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Records Fall, Falling Records Fall

May 14th, 2007

As expected, no new release came close to challenging Spider-man 3 for top spot. In fact, the four newcomers were even weaker than expected. However, while this led to a 44% drop-off from last weekend, the overall box office take of $106 million was still more than 6% higher than the same weekend last year and that's the more important figure. Next weekend there should be a big bounce as Shrek the Third should earn significantly more than that all by itself.

After smashing records on its opening weekend, Spider-man 3 had to settle for fourth place on the second weekend chart with $58.2 million. That was $92.95 million less than its opening weekend, smashing the previous largest drop-off in terms of raw dollars. However, its percent drop-off of 61.51% isn't even the worst sophomore drop-off suffered by a number one film this year, although it was very close behind TMNT, which fell 61.94% during its second weekend of release. This performance lifted the film's 10-day total to an amazing $240.2 million; only Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest earned more at this point in its run, and it had the summer holiday to boost its mid-week numbers. Spider-man 3 should have no problem reaching $300 million at this pace, perhaps as early as this time next week depending on how much direct competition Shrek the Third poses. However, it's ability to reach $400 million will depend a lot on the next two weeks and whether it can last long enough to get significant boost by the holidays. If it comes close, the studio might give it a push to get over the top later in the summer.

Second place went to 28 Weeks Later. However, like all new releases, it failed to live up to expectations with just $9.8 million. Even with the second best per theater average in the top ten and the best reviews in the top five, it is unlikely that the film will have long legs, especially not long enough to outperform the original. That said, its production budget is very low and it should earn a profit sooner rather than later.

Georgia Rule became the fourth Lindsay Lohan film in a row to miss expectations. (For that matter, Herbie Fully Loaded wasn't as big of a hit as many were predicting either, leaving her without a serious hit in more than 3 years.) At this point, if the partying doesn't kill her career, box office performances like this will. Over the weekend the film pulled in just $6.8 million, and that included growth on Sunday of nearly 5% thanks to Mother's Day. ... It was Mother's Day on Sunday. ... Awww, crap. ... With terrible reviews, equally bad per theater average, and intense competition over the next two weeks, this film will likely show poor legs at the theater. This despite the more mature target demographic, who are not known to rush out to see a movie on opening weekend, thus giving these films better than average stamina.

Disturbia continues to beat expectations, adding $4.7 million this weekend for a total of $66.2 million. At this pace $75 million is becoming more and more likely, even as it is expected to start shedding theaters at a fast pace from this point on.

Delta Farce finished within a rounding error of expectations after pulling in $3.4 million over the weekend. It also finished within one positive review of expectations with the critics. By the end of the month, this film will be nothing more than a faint memory.

It was even worse news for The Ex, which missed the top ten with just $1.4 million, which was less than the low-end prediction on Thursday. At this point, there's really no good news here.

Moving onto the sophomore class, there was just one member, Lucky You. That film fell 55% to just $1.2 million on 2,525 theaters over the weekend and $4.8 million after two. If it doesn't see its theater count chopped by at least 2,000 this Friday, I would be shocked. In fact, it could break Hoot's record of 2,200.

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Filed under: Spider-Man 3, Disturbia, Georgia Rule, Delta Farce, Lucky You, The Ex, 28 Weeks Later