March 16, 2014

Weekend Studio Estimates MARCH 14-16

Based on Friday’s and Saturday’s grosses, weekend #11 of 2014 looks like $102 million for the top 12 films Friday-Sunday, a few million dollars lower than yesterday’s estimate and now slightly below the box office volume for a typical weekend in the middle of March.  Two new wide releases opened softly Friday and were even more tepid Saturday (with neither film showing the typical “Saturday bump” in business).  And after a promising limited release Friday, Veronica Mars crashed on Saturday.  Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel continues to show great strength in limited release and a few holdovers are propping up the box office.

Opening at 3,115 theaters Friday, Need for Speed from Disney grossed $6.6 million Friday and $6.7 million Saturday, putting the film on track for a mediocre $17.8 million opening weekend (below our $25.5 million ShowbuzzDaily forecast). The film is pacing toward a three-day average of $5,700 per theater for the weekend (barely above the $5,333 opening weekend average for all wide-release films the last two years). Critical sentiment is not at supportive (23% positive overall and 22% positive with top critics). Need for Speed is headed for a soft $48 million total domestic.

Opening at 1,896 theaters Friday, Tyler Perry’s Single Moms Club from Lionsgate/Summit grossed $3.2 million Friday and Saturday, putting the film on track for a lame $8.3 million opening weekend (well below our $17.0 million forecast). The film is pacing toward a sub-par three-day average of $4,400 per theater for the weekend. Critical sentiment is unkind (22% positive overall at RottenTomatoes and 20% positive with top critics). Single Moms Club is headed for around $21 million total domestic.

Opening in limited release, Veronica Mars from Warner Brothers opened with a promising $1.0 million Friday and then crashed to a weak $620,000 Saturday.  The former UPN/CW TV series and Kickstarter project is now headed for a more pedestrian $6,900 opening weekend average at 291 theaters (for a $2.0 million weekend).  Grand Budapest Hotel from director Wes Anderson and Fox Searchlight expanded to 66 theaters this weekend (from 4 last week) and is on track for an excellent $55,200 per theater weekend average (for $3.64 million this weekend and $4.78 million total through Sunday).

Weekend 11: March 14-16, 2014 ($ millions)
Pre-Wknd Showbuzz Forecast Early Weekend Estimate Weekend Studio Estimate Actual Fri–Sat Gross Showbuzz Domestic Final Proj.
Mr Peabody & Sherman Fox/DWA [19.5] 22.8 21.2 5.4–9.6 121
300: Rise of an Empire WB [21.0] 18.0 19.1 5.8–8.0 122
Need for Speed Dis [25.5] 18.5 17.8 6.6–6.7 48
Non-Stop Uni [9.5] 10.7 10.6 3.2–4.7 95
TP’s Single Moms Club LG/Sum [17.0] 9.2 8.3 3.2–3.2 21
The LEGO Movie WB [7.4] 8.8 7.7 2.1–3.4 265
Son of God Fox [5.9] 5.7 5.4 1.5–2.2 60
Grand Budapest Hotel FoxS [—] 3.7 3.6 1.1–1.4 n/a
Veronica Mars WB [—] 2.7 2.0 1.0-.62 n/a
Frozen 3D Dis [2.2] 2.5 2.1 .53–.94 401
The Monuments Men Sony [2.0] 2.1 2.0 .59–.95 81
3 Days to Kill Rel [1.6] 1.7 1.7 .50–.77 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 now looking like $102 million total Friday-Sunday, down 4% from the four-year average for the comparable weekend and now up only 6% from the same weekend last year.

WEEKEND 11 ($ millions)
Weekend Volume: Top 12 Films Top Movies Opening Each Weekend (Fri-Sun only)
2014 $102 Need for Speed $17.8, TP’s Single Moms Club $8.3
2013 $96 The Call $17.1, Incredible Burt Wonderstone $10.2
2012 $98 21 Jump Street $36.3, Friends with Kids $1.5
2011 $103 Limitless $18.9, Lincoln Lawyer $13.2, Paul $13.0
2010 $115 Diary of a Wimpy Kid $22.1, The Bounty Hunter $20.7, Repo Men $6.1
Avg 2010-13 $105

Check back later for the Worldwide Studio Scorecard and International Box Office report.

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.