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Nothing Small About Quantum

November 18th, 2008

As expected, Quantum of Solace became the biggest opener in the history of the James Bond franchise over the weekend by a huge margin. In fact, the $67.53 million it earned over the past three days was $20 million more than the previous record holder, Die Another Day, and 65% more than Casino Royale opened with in 2006. Even if it has a multiplier of just 2.48 it will become the biggest domestic hit in the franchise, and it has already made more worldwide than all of the pre-Pierce Brosnan Bond films.

There are some troubling signs moving forward however, including reviews that have slipped to just 66% positive. Granted, that's better than most action films manage, but its well below the 94% positive reviews earned by its predecessor. Also, the film's weekend box office was lower than the studio estimate by roughly $3 million, which suggests a front-loaded box office run. That said, $200 million domestically is not out of the question, nor is $700 million worldwide.

Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa fell a little faster than expected, down 44.5% to $35.02 million over the weekend. It was able to reach the $100 million milestone over the weekend, the 19th such film this year. However, with $116.91 million after 10 days, and direct competition starting this Friday, it might not be able to keep pace with the first film next weekend and $200 million in total its far from assured.

Role Models beat expectations as it earned $11.16 million over the weekend for a total of $37.58 million after two. At this pace, and given its reviews, hitting $50 million won't be an issue, which should be enough for the movie to show a sizable profit on the home market.

High School Musical 3 is slipping off the $100 million pace after earning $5.66 million over the weekend for a total of $84.17 million. However, this matches Thursday's prediction perfectly, so at least it isn't falling significantly short of expectations.

Rounding out the top five was Changeling with $4.25 million over the weekend and $27.63 million after four. Without hard numbers on the film's production budget, it is impossible to tell if it will be profitable or not. However, it is likely closing in on its production budget given the cost of previous Clint Eastwood films like Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River.

Finally we get to the remainder of the sophomore class, namely Soul Men. The film fell more than 56% this weekend to $2.35 million, while it has $9.37 million in total. It's hard to be enthusiastic over those numbers.

Overall, box office earnings continue to show strength, with $149 million over the past three days. That was 4.6% more than last weekend, and 43% more than the same weekend last year. Additionally, 2008's lead over 2007 has grown to nearly 1% at $8.15 billion to $8.07 billion. Looking to the future, for the rest of the year, 2008 appears to be stronger than 2007 in terms of potential monster hits and it should extend its lead.

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Filed under: Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, Quantum of Solace, High School Musical 3: Senior Year, Role Models, Changeling, Soul Men