April 30, 2011

Box Office Footnotes – 4/22/11


This Week: Don’t Miss ShowbuzzDaily’s First Annual Summer Blockbuster Draft!  
The last weekend of April is an odd one for Hollywood:  as Mitch Metcalf’s analysis shows,sometimes it begins the parade of summer franchises, and in other years it’s just the quiet end of Spring.  Fast Five, of course, puts 2011 firmly in the former category–in fact, with positive word of mouth likely, Marvel and Paramount have to be a little nervous about how much it’ll damage Thor next week.  (Particularly Marvel, since Thor, with July’s Captain America, provides the lead-in to next year’s megafranchise movie The Avengers).
Tyler Perry’s movies always have steep Week 2 drops, so Big Happy Family‘s fall isn’t unusual.  But the Water for Elephants hold, considering its genre, won’t do much for the bankability of Robert Pattinson or Reese Witherspoon–plus next week it’ll face Something Borrowed, a better movie.  
Prom is just an appetizer to Disney’s giant summer offerings, but even with limited expectations, it’s failing to deliver.  Hoodwinked Too must have been green-lit with the movie mogul equivalent of beer goggles.  
Second-guessing release patterns is a Hollywood sport, but one has to wonder if Focus and Fox Searchlight are questioning their decisions to slowly roll out Jane Eyre and Win Win, respectively, since they’ll each reach $10M at best.  A few years ago, they would at least have found an audience on homevideo, but with the buttom having dropped out of that business, there’s not much revenue left for them.  The same holds true for The Conspirator, while Atlas Shrugged Part I proved the audience of Ayn Rand fans to be as front-loaded as teenage girls.
Next weekend’s most interesting debut won’t be its biggest:  Summit will open the problematic (for many reasons) Mel Gibson vehicle The Beaver in just 20 theatres and hope for the best before they expand.

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."