.5 million, slipping to third-place after four weekends at No. 1. The film raised its domestic total to $356.9 million.

“The Hunger Games” added $13 million overseas, where its total now stands at $215.8 million, for a worldwide haul of $573 million. Disney’s nature documentary “Chimpanzee” opened at No. 4 with $10.2 million.

Despite some healthy newcomers, Hollywood’s overall revenues dipped for the second weekend in a row. Domestic receipts totaled $129 million, down 5 percent from the same weekend last year, when “Rio” led with $26.3 million.

Revenues likely will decline again next weekend, with no huge newcomers expected to come close to the $86.2 million debut of “Fast Five” over that same weekend last year.

But business should shoot back up after that as the superhero ensemble “The Avengers” launches one of Hollywood’s biggest summer lineups ever over the first weekend of May.

“‘Fast Five’ basically performed to summer box-office numbers in pre-summer last year,” said Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian. “We’re not going to have a ‘Fast Five’ in late April this year, but that’s OK, because we’ve got ‘Avengers a week later, and that’ll more than make up for it.”

So far in 2012, domestic revenues are at $3.1 billion, up 16.6 percent from last year’s, according to Hollywood.com.

Paramount’s 3D version of James Cameron’s blockbuster “Titanic” added $5 million to bring its three-week domestic total to $52.8 million. The film’s lifetime domestic haul now stands at $653.6 million.

With $34.3 million more overseas, the 3-D version’s international total rose to $225 million, pushing the lifetime worldwide gross of “Titanic” to $2.1 billion.

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Kate Beckinsale back with ‘Underworld’ splash

Kate Beckinsale back with ‘Underworld’ splash

Kate Beckinsale’s return nets a nice box-office haul, but a historical drama is a strong No. 2.

Kate Beckinsale is back with a vengeance, with her latest “Underworld” movie opening at No. 1 this weekend. “Underworld Awakening” made an estimated $25.4, distributor Sony Screen Gems reported Sunday.

This is the fourth film in the vampire action saga. Beckinsale starred in the first two movies as the warrior Selene, then bowed out of part three but returned for this latest installment. “Underworld Awakening” was shown for the first time in 3D as well as on IMAX screens, where it made $3.8 million. That’s 15 percent of the film’s weekend gross, which is a record for an IMAX digital-only run.

Sony had hoped the film would end up in the low-$20 million range. But Rory Bruer, the studio’s president of worldwide distribution, says the fact that it did even better — despite a snow storm that hit much of the Midwest and East Coast — primarily has to do with Beckinsale’s return.

“She is such a force. Her character — you just can’t take your eyes off of her. I know the character is very dear to her, as well, and she just kills it,” Bruer said. “The 3D aspect of the film also brings something, makes it a fun, visceral ride.”

Kate Beckinsale back with ‘Underworld’ splash

Opening in second place was “Red Tails” from executive producer George Lucas, about the Tuskegee Airmen who were the first black fighter pilots to serve in World War II. It made an estimated $19.1 million, according to 20th Century Fox, which was well above expectations; the studio had hoped to reach double digits, said Chris Aronson, executive vice president of domestic distribution.

“I believe what George Lucas has stated all along: This is an important story and a story that must be told. It is a true story of American heroism and valor and audiences have really responded to this message,” Aronson said. “People want to feel good about themselves, they want to be uplifted. We have enough hard crud going on in this country right now. Times are tough, and if we look back and are told a story of some really fantastic deeds, that’s really compelling moviegoing.”

Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian said a grassroots effort to get groups of people into the theaters to see “Red Tails,” along with positive word-of-mouth, helped its strong showing. The film saw an uptick from about $6 million on Friday to $8.65 million on Saturday.

Overall box office is up 31 percent from the same weekend a year ago, Dergarabedian said, thanks to new releases as well as movies like “Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close,” which had limited runs for awards consideration at the end of 2011 and are now expanding nationwide. The Sept. 11 drama from Warner Bros., starring Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock, came in fourth place with $10.5 million.

Last week’s No. 1 film, the Universal smuggling thriller “Contraband” starring Mark Wahlberg, dropped to the No. 3 spot with $12.2 million. It’s now made $46.1 million in two weeks. Meanwhile, Steven Soderbergh’s international action picture “Haywire” from Relativity Media, starring mixed martial arts superstar Gina Carano in her first film role, opened in fifth place with $9 million, which was above expectations.

“This is a great, perfect January weekend. You’ve got these holdover films and newcomers creating an overall marketplace that people are really responding to,” Dergarabedian said. “It sounds cliche but this marketplace really has something for everyone.”

As for worldwide box office, “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1” has now crossed the $700 million mark. The first half of the finale of the girl-vampire-werewolf love triangle franchise has grossed an estimated $701.3 million in global box office receipts since its release last November, according to Lionsgate, which recently acquired Summit Entertainment, which distributes the series.

Nelated Link: Read the Full Production Notes for Underworld: Awakening Movie

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Mission Impossible stays on top with $31.3 million

Mission Impossible stays on top with $31.3 million

Tom Cruise’s new mission remains impossible to beat at the box office. Studio estimates Sunday placed “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol” in the No. 1 spot for the second-straight weekend with $31.3 million. With a $134.1 million domestic total, it’s the first $100 million hit with Cruise in the lead role since 2006’s “Mission: Impossible III.”

The Paramount release led a solid New Year’s weekend as Hollywood managed fair business to end a sluggish year on a more promising note for 2012. Domestic revenues closed out at $10.22 billion for 2011, down 3.4 percent from 2010’s, according to box-office tracker Hollywood.com.

That was a slight improvement over Hollywood.com’s projections a week earlier, when Hollywood was limping through the normally busy holiday season with a lineup of underachieving movies.

“This week was a pleasant surprise,” said Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian. “Last week, we were really pretty gloom and doom, but this final push at the end of the year was stronger than expected. It’s a good way to head into 2012, with at least a little bit of momentum at the box office.”

Still, movie admissions were down sharply for the second year in a row. Factoring in higher ticket prices, domestic attendance slipped to 1.28 billion in 2011, off 4.2 percent from 2010 admissions and the smallest audiences Hollywood has had since 1995, according to Hollywood.com.

Hollywood started the year in a deep rut, with domestic revenues trailing 2010’s by 20 percent or more as a weak first quarter fell far short of the previous year’s spectacular results for the sci-fi sensation “Avatar.” Studios nearly dug themselves out from that deficit over the summer, but business lagged through the fall and holidays as audiences had a ho-hum response to most movies.

Some studio executives had predicted record revenues for 2011. The movies themselves may simply have held less appeal to fans than expected, though audiences also could be skipping trips to theaters to watch movies on big-screen home setups or to play with the countless entertainment gadgets now on the market. Viewers can watch films at home or on portable devices for a fraction of the cost of going to theaters.

The rest of this weekend’s top-three remained unchanged. Robert Downey Jr.’s “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows,” from Warner Bros., finished second again with $22.1 million, raising its domestic total to $132.1 million. The 20th Century Fox family sequel “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked” was still at No. 3 with $18.3 million to lift its haul to $94.6 million.

In its first full weekend, Steven Spielberg’s World War I epic “War Horse” came in fourth with $16.9 million, pushing its domestic total to $43 million. At No. 5 was David Fincher’s thriller “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” with $16.3 million. The Sony release, which stars Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara, now stands at $57.1 million domestically.

Cameron Crowe’s family tale “We Bought a Zoo,” featuring Matt Damon and Scarlett Johansson, finished at No. 6 with $14.3 million. Released by 20th Century Fox, the movie raised its total to $41.8 million. Rounding out the top films was Spielberg and producer Jackson’s animated action story “The Adventures of Tintin” at No. 7 with $12 million. The Paramount release lifted its domestic sum to $47.8 million.

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Disappointing debuts from Sherlock and Alvin sequels

Disappointing debuts from Sherlock and Alvin sequels

While franchise titles did claim the top three spots at the box office this weekend, it wound up being a very mixed frame for sequels. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows and Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked both tallied solid grosses, though they were notably down from their predecessors. On the other hand, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol had a robust start in limited release. Even with all of these established brands entering the marketplace, the Top 12 wound up down roughly 13 percent from the same period last year.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows opened to an estimated $40.02 million, which is way down from the original Sherlock Holmes’s $62.3 million over Christmas weekend in 2009. In what could be an even more concerning comparison, the movie wound up lower than Tron Legacy‘s $44 million start at the same time last year. That’s shocking, considering Game of Shadows opened just two years after a well-received original while Tron hit theaters 28 years after a first movie that wasn’t even widely available on DVD or Blu-ray until after Legacy’s release. Distributor Warner Bros. Pictures is reporting that the audience was 59 percent male and 50 percent under the age of 35.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked debuted to an estimated $23.5 million, or less than half of The Squeakquel’s $48.9 million. It was also significantly off from the first Alvin’s $44.3 million. Distributor 20th Century Fox reports that the audience was 54 percent female and 53 percent under the age of 25.

Both Sherlock and Alvin struggled to live up to franchise standards this weekend, albeit for different reasons. The marketing for Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows never sufficiently differentiated the movie from its predecessor. While the ads did often briefly mention Holmes’s conflict with Professor Moriarty, the focus was mainly put on the slow-motion action and Holmes-Watson banter that were trademarks of the first movie. While that movie is generally well-liked, it probably doesn’t have the sort of rabid fan base that will eagerly turn out for more of same, which seemed to bear out this weekend.

In comparison, 20th Century Fox did a great job showing that Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked had a unique premise (the Chipmunks get stranded on a desert island) in comparison to the first two movies. Regardless of how interesting the premise is, though, the Alvin and the Chipmunks series probably isn’t looked upon fondly by most adults. While usually this wouldn’t be a huge problem, the generally poor performance of family movies lately indicates that parents are probably being far more judicious in deciding what movies they will take their children to.

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‘New Year’s Eve’ leads worst box office weekend since 2008

'New Year's Eve' leads worst box office weekend since 2008

The domestic box office suffered through its worst weekend since September 2008, taking in only $78 million from Friday to Sunday, a staggering 20 percent drop from the same weekend last year. And the weekend’s two new releases both significantly underperformed.

New Line’s “New Year’s Eve,” a PG-13-rated ensemble comedy featuring many of the biggest stars in Hollywood, grossed only $13.7 million, according to studio estimates.

Even with that disappointing number — the studio had expected the movie would debut to $20 million — “New Year’s Eve” was No. 1 at the domestic box office.

Fox’s R-rated Jonah Hill comedy “The Sitter” had a similarly weak opening, taking in only about $10 million.

The overall box office was down about 20 percent compared to the same weekend last year — and down about 7 percent compared to last weekend.

It is the worst weekend since Sept. 19-21, 2008, when total domestic box office revenue only came in at $67.8 million, said Chris Aronson, senior VP for domestic distribution at Fox.

Warner Bros. distribution president Dan Fellman added, “It’s just a very difficult box office.”

Compared to last year at this time, overall revenue is down 3.8 percent and attendance is off 4.71 percent, according to Hollywood.com’s Paul Dergarabedian.

“The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn — Part 1,” which had propped up the box office since its release Nov. 18, grossed $7.9 million over the weekend. That was enough to put Summit’s PG-13 werewolves and vampires movie at No. 3.

Domestically, it’s made $259.5 million so far. The bright spot was among specialty releases. Focus Features’ “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” grossed $300,737 at four locations, for an impressive per-location average of around $75,000. In all, though, it was a bleak weekend for the movie business.

In its third week of release, the GK Films/Paramount movie “Hugo” expanded to 2,608 locations, but took in just $6.1 million and received a “B-plus” score from the audience survey company Cinemascore. The Martin Scorsese movie, which was shot for around $170 million, has grossed just $33.5 million since debuting over Thanksgiving weekend.

Looking forward, distribution executives believe the market will perk up in the next few weeks as a flurry of big tentpoles hit multiplexes. “It’s a product mix situation that I think is going to be rectified,” Fox’s Aronson said.

Aronson predicted that movies like “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol,” “We Bought a Zoo,” “War Horse,” “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” and “The Adventures of Tintin” — “are going to hit on all cylinders.”

Fellman agreed. “You just have to hope that these coming weekends, when the big guns open — both ‘Mission Impossible’ and ‘Sherlock Holmes’ — the box office will spin around.”

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‘Paranormal Activity 3’ scares up huge $54M debut

'Paranormal Activity 3' scares up huge $54M debut

Paranormal Activity 3 proved there’s definitely still a lot of life left in the franchise by opening to an estimated $54 million this weekend. Besides marking a significant improvement over Paranormal Activity 2’s $40.7 million, it also topped last year’s Jackass 3D to claim a new record for highest Fall opening ever (September and October). Unfortunately, The Three Musketeers, Johnny English Reborn and The Mighty Macs all missed modest targets, and as a result the weekend fell a bit short of the same frame last year.

Aside from setting the Fall record, Paranormal Activity 3 also bested its predecessor to take the top opening ever for a pure horror movie. For a slightly less impressive metric, the horror three-quel’s earnings were incredibly front-loaded: its Friday box office represented 48.6 percent of its opening weekend gross, which ranks ninth all-time. It was a slight improvement over Paranormal Activity 2’s 49.4 percent, at least. Distributor Paramount Pictures reports that the audience was 54 percent female and 53 percent under 25 years old (down from Paranormal Activity 2’s 60 percent). A CinemaScore is not currently available.

After leading for the past two weekends, Real Steel eased just 31 percent to an estimated $11.3 million. That brings the robot boxing movie’s 17-day total to a respectable $67.2 million. Footloose took the third spot and dipped a light 30 percent to $10.9 million. That’s an excellent hold for a movie targeted at teenage audiences, and it’s a notable improvement over nearly all comparable titles including the entire Step Up series, Stomp the Yard, and Save the Last Dance. Through 10 days in theaters, the remake has earned $30.9 million.

The Three Musketeers debuted in fourth place with an estimated $8.8 million. That’s off from Fall adventure movies like The Legend of Zorro ($16.3 million) and Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow ($15.6 million), and it was even a bit behind 2001’s The Musketeer ($10.3 million). The movie was presented in 3D at over 2,400 locations, and screenings in the format accounted for roughly 55 percent of the weekend gross. A Summit spokesperson reported that the audience was split evenly between men and women, and was 64 percent over the age of 25. The Three Musketeers earned an okay “B” CinemaScore.

1. “Paranormal Activity 3,” $54 million. ($26 million international.)
2. “Real Steel,” $11.3 million. ($18.5 million international.)
3. “Footloose,” $10.85 million.
4. “The Three Musketeers,” $8.8 million. ($17.1 million international.)
5. “The Ides of March,” $4.9 million.
6. “Dolphin Tale,” $4.2 million.
7. “Moneyball,” $4.05 million.
8. “Johnny English Reborn,” $3.8 million. ($13.5 million international.)
9. “The Thing,” $3.1 million.
10. “50/50,” $2.8 million.

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‘Dragon,’ ‘Kick-Ass’ dueling for No. 1

'Dragon,' 'Kick-Ass' dueling for No. 1

There was another photo finish at the weekend boxoffice, as a leggy holdover again appeared to outpace a big wide-opener.

DreamWorks Animation’s leggy How to Train Your Dragon fetched an estimated $20 million to top preliminary domestic rankings. The Paramount-distributed 3D adventure piled cumulative coin to $158.6 million through four sessions.

Just a hair off the leader’s pace, Kick-Ass — a relatively inexpensive pickup for Lionsgate — posted a weekend opening less potent than its name yet hardly a kick in the pants for the minimajor. The well-reviewed romp about a band of not-very-super superheroes rung up $19.8 million, landing on the lower end of pre-release expectations.

The No. 1 and 2 positions could change Monday, depending on final data from distributors. Another wide-opener — Sony Screen Gem’s R-rated comedy Death at a Funeral,” with Chris Rock and Martin Lawrence — settled for fourth place with $17 million.

More positively, Fox’s PG-13 comedy Date Night starring Steve Carell and Tina Fey, used a tiny 31% drop from its week-earlier bow to ring up $17.3 million and grab third place in its sophomore session, and a $49.2 million cume. Warner Bros.’ 3D action fantasy Clash of the Titans — which overtook Date Night for No. 1 in the prior weekend’s race to the wire — finished fifth in its third frame with $15.8 million and a $133 million cume.

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