May 16th, 2017
It is another terrible week on the home market. There are three first-run releases coming out this week, which isn’t a bad number. However, all three earned terrible reviews and bombed in theaters, so you should avoid all of them. There’s not a lot of limited releases, classics, or TV on DVD releases to make up the gap, so for the second week in a row, we have a Video on Demand release topping the list of best new releases. This week it is Logan, which is one of the best wide releases of the year. I would wait for the Blu-ray, on the other hand.
May 2nd, 2017
We are officially in the worst time of year on the home market. The last of the major Awards Season players have already come out, but it is still too early for the Spring hits to be released. The competition from May Sweeps and the start of the Summer Blockbuster Season means there’s not a lot here that’s going to do well in DVD / Blu-ray sales. Ironically, the lack of a major release means there are a lot of smaller releases that are competing for Pick of the Week, many of which would be lost in the crowd during a busier time of year. This includes I Am Not Your Negro, The Salesman, Real Genius, and Seven Days in May. In the end, I went with The Red Turtle on DVD or Blu-ray as the Pick of the Week. In the meanwhile, Spacehunter: Adventures in the Forbidden Zone on Blu-ray gets the Puck of the Week honor, as the “best” Canadian release of the week. I just wish it were coming out in 3D.
April 26th, 2017
There were only two films in the $10,000 club on this week's theater average chart and both of them were biographical documentaries. Interesting coincidence. Citizen Jane: Battle for the City led the way with an average of $15,726 in two theaters. Meanwhile, Jeremiah Tower: The Last Magnificent just managed to hit the $10,000 mark with an average of $10,134, also in two theaters.
February 14th, 2017
As expected, it was a big weekend at the box office with three massive hits. The Lego Batman Movie did earn first place, but not with as much as predicted at just $53.00 million. Fifty Shades Darker wasn’t that far behind with $46.61 million. Meanwhile, John Wick: Chapter Two just cracked $30 million, which is one of the ten best third place openings of all time. Week-over-week, the box office nearly doubled growing 90% from last weekend. Sadly, it was down 22% from last year. Granted, Valentine’s Day landed on a Sunday last year, so that boosted the weekend box office and 2017 should make some of that decline back on Tuesday. Year-to-date, 2017 has pulled in $1.28 billion, putting it $40 million or 3.0% behind 2016’s pace. It is still way too soon to tell how 2017 will finish in the end, but hopefully things will turn around soon.
February 7th, 2017
As expected, Split earned first place over the weekend with $14.42 million. That’s not bad for Super Bowl weekend. In fact, the overall depth was better than expected, not that you could tell from the week-over-week decline. The overall box office fell 31% to just $98 million. However, this was still 2.5% better than the same weekend last year. That’s a surprise victory. Granted, 2017 is still behind 2016 by 5.1% at $1.06 billion to $1.12 billion, but every little victory helps.
February 5th, 2017
Rings managed to win on Friday, but the weekend as a whole will belong to Split, which is expected to top the chart with $14.6 million, according to Universal’s Sunday morning projection. Rings will finish second with $13 million or so, and A Dog’s Purpose will win Sunday (making this a rare weekend where three different films will top the daily chart) to finish the weekend with $10.8 million, and $32.9 million to date.
February 3rd, 2017
Rings had the best start in previews last night, but here “best” is a relative term. It only managed $800,000, 20% lower than Resident Evil: The Final Chapter previews last weekend. Worse still, its reviews are 0% positive with 17 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes so far. This could result in an opening weekend of less than $10 million, but I think that’s a little pessimistic. $11 million is more likely. That’s not a good start, even for a film that cost $33 million to make, and it will need help internationally to break even.
February 2nd, 2017
The new releases this week are not strong, so we could see Split remain on top for the third weekend in a row. Rings should at least be in a fight for first place, if it just does as well as Resident Evil: The Final Chapter did last weekend. On the other hand, The Space Between Us is being eviscerated by the critics and it really needed good word of mouth to thrive. If it opens in the top five, I will be impressed. This weekend last year, Hail, Caesar! was the number one new release and it earned just $11.36 million. Rings should top that. Unfortunately, the number one film was Kung Fu Panda 3, which earned more than than $20 million. There’s no way Split will match that, so 2017 is going to lose in the year-over-year competition.
February 1st, 2017
January turned out to be a good month. Granted, it didn’t live up to last January, but its box office was one of the top five Januarys of all time, so that’s still a good start to the year. Also, we will have our first $100 million movie released in 2017 and that doesn’t happen this early very often. As for February, there’s potentially the first $200 million hit of the year, The Lego Batman Movie. Fifty Shades Darker and The Great Wall both have a shot at $100 million. That said, it is more likely that both will miss that milestone than both will get there. As for the rest of the films, there are a few that are aiming for solid midlevel hits, like John Wick: Chapter Two and Get Out, while there are very few potential bombs. By comparison, last February there was one monster hit, Deadpool, and a lot of bombs. No other movie besides Deadpool made $50 million. No movie opening this month will match Deadpool, but we won’t have as many bombs either, so hopefully that will balance out and 2017 won’t fall further behind 2016.
January 27th, 2017
Next week there are two wide releases: Rings and The Space Between Us. Apparently, they are opening in a similar amount of theaters. However, even if I thought they had a similar box office potential, Rings would be the better choice for the target film in this week’s box office prediction contest, because horror films tend to start faster and fade quicker. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for Rings.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a Frankenprise consisting of their choice of either one TV on DVD release, two movies, or a kids package (could be a theatrical release, a couple of single-disc TV on DVD releases, or a full season TV on DVD release).
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win a Frankenprize, as described above.
Finally, we will be choosing an entrant from the group of people who haven't won, or haven't won recently, and they will win the final Frankenprize, as described above.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!