For the Tibetan Mastiffs living on Snow Mountain, a dog’s life has a simple riff: Guard a peaceful village of wool-making sheep from the thuggish wolf Linnux and his rabid pack. To avoid distractions, Mastiff leader Khampa forbids all music from the mountain. But when Khampa’s son Bodi discovers a radio dropped by a passing airplane, it takes just a few guitar licks for his fate to be sealed: Bodi wants to be a rock n’ roll star. Yet that means defying his father’s wishes, heading to the city, and locating the legendary—and reclusive—musician Angus Scattergood, who needs to write a new song and fast.
It is a great week on the home market with two monster hits coming out: Logan and Get Out. However, both have previously been named Pick of the Week. Fortunately there was one other release in competition for Pick of the Week, My Life as a Zucchini on Blu-ray. Thank goodness this film comes out this week. Otherwise, John Wick: Chapter Two would have become the third Video on Demand release in a row to win Pick of the Week.
It’s not a good week for top-notch releases. Fifty Shades Darker is the biggest new DVD / Blu-ray release of the week, but it is far from the best. Get Out is clearly the best new release on this week’s list, but while it is the Pick of the Week, it is only coming out on Video on Demand and I would wait for the Blu-ray. Meanwhile we have another Puck of the Week, for best Canadian release. Those are usually rare, but we’ve have a streak of them recently. This week it’s The Void, which is great, but only coming out on DVD.
Get Out beat expectations on the weekend box office chart earning first place with $33.38 million. Not only did it beat expectations, but it also had better than expected legs over the weekend and that bodes well for its long term success. Neither of the other two wide releases, Collide and Rock Dog, earned a spot in the top ten. Both will disappear from theaters A.S.A.P. Overall, the box office fell 17% from last weekend to $123 million. It is, however, 9.9% higher than the same weekend last year. Meanwhile, 2017 remains $100 million behind last year’s pace at $1.69 billion to $1.79 billion. 2017 made gains over the weekend, but The Lego Batman Movie was the number one movie during the midweek and having a kids movie on top hurts the weekday box office numbers.
If you took a bet a year ago that the Oscar weekend box office would be dominated by a movie with an A- CinemaScore, and a score of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, you probably wouldn’t get great odds. If you’d included the stipulation that the film would be a horror movie written and directed by Jordan Peele, your winnings would set you up for retirement. For that is what we have this morning: Get Out will easily top the chart this weekend, with Universal estimating a weekend around $30.5 million.
Get Out opened with $1.8 million during its midnight previews. This isn’t the best previews we’ve seen this year, but it is near the top. For example, it is just 10% lower than Split managed in January and only three other films topped $2 million during previews. The film’s 100% positive reviews should certainly help the film’s legs over the weekend and that’s great news for the studio. In fact, there are some who think it will earn more than $35 million over the weekend. That’s a little too bullish for my tastes, but I can’t entirely dismiss those predictions. Opening with just over $30 million, on the other hand, now feels more likely. Since the film only cost $5 million to make, it could earn more over the opening weekend than it cost to make and advertise.
There are three films opening wide this weekend, which is a surprise. The buzz for Collide and Rock Dog are so quiet that I’m surprised they are playing in more than 2,000 theaters and I will be equally surprised if they open above the Mendoza Line by averaging more than $2,000 per theater. On the other hand, Get Out has nearly 100 reviews and its Tomatometer Score is 100% positive. It could be a surprise smash hit. Then again... It could be another Keanu. If that happens, The Lego Batman Movie will earn its third first-place finish in a row. That’s would be bad news for the overall box office. This weekend last year there were a similar selection of new releases. Gods of Egypt struggled while the other two new releases bombed, and only Deadpool saved the box office. If Get Out matches Deadpool’s total weekend of $31 million this time last year, I will be so happy. I don’t think it will happen, but it could be close.
Surprisingly, there are three wide releases next week. I wasn’t expecting both Collide and Rock Dog to debut in more than 2,000 theaters, but that appears to be the case. That said, Get Out is widely expected to be the biggest of these three releases and as such, it is the only real choice for the target film in this week’s box office prediction contest. In order to win, one must simply predict the opening weekend box office number for Get Out.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win a Frankenprise consisting of their choice of either one TV on DVD release, two movies, or a kids package (could be a theatrical release, a couple of single-disc TV on DVD releases, or a full season TV on DVD release).
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.
Finally, we will be choosing an entrant from the group of people who haven't won, or haven't won recently, and they will win the final Frankenprize, as described above.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
January turned out to be a good month. Granted, it didn’t live up to last January, but its box office was one of the top five Januarys of all time, so that’s still a good start to the year. Also, we will have our first $100 million movie released in 2017 and that doesn’t happen this early very often. As for February, there’s potentially the first $200 million hit of the year, The Lego Batman Movie. Fifty Shades Darker and The Great Wall both have a shot at $100 million. That said, it is more likely that both will miss that milestone than both will get there. As for the rest of the films, there are a few that are aiming for solid midlevel hits, like John Wick: Chapter Two and Get Out, while there are very few potential bombs. By comparison, last February there was one monster hit, Deadpool, and a lot of bombs. No other movie besides Deadpool made $50 million. No movie opening this month will match Deadpool, but we won’t have as many bombs either, so hopefully that will balance out and 2017 won’t fall further behind 2016.
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