December 29, 2011


>No new wide releases this weekend, the final weekend of the year as we welcome the arrival of 2012.  We are estimating a box office volume of $145 million for Friday-Sunday for the top 12 films, up 27% from $114 million last weekend (which was limited by Christmas Eve on Saturday) and down only 2% from this weekend last year.           

With Christmas Eve’s low numbers in last weekend’s tallies, the crop of holdovers have a great chance of growing in their second weekend.  War Horse will show a particularly large weekend gain, although that is based on the fact that it played only one day in the last Friday-Sunday period.     

Major Returning Films            Change     This    Domestic
Dec 30-Jan 1                    vs wknd 1  Weekend   Total*

Mission: Impossible 4   Par       + 6%      $31.2     $190
Sherlock Holmes 2        WB       + 9%      $22.0     $155
Alvin & Chipmunks 3     Fox       +45%      $18.5     $100

War Horse            DW/Dis      +110%      $15.5     $ 75

Girl with Dragon Tattoo Sony      + 9%      $14.0     $ 95
Adventures of Tintin    Par       +39%      $13.5     $ 90
We Bought a Zoo         Fox       +39%      $13.0     $ 75 

New Year’s Eve           WB       +66%      $ 5.5     $ 40
Darkest Hour            Sum       +27%      $ 3.8     $ 35
Box Office Volume

For the past four years, the top 12 films in the comparable weekend have averaged $153 million total, ranking 10th of 52 weeks.  Last year this weekend’s total was $149 million, and the same weekend in 2009 was $209 million.  This Friday-Sunday is looking like $145 million, down 2% from this weekend last year.          

Come back throughout the weekend to see how the New Year’s weekend and the conclusion of holiday week shapes up.  Saturday morning we will have an early look at how the weekend is looking, on Sunday we will have initial studio estimates (based on Friday and Saturday actuals), and Monday we will have the final weekend numbers.

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.