August 4th, 2008
Another week, another list of lackluster first-run releases. Sadly, there's very little else to back it up. In fact, the only release that was even a contender for DVD Pick of the Week was The Counterfeiters, with both DVD and the Blu-ray worthy of that honor.
July 29th, 2008
Another slow week without a single first run release that was a must have, or even a contender for DVD Pick of the Week. Granted, many will find Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay worth picking up, but it is not a top-notch release. There are also a couple of special edition releases that are easily worth picking up: Dark City - Director's Cut - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray and WarGames - 25th Anniversary Edition. But the best of the best, and the DVD Pick of the Week is Stargate - Continuum - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray. But I am also giving an honorable mention to Two Fat Ladies - Buy from Amazon. On a side note, it is another week where we had to split the list into two due to the size. Part II can be found here.
March 17th, 2008
New releases were again plentiful this week with nine reaching the top 30 and three of them sweeping the top few spots. The best of the best was 101 Dalmatians, which sold 1.36 million units during its first week for $21.64 million in revenue.
March 17th, 2008
There were only four new releases to chart this week, and only one made it into the top five. This left Beowulf with an easy road to first place as it added $9.02 million in rentals for the week and $19.94 million after two.
March 10th, 2008
There were plenty of new releases to hit the sales chart this week, as well as an older release that returned to the top five. Number one was Beowulf with 902,000 units sold for $17.08 million in revenue in its first week.
March 10th, 2008
New releases were spread pretty evenly on the rental charts and included a new number one, Beowulf, which opened with $10.93 million.
March 7th, 2008
Plenty of prizes this week, including what is likely the last HD DVD disc we will ever give away. In order to win, one must simply predict Horton Hears a Who's three-day, opening weekend box office.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win 3 Pigs and a Baby on DVD, as well as Day Zero on DVD.
Meanwhile, whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win win 3 Pigs and a Baby on DVD, as well as Day Zero on DVD.
Also, whoever is the absolute closest of those two will win the City of Men poster, CD Soundtrack, and TV series on DVD.
Additionally, the person who came the closest to winning one of the above prizes, but didn't, will take home a copy of Beowulf on HD DVD. (If you don't have an HD DVD player, keep it shrink-wrapped, it could be collector's item in a few years.)
Finally, all three winners will take home Never Back Down posters, both the full size, and the mini-posters.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
March 4th, 2008
The first week of the month, but it's not very strong both in terms of raw numbers and in terms of high-profile releases. (There are a surprising number of spotlight reviews, on the other hand.) There are a few releases worth picking up, like 101 Dalmatians - Two-Disc Platinum Edition - Buy from Amazon and My Kid Could Paint That - Buy from Amazon, but none that screamed to be DVD Pick of the Week.
February 26th, 2008
It's the Oscar-delayed edition of the DVD Release Report and we have a good mix of releases for so early in the year. Granted, there are not as many prime first-run releases, but there are a few worth picking up. This includes the DVD Pick of the Week, Death at a Funeral - Buy from Amazon.
December 19th, 2007
With two weeks to go, the international box office set a record bringing in $8.6 billion in total ticket sales. Additionally, all six major studios crossed the $1 billion mark during the same year, which is a first. On the other hand, the celebration is tempered by the fact that the American dollar hit record lows against the Euro this year, and was at decade old lows against the Pound, and other international currencies, which helped to artificially inflate the box office numbers.
December 12th, 2007
Like it did domestically, His Dark Material: The Golden Compass debuted in first place on the international charts. However, unlike its performance domestically, its international haul was a hefty $44.31 million on 5263 screens in 27 markets for a total of $50.96 million including midweek numbers. In the U.K. the film opened first with $11.63 million on 507 screens over the weekend and $14.79 million in total, but that is significantly lower than Sunday's estimates. In France the film also took first place with $6.00 million on 776 screens, and in Spain with $5.17 million on 505 screens over the weekend and $8.07 million in total. The number one debuts continued in Germany at $4.80 million on 836 screens and in Russia with $3.68 million on 521. The Golden Compass's release schedule is certainly front loaded, but it still has openings in Italy next week, South Korea the week after, and Australia on Boxing Day, as well as Japan in March, and should earn between $200 million and $300 million internationally. Depending on how well it does on the home market in these markets, it could show a profit, but becoming a franchise is unlikely at this point.
December 11th, 2007
The box office has been soft practically since summer ended, but things are starting to get desperate.
This was another week of significant declines at the box office, with overall business of just $82 million.
That's down more than 2% from last weekend, and, more significantly, down more than 15% from the same weekend last year.
Year-to-date, 2007 is still ahead in terms of raw dollars, but ticket sales are now trailing last year's pace.
December 6th, 2007
It's another slow week for wide releases -- like last weekend, there's only one.
However, His Dark Materials: The Golden Compass should do significantly better than last week's Awake.
It better do significantly better or the holiday season is in real trouble.
December 5th, 2007
Beowulf had its last major push into the international marketplace this past weekend and that helped it stay in first place with $19.06 million on 6229 screens in 56 markets for a total of $74.07 million. This includes a first place opening in Australia with $1.96 million on 269 screens, a third place, $1.81 million opening on 268 screens in Japan and first place, $1.11 million opening in 273 screens in Brazil. It's best holdover was Russia where it slipped to second while adding $1.83 million on 502 screens for a total of $6.99 million. At this point, $100 million internationally should not be an issue, but that's still not enough to be considered a financial boon.
December 3rd, 2007
There were very few shocks at the box office this weekend as Enchanted remained the dominant film.
However, there was an unsettling malaise as the overall box office reached just $85 million.
This is barely more than half of last weekend's $162 million holiday-inflated haul, but that was to be expected.
What wasn't as expected was the 8% drop-off from the same weekend last year.
At the moment, 2007 is ahead of 2006 in terms of box office and ticket sales.
However, while a gain at the box office is academic at this point, a slide in ticket sales is likely if things don't turn around.
November 30th, 2007
While Beowulf's success on the big screen has been muted, it's numbers on the really big screen have broken records. The film opened with $3.58 million on 84 IMAX screens, which was a record for highest percentage of the total opening weekend for an IMAX release. During its second weekend of release, the film added $2.95 million on 84 screens, this time a record for sophomore stint for a Hollywood IMAX release.
Overall, Beowulf has brought in a total of $8.8 million domestically and $11.1 million worldwide, proving that 3-D is on the verge of making a full comeback and returning to the glory days not seen since drive-ins dotted the landscape.
November 29th, 2007
The weekend after Thanksgiving is the only slow weekend during the entire Holiday Season.
So it comes as no surprise that only one movie is opening wide, but it is a bit surprising that the weekend is a weak as it is.
November 28th, 2007
Beowulf opened in 23 more markets this past weekend, finishing in first place in 20 of them. This helped the film repeat as champion on the international box office with $25.40 million on 5433 screens in 44 markets for a total of $48.53 million. This includes number one debuts in Russia, ($4.13 million on 502 screens), and Mexico, ($1.93 million on 512 screens). However, it had to settle for second place in Spain, ($3.12 million on 450 screens), and fourth in France, ($1.88 million on 481). As for holdovers, no major openings let the film remain in second place in the U.K. with $3.03 million on 487 screens over the weekend and $9.35 million in total. On the other hand, it fell from first to fourth in South Korea with $1.36 million on 304 screens over the weekend and $6.13 million in total. The film is rapidly running out of major markets to open in, and it has made roughly half of the film's total costs worldwide so far. I think if the film fails to recoup its costs, it will be the fault of the technology, as it hasn't advanced enough to completely replace live actors without falling into the uncanny valley.
November 27th, 2007
Thanksgiving provided plenty of reasons for studios to give thanks, especially since every single film managed to earn enough to be called a hit in one form or other.
Even the weakest releases of the week did well compared to their modest costs.
Overall, the box office brought in $162 million over three days, which is 55% more than last weekend.
More importantly, it is virtually identical to the same weekend last year.
Over five days, movies earned an estimated $229 million, which is up just shy of 2% from last year.
This is great news after a Fall that most would like to forget, but the growth is still lower than ticket price inflation, meaning actual attendance was down.
November 21st, 2007
The five-day Thanksgiving long weekend officially starts tonight, as does the lucrative holiday weekend. From now until the New Year, there we should see hit after hit released, as well as a number of Oscar contenders.
With the box office slowing down, this couldn't come at a better time.
November 21st, 2007
Beowulf was able to come out on top on the international charts just as it did domestically, but it was by a lot closer margin of victory. During its first weekend of release, the film pulled in $17.41 million on 2432 screens in 13 markets, including a first place debut in South Korea where it earned $2.91 million on 365 screens over the weekend and $3.92 million in total. Beowulf opened in other major markets but had to settle for second in the U.K. with $4.51 million on 485 screens, and in Germany with $2.12 million on 698 screens while it could do no better than third place in Italy with $2.09 million on 368. Like its domestic debut, these results could be described as disappointing when placed next to its $150 million production budget.
November 20th, 2007
It was another tough week at the box office. No film missed Thursday's prediction by a significant margin, but there was an overall weakness. This pushed the box office to $104 million, down 8% from last weekend. More importantly it was down 28% from the same weekend last year. It is getting close to the time to panic. Granted, this year is safe but there's little evidence that this slowdown at the box office, which has lasted almost the entire fall, is going to end now that the Holidays have started. The only good news is that last Thanksgiving was a terrible weekend for new releases.
November 17th, 2007
It was a one horse race for the Weekly Website Award with Beowulf - Official Site walking away with that honor.
November 15th, 2007
It's looking like 2007 is going to end on a really soft note. Since mid-September, only one weekend has been above the same weekend last year, and there's almost no chance that things will turn around this weekend. This time last year, we had two $40 million openers. This weekend, we might not have a single film top $30 million.
November 1st, 2007
After a horrible October, we finally get to November and the start of the holiday season.
Just like the summer season doesn't officially begin until Memorial Day, the winter holiday season doesn't officially begin until the Thanksgiving long weekend.
However, studios are trying to stretch the lucrative box office season as long as possible and the holiday-like releases start during the first weekend of the month.
This means practically every weekend this month, there's at least one potential $100 million movie. There are also a few that might be Oscar contenders, although not as many as I had expected.
In fact, so far Award Season has been particularly slow, but at least this means there should be more buzz surrounding the upcoming films as the race is wide open.
October 6th, 2007
We are starting to get full websites for some of the massive holiday season releases, which should mean there will be at least one award worthy website on each week's list. As for this week, there were a few that have potential assuming the sections marked coming soon live up to the rest of the site. But just one site, The Seeker: The Dark is Rising - Official Site, that was worthy of the Weekly Website Award.
September 25th, 2007
The Transformers opened on IMAX screens over the weekend and pulled in $1.44 million over the weekend up against $474,000 the weekend before. Because of this, we can assume The Transformers earned roughly $1 million on IMAX screens over the weekend. Unfortunately, all we can do is assume since IMAX rarely releases numbers, usually when records are broken.
September 9th, 2007
Another week without any top-notch websites, at least one that hasn't previously won the award. At least there are a few with possibilities and the fall blockbusters should start coming launching their sites shortly so the pace should pickup soon.
August 25th, 2007
After a few busy weeks in a row, there was a total collapse in the number of sites on this week's list. Not only are there only a couple dozen sites this week, nearly half of them are films that are coming out this week and most of those had no updates to report. This leaves us with no sites that are award-worthy, and precious few that have to potential to make it there in the coming weeks.
August 18th, 2007
Busy week with more than 30 sites featured on the list. However, none really stand our as award-worthy; in fact, most only stand because of a lack of style. Hopefully as the fall season progresses and we near the holidays, we will get bigger and better sites launching.
July 29th, 2007
Server upgrades went... less smoothly than anticipated, which delayed this column, but at least there are a huge number of sites to check out. Many of these sites are making their first appearance on the list while quite a few are making their last appearance. Unfortunately, while it's a big list, there are not many that are even close to being award worthy at the moment. 30 Days of Night - Official Site comes the closest, but I'm waiting for the missing features to be added before I make that decision.
July 17th, 2007
There were even more records falling this weekend as Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix broke several IMAX records during its opening. This includes the largest number of screens (91 domestically and 35 internationally); biggest Wednesday ($1.9 million); the largest 5-day domestic total ($7.4 million); largest domestic per screen average ($80,500); and the largest worldwide opening ($9.4 million). And because of massive pre-sales and sold out showings, the film should show stronger legs on IMAX screens that it will as a whole.
July 21st, 2006
Another busy week, but unlike last week there was no massive blockbuster launching its flash site. Two sites stood out this week, (not counting past winners), and they are wildly different both in terms of style and in terms of the movie they are selling: Accepted
- Official Site
and World Trade Center
- Official Site
. The former is goofy and seriously immature, while the latter is one of the most emotional sites I've ever seen. In was nearly a coin flip, but in the end I went with Accepted
- Official Site
, but I would be willing to bet the other site will win before the movie comes out.
August 4th, 2005
During the past week promotional websites for several movies were launched and some older ones added additional content. Here the list of this week's releases, a couple of new sites and few updates, including this week's winner, Broken Flowers
- Official Site