January 3rd, 2012
The first Tuesday of the year is not a great time of year for new releases on the home market. It's an even worse time of year for critics, especially this year. With Christmas Day landing on the Sunday, many studios took the entire week off, so there are plenty of screeners that still haven't made it my way. (There is some good news here, as I was able to get caught up on all of the screeners that had previously arrived late.) A couple of these potential late arrivals are contenders for Pick of the Week, like Justified: Season Two - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray and Mildred Pierce - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack. They also have competition from Contagion - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray, but in the end I gave that honor to The Guard - Buy from Amazon: DVD or Blu-ray.
December 31st, 2011
The Expendables is a film that was tailor made for fans of 1980s action films. It was one of most expensive films Lionsgate ever made, and fortunately for them, it was also one of their biggest hits and only the second film of theirs to reach $100 million domestically. A sequel was inevitable, but while fans waited for that, they were given an Extended Director's Cut Blu-ray. Is the film worth checking out? Is the extended cut the better movie? Is it worth the double-dip?
December 12th, 2011
It is a surprisingly strong week on the home market with two $100 million hits, Kung Fu Panda 2 on Blu-ray Combo Pack or Rise of the Planet of the Apes on Blu-ray, both of which are contenders for pick of the week. There are also several smaller releases that are also contenders for that title like The Guild: Season Five on DVD. But in the end, I gave that honor to Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame on Blu-ray.
February 23rd, 2011
Due to a mixture of weak holdovers and depth in the new releases, we had seven DVDs debut in the top 30 sales chart this week. This includes a new number one, For Colored Girls, which sold 517,000 units and generated $8.41 million in consumer spending at retail.
January 25th, 2011
While there were not many new releases on this week's sales chart, one of them, The Social Network, dominated the sales chart with 1.08 million units / $14.06 million during its opening week.
December 7th, 2010
It was the Thanksgiving long weekend recently and the sales numbers this week include Black Friday. It should come as no surprise that there was an uptick in sales this week, with a number of older releases seeing a massive jump. This includes Toy Story 3, which shot into top spot with 1.27 million units / $21.19 million for the week and 6.78 million / $124.60 million after a month. It is now the third-best-selling DVD of the year.
November 22nd, 2010
This Friday is Black Friday, but there's a lull on the home market with not a whole lot of great releases.
(This is the usual pattern for Thanksgiving.)
The biggest hit coming out is The Expendables, which should top the chart, while there are a number of smaller releases that are in contention for Pick of the Week. The best of these is Metropolis: The Complete Metropolis, which comes out on Blu-ray this week after being released on DVD last week.
September 20th, 2010
This weekend saw a new industry record set, with The Twilight Saga: Eclipse becoming the fifth film to earn $300 million in 2010 (full 2010 details here), beating the four movies that topped $300 million in 2007 (2007 details).
The Expendables also became the 18th film of the year to reach $100 million at the box office, although that is off last year's record-setting pace.
September 15th, 2010
Resident Evil: Afterlife took top spot on the international chart. In fact, it dominated with $41.70 million on 3,935 screens in 33 markets for a total of $68.36 million worldwide. After just one weekend of release, the film is nearly halfway to catching up with Extinction for best in the franchise. It goes without saying that there will be another installment. Its biggest individual market was Japan, where it opened in first place with $13.27 million on 649 screens over the weekend and $15.58 million in total. It also took the top spot in Spain with an impressive $3.36 million on 488 screens, while it was a little softer in the U.K. with a chart topping opening of $2.61 million on 361 screens. On the other hand, it had to settle for second place in Italy with $1.72 million on 270 screens during its debut there.
September 9th, 2010
The weekend after Labor Day long weekend is often the worst weekend at the box office for the entire year. This time around there is only one wide release, Resident Evil: Afterlife, which will have no trouble topping the chart. In fact, it will be the only film to reach $10 million over the weekend. Will it do well enough to help 2010 keep pace with last year when there were four wide releases?
September 8th, 2010
It was a busy week for Inception, as it rose to top spot on the international chart and crossed two major milestones in the process: $400 million internationally and $700 million worldwide. Over the weekend, it earned $21.00 million on 7,785 screens in 61 markets for a total of $425.15 million internationally and $702.30 million worldwide. Much of this was due to its debut in China, where it placed first with $13.6 million. It has yet to open in Italy, but it will likely start falling off at an accelerated pace from now till its premiere in that market at the end of the month.
September 1st, 2010
The Expendables held on to top spot on the international chart with $24.70 million on 4823 screens in 38 markets for a total of $101.46 million after just three weeks of release. It had a few openings over the weekend, most notably in Germany where it placed third with $2.94 million on 531 screens. Meanwhile, it fell from first to fourth in the U.K., but still added $2.02 million on 453 screens over the weekend for a total of $10.52 million after two. With openings in Italy and Japan ahead, the film will have no trouble getting to $250 million worldwide, which is more than enough to ensure a profit.
August 30th, 2010
There was an upset at the box office with Takers pulling out a last minute win. However, it wasn't enough for the overall box office, as that sunk 12% from last weekend to $113 million. More importantly, it was down nearly 10% from last year. 2010 still has a $300 million lead over 2009 at $7.53 billion to $7.23 billion and I'm not concerned about the big picture, yet.
August 26th, 2010
The last weekend of summer is actually the Labor Day long weekend, which is next weekend. So that makes this weekend the penultimate weekend of summer, which is one of the worst weekends of the year to open a film. Last year was a bit of an exception with The Final Destination opening with $27.41 million. There's almost no chance The Last Exorcism will perform that well; in fact, if it matches Halloween 2's opening, I think the studio will be happy.
August 25th, 2010
Powered by openings in a trio of major markets, The Expendables climbed into top spot with $35.49 million on 4501 screens in 30 markets for a still early international total of $60.30 million. At this point, reaching $100 million internationally and $200 million worldwide is practically a given. The film's best opening of the weekend came from the U.K. where it debuted in the top spot with $6.08 million on 453 screens, while it was also triumphant in France with $4.75 million on 445 screens. On the other hand, it had to settle for fifth place in South Korea with $1.25 million on 298 screens over the weekend and $1.52 million in total. Next up for the film is Germany this weekend, while it opens in Italy next month and in Japan in October.
August 23rd, 2010
If it wasn't for The Expendables, there would be very little good news to report this weekend. None of the five new releases were major hits at the box office, but on the other hand, none were complete bombs either and even the weakest of them had some reason for optimism. The overall box office was down 11% from last weekend to $128 million, but that was close to 1% higher than the same weekend last year. Year-to-date, 2010 has a $300 million lead on 2009 at $7.36 billion to $7.05 billion.
August 22nd, 2010
Five openers with a decidedly end-of-Summer feel to them all posted so-so numbers this weekend, according to studio estimates released on Sunday morning, which left The Expendables as the weekend winner.
The ensemble action movie was down 53% in its second weekend to $16.5 million and has now earned a respectable $64.89 million.
Vampires Suck topped the openers with $12.2 million Friday to Sunday.
The spoof movie is projected to finish the weekend with $18.56 million since its opening on Wednesday.
Perhaps surprisingly, none of the openers has completely disastrous weekends.
August 19th, 2010
Five new releases should enter the top ten this weekend, including a few that at least have a reasonable chance at top spot.
But there's also a reasonable chance that The Expendables will squeak out another win.
Regardless, there's almost no chance the box office will keep up with last year's pace when Inglourious Basterds opened with nearly $40 million.
We will be lucky if any film makes half of that this weekend.
August 18th, 2010
As the summer blockbuster season comes to a close, there are few major releases in theaters worldwide. Regardless, there are still a few major milestones being reached, and a few more to come. For instance, Inception maintained its hold in first place with $35.51 million on 6879 screens, in 61 markets, for a total of $320.44 million internationally. It also reached a major milestone worldwide with $568.91 million, making it just one of 78 films to reach $500 million. It is still going strong in a number of major markets, including Spain, where it remained in first place with $2.72 million on 497 screens over the weekend, for a total of $10.15 million after two. It was down just 22% in Brazil adding $1.56 million on 292 screens over the weekend and $4.43 million after two. Its best market overall is the U.K. where it has made $45.53 million after a month of release, including $2.62 million on 472 screens this past weekend. By this time next week, it should have $600 million worldwide, with $700 million becoming a lot more likely.
August 17th, 2010
One of the ways of telling when summer is over, is when the number one film on the overall box office chart doesn't top the $10,000 mark on the per theater chart. That didn't happen this weekend, but it came close, as The Expendables was the only film to earn better than $10,000 on the per theater chart, and it was close with an average of $10,650.
August 16th, 2010
Two of the three wide releases that opened this past weekend were able to score at the box office and that was enough to lift the total box office to $144 million. This was 8% higher than last weekend and 1% higher than the same weekend last year. Granted, that 1% improvement is well below the rate of inflation, but a win is a win. Year-to-date, 2010 has earned $7.15 billion compared to 2009's pace of $6.85 billion. As we transition into fall, we are in an excellent position to top $10 billion for the second year in a row and set yet another record. Granted, the lack of a Avatar-like megahit coming out could be an issue, but I think 2010 has built up enough of a lead that it won't prevent the yearly box office from reaching 10 digits.
August 12th, 2010
There are three wide releases this week, but fortunately they are all aimed at widely different audiences, which means they might all reach their potential.
However, that potential might not be enough for the market as a whole to keep pace with last year.
August 1st, 2010
July started out rather well, and while there was a little weakness in the end, four films surpassed $100 million, and another could join them soon.
That said, there don't appear to be any $100 million movies opening in August; in fact, there is a chance none will come close.
Worse still, August of last year saw three $100 million movies open in the first three weeks.
There's almost no chance that will happen this year, so 2010 will likely lose ground to 2009 in the yearly box office race.