October 2, 2016

Behind the US/Worldwide Weekend Box Office – 10/2/13


OPENINGS:  The studio-reported $28.5M weekend for Tim Burton’s MISS PEREGRINE’S HOME FOR PECULIAR CHILDREN (TSG/20th) is below the $29.7M opening for Burton’s flop Dark ShadowsMiss Peregrine cost less than Shadows, which will help (reportedly by about $40M), but this is still not much more than a breakeven proposition on a fairly large investment of $225M+.  Overseas numbers are soft as well, with $36.5M in 59 territories (20 more follow next week, at which point it will be playing worldwide except Japan–and China, if that regime allows the supernatural-themed film a run).

Things are worse for DEEPWATER HORIZON (Participant/Lionsgate), which cost about the same as Miss Peregrine.  The US weekend is $20.6M, and initial international results are dim, with just $12.4M in 52 markets.  It’s hard to see how this one avoids drowning.  The potentially good news for all concerned is that they’re back at bat almost immediately:  Patriots Day, another Lionsgate/Peter Berg/Mark Wahlberg project (about the Boston Marathon bombing), opens in December.

MASTERMINDS (Relativity), arising from the grave of Relativity’s bankruptcy after a year, hardly grabbed any funnybones with a $6.6M weekend.  Its costs were much lower than Miss Peregrine and Deepwater‘s, but that won’t help pay the bills.

QUEEN OF KATWE (Disney) expanded badly to 1242 theatres with a $2.6M weekend, giving it a per-theatre average that was even lower than Masterminds‘s, despite being in less than half as many theatres and earning vastly better reviews.  Checkmate appears to be the operative word.

HOLDOVERS:  THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN (Village Roadshow/MGM/Columbia/Sony) showed little staying power, down 55% to $15.7M in its 2d weekend.  That compares to the 45% drop for The Equalizer, which cost $35M less to produce.  Magnificent is unlikely to match Equalizer‘s $101.5M US total, and things are no better overseas, where Magnificent is at $46.5M after a dusty $14.8M weekend in 68 territories covering most of the world.  Equalizer hit $90.8M internationally, a number Magnificent probably won’t see.

STORKS (RatPac/Warners Animation) held much better, down just 35% in its 2d weekend, but it started so low that this meant just a $13.8M weekend and $38.8M to date, probably meaning a $75M US total.  It’s at a similarly uncolorful $38.8M overseas after a $14.6M weekend in 48 markets.

SULLY (RatPac/Warners) hit $105.4M in the US this weekend after a 38% drop to $8.4M, on its way to $125M or so.  There’s less interest overseas, though, where the total is $46.5M after a $6.6M weekend in 46 territories.  Still, a $200M ultimate worldwide total will make this a moderate success.

DON’T BREATHE (Screen Gems/Sony) is holding extraordinarily well for low-budget horror, down just 37% in its 6th weekend to $2.4M, giving it a US total of $84.7M, and it’s also at $44.5M overseas.  It may well be the most profitable movie of the late summer/early fall season.

BRIDGET JONES’S BABY (Universal) needed a big performance overseas to make up for its wretched US results ($21M after a 50% weekend drop to $2.3M), and it’s getting one.  The international total to date is $99.9M ($41.1M of it from the UK) after a $19M weekend in 50 markets.  The US flop means that this still won’t reach high profits, but no one should lose any money, either.

LIMITED RELEASE:  DENIAL (Bleecker Street) had an unexceptional start with a $20K per-theatre average at 5 NY/LA theatres, but it’s the kind of traditional “art film” that could play well into awards season.  The per-theatre average for AMERICAN HONEY (A24) was comparable, $19K at 4, however the nearly plotless 142-minute impressionist saga needed to make a big splash for any likelihood of mainstream attention, and that didn’t happen.  THE DRESSMAKER (Amazon/Broad Green) expanded to 159 theatres with a very mild $2300 average.  A MAN CALLED OWE (Music Box) averaged $6800 at 9.  A reminder of the different levels of appeal a project can have in the US and overseas:  cricket biography M.S. DHONI: THE UNTOLD STORY (Fox Intl) earned $1.2M at 256 theatres here, while notching $14.3M this weekend in India alone.  Similarly, the Chinese I BELONGED TO YOU (China Lion) brought in $375K in the US on 50 screens, while earning $33.6M at home.

NEXT WEEKEND:  THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN (Universal) is based on a best-selling novel and hopes to approach the box office of Gone Girl, but all media eyes will be on THE BIRTH OF A NATION (Fox Searchlight), which is getting a quasi-wide release and which faces dueling narratives of its Sundance triumph and its director’s past.  Also opening:  MIDDLE SCHOOL:  THE WORST YEARS OF MY LIFE (Lionsgate).

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."