August 13, 2011


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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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>Rise of the Planet of the Apes will remain #1, followed closely by The Help, which is running well above its ShowBuzzDaily weekend forecast.  Final Destination 5 should be in third place with a decent number but still below its forecast.  30 Seconds or Less and Glee: The 3D Concert Movie are lagging, both under forecast.  Overall, the weekend is up 2% versus the same weekend last year (a nominal increase after four significant increases in a row).  

The Help is opening above forecast ($7.5 million Friday for an expected $23.5 million this weekend versus a $17 million forecast).  The five-day total should be $33.5 million, when Wednesday and Thursday are factored in.  The Help is headed for $86 million in North America when it crosses the finish line, according to the ShowBuzzDaily Domestic Final estimate.  International numbers (which will be quite low for this film) will be in our overseas round-up late Sunday.  Critics remain quite positive nationwide (73% positive at RottenTomatoes).  Read Mitch Salem’s review here.    

Final Destination 5 should open below forecast ($7.3 million Friday for an estimated $18.5 million opening weekend, compared to a $21.5 million prediction).  Final Destination 5 is on track for $49 million in North America.  Critics nationwide have been mixed to slightly positive about the film (55% positive at RottenTomatoes).  In case you missed them, click here to see this week’s Weekend Predictions

30 Minutes or Less is opening below forecast ($4.5 million Friday for an expected $13.7 million this weekend versus a $17.5 million forecast).  30 Minutes or Less is headed for $40 million in North America.  Critics remain mixed about the comedy (46% positive).  Read Mitch Salem’s review here     

Glee: The 3D Concert Movie is opening below forecast ($2.8 million Friday for an expected $6.7 million this weekend versus a $8 million forecast).  Glee is headed for $19 million in North America, with 63% positive reviews at RottenTomatoes.    

Rise of the Planet of the Apes should drop an acceptable 52% from its first weekend (not bad for a sci-fi movie), while The Change-Up should fall an expected 54% (pretty soft for a comedy).  The Smurfs should drop a very good 37%, continuing its solid run.  Also in its third weekend, Cowboys & Aliens is looking like it will fall another 54%, while Crazy, Stupid, Love will drop a solid 42%. 

August 12-14, 2011      Pre-Wknd    Wknd            Showbuzz
(millions)              Showbuzz    Early   Friday  Domestic
                        Forecast    Proj.   Actual   Final*

Rise of Planet Apes (Fox)[$27  ]    $26.5   $ 8.1     $169++
The Help (Dis/DW)        [$17  ]    $23.5   $ 7.6     $ 86
Final Destination 5 (WB) [$21.5]    $18.5   $ 7.3     $ 49

30 Minutes or Less (Sony)[$17.5]    $13.7   $ 4.8     $ 40
The Smurfs (Sony)        [$12.5]    $13.3   $ 3.8     $139++
Cowboys & Aliens (Uni)   [$ 7.5]    $ 7.2   $ 2.2     $ 99
Crazy, Stupid, Love (WB) [$ 7.5]    $ 7.0   $ 2.1     $ 78

Harry Potter 8  (WB)     [$ 7  ]    $ 6.8   $ 1.9     $370
Glee 3D Concert (Fox)    [$ 8  ]    $ 6.7   $ 2.7     $ 19
Captain America (Par)    [$ 7  ]    $ 6.5   $ 2.0     $177
The Change-Up (Uni)      [$ 7  ]    $ 6.2   $ 1.9     $ 37

Note: The table above summarizes an early look at the weekend.  The first column is a reminder of each film’s ShowbuzzDaily Forecast for the weekend (in brackets).  The second column, on which the films are sorted, displays the new weekend projection for each film, based on the Friday numbers (the third column).  The final column is a preliminary estimate of the ShowbuzzDaily Domestic Total number for the film’s total run in North America.  A “++” indicates the Domestic number has been upgraded; a “–” indicates a downgrade. 

Limited Releases 

Opening this weekend on the indie circuit (results to come later):
Aarakshan (foreign) at 90 theaters
Sex and Zen 3D: Extreme Ecstasy (foreign) at one theater
Littlerock (drama) at one theater
Over Your Cities Grass Will Grow (foreign) at one theater
Senna (documentary) at two theaters

Total Box Office Volume

The Top 12 Films this weekend are looking like $135 million total, up 2% from the same calendar weekend last year when The Expendables and Eat Pray Love opened.  

 Top 12 Films: Weekend #32

     Volume     (millions)
2011  $135  (
+11% vs 2007-10 average; +2% vs 2010) 


Avg   $121  
            Movies Opening That Weekend
2010  $132  Expendables $35, Eat Pray Love $23    

2009  $125  District 9 $37, Time Traveler’s Wife $19

2008  $112  Tropic Thunder $26, Star Wars Clone Wars $15
2007  $114  Superbad $33, The Invasion $6

Next Weekend

Opening next week are Spy Kids: All the Time in the World from Weinstein, Conan the Barbarian from Lionsgate, Fright Night from Disney, and One Day from Focus.  Those movies will be compared to Vampires Suck ($12 million opening weekend), Lottery Ticket ($11 million) and Piranha 3D ($10 million), making next weekend a possible up weekend versus 2010. 

Look for updates of the weekend box office on Sunday, based on the Saturday actual numbers.

About the Author

Mitch Metcalf
MITCH METCALF has been tracking every US film release of over 500 screens (over 2300 movies and counting) since the storied weekend of May 20, 1994, when Maverick and Beverly Hills Cop 3 inspired countless aficionados to devote their lives to the art of cinema. Prior to that, he studied Politics and Economics at Princeton in order to prepare for his dream of working in television. He has been Head of West Coast Research at ABC, then moved to NBC in 2000 and became Head of Scheduling for 11 years.