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Christmas Doesn't Come Early this Year

October 25th, 2004

Thanks to a much better than expected debut of the number one film we saw a large jump in the box office for the week, 8.75% to be more precise. However, with the rest of the films on the list just able to live up to expectations, the overall box office was still well short of last year's performance. The 18.25% drop on the yearly comparison is quite troubling, and it probably won't get much better next week either.

The Grudge's opening weekend was almost exactly in line with predictions; well, with the original prediction anyway. Despite lowly reviews, the film was able to take in $39.1 million over the weekend. However, with the typical short legs of horror films, this film will most likely overtake Alien vs. Predator as the film with the highest opening weekend to finish with less than $100 million at the box office.

Shark Tale's performance this weekend was just a fraction away from being dead on. With $14.3 million it leaped over Troy for eighth place in the annual list and is now just a week from topping I, Robot for seventh. That will likely be its peak ranking for the year and by the time December is over, it will have been pushed out of the top ten.

Good news, bad news for Shall We Dance?. Good news, brought in another $8.6 million, just a 27% drop from its opening weekend. Bad news, with a theatre count increase of nearly 650 that's a 46.5% drop in its per theatre average.

Friday Night Lights was predicted to make $7.0 million, and missed that mark by just over $50,000. The good news is the film has already pulled in nearly $50 million, but with the focus on American Football, it is unlikely to earn half that internationally.

Team America: World Police's descent wasn't quite as bad as predicted, but with only $6.4 million its legs will be below the yearly average, a drastic change from what has been happening this fall. It had topped its production budget already, but with P&A, exhibitors' share and an international run which is even more dicey than its domestic, this film will need a strong home market numbers to show a profit anytime soon.

The last film to open wide this week was an unmitigated disaster. With a box office of just $4.4 million, audiences told the makers of Surviving Christmas that it is too damn early for a Christmas movie. Especially ones that earned reviews as bad as this one received.

I Heart Huckabees nearly doubled its total box office earnings with a $2.9 million, tenth place finish this week. Already one of the Independent darlings to come out this year, a strong showing during award season will really help its bottom line.

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Filed under: Shark Tale, The Grudge, Friday Night Lights, Shall We Dance?, Team America: World Police, I Heart Huckabees, Surviving Christmas