February 16th, 2010
One of the weakest weeks on the home market for a long while, with only one wide release of note. Granted, Law Abiding Citizen's performance at the box office was much better than expected, but it still only managed to become a midlevel hit. The best of the best is Good Hair, which would be a clear Pick of the Week if the DVD had all the extras they mentioned on the audio commentary track. Alas, there's just the audio commentary track.
February 14th, 2010
With Good Hair Chris Rock gets to add another skill to his resume: documentarian. There was a huge buzz surrounding this movie before it opened and I was seeing stories about it all over TV. And I'm not talking about ads, but stories on news channels like CNN. When it was released the critical response was overwhelmingly positive while at the box office it became one of the biggest documentaries of the year.
(Although given its opening theater count, one would assume the distributor was at least hoping for more.)
So my expectations were high when the screener arrived last week.
January 12th, 2010
The WGA announced their nominations this week, which include eleven awards, three of which are for theatrical releases.
November 24th, 2009
Broken Embraces opened on top of the per theater chart with an impressive average of $53,556 in two theaters, while The Fantastic Mr. Fox was in a close second place with an average $50,878 in four theaters. The overall box office leader, The Twilight Saga - New Moon, placed third with $35,497 in more than 4,000 theaters. Precious saw its best numbers of its run so far, pulling in nearly $11 million in just over 600 theaters for an average of $17,300. The Sun opened with $11,588 in one theater while The Blind Side opened with an average of $10,971 in more than 3,000 theaters.
November 3rd, 2009
The per theater chart took a hit over the weekend and no movie topped $10,000; however, An Education was close with an average of $9,737 in 48 theaters.
October 27th, 2009
Antichrist was the only new release to reach the $10,000 club over the weekend earning a strong average of $11,900 in six theaters. An Education was just $49 behind at $11,851, which is about 5 or 6 tickets per theater. Finally, Paranormal Activity was able to reach first place on the overall chart while maintaining an average $10,850 in nearly 2000 theaters.
October 13th, 2009
No less than six films broke the $10,000 per theater average barrier over the weekend.
Paranormal Activity topped the per theater chart with its record-breaking weekend, earning an average of $49,379 in 160 theaters.
An Education was relatively close behind with an average of $39,754 in 4 theaters, which is a spectacular result at any time.
A Serious Man remained strong with an average of $21,872, which is enough to suggest further significant expansion over the coming weeks.
The number one film at the box office, Couples Retreat, was next with an average of $11,429.
Yes Men Fix the World and Bronson had nearly identical averages at $10,956 vs. $10,940.
October 11th, 2009
The Columbus Day holiday weekend produced two big winners, according to studio estimates released on Sunday.
At the top of the chart, Couples Retreat exceeded expectations with $35.3 million.
A per theater average of nearly $12,000 for the poorly-reviewed comedy is a testament to Universal's marketing campaign and the box office power of its ensemble cast.
A great marketing campaign from Paramount can also be attributed to the success of the weekend's other big success: Paranormal Activity, which jumped into the top 5 with an estimated $7.066 million in just 159 theaters.
That's the smallest number of theaters for a movie to hit the top five ever, beating the performance of Platoon, which hit 4th place the weekend of January 16, 1987 playing in 174 theaters.
October 9th, 2009
Has Awards Season officially begun? There are more than 10 limited releases on this week's list, including three that have to be considered potential Awards Season players. These three films are The Damn United, An Education, and Good Hair , and in addition to earn strong reviews, could also be breakout hits. On the other end of the spectrum, there are a number of films coming out in too many theaters with too few positive reviews.
October 1st, 2009
September ended with a thud, but at least there's good news. September has finally ended. Last month more movies missed expectations that topped them, which has put a cooling effect on the overall box office and that could hurt the business going into this month. October should still be stronger than last month, and since October of last year wasn't particularly great, 2009 should at least maintain its lead over 2008 going into the holiday season, even if it isn't as strong every single week.