June 15, 2013

EARLY FRIDAY BOXOFFICE: “Man Of Steel” Leaps Over Multiplexes In A Single Bound


MAN OF STEEL (Warners) had the opening it was looking for, with preliminary numbers at Deadline giving it $46M on Friday.  That includes $9M from Friday midnight shows, but not an additional $12M from Wal-Mart tie-in screenings at 7PM Thursday night.  Assuming the $46M number holds up, it should mean a $115-120M weekend ($132M with the Wal-Mart screenings included).  That’s not a record-breaking amount–it would put Man of Steel in the top 15 or 20 openings–but it would tidily beat most estimates, and pass Toy Story 3‘s $110.3M for the highest opening in June, as well as being the #2 opening of the year so far, behind only Iron Man 3.  Of course, Man has plenty of distance to go before Warners can fully exhale on its $350M+ (including marketing) project.  The Day 2 results for mega-openings are all over the place:  some actually go up (usually family films like Oz the Great and Powerful), while others, especially sequels, plunge as much as 30-40% on Saturday.  More than a 10-15% drop could mean uneven word of mouth.  And then there’s the international question, since Superman has never been as iconic a figure overseas as he is here.  That will only be partially answered this weekend, as Man of Steel is opening in less than half the world simultaneously with its US opening.  Still, this was where Warners wanted to be right now.

Meanwhile, the counterprogrammed THIS IS THE END (Sony) is looking at a $7M Friday after earning $12.3M on Wednesday and Thursday.  That should put it at over $30M for the 5-day opening, just about equal to its production cost.

Holdovers all seem to have been dented by the arrival of Man of Steel to the tune of 50% or more from last Friday.  Holding up best is NOW YOU SEE ME (Summit/Lionsgate), down by about half and seemingly headed straight for $100M in the US.  Last weekend’s openings were particularly battered, as THE PURGE (Universal) fell an insane 83% from its opening day (from $16.8M to $2.8M) to provide a fine definition of the term “front-loaded,” and THE INTERNSHIP (20th) only looked good in comparison, dropping 65% (from $6.5M to $2.2M).



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."