When it comes to evaluating the financial performance of top movies, it isn’t about what a film grosses at the box office. The true tale is told when production budgets, P&A, talent participations and other costs collide with box office grosses and ancillary revenues from VOD to DVD and TV. To get close to that mysterious end of the equation, Deadline is repeating our Most Valuable Blockbuster tournament for 2019, using data culled by seasoned and trusted sources.
Writer-director M. Night Shyamalan had a surprise hit with Split, the 2016 thriller distinguished by James McAvoy as a psycho with 23 personalities and an ending that invoked the filmmaker’s 2000 thriller Unbreakable. So Shyamalan brought back that latter film’s stars — Bruce Willis as a superhero and Samuel L. Jackson as a supervillian — and matched them with McAvoy. The mashup didn’t exceed Split’s $40 million three-day domestic start or that film’s $278.4M WW gross. Glass came in below bullish industry projections north of $57M over the four-day MLK weekend and did $40M over three days and ultimately $247M WW. Pic had fewer female and Hispanic audiences showing up than the previous chapter, audiences being less impressed (B Cinemascore), not to mention critics who thumbed down Glass at 37% on Rotten Tomatoes versus Split‘s 72% fresh rating.
THE BOX SCORE
Here are the costs and revenues as our experts see them:
THE BOTTOM LINE
We hear that Jackson and Willis received more upfront than a typical Blumhouse production, which normally sees the bulk of the back-end going to talent. But there was still big back-end doled out, with $50M participations (verus Split‘s $80M). Disney distributed overseas having handled Shyamalan’s Unbreakable, but Universal and Disney split global revenues. Even though Glass didn’t overperform expectations, the movie minted a net profit of $68M. That’s the same amount our finance sources assessed for Split, even though Glass was more expensive than Split in production costs, $20M versus $9M net.
2019 Most Valuable Movie Blockbuster
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