New releases made their presence felt this week, earning five spots on the DVD sales chart, including the first two places.
The battle for first place wasn't even close, though, as
300 made a dominant debut, selling 5.10 million units, which was 2 million more than the rest of the top 30 combined.
Its opening week sales of $115 million was double the rest of the top 30.
Second place went to Hot Fuzz with a very respectable 676,000 units; you must remember, this is a film that only cost 8 million Pounds to make, roughly, which is about $17 million American.
The film made more than that in just one week on the home market in combined rentals and sales, so everyone involved must be very, very happy indeed.
Pathfinder's sales were stronger than its rentals as it moved 562,000 units for a total of $10.10 million in sales, which was more than it earned theatrically.
We finally got some wide releases worth picking up this week, which have been in tight supply most of the summer.
It's been rare to find one first-run release worth picking up in any given week, but this week we have two that are contenders for DVD Pick of the Week: 300 - 2-Disc Special Edition and Hot Fuzz - Buy from Amazon.
I was a little worried that a special edition for the latter might be around the corner, but that wasn't enough to prevent me from naming it as the DVD Pick of the Week.
The Transformers held on strong dipping just 7% to $33.77 million on 4626 screens in 41 markets for a total of $192.44 million. This includes an estimated $6.4 million from previews in the U.K. The film's only major opening of the weekend was Mexico where it placed first with $5.46 million on 410 screens pushing Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix into second place. The Transformers also continued its amazing run in South Korea adding $3.12 million on 442 screens for a running tally of $46.21 million, which is like making $500 million here given the relative sizes of the two markets.
It was a slow weekend at the box office as most of the new releases, and a couple of the holdovers, were unable to live up to expectations.
How slow was it?
The overall box office dropped below $100 million.
It fell 25% from last weekend to just $89 million and that's a severe 19% drop-off from the same weekend last year.
In fact this was the worst weekend since last September.
However, it is important to note that overall 2007 is still ahead of last year's pace by 5% and most analysts expect many, many records to fall this summer.
The weekend box office numbers were mixed. On the one hand, there was a small drop in the overall box office numbers with the total ticket sales coming in at $119 million, which was 4% lower than last weekend and 1% lower than the same weekend last year. However, while that's hardly a reason to worry, there were six wide releases meaning the merely average box office numbers had to divided up amongst a crowded field and that really hurt a lot of the new releases. In fact, only one of the six had any real reason to celebrate.
Even with the extra day, it was a slow week for websites. There were a couple films to have their full sites go live this week, but in both cases there was a lack of features. The best of the list is Pathfinder - Official Site, but it's not up to the level of an award winner.
There's six new wide releases this weekend, but the overwhelming thought I have when checking them out is, "ZZZZZzzzzzzzz." There are two reasons for this. Firstly, there's not much here to get excited about; most are opening in less than 2,000 theaters and most are earning reviews that are terrible.
Because of this, none look to be runaway hits at the box office; in fact, there's talk that Blades of Glory will again win the weekend box office race.
The second reason for the snores above, last night was the start of the NHL playoffs and the Canucks played their first two games.
Or at least that's how long game one lasted.
Four overtime periods.
Oh so tired.
At least they won.
April is an interesting month to open a movie. Interesting, but not a particularly good month. This year it does start with Easter, but that's traditionally not a strong long weekend. Only one movie has topped $40 million over that weekend and only one other has cracked $30 million. Worst still, it's jammed right up against May, the start of the summer blockbusters season.
Ironically, the closer you get to this most lucrative time of year, the tougher it is for films to make a buck.
No movie wants to open the weekend before Spider-man 3, for instance.
Overall, there are a few hits to be found in the month, and a few misses, but nothing that really stands out above the pack.
Awesome. We are finally getting some major updates to the summer blockbuster movies. The ones people are watching to see if they break records. This includes the first half of the massively interactive website for Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End - Official Site. And while the site isn't done yet, it is still more than enough to win the Weekly Website Award.
Good week for trailers with several on the list, including a trio of major summer blockbusters. However, while those site will obviously generate the most traffic, they are not award-worthy sites, (at least not yet). The best site this week is Pathfinder - Official Site.
This week's round of new movie release information contains release dates for Shooter. Pathfinder, Speed Racer and more.
Still waiting sites for the big summer blockbusters to come online. In the meantime, this week is relatively busy, but with only a couple sites that look like they could be award-worthy once the features are added. The best of the best, and I use that term loosely, is Norbit
- Official Site
with a site that could be more entertaining than the movie it promotes.
This week's round of new movie release information contains release dates for Hills Have Eyes II, Pathfinder, Lucky You and more.
slipped out of the top five this week, but still has plenty of reason to celebrate as the film hit $100 million on the international scene. Over the weekend it added $8.16 million on 3104 screens in 45 markets to its running tally of $102.54 million. This includes Mexico where the film opened with a respectable third place earning $711,000 on 230 screens while it took fourth place in Argentina with $153,000 on 40.
Currently I am taking a vacation and because of that the release dates update will be irregular at best. Things should be back to normal (weekly updates on Sunday) starting Sunday January 21. If I have some time, like today on a rainy day in Singapore, I will try to make updates.
Another big week for movie sites with several excellent entries. In this crowded field there were a lot of sites that showed promise and could be just one big update away from winning the award. But this week the best of the best was World Trade Center
- Official Site
. Let's hope that the movie can live up to the site.