March 16, 2014

EARLY WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: “Need For Speed” Slows, “Single Moms” Flops


Based on preliminary numbers at Deadline, the weekend box office will largely be in line with Friday’s results.  Both NEED FOR SPEED (DreamWorks/Disney) and SINGLE MOMS CLUB (Lionsgate) barely budged on Saturday from their Friday starts, with Speed up $300K and Moms up $100K.  That will push Speed down to 3d place for the weekend with about $18M, and Moms to 5th place with less than half that much.  Expectations weren’t high for either film, but both are underdelivering anyway.  Tyler Perry’s movies do virtually all of their business in the US, so Moms is all but dead, while Speed will need much better results overseas to avoid disaster.

VERONICA MARS (Warners) indeed turned out to be very frontloaded with fans, falling 30% on its second day of release to $700K, which should give it a weekend a bit over $2M.  That isn’t bad for a 291-theatre run with very low production and marketing costs, but doesn’t suggest much of a crossover audience is interested.

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL (Fox Searchlight) expanded beautifully to 66 theatres, up a royal 60% on Saturday to $1.6M for a weekend that should be over $3.5M, for a superb $55K average.

With Need For Speed and Single Moms Club fading, holdovers MR. PEABODY AND SHERMAN (DreamWorks Animation/20th) and 300:  RISE OF AN EMPIRE (Warners/Legendary) took 1st and 2nd places for the weekend.  Of the two, Mr. Sherman was by far the stronger, down just 35% from last weekend to around $21.5M.  The 300 sequel fell 55% to about $19M.  Despite their high rankings, neither is looking like a blockbuster at the US box office, with $110-120M in store for both, and with their high costs, both will still need a great deal of foreign success to hit any profit.

NON-STOP (Universal) is holding well, down 35% to $10-11M for the weekend, but SON OF GOD (20th) dropped another 50% to around $5M.  Although Non-Stop is on course for $90M in the US and Son of God for only $60M, the latter film was so inexpensive that it should be quite profitable.

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."