July 16, 2012

WEEKLY BOX OFFICE ACTUALS & YEAR TO DATE: July 9-15 — A Down Week But No Big Surprise

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Written by: Mitch Metcalf
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A down week this week (last year boasted the opening of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2) erased the big gains last week, and now the year to year comparisons are back to where they were a few weeks (high single-digit percentages).

The Past Week: Total Box Office Volume

All films in wide release playing between July 9 and July 15 grossed a sub-par $254 million, down 23% from the same week in 2011 and down 17% from the four-year average for the comparable week. Last year featured the opening of the final Harry Potter and in the other years a film much more worthy than Ice Age 4 has the weekend to itself.  Year to date ($5.753 billion for wide-release films) is now 9% ahead of 2011 (back to the same level it was two weeks ago).  Similarly, the year-to-date total is now 7% ahead of the more stable multi-year average for the similar period (a percentage point ahead of two weeks ago).

Domestic Box Office Volume: All Wide-Release Films through July 15, 2012 ($ millions)
2011 4-year Average 2012 vs 2011 vs 4yr Avg
Week #28 $331 $306 $254 -23% -17%
Year to Date $5,299 $5,385 $5,753 +9% +7%

The past six weeks (from early-June through mid-July) total $1.550 billion, a shade below the same period in 2011 ($1.573 billion, down 1%) but down a more significant 4% from the multi-year average for the period ($1.615 billion).

Weekend Actuals versus Studio Estimate

The studio estimates for the major films this weekend were fairly close: each of the top three films came in around 1% of its estimate.  The surprise was that two of the three estimates were conservative (the official numbers came in above the estimate).  Usually it’s the other way around.  Ice Age: Continental Drift came in at $46.629 million officially for its opening weekend, 1.4% above the estimate from Fox (based on Friday and Saturday actual numbers and estimating Sunday’s take).  The second weekend of Amazing Spider-Man came in at $34.628 million, 1.1% below the estimate issued by Sony Sunday morning.  The third weekend for Ted came in at $22.411 million for Friday-Sunday, 1.2% above the Universal estimate.  


Updated Estimates of Final Grosses

The ShowbuzzDaily Domestic Grosses (the estimated North American gross when the film ends its run) are summarized below for films released the last six weeks. Pay attention to the final domestic grosses, which are much more important than individual weekend grosses and especially weekend rankings.

Updated ShowbuzzDaily Domestic Final Estimates Domestic Final Gross ($ millions) percentile
Amazing Spider-Man 300 98
Brave 235 95
Madagascar 3 217 94
Ted 224 94
Ice Age: Continental Drift 179 92
Prometheus 127 85
Magic Mike 118 83
TP’s Medea’s Witness Protection 65 65
Savages 56 59
Moonrise Kingdom 47 53
Rock of Ages 38 45
That’s My Boy 37 44
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter 37 43
Katy Perry: Part of Me 30 34
People Like Us 15 13
To Rome with Love 14 11


Weekend Predictions for the July 20-22 weekend should be posted Wednesday. This weekend features the opening of The Dark Knight Rises.

Also, catch the latest update on the ShowbuzzDaily Summer Movie Fantasy Draft.

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.