September 4, 2011

THE BIJOU: Boxoffice Footnotes – 9/4/11


It turned out to be a great boxoffice weekend for movies aimed at adults, led of course by THE HELP.  THE DEBT had an extraordinarily strong Saturday for a new opening (up 40% from Friday), and is riding that to a surprising weekend finish above its more youth-oriented competition–and at considerably fewer theatres.  APOLLO 18 and SHARK NIGHT, in comparison, had Saturday increases of only 5-7%.  This puts Debt in a good position to add some theatres next weekend, although it faces more direct competition from newcomers CONTAGION and WARRIOR.  Adding to the sweep for adult audiences, CRAZY STUPID LOVE actually managed to go up in its 6th weekend despite losing theatres, demonstrating superb word of mouth.
No one showed up for 7 DAYS IN UTOPIA (a dim $2200 per theatre average at 561), which will be coming soon to a faith-based Netflix queue near you.  A much more serious and worthy film about religion, Vera Farmiga’s HIGHER GROUND, was more impressive with around $5500 on each of 17 screens.  CIRCUMSTANCE was at an OK $3200 on each of 11, similar to THE GUARD‘s per-theatre number–but Guard‘s is more impressive because it’s at 178 screens.  THE WHISTLEBLOWER and BRIGHTON ROCK were both under $2K per theatre, in 61 and 13, respectively.  Among new limited openings, DETECTIVE DEE was most impressive with over $15K at each of 3, while LOVE CRIMES and GAINSBOURG:  A HEROIC LIFE were both in the $7K per screen neighborhood at 3 each.  Bringing up the rear (no double entendre intended) was A GOOD OLD FASHIONED ORGY, with a terrible $750 average on 142 screens.

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."