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Top 10 Films: Weekend of 01/23/15
Rank   Title Wk   Wknd$   Cume$
1   American Sniper   4   90.21  94
2   Wedding Ringer, The   1   21.00  21
3   Paddington   1   19.29  19
4   Taken 3   2   14.05  63
5   Selma   4   8.30  26
6   Imitation Game, The   8   7.19  51
7   Into the Woods   4   6.54  114
8   Hobbit: The Battle o   5   4.86  245
9   Unbroken   4   4.27  109
10   Blackhat   1   4.03  4

Analyst’s Commentary

Three very modest openings appear this week after last weekend’s extraordinary results. Despite their modesty, there should be plenty of tickets sold to surpass last year’s totals given that we are coming off a week 15% ahead of last year, and that the opening of I, Frankenstein was nothing that Mary Shelly would really write about.

The Boy Next Door appears to have the lead on the crown for new film of the weekend if not the overall lead. JLo is back at the cinema but her appeal seems to have diminished some.

Strange Magic puts the Bard’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream to 3D animation. Even with that classic source material, it would be strange magic indeed if this made it much over 10 Million this weekend.

Mortdecai is roundly despised by critics and isn’t likely to win a lot of fans at the megaplexes either. The Pink Pantheresque comedy might amuse about 10 Million dollars worth of ticket buyers this weekend.

Over all, definitely an uptick over 2014.

Click image below to go to rottentomatoes.com for updates.

Projections

American Sniper defied all estimates this weekend with an estimated 3 Day total of over 90 Million. That is truly rarefied territory for a not-superhero SciFiesque film. Warner Brothers claims multiple accolades, Largest drama ever, largest MLK weekend opening ever, largest January opening ever and more. Rated A+ in every category by Cinemascore, American Sniper starts 2015 off in an heroic fashion and is hopefully a harbinger of the future for 2015. As always, we are thrilled when the actuals beat our estimates.

Blackhat was clearly overwhelmed by Sniper. Not a lot was expected of it and not a lot was delivered.

Paddington on the other hand delivered more than was expected, on the strength of good reviews and word of mouth. Time was ripe for a new kid’s film to emerge.

The Wedding Ringer was the only film that really came in about on target throwing a solid 21 Million 3 Day estimate, it rounded out the weekend.
Net result my friends was a weekend delivering some 15% more than last year at the least. Good news after the disappointing fall.

The next two weekw the new films appear to promise fairly modest numbers. However given that 2014 boasted the solidly unsuccessful I, Frankenstein as the only wide opening (8.6 Million) on 1/24/14 and That Awkward Moment (8.7 Million) and Labor Day (5.2 Million) on 1/31/14, there should be no real doubt that 2015 will kick relative butt compared to last year.

1/23/15 Films

After the whopping success of American Sniper and the solid openings of (read more…)

Let’s start with Taken 3. While it is mostly more of the same, it appears that some measure of mayhem madness fatigue is evident. (read more…)

The Woman In Black Angel of Death did not cause the black plague to descend over the sacred temples of box office this weekend. It managed to scare (ha ha) up enough gross to keep us even with last year’s first full weekend of 2014.

As far as the rest of the lot, holdovers were good enough, especially when it came to the Oscar contenders to keep the numbers floating. Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies continued to lead the way out of the gloom of the 4th quarter 2014, it being the one sequel this year that managed to outperform its predecessor.

Next week the reign of the little people will almost certainly be over. Taken 3 will take the crown although at the moment it looks like it is suffering from the same sort of franchise fatigue that has plagued other sequels this past 12 months. It is unlikely to repeat the success of #1 or #2, but still has a healthy enough following to make for a nice start to 2015. The equivalent week in 2014 didn’t bring much to the table with an anemic The Legend of Hercules being the only opening that broke seven figures. However 8.8 Million isn’t much of a legend.

So 1/9 should show a healthy increase over 2014, but from there it will be an interesting if bumpy ride through the first quarter.

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