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Nightmare Strong, Year-to-Year Comparison is Scary

May 3rd, 2010

The new releases were a little weaker than anticipated, while the holdovers could only compensate so much. The overall box office was $102 million, which was 2% higher than last weekend. That's the good news. The bad news is that it was down 36% from the same weekend last year. Of course, this weekend last year was the first weekend of May, so the comparison is fundamentally unfair and 2010 still has a 6.4% lead over 2009 at $3.46 billion to $3.25 billion. I expect it to increase its lead next weekend.

It was recently announced that the studio decided not to move forward with a sequel to Friday the 13th, despite the fact that it made $65 million domestically on a budget of just $17 million. This is bad news for anyone hoping for a reboot of the franchise, as Nightmare on Elm Street missed expectations with $32.90 million during its opening weekend. Granted, this is more than the original made in total and greater than average for the franchise. However, it is less than Friday the 13th opened with last year, and less than Freddy vs. Jason opened with in 2003. Add in reviews that are below acceptable, even for the genre, competition that will be incredible, and the film could suffer a 70 to 80% drop-off next weekend. Still, it is very likely that the movie will top original expectations and it should have no trouble showing a profit. But I don't think the studio will be willing to risk the money on yet another installment.

How to Train Your Dragon landed in second place with $10.61 million over the weekend for a total of $192.17 million. Unless Iron Man 2 chases it out of theaters, which is unlikely, it will hit $200 million by this time next week.

Date Night held on better than expected, down a mere 28% to $7.58 million over the weekend for a total of $73.60 million. At this pace, $90 million is rather likely, but it will probably start shedding theaters at an accelerated pace from now on.

The Back-up Plan fell 41% to $7.26 million over the weekend, but this was better than expected. On the other hand, its running tally of $22.96 million puts it behind original expectations, while its per theater average suggests that theater owners will be dropping it very shortly.

The final new wide release of the week was Furry Vengeance, which barely managed to grab a spot in the top five with $6.63 million. To put this in perspective, this is even weaker than the studio's previous family friendly flick, Astro Boy. It only has one positive review out of 51 up on Rotten Tomatoes, so it will likely disappear very shortly and it won't be missed.

Looking in on the sophomore class, The Losers just missed the top five with $5.89 million over the weekend and $18.01 million after two. It only fell 37%, but with a per theater average barely over $2000, it likely won't still around long enough to matter. It should still surpass its production budget domestically while earning a profit sometime during the film's home market run. Oceans was a much more expensive movie to make, but it only managed $2.56 million over the weekend for a total of $13.46 million after two. I don't know if there will be another nature documentary released next Earth day, but I won't be surprised if there were none.


Filed under: Date Night, The Losers, A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Back-up Plan, How to Train Your Dragon, Furry Vengeance, Oceans