Wide Releases Offer Little to Audiences
August 22nd, 2003
Once again there seems to be little to get a movie fan interested this week. At least when it comes to wide releases.
It's almost a foregone conclusion that Freddy vs. Jason will finish first this week, just as much as it's a foregone conclusion that it will lose at least 50% at the box office. Just the genre alone would suggest that. Add in the Fanboy effect and sequelitis and the like and a drop of closer to 60% is likely. Mid-week numbers have been horrible; Freddy vs. Jason has lost more than 84% of its daily box office since last Friday. That's on par with The Hulk, which went on to lose nearly 70% at the box office during its second week. The one thing this movie has going for it is the complete lack of competition this week. This should help it grab $15 million this weekend.
The Medallion has already opened internationally and the numbers are average at best. It's currently tracking about 10% lower than The Tuxedo, and that performance should be similar stateside. Reviews are also on lower than The Tuxedo, in other words, bad. Really bad. Although most reviewers did comment on how special effects are replacing stunts in Jackie Chan's movies. (He's turning 50 next year, cut him some slack.) The Medallion should earn about $12 million this weekend.
In third place is S.W.A.T. This TV show turned movie didn't drop nearly as much as expected last weekend and should continue to show some legs. Not a lot mind you, but better than average for the summer. The $11 million is should grab this week will put it close to $90 million and it should cross $100 million by the end of next weekend.
Open Range added a few more theatres in its second week, but it's still not enough to crack the top ten theatre count this week. It will fair better at the box office coming in fourth with $10 million.
Rounding out the top five is Freaky Friday. $9 million for its third weekend is good news for this $26 million movie. $100 million total could be in the cards for Freaky Friday.
Just missing the top five will be My Boss's Daughter. When judging how well a movie will do one of the factors to consider is advertising. Not just how well is the advertising done, but does it even exist. In the case of My Boss's Daughter I've only seen a few ads on TV and it doesn't even have an official website. Earlier in the week it was expected to open in about 1200 theatres, but Dimension Films pushed to have it opening is a respectable 2200 theatres. This after being bounced around to no less than 4 release dates. Add in the fact that is wasn't screen for critics and $7 million opening weekend is about as good as it gets.
Doing even worse and just missing the top ten will be Marci X. A lot of things have been blamed for the soft summer this year from pirates to text messaging. But the real culprit is quality or the lack thereof. You can't tell me there aren't better scripts that haven't been made. Like the previous movie, Marci X wasn't screened for critics and advertising has been nearly non-existent. And with a release of just over 1200 theatres, this movie will probably do even worse than last week's loser Grind did.
But fret not brave reader. There is hope at the box office this weekend in the form of limited releases. Thirteen opened on Wednesday and if the reviews are correct it deserves to find an audience. And the reviews are even better for last week's winner of the per theatre box office, American Splendor (which expanded into 26 more theatres this week.) Other limited releases that should be worth checking out include Passionada, (reviews.) Step into Liquid, (reviews), The Secret Lives of Dentists, (reviews) and The Magdalene Sisters, (reviews.) It may take a little more effort to find a theatre showing these movies. But if enough people see them, then maybe Hollywood will make more high quality movies and fewer movies like Marci X.
Submitted by: C.S.Strowbridge
Filed under: Hulk, S.W.A.T., Freaky Friday, Open Range, The Medallion, My Boss's Daughter, Grind, The Magdalene Sisters, Thirteen, Step Into Liquid, Marci X, Passionada, American Splendor