Weekend Wrap-Up: LEGO Earns Stacks Dollar Bills

Lego poster

The LEGO Movie didn't break the record for Biggest February Weekend, but it came close. The Monuments Men performed better than expected, but was still a very distant second place. On the other hand, Vampire Academy bombed, fully and completely. Compared to last week, even without The LEGO Movie, this week is almost better. With The LEGO Movie, this week is 76% better at $151 million. Compared to last year, The LEGO Movie opened with more than the top five made in 2013. Overall, the year-over-year growth was 46%. This is just a fantastic result no matter how you look at it. Year-to-date, 2014 has pulled in $1.12 billion, putting it 12% ahead of 2013's pace. It is obviously still too early to declare 2014 the winner, but this is still a fantastic start.

The LEGO Movie was a risky film to make, because so many toy adaptations turn out to be garbage, most of which never see theaters. However, not only did this film earn Oscar-worthy reviews, it crushed expectations with $69.05 million. That's $10 million more than even the high end expectations. It's just over $10 million less than the rest of the box office combined. There's not another animated family film till Mr. Peabody & Sherman (which is also earning good reviews) so it should have really strong legs. There's no doubt it will be profitable and it is likely a sequel is already in the works.

The Monuments Men was expected to miss $20 million, but earning $22.00 million during its opening weekend. Given the star power, this is still a rather weak opening. However, given its reviews and its release date, it is better than the studio was hoping for. The film cost $70 million, so it will need help internationally and / or on the home market to break even, but this is a good start.

It was a great week for Ride Along, as it cracked the century mark over the weekend. It took in $9.59 million over three days giving the film a running tally of $105.31 million after 24. Unless it cost way more to advertise than it cost to make, it has broken even.

Frozen earned $6.87 million over the weekend for a total of $368.64 million after 80 days of release. It has now overtaken Despicable Me 2 for biggest animated film released in 2013. It's going to fall out of the top five next weekend, but it will end with close to $400 million domestically and perhaps as much as $1 billion worldwide. That's an amazing total.

Lone Survivor was a surprise entrant in the top five with $5.57 million over the weekend lifting its total to $112.85 million after 47 days of release. I'm not sure about its international prospects, but it has already covered its production budget and is likely very close to cover its P&A budget as well.

I said there was a chance Vampire Academy would bomb and it did. In fact, it bombed worse than expected with just $3.92 million in 2,676 theaters for an average of $1,466. This was only enough for seventh place. It would have needed to have earned $3.92 million on its opening day in order to match high end expectations, and even then it wouldn't have been a hit. Its reviews are meaningless, because even if the film was Oscar-worthy, theater owners would be looking to drop this film as soon as they were contractually able to, regardless of the film's legs. However, with just 12% positive reviews, it will likely completely collapse next weekend and will be all but gone before the end of February.

Looking in at the sophomore class, That Awkward Moment slipped to sixth place with $5.24 million over the weekend for a total of $16.55 million after ten days of release. It only fell 40%, which would have been a great result, had the film opened in first place like it was expected to. Likewise, Labor Day only fell 38%, but it fell to tenth place with $3.18 million over the weekend for a total of $10.13 million after two. It had some pre-release Oscar buzz, but clearly something went wrong along the way.


- C.S.Strowbridge


Date posted: 2014-02-11