Extremely Underwhelming & Incredibly Underperforming – Biff Bam Pop’s Box Office Wrap-Up Report, Weekend of January 20th, 2012

As expected, this weekend vampires and werewolves ruled the box office. What was a little less expected was that, even with what I considered a low end prediction for the team-up of Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock, the film managed to seriously underperform. Here’s how the weekend turned out:

Underworld: Awakening, the fourth film in the franchise and the first with Kate Beckinsale since the second outing, scared up a solid opening weekend debut of $25 million (about $2 million more than predicted). Definitely a strong showing, but like most horror films, I anticipate a steep drop come week 2. Speaking of steep drops, The Devil Inside, number one two weekends ago, is already out of the top 10, though it has taken in $54 million of a $1 million production cost.

Debuting in second with $18 million is the World War II flick, Red Tails. This one definitely surprised me, but I suppose having George Lucas on board still counts for something, since I can’t remember the last time Cuba Gooding Jr stared in a film that had such a decent opening weekend. I’m curious to see how the film holds up in the coming weeks, but I don’t see it really having legs, even after a goode debut.

When it comes to disappointments, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close has got to be concerned a huge one. I had predicted a second place showing with $17 million, and the film wasn’t even able to make that much. Instead, the 9/11 themed film with Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock could only muster $10.5 million to land in fourth place. Now, few if any 9/11 films have done big business at the box office, but with Hanks and Bullock on board you would think it would have done better. I don’t expect any sort of shelf life for this film, unless for some reason it gets some Oscar nominations this week.

Haywire, which I hadn’t placed in the top five, managed to show up, grossing $9 million, right around what I thought it would make. This film has been getting decent reviews and could actually move up next weekend. Meanwhile, Mark Wahlberg’s Contraband dropped from first to third with $12 million. As for Beauty and the Beast in 3D, in wound up in sixth with only $8.5 million.

So, to recap, here were our predictions:

1) Underworld: Awakening – $23 million
2) Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close – $17 million
3) Red Tails – $14 million
4) Contraband – $12 million
5) Beauty and the Beast 3D – $10.5 million

And here’s how the weekend turned out:

1) Underworld: Awakening – $25 million
2) Red Tails – $18 million
3) Contraband – $12 million
4) Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close – $10.5 million
5) Haywire – $9 million

Next weekend sees the release of The Grey with Liam Neeson, and Man On A Ledge with Sam Worthington. Check back on Friday to see how we think those films will do.

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