August 8, 2011


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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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The past week (seven days ending Sunday) came in up 19% versus last year’s comparable week (the fourth significant increase in as many weeks).  Year-to-date box office is now down 4.6% versus last year.  Rise of the Planet of the Apes from 20th Century Fox set the pace for a solid weekend: it beat its weekend forecast (issued Thursday) and it beat the Sunday studio projection, indicating strong late weekend interest.  The Change-Up from Universal was a non-factor this weekend.   

The Past Week: Total Box Office Volume

All films in wide release playing between August 1 and 7 grossed a very good $250 million, up 19% versus the same week in 2010 and up 23% from the average comparable week the past four years.  Year to date, all films are now down 4.6% from the same period last year (down from -5.4% last week), and all films year-to-date are up 2% versus the comparable year-to-date number averaged over the last four years.  

All Films August 1-7
(millions)           4yr              vs      vs
             2010    Avg     2011    2010    Avg

Week #30     $203    $211    $250   
+23%    +19%

Year to Date $6749   $6345   $6441   -4.6%   + 2%

Updated Estimates of Final Grosses

The ShowbuzzDaily Domestic Grosses (the estimated North American gross when the film ends its run) are now:  

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 ($368 million, 99th percentile for all wide releases the past two years)
Transformers: Dark of the Moon ($359 million, 99th percentile)Captain America ($179 million, 92nd percentile)
Rise of the Planet of the Apes ($157 million, 89th percentile)
The Smurfs ($127 million, 85th percentile)
Horrible Bosses ($121 million, 84th percentile)
Cowboys & Aliens ($101 million, 79th percentile)
Zookeeper ($81 million, 72nd percentile)
Crazy, Stupid, Love ($76 million, 70th percentile)

Friends with Benefits ($64 million, 64th percentile)
Larry Crowne ($36 million, 43rd percentile)
Winnie the Pooh ($29 million, 33rd percentile)
Monte Carlo ($23 million, 23rd percentile)

Note Harry Potter‘s domestic final estimate is now higher than Transformers‘ again.

Weekend Actuals vs Sunday’s Studio Projections

The weekend Studio Projection (Friday and Saturday actual numbers with estimates for Sunday’s box office) for Rise of the Planet of the Apes was actually low ($800,000 lower than the actual weekend).  This is a good sign for Rise as it indicates Sunday was very strong and might be a good indicator of positive word of mouth.  The projection for The Change-Up exactly matched the actual weekend number.    

      Weekend of                 Sunday    Monday   Showbuzz
      August 1-7                 Studio    Weekend  Domestic
      (millions)                Estimate   Actual    Total

Rise of Planet of Apes    (Fox)   $54.0    $54.8     $157
The Smurfs               (Sony)   $21.0    $20.7     $127
Cowboys & Aliens          (Uni)   $15.7    $15.7     $101
The Change-Up             (Uni)   $13.5    $13.5     $ 36
Captain America           (Par)   $13.0    $13.0     $179
Harry Potter 8             (WB)   $12.2    $12.4     $368

Crazy, Stupid, Love        (WB)   $12.1    $12.0     $ 76
Friends with Benefits    (Sony)   $ 4.7    $ 4.7    
$ 64
Horrible Bosses            (WB)   $ 4.6    $ 4.6     $121

Transformers 3            (Par)   $ 3.0    $ 3.1     $359
Zookeeper                (Sony)   $ 2.2    $ 2.2     $ 81 

Look for the Summer Movie Draft update later today (Monday).

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.