The Numbers News

← December 2014

Weekend Wrap-Up: Sniper Stable, While Next Door Survives

2015-01-27

American Sniper poster

As expected, American Sniper earned first place, but it did so with a much stronger sophomore stint. As for the new releases, The Boy Next Door matched expectations (nearly) perfectly but the other two missed the Mendoza Line. Overall, the box office was down 21% to $159 million; however, this is good for a post-holiday weekend. Compared to last year, the overall box office was 37% higher. This kind of year-over-year growth usually only happens when holidays are misaligned. Year-to-date, 2015 is ahead of 2014 by 4.1% at $856 million to $823 million. It is obviously too soon to celebrate, but after last year's losses, I'll take any reason to be optimistic. More...

DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 27th, 2015

2015-01-27

It is a really bad week for the home market with a lot of filler on the first page of the new releases on Amazon.com. Fury is the biggest release, but there are not enough extras on the DVD or Blu-ray to be a contender for Pick of the Week. The Book of Life, on the other hand, has a loaded DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack and is a contender. The only other real contender is The Kingdom of Dreams and Madness on DVD. In the end, I went with The Book of Life. More...

Per Theater Chart: Sniper Stuck at the Top

2015-01-27

American Sniper poster

For the fifth week in a row, American Sniper led the way on the per theater chart, this week earning an average of $17,444. The only other film in the $10,000 club was Still Alice with an average of $10,816 in 38 theaters. More...

18th Annual Predict the Academy Awards Competition

2015-01-27

Today we're launching The Numbers 18th Annual Predict the Academy Awards Competition, our traditional chance for you to win some great prizes, and for all of our readers collectively to predict who will win the Oscars on February 22. The top selection for Best Picture in our contest has gone on to win the Best Picture Oscar 14 times in the previous 17 years we've run the contest, and we've correctly predicted the Best Animated Feature 11 times out of 13. That represents a batting average of over 80%—an amazing performance when you consider that there are now nine or ten nominees for Best Picture each year.

Uniquely among Oscar contests, when you make your predictions, we show you how many people have voted for each movie so far, and allow you to go back and change your choices. In fact, you can come back at any time to update your predictions as news breaks and sentiment changes about different nominees. But beware our tie-breaking rule: if multiple people correctly predict the same number of winners, whoever made their picks first will win the prize.

So enter now for your best chance of winning our grand prize: every film nominated for Best Picture on DVD or Blu-ray. We will send you all eight films that are nominated as soon as they become available on the home market, and you get to choose either the DVD or Blu-ray version.

More...

2014 - Awards Season: SAG - Winners

2015-01-26

Birdman poster

The Screen Actors Guild winners were announced Sunday and there were some surprises, mostly in the negative. Birdman picked up the biggest prize, but there were six different winners in the six categories.

More...

Featured DVD Review: Born of War

2015-01-26

Born of War was shot in the winter of 2011-2012, but it is just getting a direct-to-DVD release this week. That's a bad sign. Is it a forgotten gem? Or is there a reason it was delayed this long? More...

Featured DVD Review: Más negro que la noche

2015-01-26

Más negro que la noche, a.k.a. Blacker Than Night, is a Mexican horror that is a remake of the 1975 film of the same name. There are almost no reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, but the film did make nearly $1 million in limited release. That's a lot for a horror film. Will it do better on the home market, as most horror films do? Or did it unduly benefit from the recent success of Hispanic films and the inflated 3D prices? More...

2014 - Awards Season: PGA - Winners

2015-01-25

Birdman poster

The Producers Guild of America handed out their awards last night and there weren't many surprises to discuss. In fact, the favorite won all three theatrical awards, starting with... More...

Weekend Estimates: American Sniper Continues Box Office Domination

2015-01-25

American Sniper poster

After smashing the January weekend record last weekend, American Sniper is enjoying a very solid second-weekend hold. So solid, in fact, that it will also have the third-best January weekend. If it drops less than 35% next weekend, it will share with Avatar the records for the top six January weekends, each movie having topped $42 million three times. Sniper’s expected weekend this time around is $64.365m, according to Warner Bros. Sunday morning projection. More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: Open Windows

2015-01-25

Open Windows is an English-language, Spanish thriller starring Elijah Wood and Sasha Grey. Elijah Wood was part of one of the biggest franchises ever, but since then he plays in mostly smaller movies, most of which struggle to find an audience in theaters. For instance, he was really good in Grand Piano. Is this another great film that deserves to be discovered on the home market? Or is there a legitimate reason it struggled in theaters? More...

Home Market Numbers: 2014, The Year the Home Market Froze

2015-01-24

We are getting back to weekly home market analysis this weekend, but before we do that, let's have a brief look at the home market in 2014. The overall winner was Frozen, which just destroyed the competition. It sold more Blu-rays (7.23 million units for $152.93 million) than the nearest competitor, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire sold total units, and had more combined sales than the next three best-selling films. It is the second-best selling Blu-ray off all time and will soon top Avatar for first place. Additionally, the film surpassed 10 million DVDs sold by a significant margin at 11.03 million units for $185.48 million, while its overall home market sales for the year were 18.27 million units for $338.41 million in total sales. More...

Blu-ray Sales: No Reward for Good Deeds

2015-01-24

The first set of new releases for Blu-ray didn't result in a change at the top, as The Equalizer remained on top of the chart during its sophomore stint. Over the week, it sold $143,000 / $3.48 million for two-week totals of 821,000 units / $17.08 million. This gives it a two-week Blu-ray share of 51%, which is good for an action film. It does have a slightly older target demographic, so that explains why it isn't as good as say... More...

DVD Sales: Left Behind Out in Front

2015-01-24

Left Behind led the new releases on the DVD chart, at least in terms of units sold, with 201,000. Its sales for the week were $2.05 million, giving it third place by that metric. This is not great for a first-run release, but not bad compared to the film's box office. It is also much better than its opening on Blu-ray. More...

Contest: Operation Project

2015-01-23

Next weekend is the last weekend of the January and there are three films being dumped into theaters. Of these, Project Almanac is earning the best buzz by far, but even then I think it will struggle just to become a midlevel hit. Since the other two wide releases might miss the top five, Project Almanac is the only real choice for the target film for this week's box office prediction contest. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for Project Almanac.

Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a copy of the Open Windows on Blu-ray. Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win a previously reviewed Blu-ray. Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay! More...

Limited Release: Don't Want to Start in the Red

2015-01-23

Red Army poster

It is not a great week for limited releases, as there are many films opening with mixed reviews and opening on Video on Demand as well as in theaters. That doesn't mean there aren't some films that could be hits. Mommy's reviews suggest it could land near the top of the per theater chart. Meanwhile, Red Army is still rocking 100% positive reviews, but it is a documentary. More...

Contest: Ring In the New Year: Winning Announcement

2015-01-22

The winners of our Ring In the New Year contest were determined and they are... More...

International Box Office: Taken Takes Top Spot

2015-01-22

Taken 3 poster

Taken 3 rose to first place during its third weekend of release earning $31.4 million in 49 markets for an international total of $99.0 million. Its biggest debut of the weekend was in the Philippines, where it earned first place with $2.5 million on 218 screens. It also earned first place in Russia, but with only $1.80 million on 1,438. Its biggest market was the U.K., where it remained in first place with $5.00 million in 500 theaters for a two-week total on $18.55 million. More...

Weekend Predictions: New Releases to Fall Victim to Sniper

2015-01-22

American Sniper poster

There are three wide releases coming out this weekend: The Boy Next Door, Mortdecai, and Strange Magic. None of these movies are earning good reviews and none of them are likely to become even midlevel hits. As such, American Sniper will have a really, really easy time to repeat in top spot. It could drop by 80% and still earn first place this weekend. This weekend last year, the only wide release was I, Frankenstein, which bombed hard. I really hope none of the new releases open as poorly as that film did, but it is possible. Regardless, 2015 will win thanks to American Sniper's sophomore stint. More...

DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 20th, 2015

2015-01-21

It is another very shallow week on the home market with only a few releases that are really worth considering. The biggest release is Lucy, which is absolutely worth picking up the Blu-ray Combo Pack, assuming you are willing to ignore the bad science. Likewise, The Boxtrolls the second biggest hit and the 3D Blu-ray Combo Pack is worth picking up, if you like stop-motion animation. As for Pick of the Week Contenders, there are a trio of such films: Coherence on DVD, The Drop on DVD or Blu-ray, and The Mule on DVD or Blu-ray. In the end it was a coin toss and Coherence won. More...

Weekend Wrap-Up: Sniper Earns Even More Records

2015-01-21

American Sniper poster

American Sniper opened wide after a record-breaking run on limited release and it topped expectations. I know, that's an understatement, but in my defense, I don't think there's anybody that seriously predicted American Sniper would earn $107 million during the four-day weekend. A lot of people didn't think it would earn $107 million in total. Both The Wedding Ringer and Paddington did okay business, all things considering, while Blackhat was also released this past weekend. Overall, the box office was $203 million over the three-day period, which was 61% more than last weekend. More importantly, it was 15% more than the same weekend last year. 2015 is still behind 2014 in the year-to-date comparison, but it closed the gap to just just under $20 million or 2.9%. More...

Per Theater Chart: Sniper Expands Wide, but Still Secures Top Spot

2015-01-21

American Sniper poster

American Sniper expanded wide, but it still earned first place on the per theater chart with an average of $25,111 in more than 3,000 theaters. Second place went to Still Alice, which opened with an average of $17,667 in 12 theaters. Those were the only two films to reach the $10,000 club over the three-day weekend, but Ode to me Father came close enough that it probably got there over the four-day weekend. More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: White Bird in a Blizzard

2015-01-20

I heard a lot of pre-release buzz for White Bird in a Blizzard, in part because it starred Shailene Woodley, who is rapidly becoming an A-list star. However, its reviews were mixed and it opened below the Mendoza Line. (Although the weak box office numbers are in part due to the film opening on Video on Demand.) Were the critics overly harsh? Or was the buzz overly generous? More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: Lucy

2015-01-20

Lucy opened at the end of July and it was expected to do well at the box office, but it was a surprise hit earning more than $40 million opening weekend and $120 million domestically, not to mention over $450 million worldwide. This is an even better result when you compare it to how bad the overall summer box office was. Did this film deserve this success? Or did this film benefit from the lack of strong competition? More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: Life's a Breeze

2015-01-19

Life's a Breeze is an Irish film that came out in limited release, but failed to make an impact at the box office opening well below the Mendoza Line. Is the film as bad as that result would indicate? Or did it slip between the cracks like so many limited releases before it? More...

Weekend Estimates: American Sniper Shatters January Record

2015-01-18

American Sniper poster

American Sniper was confidently expected to top the box office charts this weekend, and to give Clint Eastwood his best weekend as a director, but no-one was predicting that the film would break the record for the biggest weekend in January by over $20 million. As of Sunday morning, that’s what Warner Bros. is projecting for the film with their official weekend estimate standing at $90,205,000 from 3,555 theaters. Since the film had already played for three weeks in exclusive engagements, it will also grab the crown for biggest fourth weekend at the box office. More...

Featured 3D Blu-ray / DVD Review: The Boxtrolls

2015-01-18

The Boxtrolls was a September release that earned good reviews, especially for a September release. However, it failed to meet expectations at the box office. On the other hand, it has done very well with Awards Season voters. Is it as bad as its box office would indicate? Is it as good as its Oscar nomination would indicate? Or is it somewhere in-between? More...

2014 Awards Season: Oscars - Nominations

2015-01-17

Birdman poster

The Oscar nominations were announced early in the morning, when all sensible people were asleep. There were some surprises, as well as some results that would have been surprises had it not been for the previous Awards Season nominations. Seventeen films earned two or more nods, led by Birdman and The Grand Budapest Hotel, both of which picked up nine nominations, while The Imitation Game was right behind with eight. More...

Technical Rage Delay

2015-01-16

Selma poster

Oscar nominations came out yesterday morning, but there will be a delay in our list and reactions because of rage. I've been working at The Numbers for 12 years and I've been doing the Awards Season reports for almost as long. (The format we use today didn't really start till 2006.) The Oscar nominations for this year are the worst I've seen. I literally can't get through a single category without getting angry and walking away from my computer. Because of that, I'm going to take a break from that and work on the regular columns while I calm down, because otherwise the column will degenerate into a string of expletives before I get past the Best Director list. Look for our full list of nominees and hopefully calmer reactions Saturday morning. More...

Weekend Predictions: Can Sniper Expand into First Place?

2015-01-16

American Sniper poster

There are four films opening or expanding wide this Martin Luther King Day weekend. American Sniper is expanding wide after its record-breaking limited release run. The Wedding Ringer is expected to earn second place, while Paddington and Blackhat are the other wide releases. They have opposite results when it comes to reviews, but I fear neither will find an audience in theaters. This weekend last year was led by Ride Along with $41.52 million. I don't think American Sniper will match that, nor do I think the overall box office is quite as strong, so 2015 will probably lose the year-over-year comparison. Hopefully it will be close. More...

Contest: A Bird in the Hand

2015-01-16

Next weekend there are three wide releases, The Boy Next Door, Mortdecai, and Strange Magic. Oh boy. This is the most January out of all of the January weeks. I really don't think any of them will even come close to becoming a midlevel hit, but one of them will have to be the target film for this week's box office prediction contest. I'm going with ... rolls a dice ... Mortdecai. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for Mortdecai.

Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a copy of White Bird in a Blizzard on DVD. Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will win a copy of Life's a Breeze on DVD. Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay! More...

Limited Release: Still Struggling to Find a Hit

2015-01-16

Still Alice poster

It is a really, really bad weekend to release a limited release. Not only do fans of art house cinema have a lot of films to choose from, but many of them are busy talking about the Oscar nominations, which were just announced. Even so, there are about a dozen limited releases on this week's list. I seriously doubt most of them will do well enough to make a real impact on the box office. There is one exception, as Still Alice is earning great reviews and even picked up a number of major nominations this Awards Season. More...

International Box Office: Night Rises to the Top

2015-01-15

Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb poster

Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb rose to first place with $46.2 million in 48 markets for totals of $148.6 million internationally and $248.1 million worldwide. This includes a $26.39 million "opening" in China for an 8-day total of $31.06 million. 8-day opening? It also opened in first place in Russia with $5.55 million on 1,690 screens. More...

2014 - Awards Season: DGA - Nominations

2015-01-15

Birdman poster

The Directors Guild of America were the last major Awards Season group to hand out their nominations and did so over two days this week. Not surprisingly, for the most part, the same group of films appear on this list as have appeared on the rest of the Awards Season nominations. Birdman, Boyhood, and The Imitation Game all make appearances, More...

Contest: No Need to Take: Winning Announcement

2015-01-14

Taken 3 poster

The winners of our No Need to Take contest were determined and they are... More...

Weekend Wrap-Up: Taken Takes Top Spot, Can't Save 2015

2015-01-13

Taken 3 poster

Taken 3 earned first place at the box office, as expected, but it did so earning close to $40 million, which is much more than expected. Unfortunately, the rest of the box office wasn't nearly as strong as the overall number fell 19% from last week to $126 million. Compared to last year, the box office this year was 10% lower than the same weekend last year. Year-to-date, 2015 is behind 2014's pace by 1.8%. However, while 2014 was the worst year at the box office in nearly two decades, last January was the second-best January ever, so it is still way too early to panic. More...

DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 13th, 2015

2015-01-13

This week on the home market is about as busy as last week was, but there are far fewer contenders for Pick of the Week, as Gone Girl just crushes the competition and the Blu-ray is the Pick of the Week. The next best picks are Empire: Season Five and Love is Strange on Blu-ray. More...

Per Theater Chart: Sniper Still Calling the Shots

2015-01-13

American Sniper poster

There was only one new release in the $10,000 club, which left American Sniper with an easy victory. It pulled in an average of $144,880 in four theaters, making it the first film ever to earn an per theater average of $100,000 or more for three weeks. Second place went to A Most Violent Year with an average of $29,135, also in four theaters. Taken 3 was the best of the new releases with an average of $10,908, just ahead of Song of the Sea with an average of $10,470. More...

2014 - Awards Season: Golden Globes - Winners

2015-01-12

Boyhood poster

We are still waiting for the DGA nominations to be announced, but we had the first major awards show on Sunday. The Golden Globes winners were announced Sunday night and while there were not a lot of surprises, there are some things worth talking about. Leading the way with three wins was Boyhood, while Birdman and The Theory of Everything each picked up a pair of wins. More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: A Walk Among the Tombstones

2015-01-12

A Walk Among the Tombstones opened in September, which is a bad sign. It did earn good reviews, but failed to find an audience in theaters. Granted, it was a September release, so perhaps that's the problem. Or perhaps Liam Neeson has done one too many similar roles and moviegoers have grown tired of these movies. More...

2014 - Awards Season: BAFTA - Nominations

2015-01-11

The Grand Budapest Hotel poster

The BAFTA nominations were announced yesterday and unlike most other Awards Season voters, the BAFTA voters gave us some real surprises. For instance, Birdman didn't lead the way. In fact, it was a comedy, The Grand Budapest Hotel, that earned the most nominations at 11. Granted, Birdman and The Theory of Everything were tied for second place with ten each, but it is still strange to see a comedy leading the way. More...

Weekend Estimates: Taken Tops $40 Million

2015-01-11

Taken 3 poster

A lukewarm critical reception hasn’t deterred movie fans from embracing the (possibly) final installment in the Taken franchise this weekend, with Taken 3 enjoying a $40.4 million debut, according to Fox’s Sunday estimate. That’s down somewhat from the $49.5 million posted by Taken 2 on its debut, but a theater average of $11,200 speaks for itself. More...

Featured TV on DVD Review: Mythbusters: 10th Anniversary Collection

2015-01-11

Mythbusters has been on the air for just over a decade starting with three specials that aired in early 2003. Since then, the series has amassed over 250 episodes / specials. This 10-disc set collects 50 of them, as chosen by the five hosts. Is this set worth picking up for fans of the show? Is it worth picking up for those who have been buying the full-season DVDs as they've been coming out? The answer to the second question is no, because there are no extras on the DVD. More...

2014 - Awards Season: PGA - Nominations

2015-01-10

Birdman poster

The Producers Guild of America nominations were announced and there's not a lot of surprises among the three categories. Birdman, Boyhood, The Imitation Game, and others continue to get accolades, but there are also some films that are being passed over too often. More...

2014 - Awards Season: WGA - Nominations

2015-01-10

Boyhood poster

The Writers Guild of America nominations were latest to be announced, but were there any real surprises? Yes. Birdman didn't get a nomination, but Guardians of the Galaxy did. More on that later. Besides those two films, there are not a lot of surprises here and the usual contenders are present, including Boyhood and The Imitation Game, but there are also some other notable films missing. More...

Contest: Ring In the New Year

2015-01-09

There are four wide releases / wide expansions next weekend with American Sniper and The Wedding Ringer leading the way. I'm not sure which film will come out on top; however, since American Sniper is expanding wide, The Wedding Ringer is the much better choice for the target film for this week's box office prediction contest. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for The Wedding Ringer.

Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a copy of the Ong Bak Trilogy on DVD. Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win a copy of the Ong Bak Trilogy on DVD. Finally, one additional entrant will be chosen and they will also win a copy of the Ong Bak Trilogy on DVD. Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay! More...

Beloved Limited Release

2015-01-09

Die geliebten Schwestern poster

It is still a really bad time of the year to release a film in limited release, and will continue to be so until Awards Season ends. Fans of art house theater have far too many films to watch and the Oscar contenders are drowning out the competition. That's not to say there are no good films on this week's list. In fact, there are many that are earning good reviews. Unfortunately, there are almost none that are earning great reviews and that's a problem. More...

Weekend Predictions: Will Taken Take Top Spot?

2015-01-08

Taken 3 poster

It is a strange weekend at the box office with the number of wide releases being outnumbered by the number of wide expansions. Taken 3 is the only wide release and it is widely expected to top the chart by a significant margin. Selma is the best film on this week's list and should do well during its first wide weekend. On the other hand, it appears Inherent Vice is not opening truly wide and that it likely won't reach the top ten. This weekend last year was led by Lone Survivor, which earned $37.85 million during its first week of wide release, while the only new wide release was The Legend of Hercules with $8.87 million. There was also another not-so wide expansion, August: Osage County, which earned seventh place with $7.16 million. Overall, it looks like 2015's batch of new releases are not quite as strong as last year's were, but 2015 did win last weekend, so perhaps the holdovers can help 2015 come out on top of the year-over-year comparison. More...

International Box Office: Hobbit Hits Half a Billion

2015-01-07

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies poster

It was a big week for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, as it crossed the $500 million mark on the international box office. Over the weekend it pulled in $52.5 million in 65 markets for totals of $504.7 million internationally and $725.3 million worldwide. At this pace, the film will reach $800 million worldwide, possibly as early as this time next week. As for last weekend, there were very few new openings, but the film did earn first place in Argentina with $2.1 million on 397 screens. The film opens in China before the end of the month and the studio is obviously hoping for big numbers in that market. More...

Per Theater Chart: 2015 Starts as 2014 Ended

2015-01-06

American Sniper poster

There were very few new films that came out during the first weekend of 2015, so it should come as no surprise that the per theater chart looked mostly the same as it did last weekend. This includes the top of the chart, American Sniper, which earned an average of $169,227 in four theaters, which is 7% higher than last weekend. That bodes well for its planned wide release later in the month. The best new release was A Most Violent Year, which opened with an average of $43,197, also in four theaters. This film should also expand significantly over the coming weeks. Selma was next with an average of $28,781 in 22 theaters. Inherent Vice earned an average of $15,712 in 16 theaters. It is expanding wide in just a few days, so this is a great result. Two Days, One Night was right behind with an average of $15,628 in two theaters. The Imitation Game was roughly even with last week with an average of $10,308. Leviathan rose earning an average of $10,300 in three theaters. More...

Contest: Back in Black: Winning Announcement

2015-01-06

The Woman in Black: Angel of Death poster

The winners of our Back in Black contest were determined and they are... More...

Featured Blu-ray / DVD Review: Weird Al Yankovic Double-Shot

2015-01-05

Something weird has happened. I have nothing to review. This is partially due to the holidays and I suspect next week will be busier. However, in the meantime I didn't want to have nothing to review this week, so I thought I would do a Weird Al Yankovic double-shot, as two of his films had new home market releases recently. The first of these is... More...

DVD and Blu-ray Releases for January 6th, 2015

2015-01-05

It is a strange week on the home market, as there are five contenders for Pick of the Week, including three of them that start with the letter G. However, this isn't because the week is loaded with simply amazing titles. It's because none of the contenders were simply amazing in both quality and extras. Archer: Season 5 on DVD or Blu-ray, Boyhood on DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack, Get on Up on DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack, Girls: Season 3 on DVD or Blu-ray, and The Guest on DVD or Blu-ray Combo Pack were the five contenders. Boyhood is the best in the Award-worthy meaning of the word, Archer is the show I would get the most entertainment from. In the end, it was down to a coin toss, a literal coin toss, and Archer: Season 5 on DVD or Blu-ray won. More...

Weekend Wrap-Up: Angel of Death Breathes Life into Box Office

2015-01-05

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies poster

2015 box office started off on a strong note with The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies leading the way with $21.73 million. More impressive, The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death earned fourth place with $15.03 million, which is significantly more than what most people were predicting. The overall box office was $155 million, which is 2% lower than last weekend. More importantly, it is 10% higher than the same weekend last year. Obviously it is far, far too early to judge 2015, but after what happened last year, I'll take any win and I'll be happy about it. More...

Weekend Predictions: Will New Year Start in the Black

2015-01-02

The Woman in Black: Angel of Death poster

The new year starts with just one new release, The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death. It's a horror film, which is a genre that is becoming common for early year releases. This is probably because these films are relatively cheap to produce, so they don't need a strong box office to break even. For example, this weekend last year, Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones, a horror film that cost $5 million to make, was the only wide release. I don't think Angel of Death will top The Marked Ones, but last weekend was strong in the year-over-year comparison, so perhaps the holdovers can help 2015 start on a winning note. More...

Contest: No Need to Take

2015-01-02

Taken 3 poster

Next weekend there is only one wide release, Taken 3, as well as two limited releases possibly expanding wide. Because of this, Taken 3 is really the only choice for the target film for this week's box office prediction contest. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for Taken 3.

Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a Frankenprize of one TV on DVD season set, two DVDs or Movies, or three kids TV on DVD releases. Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will also win a Frankenprize as described above. Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay! More...

Limited Release: A Most Violent Weekend

2015-01-02

A Most Violent Year poster

Wednesday was the last day a film could open to qualify for this year's Oscars and A Most Violent Year just got in under the wire. It isn't the only film opening in limited release this week, but it has by far the most box office potential. More...

2015 Preview: January

2015-01-01

Taken 3 poster

2014 is over and for the most part, December was a soft ending to a weak year. This is bad news for two reasons. Firstly, it means the overall box office is still soft and it is unlikely that January will start strong. Secondly, last January was a great month, thanks in part to Frozen and other holdovers. The slump can't last forever and Taken 3 should help 2015 get off to a reasonably fast start and it even has a shot at $100 million. American Sniper got off to a really fast start in limited release, so it too could be a hit when it expands wide. By comparison, last January was led by Ride Along, but there were only two other films that didn't completely bomb. I want to say 2015 will start out on a winning note, but given the box office losing streak, it will likely pay to be pessimistic. More...

International Box Office: Hobbit Meets More Milestones

2015-01-01

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies poster

For the third week in a row, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies held onto first place with $89.0 million in 62 markets for totals of $405.1 million internationally and $573.6 million worldwide. The film opened in first place in Australia with $10.1 million on 603 screens, while the film was particularly strong in Poland earning $5.3 million on 699. By this time next week, it should be at $500 million internationally and $700 million worldwide, which is enough to break even, but not enough to keep pace with the franchise average. More...