May 31, 2011


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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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The past week (seven days ending Sunday) came in up 48% versus last year’s comparable week.  Year-to-date box office is now down 9% versus last year (an improvement of three percentage points from last week).   

The Past Week: Total Box Office Volume
All films in wide release playing between May 23 and May 29 grossed an amazing $300 million, up 48% versus the same week in 2010 and up 33% from the average comparable week the past four years.  Year to date, all films are down 9% from the same period last year (last week the figure was -12% — a huge swing in one week), and all films year-to-date are now even with the comparable year-to-date number over the last four years.  With the slump early in the year, there seems to be a lot of pent up demand in the marketplace, and the right movies are playing to satisfy that demand. 
All Films May 23-29
(millions)           4yr              vs      vs
             2010    Avg     2011    2010    Avg

Week #21     $202    $226    $300   
+48%    +33%

Year to Date $4196   $3833   $3816   – 9%    – 0%

Updated Estimates of Final Grosses
The ShowbuzzDaily Domestic Grosses (the estimated North American gross when the film ends its run) are now: The Hangover Part II ($294 million, 97th percentile for all wide releases the past two years), Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides ($241 million, 95th percentile),  Fast Five ($211 million, 94th percentile), Thor ($186 million, 93rd percentile), Kung Fu Panda 2 ($174 million, 92nd percentile), Bridesmaids ($134 million, 87th percentile).  

The complete list of Total Domestic estimates can be found below.

Weekend Actuals vs Sunday’s Studio Projections

The weekend Studio Projections (Friday and Saturday actual numbers with estimates for Sunday’s box office) were almost exactly what the actual weekend numbers were today.  

      Weekend of                 Sunday    Monday   Showbuzz
      May 27-29, 2011            Studio    Weekend  Domestic
      (millions)                Estimate   Actual    Total
The Hangover Part II       (WB)   $86.5    $85.9     $294
Kung Fu Panda 2        (Par/DW)   $48.0    $47.7     $174
Pirates On Stranger Tides (Dis)   $39.3    $39.8     $241
Bridesmaids               (Uni)   $16.4    $16.5     $134
Thor                      (Par)   $ 9.4    $ 9.5     $186
Fast Five                 (Uni)   $ 6.6    $ 6.4     $211
Midnight in Paris        (Sony)   $ 1.9    $ 1.9      n/a

Jumping the Broom        (Sony)   $ 1.9    $ 1.8     $ 37

Rio                       (Fox)   $ 1.8    $ 1.8     $145 

Something Borrowed         (WB)   $ 1.8    $ 1.9     $ 38
Priest                   (Sony)   $ 1.7    $ 1.8     $ 27
Water for Elephants       (Fox)   $ 1.1    $ 1.1     $ 58

A reminder that Weekend Predictions will be posted Thursday for X-Men: First Class and the other returning films.

Be sure to check the status of the ShowBuzzDaily Summer Movie Draft, too.   

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.