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Box Office Prospects Look Grimm

August 26th, 2005

The last weekend in August brings us three wide releases, sort of. The widest release, and most likely weekend champion, is opening much wider than expected, but the other two films are not. One is opening in not much more than 2,000 theatres while the other didn't even crack the top ten on the theatre count chart for the weekend. On the plus side, this weekend last year was really weak, so 2005 should catch up a little bit.

The Brothers Grimm is being compared to another Terry Gilliam Fantasy film, The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. On the one hand, that was an amazing movie. On the other hand, when it was release it was widely regarded as the most expensive bomb of all time, making only $8 million on a budget of $46.63 million (it has since been 'beaten' by many, many films). This film isn't earning the same kind of reviews. It is often called imagination without direction, but it will likely end up losing a lot of money at the box office. It cost $80 million to make and $20 million over the weekend is likely out of the question, and its opening box office could be as low as $10 million, which will certainly not be enough to earn top spot. Go with $18 million over the next three days.

Second place should go to The 40 Year-Old Virgin, whose name alone made the film a tough sell to many moviegoers. However, now that roughly 5 million people have seen the film the positive word of mouth should help the film have incredible legs as people who pre-judged the film should begin to give it a second chance. That is not to say it will have a The Wedding Crashers-like run, but losing less than a third of its opening weekend box office and landing at $15 million should help the film earn a small profit domestically (target box office to do that is about $80 million).

Red Eye also earned outstanding reviews, but the very nature of the movie will limit the film's legs (suspense films tend to have similar legs to horror films). This film could lose as much as 50% at the box office, but I think it will just miss that fate, landing at $9 million.

Four Brothers should hold up even better this week compared to last adding just under $8 million to its box office, which will put it past $50 million in the process. It's already beaten the first of the month prediction and profitability is all but guaranteed at this point. It's just a matter of when it will reach that goal.

Next up is The Cave, which is earning terrible reviews, especially from the cream-of-the-crop critics. And if that's any indication, there's really only one reason to see the film and that's to look at the cool creature. However, since the ads already show it to us, there's little reason left to pay money to see the movie. Over the weekend it will likely struggle to hit $7 million and will quickly disappear from theatres after that.

An even worse fate awaits Undiscovered, the latest contender in the worst film of the year contest. So far the film has earned an unblemished record of 0% positive with the critics, many of whom are comparing the film to Glitter. Sadly, this film will likely not open in the top ten, finishing with $2.5 million over the weekend and $5 million total.

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Filed under: The 40 Year-old Virgin, Four Brothers, Red Eye, The Brothers Grimm, The Cave, Undiscovered