September 8th, 2008
TV on DVD is at its peak for the year, just in time for the new season to start. However, because last season was cut short by the writers' strike, and so many studios are not taking that into account in the pricing, there are fewer releases at are contenders for DVD Pick of the Week. But we do have a worthy recipient of the award, Fist of Legend - Buy from Amazon, the latest release from Dragon Dynasty. Also, while the week was slow on top, it was busy overall, so much so that we had to split the week's list into two parts again. Part I can be found here.
January 22nd, 2008
The Oscar nominations were announced today and there is no shortage of contenders.
In fact, with no real juggernaut to deal with, the competition is more up in the air that most years.
January 7th, 2008
Since most new releases were released on Sunday, it comes as no real surprise that The Simpsons Movie remained in first place on this week's DVD sales chart.
This time around, the film sold 1.05 million units for a two-week total of 3.81 million units while it generated $16.84 million in revenue for a total of $64.98 million.
This is a very good start, but lower than expected after its phenomenal theatrical debut.
December 31st, 2007
There were plenty of new releases to chart this week, but most did not live up to expectations. This includes the number one film, The Simpsons Movie, which sold 2.76 million units during its first week for total sales of $48.14 million.
December 24th, 2007
New releases earned the top three spots on the sales chart this week, including Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which sold 5.26 million units for a total of $108.48 million in opening week revenue.
December 24th, 2007
New releases lead the way on the rental chart but it was The Bourne Ultimatum that came out in first place with $15.44 million in rentals, which is one of the best opening weeks this year.
December 23rd, 2007
The Screen Actors Guild nominations were announced this week, but again there were no clear front runners for the six theatrical categories.
December 17th, 2007
Only five new releases landed on the sales chart this week, but that included the top two sellers.
Leading the way was Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End with a year's best weekly sales of 7.35 million units and total revenue of $145.06 million, which crushes The Transformers' opening week by nearly 2 million units.
In fact, after just one week, At World's End is in fourth place for the whole year.
At this pace, it could be the biggest seller of the year by next week.
December 17th, 2007
Like it was on the sales chart, new releases took the top two spots on the DVD rental chart.
However, they finished in the opposite order as Superbad beat out Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End $13.97 million to $9.54 million.
Superbad's performance here compared to its performance on the sales chart may be explained either as a clear case of Try-Before-You-Buy, or it may be a lot of people interested in seeing it are expecting to get it for Christmas.
December 4th, 2007
This week was not as busy as I was expecting. Perhaps the thought of going against Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End 2-Disc Collector's Edition or on Blu-Ray was enough to scare away the competition.
However, while that is a formidable release, it is not this week's DVD Pick of the Week.
For that, we have Superbad - Unrated 2-Disc Edition or Unrated Blu-Ray Edition.
If you have a Blu-Ray player, that edition is worth the extra money, but it is not the kind of release worth upgrading for.
December 2nd, 2007
It's the first of December. (At least it was when I was writing this intro the first time. I was only going to do a dozen or so releases, but the list ballooned well out of control.) This week kicks off our second annual Holiday Gift Guide with a look at some high definition releases, because nothing says holidays like a format war.
August 12th, 2007
Live Free or Die Hard was knocked out of the top five but still earned $7.15 million on 317 screens in 29 markets for a total of $192.83 million. The film opened in first place in four markets, with the biggest being Brazil at $1.60 million on 352 screens over the weekend and $2.07 million in total. At this pace the film would hit $200 million this weekend, even if it didn't open in Australia, while it will top Die Hard with a Vengeance's worldwide total shortly.
August 5th, 2007
No, this is not a repeat, May 18 is the name of a South Korean film that opened last weekend with $7.40 million on 534 screens over the weekend and $9.66 million in total. This was enough for first place finish in its native market and a sixth place finish internationally.
July 29th, 2007
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.
July 22nd, 2007
As expected, The Transformers fell to second place this week, what wasn't expected was how well it held on. The film was down a mere 23% to $36.13 million on 3667 screens in 31 markets for a total of $146.66 million internationally. The film opened in China with a record-setting $12.6 million on 300 screens over the first five days while it earned $498,000 on 71 in Greece and $258,000 from 28 in Israel. The film's best market so far has been South Korea where it has taken in $39.52 million in three weeks, including $5.76 million on 540 screens this past weekend. This is a record for a non-South Korean film and an unexpectedly strong performance. Additionally, the film has yet to open in a number of major markets including the U.K., Japan, France, and Mexico and should hit $300 million internationally and $600 million worldwide, if not more.
July 15th, 2007
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End remained in sixth place with $8.94 million on 5442 screens in 101 markets for a total of $624.93 million. Internationally the film is in fifth place all-time and should top Dead Man's Chest shortly. Worldwide, it is also in fifth place but Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone's $974.56 million seems safe. As for At World's End's individual markets, the U.K. is still ahead of Japan $80.06 million to $77.58 million. However, Japan is catching up $2.28 million on 674 screens compared to just $738,000 on 357 in the U.K. At this pace Japan will need just two weeks to become the film's biggest draw.
July 10th, 2007
Records fell this past week(end) as The Transformers topped almost all expectations and broke a couple of records.
However, while the overall box office hit $174 million, which was 12% higher than last weekend, it was 20% lower than the same weekend last year.
There are some mitigating circumstances to deal with.
For instance, the midweek releases did pull some business from the weekend.
And secondly, last year at this time was the then record-breaking opening of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest.
July 8th, 2007
Some very interesting news on the international front this weekend regarding Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. First of all, it fell out of the top five; however, it was still able to pull in more than $10 million over the weekend. Not too long ago it was a chore to find a dozen films that cracked $1 million, while this past weekend we had 6 that earned $10 million or more. Over the weekend the film added $14.02 million on 5775 screens in 104 markets for a total of $608.89 million internationally. It is the sixth film to cross $600 million internationally and is now in fifth place on that chart. Worldwide the film has $906.89 million making it the ninth highest grosser of all time. The U.K. is still the film's best market at $78.51 million compared to second pace Japan where it has made $74.02 million. However, that gap continues to narrow with the film making $3.23 million on 691 screens in the latter and $1.37 million on 401 screens in the former.
June 28th, 2007
Shrek the Third managed to grow, albeit by a tiny amount, adding $47.29 million on 5,737 screens in 45 markets for a total of $170.44 million. The film opened in a pair of major markets scoring first place in Germany with $7.84 million on 861 screens and a nearly identical $7.77 million on 687 screens in Spain. While these numbers are impressive, they are not up to the same level as Shrek 2 managed. On the other hand, it had the best openig of the year and the franchise in Belgium with $2.47 million on 125 screens, including midweek numbers. Holdovers continue to be a problem as the film was down 42% in France, the second worst in the top ten, adding $7.62 million on 8750 screens for a $22.22 million running tally. In Mexico is was even worse down 56% to $3.82 million on 417 screens over the weekend and $17.23 million in total
June 24th, 2007
Spider-Man 3 fell out of the top five for the first time during its run, but since it has already hit $500 million internationally and is closing in on $900 million worldwide, this is hardly a reason to panic. Over the weekend the film added $3.02 million on 3914 screens in 65 markets for a total of $543.87 million, putting it in 11th place all time, just behind Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Rings. Worldwide the film had $873.88 million at the end of the weekend, which means it also places 11th on that all-time chart, but will top Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets before long.
June 20th, 2007
Not only did Shrek the Third climb to top spot this weekend, it also crossed $100 million internationally while hitting $400 million worldwide. Over the weekend the film added more than 10 new markets earning $46.64 million on 3564 screens in 32 markets for a total of $108.27 million, double its haul at this point last week. Its biggest new market of the week was France where it earned $12.5 million from 850 screens, 20% more than Shrek 2 opened with. The film was also tops in Mexico with $9.12 million on 418 screens and in Brazil with $5.9 million on 280. That last figure represents a record for animated films and is nearly triple what Shrek 2 opened with. On the other hand, the film fell nearly 50% in Australia to $4.41 million on 476 screens for a total of $16.78 million while its decline was even steeper in South Korea down 69% to $2.7 million over the weekend and $15.2 million in total. That said, it is still tracking for a $500 million international total and $800 million worldwide. On the other hand, poor critical reception and shorter legs suggest the franchise peaked with Shrek 2 and Shrek 4 and Shrek 5 might be pressing the studio's luck.
June 19th, 2007
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer set a record for best Father's Day opening and overall the box office reached just over $145 million, which was 7% more than last weekend. But that's still lower than the same weekend last year by just over 4%. On the one hand, the box office is still healthy and undoubtedly more records will fall this year. On the other hand, there are some troubling signs and perhaps the irrational exuberance is starting to wear off.
June 14th, 2007
After an amazing May, June has shown a bit of weakness and the summer has fallen off its record-setting pace.
Things look to turn-around thanks to a super-hero sequel and the buzz suggests Fantastic Four franchise should be up to the task of rescuing a slumping box office, again.
June 13th, 2007
Weaker than expected competition helped Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End maintain its stranglehold on first place, despite losing more than 50% at the box office. Over the weekend the film added $50.70 million on 12,591 screens in 103 markets for a total of $495.16 million meaning it should crack $500 million internationally by this time this column in published while $600 million is still the target number. However, due to weaker than expected domestic numbers $1 billion worldwide is out of reach. The film hit $50 million in Japan over the weekend after earning $7.68 million on 842 screens, down just 20%. That was the film's biggest single market over the weekend, but its total there of $50.41 million is second place to the U.K.'s $66.22 million running tally. However, in that market the film is fading fast and Japan could eventually become At World's End's most lucrative market.
June 12th, 2007
After three monster hits, it appears moviegoers might be undergoing some type of blockbuster fatigue.
All three new releases wilted under the pressure at the weekend.
Overall, the box office still increased from last week, but it was up less than 1% to $136 million and compared to the same weekend last year it was down 11%.
Worse yet, 2007 has fallen below 2004's record setting pace for the summer season and that year wasn't as front-loaded as this year.
On the bright side, we still have a tremendous number of potential $100 million movies and that's one record that is still within reach.
June 7th, 2007
Moviegoers craving originality this weekend might have to look somewhere other than the wide releases.
We have the third movie in a trilogy, a sequel, and the second digitally animated penguin picture to open within a year.
Even so, all three have enough strength that the overall box office should maintain its strong pace when compared to last year.
June 6th, 2007
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End lost more than 50% of its international opening this past weekend, but it was still the clear winner with an outstanding $103.22 million on 17,500 screens in 103 markets. It also became the fastest film to reach $400 million internationally with $406.41 million after the weekend and that places it 25th on that particular chart. Worldwide the film had $623.96 million, which put it in 30th place just behind The Incredibles (it overtook that film during the week).
At this pace, the film should have no difficulty catching Spider-Man 3 and become the biggest international box office hit this year.
It should manage to become the worldwide leader shortly afterward.
June 5th, 2007
Only three films were able to crack into the $10,000 club on the per theater chart.
The only new release to do so was Knocked Up, which was barely able to reach that figure with $10,690.
Second place went to The Golden Door with $10,169, while the overall number one film, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, earned third place with $10,134.
June 5th, 2007
The post-holiday weekend saw a massive collapse at the box office, with receipts down 34% to $135 million.
However, that collapse was entirely predictable.
On the other hand, the film market fell below the same weekend last year, which is a lot more troublesome.
Granted, the drop-off is less than one percent, and year-to-date 2007 is still showing strong growth, but it is concerning nonetheless.
June 4th, 2007
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End topped the weekend chart comfortably, according to studio estimates released on Sunday.
The swashbuckling adventure added an estimated $43.2 million to its tally, taking it to a healthy $216.5 million total gross in the US alone.
But its weekend-to-weekend drop-off was over 60%, and $43 million is well behind most predictions.
Although $300 million seems like a certainty (our projection has it reaching the mark after 23 or 24 days in release), anything beyond that is looking increasingly unlikely.
May 31st, 2007
The post holiday weekend sees three new releases, but for the first time in three weeks, there's no massive blockbuster on the horizon and there's little chance we will have a new number one at the box office.
May 30th, 2007
The second worldwide release of the summer occurred over the weekend when Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End debuted in more than a hundred markets. Needless to say, records were broken.
May 30th, 2007
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, and its record-breaking theater count of 4,362 were able to top the per theater chart this weekend with $26,303. As impressive as that was, both Shrek the Third and Spider-Man 3 opened with better averages. Paprika opened in second place with $17,797, but while that's a great start, its niche market appeal will prevent it from expanding wide. Last week's winner, Once, fell to third with $16,607, but, given the film's expansion, this was an amazing hold.
The Golden Door opened with an average of $13,872 in two theaters while Shrek the Third was close behind with $12,713.
May 29th, 2007
The Memorial Weekend was one of the biggest weekends of all time, pulling in a combined $193 million.
Yet, for many, it will be looked at as a disappointment.
In fact, the whole month of May has been like that as, while it will go down as one of the most lucrative months of all time, it will still be remembered by some for not reaching expectations.
May 27th, 2007
As expected, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End has taken the Memorial Day weekend record with an estimated Friday-Saturday-Sunday haul of $112,547,000, according to Buena Vista's Sunday estimate.
That gives the movie a four day total of $126,547,000, including Thursday previews.
While somewhat behind the early pace of Spider-Man 3, the long weekend and official start of the Summer vacation season will help Pirates catch up in the coming days, and we look set for a box office battle royale.
May 26th, 2007
Another slow week. If this keeps up I'm going to have to rethink my methodology. Not only were there not as many sites as I would like, there were none that really stood out as award-worthy. The best was Stardust - Official Site, but here I will wait for more of the content to be added before I make a final decision.
May 26th, 2007
However you look at it,
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End had a rip-roaring opening day.
But exactly how rip-roaring depends on how exactly you define "opening day".
You might see headline numbers proclaiming a all-time record-breaking $57 million day, but the reality is that At World's End made much of that money at Thursday evening previews.
May 24th, 2007
For the third time in four weeks there will be another $100 million opening. It's strange, for four years after Spider-Man set the record, no film matched its record-setting debut. In fact, no film really came that close. However, in the past 12 months, three films have topped that mark and another film will do the same this weekend.
May 21st, 2007
Yet another potential $100 million movie opens this weekend.
In fact, Memorial Day Weekend pretty much guarantees Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End will hit $100 million.
However, that also complicates our box office prediction contest, as we are only interested in the film's 3-day opening weekend and we have to wait a day to get those numbers.
To win one must simply predict the opening weekend box office of Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End. Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a copy of Alone With Her on DVD as well as Catch & Release Soundtrack on CD.
Meanwhile, the person who comes the closest to the film's opening 3-day weekend (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will win a copy of The Lost City on DVD.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
May 1st, 2007
It's the first of May, which means it is the start of the summer blockbuster season.
This year, May is dominated by sequels, and not just sequels; there are three monster franchises releasing their third installments this month.
If these films were the only monster hits being released this month, I would assume that any of them would have little difficulty hitting $300 million; for that matter, all three would have a better than 50% shot at $400 million.
However, it seems highly unlikely to have three $400 million movies open in one month, especially given there's never been two $400 million movies to open in the same year.
But who knows, records have already fallen this year, so anything's possible.
On a side note, there is a real gap between the big three and the rest of the new releases.
There's a slim chance another sequel, 28 Weeks Later, could crack $100 million.
However, it looks like the any of the big three releases will earn twice as much as all of the other films on this list will earn combined.
April 7th, 2007
It's the Saturday after Good Friday, which explains why this column was delayed one day. But while the Friday was good, this week's sites were mediocre, at least they were compared to high expectations. If this was January, it would be a great list. However, at this point of the year I'm expecting one potential summer blockbuster to have a major website launch each week, and that didn't happen this time. We still had an award-worthy effort with Grindhouse - Official Site.
March 31st, 2007
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.
March 24th, 2007
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.
March 10th, 2007
We are starting to see more and more summer blockbusters launching or updating their websites. However, this week it was still a spring release taking top spot as The Fracture - Official Site won the Weekly Website Award.