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Thor Thunders to the Top

May 9th, 2011

There were reasons to celebrate the opening weekend of summer, even if it didn't get off to the best opening in recent memory. Thor took top spot, but its opening weekend was the weakest for the start of summer since Mission: Impossible: III kicked things off in 2006. The overall box office was up 5% from last weekend to $167 million, but that was 7% lower than the same weekend last year. However, this time last year the biggest film was Iron Man 2, which had the biggest opening of the year, so falling being by just 7% is not a bad result. Year-to-date, 2011 is behind 2010 by 13% at $3.25 billion to $3.75 billion, but hopefully in a couple of weeks we can start seeing that gap close.

Thor opened in top spot with $65.72 million, which was closer to the low end of expectations, but still a solid result. In fact, it was the third best opening for a non-sequel Marvel movie behind just Iron Man and Spider-man. It also earned strong reviews while its internal multiplier was better than a lot of Fanboy films manage. I don't think $200 million domestically is in the cards, but $150 million to $175 million is a solid goal. On the other hand, it seems to be doing better than expected internationally, but more on that on Wednesday.

As expected, Fast Five plummeted, but it was a little worse than expected, down more than 62% to $32.45 million. That said, it now has $139.78 million domestically, which is more than it cost to make, while it should show a profit before it hits the home market. It is currently the biggest hit of 2011 and will stay that way till On Stranger Tides gets going.

Jumping the Broom was the biggest surprise hit of the weekend earning $15.22 million, including $5.87 million on Mother's day alone. Its reviews are good, especially for a romantic comedy, while there's not a lot of films aimed at African-Americans opening in the coming weeks, so the direct competition is low. That said, niche market films sometimes suffer from a drop-off similar to Fanboy films, while Mother's Day could be seen as a holiday and this could lead to a sharp drop-off next weekend. However, even if this is the case, the studio should be more than happy with the result.

Something Borrowed topped expectations with $13.95 million over the weekend, but still had to settle for fourth place. Awful reviews and direct competition could result is a severe drop-off next weekend and it may struggle just to become a midlevel hit.

Rio rounded out the top five with $8.50 million over the weekend and $115.21 million after four. It was an expensive movie to make, as most digitally animated movies are, but the studio should be very happy with this result, especially when you take into account its far stronger international numbers.

Looking in on the sophomore class, both Prom and Hoodwinked Too: Hood vs. Evil struggled to hold onto their disappointingly small opening numbers. The former was down 53% to $2.21 million over the weekend for a total of $7.59 million after two, while the latter was down just over 50% to $2.04 million over the weekend for a total of $6.88 million, also after two. Both films have per theater averages under $1000 and will likely evaporate from theaters on Friday. The only reason that might not happen is the lack of a blockbuster release that will grab every screen available.


Filed under: Weekend Box Office, Thor, Rio, Hoodwinked Too: Hood vs. Evil, Fast Five, Jumping the Broom, Something Borrowed, Prom