erik lundegaard

Movies - Box Office posts

Monday September 03, 2018

Box Office: ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Has Crazy Good Labor Day Weekend

Crazy Rich Asians has crazy rich Labor Day weekend

Most movies stayed afloat this weekend—particularly “Crazy Rich Asians,” which dropped only 10% to pull in another $22 million. Four-day estimates are around $28 mil. A sequel is in the works. 

I’d say movies were buoyed by the holiday, but Labor Day weekend is an historically bad weekend for moviegoing. We have four established three-day holiday weekends in the U.S., and this is the best domestic box office for each:

  • MLK: “American Sniper,” $107 million *
  • President’s Day: “Black Panther,” $242 million
  • Memorial Day: “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End,” $139 million **
  • Labor Day: “Halloween” (2007), $30 million

*Yes, it’s embarrassing that a movie with this title did so well over MLK weekend.

** This was way back in 2007 and no recent movie has come close. Is Memorial Day not the great movie weekend I thought it was? This decade only four Memorial openers have even crossed the $100 mil mark: “Hangover Part II” in 2011, “Fast & Furious 6” in 2013, “X-Men: Days of Future Past” in 2014, and “Solo: A Star Wars Story." “F&F6” did best, $117, so not even within $20 mil of “POTC3.” Interesting.

That’s quite a drop-off from the other holiday weekends. Even so, this weekend they came out for “Crazy Rich Asians.” If the estimates hold, it’ll be the third-best box office ever during Labor Day weekend—after the aforementioned 2007 reboot of “Halloween” and the fourth weekend of “The Sixth Sense” back in 1999. If it does just a little better than estimates (another $2 mil), it’ll break the record. Stay tuned. (I think only I am excited by this possibility.)

In other news, “The Meg” dropped 17% to gross another $10 for $120 total. “M:I-F” added $7 for $204. “Searching,” starring Jon Cho, came in fourth: $6 mil in only 1207 theaters. 

The two biggest new releases were “Operation Finale,” about extradicting Adolf Eichmann for trial in Israel, which got so-so notices (62%), and earned $6 mil in 1818 theaters; and “KIN,” a supposed “crime thriller with a sci-fi twist,” which got shitty notices (34%), and did shittier box office: $3 mil in 2141 theaters. It finished 12th.

Despite the holidayish weekend, a few movies did drop big. “The HappyTime Murders” fell 53% in its second weekend, earning $4.4, for a total of just $17; and “Mile 22,” the latest Berg/Wahlberg military adventure, fell 43% in its third weekend and has grossed just $31 total.

P and I went to see “Juliet, Naked,” which is a funny, original story for adults. I guess that’s why it’s only playing in 318 theaters. It grossed $804k.

The lowest screen-average for the weekend? Dinesh D’Souza’s idiot right-wing documentary, “Death of a Nation,” which earned just $375 per theater. That's 375 dollars. Couldn’t happen to a nicer fellow.

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Posted at 05:10 AM on Sep 03, 2018 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday August 26, 2018

Box Office: ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ Sets Record for Non-Holiday Drop

Crazy Rich Asians tops U.S. box office second weekend

Happy loving couples make it look so easy.

I hadn’t realized that last December “The Greatest Showman” broke the record for smallest second-weekend drop for super-saturated movies (3,000+ theaters). And it’s not even a drop: Its box office improved by 76% from weekend 1 to 2, which broke the old record—set by, of all films—“Cheaper By the Dozen 2,” which improved 55% in 2005. Both movies were released the weekend before Christmas, and that’s usually how you get on this list. You’re released the weekend before Christmas, when no one has time for movies, and your numbers skyrocket the weekend after Christmas, when everyone has time for movies. Of the 25 top movies with the lowest second-weekend drop, 18 of them, including “Jumanji” and “Avatar,” are weekend-before-Christmas releases.

I’m bringing all of this up in the dog days of August because “Crazy Rich Asians” dropped just 5.7% in its second weekend, grossing $25 mil for a total of $76. If the actuals hold, that would be the 26th-lowest drop since 1980.

And if you remove all those pre-Christmas releases? It’s eighth-lowest.

And four of those are pre-Thanksgiving releases like “The Blind Side.” Same principle: from no time for movies to tons of time for movies. Take out those and “Asians” is fourth.

Here are the others:

RNK MOVIE WKND 1 WKND 2 % DROP DATE
5 Mother's Day $8,369,184 $11,087,076 32.5% 4/29/16
19 Shrek $42,347,760 $42,481,425 0.3% 5/16/01
23 Puss in Boots $34,077,439 $33,054,644 -3% 10/28/11
26 Crazy Rich Asians $26,510,140 $25,010,000 -5.7% 8/15/18

Now that I think about it, the three movies above it are also holiday-related in some fashion.

In its second weekend, “Mother’s Day” dropped 31% from the previous Friday, improved 5% Saturday to Saturday, and on Sunday did 150% better than the previous Sunday. Why such a jump? Because it was Mother’s Day, of course.

The first “Shrek” is interesting. It was released on a Wednesday so its first weekend numbers took a bit of a hit, while its second weekend numbers were boosted simply because it was Memorial Day weekend—when people do go to the movies. Plus the only other kids movie in theaters was “Spy Kids,” which had been out nine weeks. Plus word of mouth on “Shrek” was good.

“Puss in Boots”? It was simply misreleased—the week before Halloween, which is not a traditional time to go to a non-scary movie. It saw benefits the weekend after.

As for “Crazy Rich Asians”? It was also released on a Wednesday, so its first weekend numbers were a bit diluted, but that’s about it. Otherwise it’s just marketing and word of mouth. It got great reviews (94% on Rotten Tomatoes), a great CinemaScore (A), and it’s unique (first all-Asian cast since “The Joy Luck Club”). Oh, and shitty competition. The only super-saturated movie released this weekend is Melissa McCarthy’s latest bomb, the R-rated Muppet comedy “The Happytime Murders,” which garnered a 23% rating on RT and managed to scare up $10 mil opening weekend. 

I saw “Crazy Rich” yesterday. Review up soon.

In other box office news:

  • “The Meg” grossed another $13 mil to pass the $100 million domestic mark. Worldwide, it’s grossed north of $400. China loves it even more than we do.
  • “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” came in fourth with $8 mil. It’s at $194 domestic, $538 worldwide. (And that’s without China.)
  • The latest Peter Berg-Mark Wahlberg collaboration, “Mile 22,” dropped 50% in its second weekend, adding just $6 mil. It continues their downward BO trajectory: “Lone Survivor” $125; “Deepwater Horizon” $61; “Patriots Day” $32; “Mile 22”: $25 and counting.
  • “The Equalizer 2” shot down $2 mil more and is just $2 mil from crossing the $100 million mark
  • “Incredibles 2” added $1.6 and it’s $3 mil from $600 million domestic. It’s already the ninth-highest grossing film in U.S. history (unadjusted).

I’m really interested in what happens if/when “Crazy Rich Asians” gets a mainland Chinese release. Does the box office blow up or do the mainlanders give the overseas Chinese a pass? The Chinese government is currently undecided on the matter.

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Posted at 06:07 AM on Aug 26, 2018 in category Movies - Box Office
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Monday July 02, 2018

Box Office: Dinos vs. Cartoon Supes

Roaring louder abroad. 

This past weekend, a week after its opening, “Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom” dropped nearly 60% but still finished first with a $60 million haul. Two weeks after its opening, “Incredibles 2” fell 43% and was No. 2 with $45 million. 

But let's look deeper. 

“Jurassic/Fallen” has thus far grossed $264 million domestically, which, among “Jurassic” films adjusted for inflation, ranks dead last. In a few days it will pass up “Jurassic World III,” which grossed the equivalent of $293 million in 2001, but probably won't make it past “The Lost World: Jurassic Park,” which grossed the equivalent of $457 million in 1997. So domestically, among Jurassic films, it will be fourth of five. Not a huge success. 

“Incredibles 2” has thus far grossed $439.7 million, which, among Pixar films adjusted for inflation, ranks fourth of 20. It will probably pass them all. Unadjusted, the biggest domestic Pixar flick is “Finding Dory,” grossing $486 a few summers back. Adjusted, it's “Finding Nemo,” which grossed the equivalent of $516 mil in 2003. Expect “I2” to be top of the heap in both categories. So a huge success. 

But that's just domestic. If you go global, “Jurassic” stomps “Incredibles.” It's grossed nearly $1 billion worldwide—meaning including U.S. receipts). “I2” is at $646 million.

So which would you rather be: 1) critically well-received, domestically on top of your clan but losing out on hundreds of millions internationally, or 2) critically received with a shrug and a sign, a domestic disappointment among your clan but killing it internationally? 

Several other films opened well: “Sicario: Day of Soldado” grossed $19 mil, which is nearly half of the original's total gross in Sept. 2015; and “Uncle Drew,” which stars Shaq, Nick Kroll and the suddenly omnipresent Tiffany Haddish, and which took in $15 mil. 

Some good news for people who care about quality cinema and documentaries: the fourth weekend of “Won't You Be My Neighbor?” is in a dead heat with the sixth weekend of “Solo: A Star Wars Story”: $2.29 mil. With $7.4 mil, “Neighbor” is the second-highest-grossing doc of the year after “RBG” at $11.5.

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Posted at 04:16 AM on Jul 02, 2018 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday June 24, 2018

Box Office: ‘Jurassic’'s Roar Ain't What It Used to Be

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom falls

Right. This again. 

“Jurassic World: The Fallen Kingdom” grossed $150 million at the U.S. box office this weekend, which is the 20th biggest domestic opener ever, but it's kind of ho-hum. It's down nearly 30% from the previous movie, which opened to $209 in 2015.

These are the tentpole films that opened bigger than expectations or previous iterations in 2018:

  • “Avengers: Infinity War”
  • “Black Panther”
  • “Incredibles 2”

And there are the movies that opened down from expectations or previous iterations:

  • “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”
  • “Solo: A Star Wars Story”

Apparently superheroes are still ascendant. Domestically. Internationally, “Jurassic” has already grossed $561 million. Somehwere, somehow, people will see their dinos. 

I admit, I had zero interest in seeing this thing and the 50% Rotten Tomatoes rating didn't help. This morning, though, I realizes its new director, J.A. Bayona, was the dude who made “El Orfanato” in 2007, which is one of my favorite horror movies. Now I'm a little intrigued. Will have to see what the wife says. If she's up, maybe. 

But yeah, I know: Directors of tentpole films can only do so much. Can't even imagine what it's like to deal with all of those corporate hands. 

Elsewhere, “Incredibles 2” fell 55%, which is a lot of an animated kids movie, but then it opened bigger than any animated kids movie ever did. After 10 days, it's at $350, which is already the fourth-best box office for a Pixar flick. No. 1 is “Finding Dory” at $486. It‘ll pass that soon. 

“Ocean’s 8” grossed another $11.6 mil to eke over the $100 million mark in its third weekend. Bullock's reign continues. Has anyone seen it? 

Brad Brevert at BOM brings up an interesting stat: This is only the second time that two different movies opened north of $100 million in consecutive weekends. Of course, the first time it happened, it wasn't exactly anything to crow about: “Shrek the Third” followed by “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End” in 2007. Blah.

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Posted at 04:36 AM on Jun 24, 2018 in category Movies - Box Office
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Sunday June 17, 2018

Box Office ‘Incredibles 2’ Shatters Animated Mark

Incredibles 2

Animated movies tend to open slower than the other kind but have longer legs. Before this weekend, the biggest animated opener was Pixar/Disney's “Finding Dory” in 2016, which opened to $135 million in 4,305 theaters. That's the 25th best opening ever. We rush to the other kind but I guess it's sometimes hard to get the kids, or their parents, organized for opening weekends. Plans. 

Not this weekend. Now “Dory” is the 26th-biggest opening because Pixar/Disney's “Incredibles 2” opened to $180 million. That's eighth-best all-time. It shattered the animated mark by nearly $50 million. It jumped 33 percent. As Frank Tarkenton used to say, that's incredible. 

Rotten Tomatoes likes it, too: 94%. Jeff Wells has a different opinion

(BTW: The best opening for an animated non-sequel? This, at $104 million.)

Elsewhere, “Ocean's 8” dropped 53% to finish second with $19 mil and a cumulative $79 mil. The men-will-be-boys comedy “Tag” (RT: 56%) opened to $14.6 and third place, while the “Superfly” reboot landed in seventh with $6.3. John Travolta's “Gotti,” with its infamous 0% RT rating, slept with the fishes: $1.6, 12th place. Just ahead of it? The 15th weekend of “A Wrinkle in Time,” which got a theater boost (+85), and perhaps a publicity boost from Brie Larson vis a vis the preponderence of white male critics, to gross another $1.7, which allowed it to finally gasp over the $100 million domestic mark, at $100,000,127. Its worldwide gross is $132.

Speaking of gasping: Fourth place was occupied by “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” which earned another $9 mil for $192 million domestic. How low is that? If you adjust for inflation, it's the lowest-grossing among the 10 “Star Wars” canon movies. The previous record was the second prequel, 2002's “Attack of the Clones,” which grossed the equivalent of... $476 million. So a bit of a drop. That's also Disney, of course. So moviegoers giveth and taketh. And sometimes we can only taketh so much. 

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Posted at 04:15 AM on Jun 17, 2018 in category Movies - Box Office
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