August 25, 2012


The 34th weekend of 2012 is looking like $77 million for the Top 12 films Friday-Sunday, down 12% from the average for this reliably disappointing weekend.  Returning films fill the top six slots in the weekend rankings, with only one film above a $10 million weekend (Expendables 2 with $12.7 million).        

The pick of the litter of the new(ish) films this weekend: 2016 Obama’s America, which expanded from 169 to 1,091 theaters Friday.  2016 grossed $2.3 million Friday, on its way to an estimated $6.4 million Friday-Sunday (even stronger than our $5.5 million forecast Wednesday).  The weekend per theater average of $5,800 is clearly the best of the new wide release films (but just barely above the average for all first weekend films).  2016 should have a $9.2 million total through Sunday and puts the documentary on track for a final domestic gross of $26 million.  Not a bad showing at all, but keep in mind this would be well behind the gold standard of Presidential year political films: Fahrenheit 9/11 from Michael Moore which grossed $119.2 million in North America in the summer of 2004, after opening with $23.9 million June 23-25 that year.

Premium Rush from Sony is an even bigger bomb than we thought: it opened with $1.9 million Friday and is on track for maybe a $5.5 million opening weekend (only $2,400 per theater at 2,255 theaters) — well below the $8.4 million ShowbuzzDaily forecast.  Premium Rush is on pace for a domestic final of about $18 million.

Ditto for Hit and Run from Open Road Films.  The Dax Shephard production grossed $1.4 million Friday and should hit $4.0 million Friday-Sunday (a dreadful $1,400 per theater at 2,870 theaters), well below our $7.0 million ShowbuzzDaily forecast issued Wednesday.  Hit and Run should leave theaters relatively quickly with a domestic gross of $11 million.

The Apparition found $1.2 million under the cushions Friday and should hit $2.9 million Friday-Sunday (around $3,500 per at only 810 theaters), about equaling the $2.7 million we forecast.  The film should leave theaters with about $6 million domestic.

In case you missed them, click to see this week’s Weekend Predictions.

Weekend 34: August 24-26, 2012 ($ millions)
Pre-Wknd Showbuzz Forecast Early Weekend Estimate Actual Friday Gross Showbuzz Domestic Final Proj.
Expendables 2 LG [13.9] 12.7 3.7 83
Bourne Legacy Uni [9.1] 8.9 2.7 107
Dark Knight Rises WB [6.9] 7.0 2.0 442
ParaNorman Focus [8.8] 7.0 2.3 46
The Campaign WB [7.8] 6.9 2.2 84
Odd Life of Timothy Green Disney [7.0] 6.5 2.0 42
2016 Obama’s America Rocky Mtn [5.5] 6.4 2.3 26
Hope Springs Sony [6.2] 5.7 1.7 62
Premium Rush Sony [8.4] 5.5 1.9 18
Sparkle Sony/ Tri [5.9] 4.1 1.2 27
Hit and Run Open Road [7.0] 4.0 1.4 11
The Apparition WB [2.7] 2.9 1.2 6

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.


Total Box Office Volume

The Top 12 Films this weekend are looking like a sad $77 million total Friday-Sunday, down 12% from the average for this weekend the past four years but up 4% from last year’s terrible number.

($ millions)
WEEKEND #34 Weekend Volume: Top 12 Films Top Movies Opening Each Weekend
2012 $77 2016 Obama’s America $6.4, Premium Rush $5.5, Hit and Run $4
2011 $75 Colombiana $10, Don’t Be Afraid of Dark $8, Our Idiot Brother $7
2010 $95 Takers $20, Last Exorcism $20, Avatar Special Edition $4
2009 $110 Final Destination $27, Halloween 2 $16, Taking Woodstock $3
2008 $74 Babylon A.D. $9, Traitor $8, Disaster Movie $6
Avg 2008-11 $88

Check back tomorrow morning for updated weekend figures and revised estimates for domestic final grosses, as well as updated international figures later in the day Sunday.  On Monday, we will update the ShowbuzzDaily Summer Movie Fantasy Draft, as well.

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.