6TH UPDATE, Monday 4PM; weekend actuals: The final weekend of January isn’t really known as a time to launch a major studio animated film, but 20th Century Fox broke new ground here by taking out DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 3 in this slot and making $41.3M. It’s the best stateside debut ever for a January toon and the third-best FSS opening for the month overall behind American Sniper ($89.3M) and Ride Along ($41.5M). KFP and KFP2 cleared $631.7M and $665.7M, respectively, in worldwide totals, and a $116.3M worldwide start for KFP3 from U.S., China, Russia and Korea is just fine.
Trotting Kung Fu Panda 3 out at this time had several things working in its favor. First, it gave Fox/DWA a runway in being the only animated family feature out there until Disney’s Zootopia (March 4). Second — and this is another reason why Disney had to launch its 1950s seafaring disaster film The Finest Hours on Friday — the first quarter of this year is crowded with such tentpoles as Deadpool and Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice on the horizon. You have to start somewhere. Rentrak reports that there are 56 wide releases (more than 1,000 engagements) opening before May 1, versus 40 last year. There are five wide releases on March 11 alone: Paramount’s 10 Cloverfield Lane, Sony’s Sacha Baron Cohen title The Brothers Grimsby, Fox’s horror The Other Side Of The Door, Lionsgate’s The Perfect Match and Focus Features’ The Young Messiah.
Finally, the fact that KFP3 is a China co-production was a major plus for DWA/Fox — particularly after KFP2 struck a nerve with booming Middle Kingdom moviegoers, who shelled out $92M versus $26M for KP1. (Note that surge is also largely due to the growth in China’s exhibition infrastructure between 2008 and 2011.) KFP3‘s debut in China comes a week before the Chinese New Year (February 8) and is poised for a long run during a blackout period in the country after raking in the best animated opening there with $58.3M ($75M overall for foreign across four territories).
Disney’s ho-hum $10.3M results for The Finest Hours stems from the marriage between a largely non-marquee ensemble and a tired subgenre of disaster pics that felt all too familiar (The Perfect Storm, anyone?). Those who bought tickets enjoyed what they watched, giving it an A- CinemaScore, but that grade comes with a 3.5 multiple that gets the film to a final $36M domestic take. Leave it to foreign to bail out this one, which comes with a $70M-$80M production cost. iSpot TV reports that Disney spent $24.2M in U.S. ads and media.
Open Road/IM Global’s Fifty Shades of Black is essentially Z-grade satire that didn’t deliver in a mass-appealing way. It was made cheap at $5M by IM so that it was built to profit. Open Road acquired the title. Its C CinemaScore grade comes with a 2.5 multiple, which puts this Marlon Wayans film that opened with $5.9M in 10th place at a final domestic tally of $14.75M. It smells like a break-even situation theatrically, but not if you count P&A.
This weekend also will go down as the time when the Natalie Portman Western Jane Got a Gun finally opened to $836K after a four-year struggle to the screen. Yesterday we recapped its path (scroll down). In the end, this film’s tale is about overcoming a slew of adversity in its headway to the multiplex over profit (it cost a reported $25M). The film carries a 32% Rotten Tomatoes score, but keep in mind that only 22 critics saw the movie.
Breaking its way into the chart was The Met: Live in HD‘s production of Puccini’s Turandot directed by Franco Zeffirelli. It drew 116,760 people from its Saturday domestic transmission for a gross of $2.5M.
The top 20 and notable from Rentrak for the weekend of January 29-31:
1) Kung Fu Panda 3 (DWA/FOX), 3,955 theaters /3-day cume: $41.3M / Per screen avg: $10,438/Wk 1
2) The Revenant (FOX), 3,330 theaters (-381) / 3-day cume: $12.8M (-20%) / Per screen: $3,838 /Total cume: $138.6M / Wk 6
3) Star Wars: The Force Awakens (DIS), 2,556 theaters (-809) /3-day cume: $11.1M (-21%)/ Per screen: $4,349 /Total cume: $895.8M / Wk 7
4) The Finest Hours (DIS), 3,143 theaters /3-day cume: $10.3M / Per screen: $3,274 / Wk 1
5) Ride Along 2 (UNI), 2,412 theaters (-780) /3-day cume: $8.4M (-32%) / Per screen: $3,494 / Total cume: $70.9M / Wk 3
6) Dirty Grandpa (LGF), 2,912 theaters (0)/3-day cume: $7.59M (-32%)/ Per screen: $2,607 /Total cume: $22.8M /Wk 2
7) The Boy (STX), 2,671 theaters (0)/3-day cume: $7.55M (-30%)/ Per screen: $2,827 /Total cume: $21.2M/ Wk 2
8) The 5th Wave (SONY), 2,908 theaters (0) /3-day cume: $7.1M (-31%) / Per screen: $2,456 /Total cume: $20.3M/ Wk 2
9) 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (PAR), 2,803 theaters (-114) /3-day cume: $6.3M (-31%) / Per screen: $2,238 /Total cume: $42.8M / Wk 3
10) Fifty Shades of Black (OR/IMG), 2,075 theaters /3-day cume: $5.9M / Per screen: $2,844 /Wk 1
11) The Big Short (PAR), 983 theaters (-368) /3-day cume: $3.06M (-4%)/ Per screen: $3,116 /Total cume: $61M / Wk 8
12) Daddy’s Home (PAR), 1,718 theaters (-1,071) / 3-day cume: $3.05M (-38%)/ Per screen: $1,779 / Total cume: $143M / Wk 6
13) MET Opera: Turandot (FE), 900 theaters /3-day cume: $2.5M / Per screen: $2,778/Wk 1
14) Brooklyn (FSL), 748 theaters (-214) / 3-day cume: $1.8M (+2%)/ Per screen: $2,354/ Total cume: $30.4M / Wk 13
15) Room (A24), 795 theaters (-67) / 3-day cume: $1.23M (-7%)/ Per screen: $1,556/ Total cume: $9.9M / Wk 16
16) Spotlight (OPRD), 715 theaters (-315) / 3-day cume: $1.2M (-6%)/ Per screen: $1,678/Total cume: $34.8M / Wk 13
17) Norm Of The North (LGF), 1,506 theaters (-905) / 3-day cume: $972K (-75%)/ Per screen: $646 /Total cume: $16M / Wk 3
18) Jane Got a Gun (TWC), 1,210 theaters / 3-day cume: $836K/ Per screen: $691/ Wk 1
19) The Hateful Eight (TWC), 505 theaters (-772) / 3-day cume: $720K (-47%) / Per screen: $1,425 / Total cume: $52.4M / Wk 6
20) Sisters (UNI), 529 theaters (-1,073) / 3-day cume: $646K (-63%/ Per screen: $1,222 / Total cume: $86.1M / Wk 7
2016 Oscar Shorts (MAG), 123 theaters /3-day cume: $560K/ Per screen: $4,549 / Wk 1
Saala Khadoos (UTV), 70 theaters /3-day cume: $77K/ Per screen: $1,099 / Wk 1
5TH UPDATE, Sunday 8:12 AM: DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 3 looks to easily meet its weekend projections with $41M at 3,955 theaters. Worldwide bow for KFP3 is $116M. While China was big for Kung Fu Panda 2, what’s interesting this time around is that the Middle Kingdom opening may actually edge out domestic’s opening. Word of mouth on KFP3 is just as strong as KPF2 with the threequel landing an A CinemaScore. Though KFP3’s weekend is less than part 2‘s $47.7M FSS, keep in mind it’s winter and only 4% of all K-12 schools are on recess according to Rentrak. Wall Street loves to flog a DWA movie when it opens, but the Street needs to be reminded that these films have 3.5 multiples or higher, not to mention the KFP movies clean up overseas with foreign repping 66%-75% of an animated pic’s final global haul.
While it might seem unusual to launch a big animated film along with a $70M-80M seafaring disaster pic like Disney’s The Finest Hours in a non-holiday frame, February is going to be crowded. The advantage of KP3 going out this weekend is that it has five weeks to play before Disney’s Zootopia opens March 4.
20th Century Fox claims the No. 2 spot with its New Regency title The Revenant, which is turning in a $12.4M sixth weekend, down just 23%. As the northeastern seaboard thawed, many distributors expected decent holds for last weekend’s films as audiences shrugged off cabin fever. This is true especially with last weekend’s crop — The Boy, The 5th Wave and Dirty Grandpa — registering second weekend declines between -27% and -34%. Total FSS ticket sales per Rentrak are $136.5M, +19% over last weekend.
While KP3 was always expected to clear the snow off the road for moviegoers, the more intriguing piece of B.O. news occurred toward the bottom of the chart: Natalie Portman’s beleaguered, four-years-in-the-making western Jane Got a Gun finally opened to $803K at 1,210 theaters ($664 per theater). That number didn’t set off the loud noises that the production did with its revolving doors of actors, directors and financial hardships. With an estimated production cost of $25M, yes, JGAG failed theatrically. Still, the film achieved some sort of victory simply by not allowing adversity to doom it. Just getting to the finish line is an accomplishment for JGAG, which appeared doomed when its director Lynne Ramsay quit on the first day of production, leaving a 150-member crew standing around. It’s a miracle that JGAG isn’t buried on a VOD menu somewhere. Producer Scott Steindorff kept the movie afloat and sources say he got Warrior director Gavin O’Connor to step in and even shoot a bit before cast and crew scattered. Prior to Ramsay leaving, Michael Fassbender departed his role as Jane’s ex. Jude Law fled the lead villain role after Ramsay left, and then Bradley Cooper stepped in and left (due to scheduling) with Ewan McGregor finally committing. During Cannes 2013, Relativity and Weinstein Co. partnered on U.S. rights with each respectively handling distribution and marketing. Relativity would change the release date three times, and just before they were about to go into bankruptcy proceedings last July, the film’s financier, anti-Prop 8 attorney David Boies (whose clients also included the Weinsteins during their Hobbit profit suit against Time Warner), extricated JGAG ahead of Relativity’s Chapter 11 proceedings. TWC provided a service deal to distribute JGAG, with the financier covering P&A. Marketing was limited for the movie. JGAG didn’t junket, but Portman traveled from Paris to the U.S. for premiere and appearances on Good Morning America and The Tonight Show. Relish Mix reports that JGAG social media has been extremely light: The cast doesn’t do social, the official YouTube trailer is at a low 400K views and the Facebook page has less than 6K likes. One bright spot for JGAG this weekend: 75% of all moviegoers gave the western a positive review per PostTrak which was just under Disney’s The Finest Hours (81%) and bested Open Road/IM’s Fifty Shades of Black (56%). Rotten Tomatoes score for JGAG was a rotten 35%. Jane attracted 52% guys per PostTrak with 86% over 25. Those in the 35-44 age bracket gave it 100% positive score. That said, only 42% of the entire moviegoing crowd said they would recommend Jane to a friend.
KFP3‘s Saturday saw a 74% spike with $18.3M over Friday’s $10.5M. 3D repped 28% of the B.O. with PLF accounting for 5%. Production cost ranges from $120M-$140M. KFP3 drew 56% women, as moms drove the kids to the cinema with 58% of the crowd under 25. 41% of the KPF3 crowd were Caucasian, while 31% were Asian. Both that demo and the under 18ers gave KFP3 an A+. While the proportion of under 25s didn’t change between KFP2 and KFP3, the previous sequel was top heavy with males. Per PostTrak, 72% of the crowd said they’d recommend the DWA film to a friend. KP3 played fairly balanced across the nation. DC was strong due to kids off on Friday. The rain in LA should send people to theater.
Disney owns the third and fourth ranking movies on the weekend chart: Star Wars: The Force Awakens and The Finest Hours. However, it appears that the Jedis have whipped the New England coast guard with Force Awakens grossing $10.8M and Finest Hours settling for $10.3M.
The Finest Hours FSS isn’t the best of starts for a movie that carries an estimated budget between $70M-$80M. These seafaring films always have the tide against them during production, hence their lofty budgets. However, Finest Hours is another quagmire for prestige adult titles in the wake of such B.O. misfires as The Walk and Everest. Despite the fact that Finest Hours offers a smart ensemble with Chris Pine, Casey Affleck, Eric Bana and Ben Foster, none of those actors individually possess the marquee power of a Channing Tatum or a Leonardo DiCaprio, stars who could sail this pic to a taller wave. Another obstacle for Finest Hours per RelishMix: None of the stars navigates social media. Facebook conversation has been dominated by two things: the red carpet premiere and a Q&A with the cast. That said #Pinenuts took over the social Q&A with all kinds of questions for Pine, some about Finest Hours, but mostly related to Star Trek. On the upside, Finest Hours is coming in with an A- CinemaScore. Maybe word of mouth gets out, but that’s a challenge when tickets sales are so low. The Finest Hours was a chick magnet drawing 51% females per CinemaScore with 82% 25 and up. Both gave it A-. The movie’s subject matter was the big draw here at 61%.
As we previously reported Star Wars: The Force Awakens, will cross $900M later this week. By the end of today the highest grossing film of all-time stateside will have banked $895.4M. While some projected a $1B stateside end cume for Episode VII, others saw a slowdown at this point in time as the film nears $900M. There have been rumors that A Rogue One: Star Wars Story trailer will be paired with Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War on May 6. However, if Disney wants to push Force Awakens to the highest gross possible, they might consider dropping the Rogue One trailer earlier, specifically attached to Force Awakens. All the more reason to send fans back to the theater for the umpteenth time. Note that’s wishful thinking on our part. Force Awakens is holding so strongly that Disney isn’t even at the point where it’s contemplating the film’s final send-off on the big screen.
Open Road/IM Global’s Fifty Shades of Black is more like Fifty Shades of Red with the parody film coming in far below its $9M-$10M projection for a $6.2M weekend at 2,075 theaters in 9th place. The film was financed for $5M before P&A by IM Global. The Haunted House films earned B- grades, but CinemaScore crowds gave FSOB a nasty C. Older females actually braved this movie, turning up at 54% women, 65% over 25. 60% came out because they love comedy satires, while the Marlon Wayans fans repped close to half of the audience. 13% of the under 18 set who sneaked in gave FSOB its best grade: B+. Still, don’t expect them to show up in the coming weeks.
Other notables include A24’s Room at 795 locations pushing its total cume to $9.7M by end of today thanks to its Oscar nominations for best picture, director, adapted screenplay and actress Brie Larson. That’s an 87% uptick in its total gross since Oscar nom day. Of all the films to receive a surge from their Oscar noms, many projected Room to go boom since it was still in limited release.
Lazer Team in play at 25 locations is seeing an estimated Friday of $39K and a FSS of $98K. Rooster Teeth in connection with a crowd sourcing company TUGG crowed that the film racked up $1M in pre-sales with screenings also in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the U.K.
Also a golf clap for Paramount/New Regency’s The Big Short. Not only did the Adam McKay financial comedy surprise us last weeked as the Producer Guild’s top motion picture, but the film which cost $28M just crossed the $100M mark worldwide this weekend, with $41.8M of that figure coming from foreign. Film was in play in 57 territories and made $6.8M.
On social, RelishMix measured KFP3‘s SMU at 374M. Broken out that’s 112M on Facebook, 8.2M on Twitter, 3.7M on Instagram and a huge 250M total YouTube views. Many views on YouTube are holdover clips driving impressions. However, the biggest bounce in views has come from Dreamworks TV’s YouTube channel with 28.5M views for KFP3. By comparison, DWA’s Home had an SMU of 304M on its release date of March 27, 2015. That figure included Rhianna and Jennifer Lopez’s social following plus their Vevo music video views. KFP3’s social activity on par or slightly ahead of Home, which opened at $52.1M. The EOR earned, owned ratio of reposting videos is 9:1, which is very good for a family/animated film. KFP3‘s cast has a combined social media pull of 89.4M comprised of Jackie Chan, Bryan Cranston, Seth Rogen, Jack Black and Lucy Liu.
The top 15 films for the weekend of Jan. 29-31, 2016 as compiled by Deadine’s Amanda N’Duka as of Sunday AM
1). Kung Fu Panda 3 (DWA/FOX), 3,955 theaters / $10.5M Fri. / $18.3M Sat. (+74%)/ $12.2M Sun. (-33%) /3-day cume: $41M / Wk 1
2). The Revenant (FOX), 3,330 theaters (-381) / $3.2M Fri. /$5.8M Sat. (+80%)/ $3.4M Sun. (-42%) / 3-day cume: $12.4M (-23%) / Total cume: $138.2M / Wk 6
3). Star Wars: The Force Awakens (DIS), 2,556 theaters (-809) / $2.5M Fri. / $5.1M Sat. (+107%)/ $3.2M Sun. (-36%) /3-day cume: $10.8M (-23%)/ Total cume: $895.4M / Wk 7
4). The Finest Hours (DIS), 3,143 theaters / $3.3M Fri. / $4.3M Sat. (+31%)/ $2.7M Sun. (-38%) /3-day cume: $10.3M / Wk 1
5). Ride Along 2 (UNI), 2,412 theaters (-780) / $2.25M Fri. / $4M Sat. (+76%)/ $2.1M Sun. (-50%) /3-day cume: $8.35M (-33%) / Total cume: $70.8M / Wk 3
6). The Boy (STX), 2,671 theaters (0)/ $2.3M Fri. / $3.5M Sat. (+51%)/ $2.1M Sun. (-40%) /3-day cume: $7.89M(-27%)/Total cume: $21.5M/ Wk 2
7). Dirty Grandpa (LGF), 2,912 theaters (0)/ $2.2M Fri. / $3.35M Sat. (+52%)/ $2M Sun. (-40%) /3-day cume: $7.6M (-32%)/Total cume: $22.8M /Wk 2
8). The 5th Wave (SONY), 2,908 theaters (0) / $1.9MFri. / $3.3M Sat. (+72%)/ $1.8M Sun. (-44%) /3-day cume: $7M (-32%) /Total cume: $20.2M/ Wk 2
9). Fifty Shades of Black (OR/IMG), 2,075 theaters / $2.25M Fri. / $2.4M Sat. (+6%)/ $1.55M Sun. (-35%) /3-day cume: $6.2M / Wk 1
10.) 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi (PAR), 2,803 theaters (-114) / $1.7M Fri. / $2.8M Sat. (+64%)/ $1.5M Sun. (-46%) /3-day cume: $6M (-34%) / Total cume: $42.6M / Wk 3
11). Daddy’s Home (PAR), 1,718 theaters (-1,071) / $786K Fri. /$1.45M Sat. (+85%)/ $788K Sun. (-46%) / 3-day cume: $3.025M (-39%)/ Total cume: $142.9M / Wk 6
12). The Big Short (PAR), 983 theaters (-368) / $790K Fri. / $1.4M Sat. (+77%)/ $809K Sun. (-42%) /3-day cume: $3M (-6%)/ Total cume: $60.9M / Wk 8
13). Brooklyn (FSL), 748 theaters (-214) / $463K Fri. /$802K Sat. (+73%)/ $450K Sun. (-44%) / 3-day cume: $1.7M(-1%)/ Total cume: $30.4M / Wk 13
14). Room (A24), 795 theaters (-67) / $292K Fri. /$508K Sat. (+74%)/ $291K Sun. (-43%) / 3-day cume: $1.1M(-18%)/ Total cume: $9.7M / Wk 16
15). Spotlight (OPRD), 715 theaters (-315) / $281K Fri. /$525K Sat. (+87%)/ $315K Sun. (-40%) / 3-day cume: $1.1M (-12%)/ Total cume: $34.7M / Wk 13
Jane Got a Gun (TWC), 1,210 theaters / $277K Fri. / $329K Sat. (+19%)/ $197K Sun. (-40%) /3-day cume: $803K/ Wk 1
Lazer Team (ROO), 25 theaters / $38K Fri. / $33K Sat. (-15%)/ $23K Sun. (-30%) /3-day cume: $94K/ Wk 1
2nd UPDATE, Friday 12:10PM: DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 3 via 20th Century Fox is on its way to a $13M opening day and a weekend that’s in the $44M-$45M range. That’s not too far from the opening of Kung Fu Panda 2 which played over Memorial Day weekend 2011. That film also posted a Friday that was $13.1M (if you add in its $5.8M Thursday then you get to $18.9M) and its 3-day take was $47.7M. Again, matinees will determine if this threequel cracks $50M. KFP2 improved upon KFP with moviegoers earning an A Cinemascore to the first title’s A-. KFP2 in relation to its opening posted a 3.5 multiple in the end of $165.2M. KFP3 with critics is earning a 79% fresh score which files behind KFP (87%) and KFP2 (81%).
Among the new titles, Disney’s Finest Hours is looking at a $4.5M Friday and an opening weekend in the low teens. Critics are giving the sea ship disaster film a 60% fresh Rotten Tomatoes grade. Open Road/IM Global’s Fifty Shades of Black looks to whip $4M today with a $10M three-day. The tweeds can’t stand it with an 11% Rotten Tomatoes score…but then again, when did they ever appreciate satire or gross out? 20th Century Fox/New Regency’s The Revenant is also looking to gross $10M for the weekend, putting its cume through six weekends at $135.8M by Sunday.
Weinstein Co.’s release of Natalie Portman’s western Jane Got a Gun from director Gavin O’Connor is playing at 1,210 theaters and is looking at a $400K Friday and a FSS of $1.3M per rival distrib sources. Currently, Jane got a 40% Rotten Tomatoes score. More updates and analysis later this evening.
1st UPDATE, Friday 8:10AM: DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda 3 from 20th Century Fox did not screen last night, but Walt Disney’s period sea disaster film The Finest Hours and Open Road’s Fifty Shades of Black did. Disney is reporting $375K in Thursday preview B.O. last night for the Chris Pine-Casey Affleck-Ben Foster-Eric Bana ensemble pic, while Open Road/IM Global’s satire Fifty Shades of Black grossed $275K.
Finest Hours B.O. yesterday is slightly better than McFarland which made $260K and turned in a $11M opening ($44.5M stateside cume) and Million Dollar Arm which drew $250K and a $10.5M FSS (final domestic $36.5M). The film directed by Craig Gillespie carries an estimated production cost of $80M. The New York Times reports that post-production took a year as the director tried to get the waves correct with 1K VFK shots.
It will be a while before we get a sense of how well Kung Fu Panda 3 will be doing: Only 4% of K-12 schools are out today, and animated family films show their mettle in Saturday matinees. The first Kung Fu Panda posted an opening day of $20.3M and the second one inclusive of a $5.8M Thursday did $18.9M, however, that was made off the backs of summer moviegoers.
Fifty Shades of Black was financed by IM Global for an estimated $5M. The previous Marlon Wayans collaboration, the A Haunted House comedy series with director Michael Tiddes and scribe Rick Alvarez, racked up $84M worldwide across two films, with each costing between $2.5M-$4M before P&A.
B.O. analysts expect both The Finest Hours and Fifty Shades of Black to open to $10M-$11M in a marketplace that will be thawed by Kung Fu Panda 3 with a FSS in the $40M range.
Yesterday, 20th Century Fox/New Regency’s The Revenant topped the B.O. charts with $1.5M and a running cume prior to its sixth sesh of $125.8M.
Disney’s Star Wars: Force Awakens was third with $1.3M and a six week cume of $884.6M. Episode VII will cross the nine-century mark late next week. Last night, New York’s famed Ziegfeld Theatre dropped its red curtain for the final time after 46 years following the 10PM showtime for the J.J. Abrams movie. The midtown Ziegfeld
is (was) Manhattan’s last remaining single screen is not the last of the single screens; the Paris is still alive at 4 W. 58th Street and TWC’s Carol is showing there. Last week it was reported that the theater was losing $1M a year and that Cablevision was released from its longtime lease on the venue by landlord Fisher Brothers, who found a new tenant. The new occupants, who operate Gotham Hall on West 36th Street, will unveil the Ziegfeld Ballroom in the fall of 2017, which will include a 10,000-square-foot ballroom as well as mezzanine meeting rooms. So there’s a chance that film premieres will live on there.
Lionsgate’s Dirty Grandpa was pulling up third yesterday with $950K and a first week’s cume of $15.2M.