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Jonas Brothers Hit a Sour Note

March 3rd, 2009

We had a surprise film at the top of the chart as The Jonas Brothers proved they were no competition for Miley Cyrus. In fact, they were no match for Tyler Perry in a dress. Fortunately, while there was severe weakness at the top, the overall box office was still strong at $111 million. Yes, that was down 22% from last weekend, but it was 15% head of the same weekend last year. Meanwhile, 2009 continues to lead 2008 by a sizable margin at $1.79 billion to $1.53 billion, a 17% gap.

Madea Goes to Jail fell just over 60% during its second weekend of release, which was higher than most analysts predicted. On the other hand, it matched our prediction perfectly with $16.18 million over the weekend. After ten days of release, the film has made $64.53 million, which is the most any Tyler Perry film has made. It also gives the film an outside shot at $100 million. I'm not saying it will, but it has a statistically significant chance of reaching that milestone.

It turns out my gut was right. On the one hand, the fact that Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience managed second place with $12.51 million in just 1,271 theaters is great news. A per theater average of nearly $10,000 for a wide release this time of year is a very strong start. On the other hand, because it is in 3D, ticket prices were higher than usual, which means far fewer tickets were sold. Secondly, it was being compared to Best of Both Worlds, which broke records last year. Add in reviews that were just 31% positive, and what will likely be a devastating Fangirl Effect, and it will disappear very quickly. By way of comparison, Best of Both Worlds had an Internal Multiplier of 3.60, while the The Jonas Brothers managed just 2.52. Had it matched expectations, it would have been held over longer than its one-week engagement in most of the theaters that booked it. Now I'm not so sure.

As expected, Slumdog Millionaire climbed into third place; however, with $12.03 million, it was a lot stronger than expected. So far the film has pulled in $115.02 million in total, and at this pace, it might reach $100 million during the calendar year.

Taken slipped a spot to fourth with $9.86 million over the weekend for a total of $107.80 million after a month of release. On Friday, it became the second $100 million hit from January. It has been 37 years since The Godfather became the first film to earn $100 million during its initial box office run, and in that time, no film that has opened in January ever reached that mark. That is until this year when two films managed that feat. Impressive.

He's Just Not That Into You was a surprise entry in the top five, adding $6.01 million over the weekend for a total of $78.66 million.

Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li was within a rounding error of matching Thursday's prediction with $4.72 million in 1,136 theaters. Its per theater average wasn't as bad as it could have been, but with a Tomatometer Score at just 6% positive, there's little hope for expansion. Maybe it will find a more receptive audience on the home market.

Moving onto the sophomore class, Fired Up didn't collapse as expected and was down just 32.5% to $3.70 million over the weekend for a total of $10.04 million after two. While this decline was better than expected, it will still have trouble matching original expectations.


Filed under: Taken, Slumdog Millionaire, He's Just Not That Into You, Madea Goes To Jail, Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience, Fired Up, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li