erik lundegaard

Movies - Box Office posts

Sunday June 01, 2014

Weekend Box Office: 'Maleficent' Magnificent; 'A Million Ways to Die' Finds a Million and First

Angelina Jolie in Maleficient

Angelina Jolie in “Maleficient”: Her eyes say no no no, but her lips? Well, they say no, too.

If this doesn’t spur them to make “Wicked,” nothing will.

In its opening weekend, “Maleficent,” a rewrite of “Sleeping Beauty” from the wicked witch’s perspective, grossed $70 million domestically and another $100 million worldwide. Domestically, it’s the best opening of the year for a non-superhero, non-giant lizard movie. It’s also the best opening of Angelina Jolie’s career.

The other big opener, Seth MacFarlane’s “A Million Ways to Die in the West,” added a million and first way to die: It grossed only $17 million in 3,000+ theaters. This has to be a disappointment. MacFarlane’s “Ted,” after all, opened at $54 million in June 2012.

The initial trailers for “Million Ways” looked good, but its Rotten Tomatoes score is only 33% (39% for top critics), while its audience score is a low 52%. “Maleficent” is hardly “Frozen” in its critical acclaim: 51% / 50% / 77%. But maybe that was enough. It was enough to know it wasn’t awful.

Besides, if a mediocre, upside-down fairy tale can do this kind of business, what might “Wicked” do?

The new “X-Men” movie, despite critical and audience acclaim (92% / 95% / 95%), fell off by 64.1% for second place. Are people tiring of superhero movies? Or blockbusters? “The Amazing Spider-Man 2,” which opened at $91 million, grossed $3.7 million in its fifth weekend (seventh place) and looks lucky to break the $200 million barrier. “Godzilla,” which opened at $93 million, is falling even faster.

Comedies fall less fast, and both Adam Sandler’s “Blended,” in its second weekend, and Seth Rogen’s “Neighbors,” in its third, fell off in the 40s: 41% and 45%, respectively. It’s interesting to look at “Blended”’s RT numbers. Critics hated it, of course (14% / 11%) but its audience likes it: 72%. At the same time, it’s only at 5.8 on IMDb. No matter: it’s a bomb by Sandler standards. I’d applaud but some doofus will surely replace him. Way of the world.

This, by the way, was Box Office Mojo’s early prediction for the weekend:

Not bad, but it overestimated the boys and underestimated the girl. A Hollywood habit.

Posted at 10:32 AM on Jun 01, 2014 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday May 25, 2014

Weekend Box Office: Welcome Back, Bryan Singer; Go Away, Adam Sandler

Bryan Singer: X-Men, Days of Future Past

Singer eyes the No. 1 spot. 

I’m curious how often this happens.

The Rotten Tomatoes score of “X-Men: Days of Future Past” was 91% and it wound up grossing almost that number, $90 million, to win the weekend.

The Rotten Tomatoes score of the new Adam Sandler comedy, “Blended,” was 15% and it wound up grossing almost that, $14 million, to finish a distant third for the weekend.

Would be nice if this kind of correlation happened more often. Hollywood would strive to make better movies. But I know it’s a fluke.

Welcome back, Bryan Singer. That opening for “X-Men: Days of Future Past” is the second-best opening ever for an X-Men movie—surpassed only Brett Ratner’s abyssmal “X-Men: The Last Stand” in 2006, which grossed $102 million riding the good vibes of Bryan Singer’s previous X-Men movies. Ratner killed those vibes.  

Go away, Adam Sandler. “Blended”’s opening is among Sandler’s worst. You sort out his high-brow work (“Spanglish,” “Reign Over Me,” “Punch-Drunk Love”), and ignore his first comedies back in the mid-90s when tickets cost so much less, and it’s actually his second-lowest opener after “That’s My Boy” in 2012. “Boy” went on to gross $36 million, which is about what “Blended” will do. If it’s lucky.

Meanwhile, “Godzilla,” which roared mightily opening weekend, fell mightily this one. It grossed $31.4 million for second place, a fall-off of 66.3%. That’s the second-worst second-weekend fall-off of the year—after “About Last Night,” which fell off 70% after its Valentine’s Day debut.

And in its fourth weekend, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” fell off by another 53% to gross $7 million. It will surely be the lowest-grossing Spider-Man movie ever:

That's unadjusted, too. It’s called franchise fatigue, Sony. Give it up. Let Spidey join the Merry Marvel Marching Society already.

Oh, right. Worldwide box office for “TAS2” is currently at $673 million. Thanks for nothing, China and Brazil.

The box office numbers

Posted at 10:58 AM on May 25, 2014 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday May 18, 2014

Weekend Box Office: Oh No, You Say You’ve Got to Go, Go See ‘Godzilla’

Cranston in Godzilla: Say its name

Say its name. 

How big is Godzilla? A little bigger than Spider-Man but not quite as big as Captain America.

The new “Godzilla” movie had the biggest opening-day gross of the year—$38.5 million, or about $1.5 million more than “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”—but its opening weekend fell short of Cap even as it bested “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”:

  1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier: $95 million
  2. Godzilla: $93.2 million
  3. The Amazing Spider-Man 2: $91.6 million

The tentpoles can’t seem to break the $100 million mark this year, can they? It’s 2001 all over again. Should studios be worried? Should cinephiles be gladdened? Are moviegoers in general just tired of all the noise, noise, noise? Or has a new stupid take on an old stupid story just not arrived yet?

I assume this last. I assume most moviegoers still just want to watch the cinematic world burn. Even as the real world is melting glaciers.

The other opener, “Million Dollar Arm” starring Jon Hamm, grossed only 10 times its title in 3,000+ theaters. No surprise. Even I, a fan of both baseball and “Mad Men,” wasn’t taken by its trailers.

“Neighbors,” the Seth Rogen-Zac Efront comedy, fell off 47% for second place and $25 million. It’s currently at $91 million. In its third weekend, Spidey fell of 52% for $16 million and third place. It’s now at $172 million, and seems unlikely to best the $272 million its predecessor grossed two years ago, which is the lowest gross of any Spider-Man movie. Domestic, that is. Worldwide, “TAS2” is already at $633 million. But that’s also the lowest worldwide gross of any Spider-Man movie.

I didn’t make it to “Godzilla” since I’ve been distracted by another monster, the Seattle International Film Festival. Thursday night was opening night, John Ridley's “Jimi: All Is By My Side,“ about Jimi Hendrix in '66 and '67; Friday I saw “Chinese Puzzle.” Last night, P and I took in the documentary “Dior and I” and today it's the Swedish thriller “In Order of Disappearance,” starring Stellan Skarsgård.

Updates and reviews to come. 

Posted at 09:33 AM on May 18, 2014 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday May 11, 2014

Weekend Box Office: 'Neighbors' Shocks

Zac Efron shirtless in Neighbors

I don’t get it.

Apparently neither does Box Office Mojo. Even after “Neighbors” earned $2.56 million during Thursday midnight showings—meaning it might do near $50 million over the weekend—BOM’s updated forecast still predicted something closer to $35 million.

Instead, weekend estimates have it at $51 million.

The hell?

Is it Seth Rogen? Doubtful. His best non-animated opening was “The Green Hornet” in January 2011: $33 million. His best live-action comedy opening was “Knocked Up” in 2007: $30 million. He’s not hugely popular and he’s got a laugh like a slushee.

Is it Zac Efron? Doubtful. His previous best non-animated opener was “High School Musical 3: Senior Year,” which grossed $42 million in 2008. His most recent movie, “That Awkward Moment,” opened in January against no competition whatsoever, and grossed just $8.7 million.

Is it the concept? The combination of John Belushi comedies? Instead of the obnoxious guy moving next door it’s the obnoxious frat.

Is it the abs? In the ads?

Is it the love of all things fraternity?

Whatever it is, it’s the 11th-best R-rated opener ever, and the third-biggest R-rated comedy opener ever—after “The Hangover Part II” and “Ted.”

American moviegoers, you fffffascinate me.

Elsehwere, “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” fell of 59% to gross $37 million for second place. In 10 days, it’s now made less ($147 million) than “Spider-Man 3” did in three days ($151). But it’s killing overseas: $403 million in foreign rentals.  

“The Other Woman” hangs in there ($9.2 million for $61 total), as does “Heaven is for Real” ($7 million, $75 total). “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” earned another $5.6 million for $244 million. It’s about $10 million away from eclipsing “The LEGO Movie” as the year’s biggest movie. Until summer movies come along. Or late spring movies.

Good news of a less-perplexing nature? “The Grand Budapest Hotel” made another $1.4 million (11th place), and is now the highest-grossing Wes Anderson movie.

The weekend numbers here

Posted at 01:21 PM on May 11, 2014 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday May 04, 2014

Weekend Box Office: How Amazing was the Opening for 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2'?

Spider-Man and Paul Giamatti tied up

Spidey ties up the competition, but not like he used to.


No, not “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”’s open of $92 million, which is $22 million less than the opening weekend gross for the first Tobey Maguire “Spider-Man” 12 years ago. That’s unadjusted, by the way. Adjust and it’s $65 million less. So not good.

Sure, “Amazing 2” opened better than its predecessor did two years ago ($62 million in July 2012 ), but that’s because “The Amazing Spider-Man” actually opened on a Tuesday, and had already grossed $75 million by the time the weekend rolled around. So its first weekend totals were really sloppy seconds.

So what is amazing? That “The Other Woman,” last weekend’s winner, fell off by only 42% to land in a distant second place. Seriously, who are the women giving this movie good word of mouth? It’s awful. It deserves a quick, painless fall. I thought women had better taste than this. Or are boys going for Whatsherface.

The news doesn't get any better, since “Heaven Is For Real” wound up in third place. Damn. Do I have to see this thing now? I’ve already sat through “God’s Not Dead.” Isn’t that punishment enough? “Heaven,” with another $8.7, is now up to $65, while “God’s,” with another $1.7 and ninth place, is up to $55 million. On miniscule budgets. The Christian right says this means they have buying power and Hollywood should pay attention. But if Hollywood pays attention they’ll disown the movie as not being Christian enough. See: “Noah.”

OK, here's better news about a better movie: “The Grand Budapest Hotel” pulled in another $1.7 million (10th place) and is now less than a million from becoming the highest-grossing Wes Anderson movie, surpassing “The Royal Tenenbaums” ($52.3 million in 2001).

Worldwide this year, “Captain America” is first with $679 million, “The LEGO Movie” is second with $452 million, and “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” is already third with $379 million.

The rest of the weekend estimates here.

Posted at 10:40 AM on May 04, 2014 in category Movies - Box Office
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