December 14th, 2009
Plenty of new releases reached the top 30 on this week's rental chart, including the three at the top.
Angels & Demons was numbers one, beating out Four Christmases with roughly 50% more rentals.
December 12th, 2009
Black Friday sales gave a decidedly retro look to the DVD sales chart for the week ending November 29.
All major retailers were offering deeply discounted prices of catalog titles, including $4 deals at Target for Elf, Sex and the City and Forgetting Sarah Marshall, among others, and Best Buy offering Hellboy 2: The Golden Army, Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor and Forgetting Sarah Marshall at the same price.
Walmart wasn't going to be outdone though, and offered some DVD titles, including Hellboy 2, Mummy 3, I am Legend and Casino Royale in limited quantities at just $2.
The real champion of the bargain basement, however, was The Dark Knight, which was available for $5 at Walmart, and $4 at both Target and Best Buy.
With low, low prices, the unit volumes for the week were astronomical, but overall spending was actually down from 2008 thanks to the price cuts.
November 23rd, 2009
It's the week before Black Friday, which is widely reported as the busiest shopping day of the year. (It's not. Christmas Eve is the busiest shopping day of the year; however, on Christmas Eve a lot of the purchases are last minute food items.) If a studio wants its product to be part of Black Friday, this is the last Tuesday they can release the DVD or Blu-ray. Because of this, I'm a little surprised the week isn't busier than it is. The biggest release of the week is Angels & Demons, while there are a couple of Christmas releases that are also selling well. However, none of those come close to being the DVD Pick of the Week. Arguably the best of the best is Funny People, which isn't the best movie coming out this week, but it is a good movie and its Blu-ray is absolutely loaded.
September 26th, 2009
Vicky the Viking fell to sixth place with 7.40 million on 898 screens in 3 markets for a total of $24.55 million. Of that, $5.92 million was earned on 751 screens in Germany and it now has $18.94 million in its native market.
September 19th, 2009
Ice Age - Dawn of the Dinosaurs fell out of the top five this past weekend earning $7.08 million on 3521 screens in 35 markets for a total of $670.44 million internationally and $865.11 million worldwide. It is now the third highest grossing film internationally of all time, while it is 18th place worldwide. That's quite a gap. The film remained in first place in Italy earning $3.14 million on 690 screens over the weekend for a total of $33.63 million after three. So far the film has earned more than 77% of its worldwide box office internationally, which is a very high percentage, and it will keep creeping higher as its international run comes to a close.
September 5th, 2009
G-Force just missed the top five with $7.09 million on 2964 screens in 30 markets for a total of $67.97 million. The film had no major market openings this week, but it did add $2.17 million on 409 screens in Russia for a total of $8.93 million after two weeks there. Up next is Spain this weekend, which means it could climb back into the top five, if it performs well there.
August 18th, 2009
Nine was the lucky number over the weekend as District 9 topped the charts with better than expected results.
Also, nine of the ten film talked about in Thursday's column met or exceeded expectations.
This helped the box office bring in $142 million overall, which was only 3% lower than last weekend.
More importantly, it was 14% higher than the same weekend last year, which was much better than expected.
Year-to-date, 2009 has earned $6.86 billion in total revenue, which is 6.6% higher than last year's pace.
August 11th, 2009
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra topped expectations and that helped 2009 finally snap its month-long slump at the box office. Overall the industry brought in $146 million, which was 17% higher than last weekend, and more importantly, 22% higher than the same weekend last year. Year-to-date, 2009 has brought in $6.64 billion, which is 6.6% higher than 2008's pace; however, while that's impressive, it is seriously off its highs for the year and 2009 will need to work to make sure ticket sales don't fall behind last year's pace.
August 9th, 2009
While its hefty price tag means it's got a long way to go before it turns a profit, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra did enjoy a strong opening weekend at the US and international box office, according to Paramount's numbers, released on Sunday.
The action flick stormed to $56.2 million in the US, the 4th biggest August weekend ever (see complete list) and picked up an estimated $44 million internationally for a $100 million worldwide opening.
After a lukewarm reception from critics, Paramount reports a solid response from audiences, which bodes well for healthy numbers for a few weeks.
August 7th, 2009
August begins with the movie industry hoping that summer will last at least one more week.
There is some hope that we will have a $60 or $70 million opener this weekend, but even if G.I.Joe earns just half of that, it will be a better start than the top film from last year and hopefully that means 2009 will finally end its recent slump.
August 3rd, 2009
2009 took another hit at the box office over the weekend, bringing in just $125 million.
This might seem like a huge amount, but that's 17% lower than last weekend and 18% lower than the same weekend last year.
Year-to-date 2009 has earned $6.43 billion, which is 7.0% more than the running tally from this time last year, and if 2009 can just maintain pace with 2008 for the rest of the year, then the total ticket sales will reach $10 billion for the first time ever.
However, we haven't matched box office numbers in nearly a month, so things will need to turn around soon.
August 2nd, 2009
On a weekend that was modest overall for the industry, Funny People took top spot on the box office chart with a $23.4 million opening weekend, according to Universal's Sunday estimate.
The movie is Judd Apatow's third directorial effort, and the opening falls in the middle of his range so far, ahead of The 40-Year-Old Virgin's $21.4 million but some way behind the $30.7 million opening enjoyed by Knocked Up.
It's also something of a disappointment for an Adam Sandler movie, as he has become more accustomed to $30 million plus openings.
July 31st, 2009
The final potential monster hit of the summer comes out next week, but G.I.Joe - The Rise of Cobra also has the potential to be the most expensive bomb of the year, which complicates the box office prediction contest, as it is this week's target film. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office of G.I.Joe - The Rise of Cobra.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a copy of Secret Diary of a Call Girl on DVD and the soundtrack to Funny People on CD.
Meanwhile, whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will win a copy of Echelon Conspiracy on DVD and Van Wilder - Freshman Year on DVD.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
July 30th, 2009
The final weekend in July starts today, while August starts the day after. It's not a great weekend to open a movie, and of the three wide releases, only one has any real box office potential. Even worse, this time last year there were two films that made $40 million or more at the box office, which means 2009's lead on 2008 will continue to shrink.
July 1st, 2009
June gave us some unexpected hits in The Proposal and The Hangover, as well as expected hits like Up, not to mention the biggest hit of the year, so far, in Transformers - Revenge of the Fallen. However, despite this, 2009 lost a bit of ground to 2008, and this will likely continue this month, as this month last year saw the release of The Dark Knight.
This year we have a couple of potential $300 million hits, but nothing likely to perform on that scale.
Then again, I only predicted Dark Knight would make $250 million, so we could be surprised again this year.
The box office is certainly hot, and is currently running more than 12% ahead of last year's pace.
June 19th, 2008
This week's round of new casting information contains updates for 2012, Public Enemies, Transformers 2, and more!
April 9th, 2008
This week another number of upcoming movies, new stars and directors have been added to our archive!
April 6th, 2008
This week's round of new movie release information contains release dates for Underworld 3, Pink Panther 2, Nottingham and more!
April 4th, 2008
This week's round of new casting information contains updates for The Informant, The Surrogates, War, Inc., and more!