February 25, 2012


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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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The eighth weekend of 2012 is another solid one, running 18% ahead of last year’s same weekend and 22% ahead of the multi-year average for this weekend.  This is the third weekend in a row that 2012 volume beats both the easy target of last year’s depressed levels as well as the more difficult to beat multi-year averages.  (The first five weekends of 2012 were generally ahead of 2011 but not other recent years.)  Act of Valor powered its way to #1 with a big advertising budget, including Super Bowl buys, and additional free media because of its use of real Navy SEAL team members in the film.  Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds is a fairly weak second place, just ahead of the third week films (Journey 2, Safe House, The Vow), which are hanging around reasonably well.  The other openers this weekend, Wanderlust and Gone, are DOA.    

Act of Valor from Relativity opened with $9.0 million Friday for an estimated $25.7 million for Friday-Sunday, way above the $18.0 million ShowBuzzDaily forecast.  The war movie featuring real Navy SEALs is averaging $8,500 on 3,039 screens.  Act of Valor is headed for a preliminary $70 million total domestic. 

Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds (from Lionsgate) opened with $5.4 million Friday for $14.6 million Friday-Sunday, missing the $17.0 million prediction.  The latest from Tyler Perry should average around $6,800 at 2,132 theaters this weekend.  Good Deeds is headed for a preliminary $38 million domestic. No, it’s not going to be the $90 million when Perry dressed up for Madea Goes to Jail or the $63 million when he did the same thing for Madea’s Family Reunion.  But give the man some credit for trying some other things and not sticking to a formula.

Wanderlust (from Universal) opened with $2.2 million Friday — on track for $6.2 million this weekend, badly missing a very modest $9.0 million forecast.  The Paul Rudd-Jennifer Aniston comedy should average $3,100 this weekend at 2,002 theaters.  Wanderlust is on track for $19 million total domestic.

Gone from Summit Entertainment opened with only $1.7 Friday, on its way to $4.5 million this weekend, also missing a very soft $6.0 million forecast.  The Amanda Seyfried film should average a pitiful $2,000 this weekend at 2,186 theaters.  Gone is on pace for $8 million total domestic.  

The third weekend films are the pick of the holdovers, with Journey 2: The Mysterious Island holding the best, down a very good 32% from its second weekend.  Safe House should be down 54% and The Vow down 57%.  Through Sunday, Safe House should trail The Vow by about $5 million ($97.7 million versus $102.9 million to date), but we expect both films to ultimately finish with about $133 million.  This Means War is on track to drop 50% in its second weekend, compared to a huge 65% decline for Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.    

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

February 24-26, 2012    Pre-Wknd    Wknd            Showbuzz
(millions)              Showbuzz    Early    FRI    Domestic
                        Forecast    Proj.   Actual   Final

Act of Valor (Rel)       [$18.0]    $25.7   $ 9.0     $ 70
TP’s Good Deeds (LG)     [$17.0]    $14.6   $ 5.4     $ 38
Journey 2 (WB)           [$12.8]    $13.5   $ 3.2     $118+ 
Safe House (Uni)         [$13.0]    $11.0   $ 3.1     $133 
The Vow (Sony)           [$12.0]    $ 9.8   $ 3.3     $133-
This Means War (Fox)     [$ 9.5]    $ 8.8   $ 2.7     $ 53+ 
Ghost Rider 2 (Sony)     [$ 8.5]    $ 7.8   $ 2.3     $ 50- 
Wanderlust (Uni)         [$ 9.0]    $ 6.2   $ 2.2     $ 19 
Gone (Sum)               [$ 6.0]    $ 4.5   $ 1.7     $  8
Secret World Arrietty Dis[$ 4.5]    $ 4.5   $ 1.1     $ 30+

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 $113 million total Friday-Sunday, up 18% from the same calendar weekend last year and up 22% from the more typical volume for this weekend in other years.            

Top 12 Films: Weekend #8

     Volume    Movies Opening Each Weekend (millions)
2012  $113  Act of Valor $25.7, Good Deeds $14.6, Wanderlust $6

2011  $ 96  Hall Pass $13.5, Drive Angry 3D $5
2010  $107  Cop Out $18, The Crazies $16
2009  $ 87  Jonas Brothers 3D Concert $12.5, Street Fighter $5

2008  $ 80  Semi-Pro $15, Other Boleyn Girl $8
Avg   $ 92

Check back tomorrow for updated weekend figures and revised estimates for domestic final grosses.


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.