Alice in Wonderland was the #1 film for the third weekend in a row, and for the second weekend in a row, it fought off competition from three major new releases. The big surprise to me was the #2 film, and we’ll get to that soon. I picked four of the five films in the top five (and was dead on with two). The one I was incorrect on might be correct when final numbers come out on Monday. Here’s how everything broke down.
As mentioned above, the #1 film is Alice in Wonderland with $34.5 million. (I predicted a 1st place finish and a gross of $35.1 million). The film dropped only 45% from last weekend, and had a per theatre average of $9,227. Like last weekend, when its second weekend gross with the 6th highest in history, the third weekend gross became the 6th highest in history. Here are the all-time third weekend numbers:
1) Avatar – $68.4 million
2) Spider-Man – $45 million
3) The Dark Knight – $42.6 million
4) Shrek 2 – $37.9 million
5) Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest – $35.2 million
6) Alice in Wonderland – $34.5 million
I’ll stress that the 3-D showings are helping, and most every major release is hoping to jump on the 3-D bandwagon, but the low drop this weekend proves that this is a legitimate hit and one that should play right on through until the summer box office begins in May. Its total gross after three weekends is $265.8 million.
The battle for 2nd place is very tight, and the movies in question could switch positions when final numbers get released on Monday. Currently, the number two movie is, in a complete shock to me, Diary of a Wimpy Kid with a gross of $21.8 million (I predicted a 3rd place finish and a gross of $9 million). The popular book did have a decent opening with a per theatre average of $7,085, but let’s compare it to Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. That film had an opening weekend of $31.2 million and a per theatre average of $9,308. Having said that, I fully acknowledge that I underestimated the Diary of a Wimpy Kid’s performance and the popularity of the books that the film is based on. I still have not seen one bit of advertising for the film, but the film is not marketed to me, it’s marketed to kids, and this weekend’s numbers proved that they got kids to see the film. I don’t know if Diary of a Wimpy Kid has any staying power as kids will be done March Break, and next weekend brings us How To Train Your Dragon, which more kids want to see. Add Alice in Wonderland to the mix, and Diary of a Wimpy Kid quickly becomes the third option to see. Having said that, the budget for Diary of a Wimpy Kid is estimated to be between $15-$20 million, so it has already made a profit for the 20th Century Fox, so in that regard, it is a much great success than Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief. It’s weird to see so many positives and negatives for one film on its opening weekend, but I will take the positive point of view on this one.
3rd place belongs to The Bounty Hunter with a gross of $21 million (I predicted a 2nd place finish and a gross of $24 million). The Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler action-comedy had a decent per theatre average of $6,831, and considering it had to overcome some of the worst reviews of 2010, an opening weekend gross of over $20 million is excellent. I don’t know how well it will do over the coming weeks, as The Bounty Hunter will be battling another comedy next weekend in Hot Tub Time Machine. Still, it’s a decent opening and it could be the #2 film by end of day Monday.
The battle for 4th place is between three films as $188,000 currently separates 4th place from 6th place. The current #4 film is Repo Men with a gross of $6.15 million (I predicted a 4th place finish, and a gross of $8 million). The film had an absolutely horrendous opening with a per theatre average of $2,440 from 2,521 theatres. When the per theatre average is lower than the theatre count on the opening weekend, you know the film is going to be on DVD shelves in the very near future. The subject matter of repossessing organs is definitely a turn off to some people (although I do like it myself) and the film could be out of the top ten by next weekend.
In 5th place, in another surprise to me, is She’s Out Of My League with a gross of $6.01 million (I predicted a 6th place finish with a gross of $4.4 million). The Jay Baruchel comedy was the #3 film last weekend, and was down a pretty slim 38.5% from last weekend, so word-of-mouth on the film is good. Its per theatre average is $2,033 is not great, and it should disappear from the top ten shortly. The low percentage drop shows that there is an audience, but the larger audience will wait until it comes out on DVD. After two weekends, the film has grossed $19.9 million.
Dropping from 2nd place to 6th place is Green Zone with a gross of $5.96 million (I predicted a 5th place finish and a gross of $7.4 million). The Matt Damon//Paul Greengrass collaboration had a terrible second weekend, as it was off 58.3% from last weekend, and had a per theatre average of $1,985. I really do not think Hollywood is not going to release a war film for quite some time, unless they want prestige, because the subject matter is not bringing in audiences to the theatres. After two weekends, the Green Zone has grossed $24.7 million.
In limited release,
The Runaways finished in 18th place with a gross $803,000 from 244 theatres. It had a per theatre average of $3,291, which is not that great, but we’ll see if word-of-mouth helps the film out.
Hubble 3D had a gross of $453,000 from 39 theatres giving it a per theatre average of $11,615, which is the third highest per theatre average of any film in release.
City Island had a gross of $35,000 from 2 theatres giving it a per theatre average of $17,500, which is the second highest per theatre average of any film in release.
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo had a gross of $340,408 from 34 theatres giving it a per theatre average of $10,012, which is excellent for the foreign film based on the popular book.
The per theatre average winner of the weekend belongs to Ben Stiller and Noah Baumbach’s film Greenberg. It had a gross of $120,000 from 3 theatres, giving it a per theatre average of $40,000. That’s an excellent start for the film, and it will slowly be expanding over the coming weeks.
Vincere has yet to report its box office total for the weekend as of this writing.
So to recap, here were my predictions:
1) Alice in Wonderland – $35.1 million
2) The Bounty Hunter – $24 million
3) Diary of a Wimpy Kid – $9 million
4) Repo Men – $8 million
5) Green Zone – $7.4 million
And here are the actual numbers:
1) Alice in Wonderland – $34.5 million
2) Diary of a Wimpy Kid – $21.8 million
3) The Bounty Hunter – $21 million
4) Repo Men – $6.1 million
5) She’s Out Of My League – $6 million
My top five predictions were off by $19.9 million.
Next weekend, Alice in Wonderland will try to be the #1 film for a fourth straight weekend against DreamWorks’ animated film How To Train Your Dragon and John Cusack’s Hot Tub Time Machine.
Check back next week for my predictions!