Scotty G’s Box Office Wrap-Up Report

“Samsonite! I was way off.” – Lloyd Christmas from Dumb & Dumber.

That quote is a pretty accurate way to describe my predictions this weekend. So let’s see just how bad I was.

District 9 destroyed my prediction to become the #1 movie in North America this weekend. It more than doubled my prediction to be exact. District 9 led the box office with a gross of $37 million [I predicted $18 million, and for it to be the #2 film], and had the best per theatre average of any movie with $12,135. Sony has to be jacked about this result. The marketing was smart and got people into theatres. It didn’t have any major stars, but it had Peter Jackson producing, and had excellent reviews. In retrospect, the film reminds me of Cloverfield. That film had great marketing, no stars, and J.J. Abrams as a producer. The only difference was that District 9 got better reviews, so it might play longer.

Dropping from 1st place to 2nd place is G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra. The film dropped a large 58.9% for a gross of $22.5 million [I predicted $24.6 million, and for it to stay in the #1 spot], and a per theatre average of $5,615. The drop is big, but not unexpected as reviews were not strong, and audiences seem to be mixed on the film. The film has now grossed $98.7 million, and will probably finish out with no more than $150 million.

In 3rd place is The Time Traveler’s Wife with Rachel McAdams and Eric Bana. The film grossed $19.2 million [I predicted $15 million and for it to be the #3 film], and had a per theatre average of $6,427 which was 2nd best of all films at the box office this weekend. Reviews have been mixed, so we’ll see what the long term holds for this film, but audiences wanted a romantic drama instead of a romantic comedy, and this film fit the bill.

In 4th place is Julie& Julia, which was off only 38.1% for a gross of $12.4 million [I predicted $11 million and for it to be the #4 film], and a per theatre average of $5,268. The film has taken in $43.6 million. The hold from weekend to weekend was strong, so while I don’t think this film will come close to $100 million, it should turn out to be a nice hit for all involved.

In 5th place is G-Force with a gross of $6.9 million. It was down 30% from last weekend and its total gross stands at $99 million. I did not make a prediction on this film as I incorrectly thought it would be out of the top 5.

In other box office news:

In 6th place is The Good: Live Hard. Sell Hard. with a gross of $5.3 million. It had an awful per theatre average of $2,911 so it will be on DVD shelves soon.

In 9th place is Ponyo. The Hayao Miyazaki film grossed $3.5 million and had a per theatre average of $3,782. It’s hard to compare the release of Ponyo to other Miyazaki films released by Disney because they had very limited releases on their opening weekends [usually in less than 40 theatres], but this was never a film that was going to do big box office. Disney should be happy with the result.

In 12th place was Bandslam. A couple of weeks ago, I ripped into Aliens in the Attic for how bad its opening weekend was. Bandslam had an even worse weekend. Opening in 2,121 theatres, the film grossed $2.25 million and has a dismal per theatre average of $1,061 (I predicted $8 million and that it would be the #5 film). I guarantee the film would have had a better result if the Disney marketing machine had been behind this, but the film was released by Summit so it did not have that sort of power. It’s a good lesson for the stars of the film as well, as Vanessa Hudgens and Aly from Aly and AJ are not ready to move on from the Disney brand name and headline a film. I’m sure Summit is hoping that the film finds an audience on DVD.

So to recap, here were my predictions:

1) G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra – $24.6 million

2) District 9 – $18 million

3) The Time Traveler’s Wife – $15 million

4) Julie & Julia – $11 million

5) Band Slam – $8 million

And here are the actual numbers:

1) District 9 – $37 million

2) G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra – $22.5 million

3) The Time Traveler’s Wife – $19.2 million

4) Julie & Julia – $12.4 million

5) G-Force – $6.9 million

My Top 5 predictions were off by $32.5 million.

Next weekend brings us Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds.

Until next weekend!

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