March 31st, 2008
New releases had an impressive one-two punch on the DVD sales chart with I Am Legend leading the way over second place Enchanted by 3.56 million to 2.82 million in terms of units and $66.39 million to $44.69 million in terms of dollars. They are not only the top two for the week, they are the top two openings of 2008 so far, and catapult both movies into the top four for the year to date.
March 31st, 2008
Half a dozen new releases charted this week, including I Am Legend, which generated $10.99 million in rentals.
March 18th, 2008
The movie business is cyclical with peaks (summer season and the winter holidays), as well as lulls (September and January). This translates into the peaks and lulls in the home market as well, just three to four months later. We are finally coming out of the latest home market quiet period and the biggest hit of the Christmas Holidays is hitting the home market. However it is not the DVD Pick of the Week. That honor goes to Enchanted, which is worth picking up on DVD but is a must-have on Blu-ray.
November 11th, 2007
Surf's Up grew by 77% in France adding $3.44 million on 628 screens over the weekend for a total of $7.36 million in total. This growth was due to the Toussaint holiday while it was enough to lift the film's weekend box office to $5.84 million on 1996 screens in 32 markets for a total of $72.34 million. The film has yet to open in Scandinavia as well as Japan and should hit $100 million internationally before it is done, which is significantly more than the $58.87 million it earned domestically, but not enough to show a profit just yet.
November 4th, 2007
The Orphanage may have fallen out of the top five internationally, but it remained the top draw in Spain with $4.11 million on 373 screens over the weekend for a three-week total of $20.78 million. This is more than Ratatouille has earned in that market after three months of release and equivalent to $200 to $300 million here. It won't make $200 to $300 million here, in fact, it might not make $20 million here. It all depends on how well it does with critics and award committees.
October 28th, 2007
Superbad climbed into sixth place with $4.26 million on 1836 screens in 27 markets for a total of $31.79 million. Most of that growth came from Spain where the film debuted in second place with $2.24 million on 350 screens while it also opened in Brazil with $511,000 on 192 screens. The film doesn't have many major markets left to open in, but it has already earned more than most comparable films do during their entire run.
October 22nd, 2007
It's been more than a month since we've seen the weekend box office numbers top last year's figures. This time around the overall box office was $97 million, which was down 2% from last weekend and 8% from the same weekend last year. So far this fall is behind lasts year's pace by more than 6%, 10% if you are using tickets sold and not dollars. Year to date, on the other hand, is still showing a 6% growth, and up more than $400 million on last year's pace. Even ticket sales are still up a strong 1.4%, so there's no reason to panic just yet, but the recent weakness is still a cause for concern.
October 21st, 2007
Bhool Bhulaiyaa became the latest in a long line of Indian films to strike it rich on the international box office as it scored sixth place with $4.59 million on 756 screens in 17 markets. The supernatural comedy even scored a top ten finish in Britain with $600,000 on 45 screens topping a few major Hollywood releases that week.
October 15th, 2007
October is turning into a nightmare at the box office as all but one new release failed to reach modest expectations. The overall box office did take in $100 million, which was a health 19% increase from the last week. However, that was still 10% lower than the same weekend last year. 2007 is still up 7% from last year, but the fall season is down 5% and if things don't turn around, and soon, it could cast a gloom on the important holiday box office market.
October 8th, 2007
September was predictable almost to the point of boredom.
However, October got off to a rather shocking, near record-breaking start.
Granted, these weren't records that studios want to break, with the overall box office fell 7% from last weekend to just $84 million. Worse yet, that was 24% lower than the same weekend last year.
October 6th, 2007
We are starting to get full websites for some of the massive holiday season releases, which should mean there will be at least one award worthy website on each week's list. As for this week, there were a few that have potential assuming the sections marked coming soon live up to the rest of the site. But just one site, The Seeker: The Dark is Rising - Official Site, that was worthy of the Weekly Website Award.
October 4th, 2007
September may be over, but the box office isn't exactly heating up.
There are three wide releases this week (or two, depending on your definition of wide), but only one has a shot at any real box office success.
And even that is rather subdued given the film's pedigree.
I don't expect things to be significantly different next weekend, or the weekend after that.
In fact, the next true hit doesn't come till November.
October 1st, 2007
October means one thing: Free candy. ... Oh yeah, and the unofficial start of Award Season.
And Halloween brings us a few horror films as well.
Unfortunately, this year October is rather weak, with no film looking like a strong contender for $100 million and most of the films with early Oscar buzz having performed poorly with the critics.
The only good news is last October was also weak at the box office, meaning there's at least a reasonable shot at 2007 maintaining its box office lead over 2006.
September 28th, 2007
For the first time since August, we have a film with a shot at $100 million opening next week. This film, The Dark is Rising, is also this week's target film.
To win one must simply predict the box office opening for The Dark is Rising.
Whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going over, will win 1408 - 2-Disc Collector's Edition.
Meanwhile, whoever comes the closest to predicting the film's opening 3-day weekend box office (Friday to Sunday), without going under, will win Black Sheep on DVD.
Entries must be received by 10 a.m., Pacific Time on Friday to be eligible, so don't delay!
August 5th, 2007
Another big list of movie sites, but not much in the way of top-notch entries. For a movie site to be an award winner, I expect it to have all of the usual features, extras like clips, something interactive like a game, and background sound and animation. The film that best exemplifies that criteria is Stardust - Official Site, which is the winner of the Weekly Website Award.
July 29th, 2007
Server upgrades went... less smoothly than anticipated, which delayed this column, but at least there are a huge number of sites to check out. Many of these sites are making their first appearance on the list while quite a few are making their last appearance. Unfortunately, while it's a big list, there are not many that are even close to being award worthy at the moment. 30 Days of Night - Official Site comes the closest, but I'm waiting for the missing features to be added before I make that decision.
July 14th, 2007
One of the last summer blockbusters launched its full site this week. This means two things, The Bourne Ultimatum - Official Site is the clear winner of the weekly website award. And secondly, there will likely be a slowdown in top-notch sites as we approach the dog days of summer, and the even worse days of September.
May 13th, 2007
This week's round of new movie release information contains release dates for 1408, Illegal Tender, Mr. Woodcock and more.
October 15th, 2006
This week's round of new movie release information contains release dates for Jumper, Kung Fu Panda, Charlie Wilson's War and more.