Weekend Estimates: New Releases No Match for Apes

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes poster

Only one new release really fired at the box office this weekend, and even that film, The Purge: Anarchy couldn’t topple Dawn of the Planet of the Apes from top spot on the chart. Apes will be down 50% from last weekend, to $36 million, and its cume is hovering around $140 million so far. It seems destined to be another film that ends up around $200 million this Summer. Anarchy will open with about $28.4 million, according to Universal, for a theater average of almost exactly $10,000. That’s stellar business for a film costing $9 million to make, although it is off a bit from the $34 million open enjoyed by last year’s surprise hit. A third installment seems inevitable (and a direct-to-video Part 4 is a good bet).

The weekend’s other two wide releases were well behind the pace.

Planes: Fire and Rescue will manage about $18 million, compared to the $22 million earned by the first film in that franchise last year. Soft as those numbers are, the film is largely an exercise in maintaining the brand for Disney, and merchandise sales will offset a modest loss on the film.

Sex Tape is, to put it delicately, a film that lends itself less well to merchandise tie-ins, so its $15 million opening weekend is much more problematic. Reviews for the film have been fairly dismal, and a $14.8 million opening suggests it won’t have a long shelf life. By comparison, What to Expect When You’re Expecting took in $10.5 million on opening weekend, and Bad Teacher $31.6 million. The latter is the only one of Cameron Diaz’ non-franchise films from the last decade to top $100 million, so Sex Tape is actually more representative of her films’ typical performance at the box office than one might think.

Boyhood is once more the standout limited release. It will post about $1.2 million from just 34 theaters for $1.8 million after two weekends. IFC will continue to expand it, and an appearance in the top 10 seems like a good bet for the film. Its reviews continue to be stellar.

Two new limited releases are projected to be members of the $10,000 theater average club. There’s No Place Like Utopia is expected to make $27,830 from a single theater for Rocky Mountain Pictures. A Five Star Life is expected to bring in $16,500 from one location for Music Box.

- Weekend Estimates

Bruce Nash bruce.nash@the-numbers.com


Date posted: 2014-07-20