Following a disappointing May at the Box Office, June got off to a slow start as the total weekend was down about 19% from last year, and several new releases fell short of their expectations. “Shrek Forever After” took the top spot for the third week in a row, taking in another $25 million. This brings its domestic total to $183 million and its global total to $251 million. As the production budget is reported as having been $165 million, the film has still proven profitable for Dreamworks, but has grossed far less than either of the last two films in the franchise at this point in their respective runs.
“Get Him to the Greek” came in second, with a respectable opening weekend of $17 million, an almost identical figure to the opening weekend of “Forgetting Sarah Marshall” in the spring of 2008. The rock n’ roll themed comedy cost Universal $40 million to produce, and should easily turn a profit in the coming weeks.
“Killers” had a terrible opening weekend, taking in $16 million, a four-year-low for a film starring either Katherine Heigl or Ashton Kutcher. Lionsgate produced the film for $75 million. Depending on the drop-off in the coming week and the worldwide grosses (which are unavailable at this time) the film may have to wait until its DVD release to turn a profit, but as of now it’s hard to see the film ultimately not making money.
“Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time” fell over 53% in its second week, taking in another $13 million to bring its domestic total to $59 million. Though the film has continued to under-perform stateside, its worldwide gross currently sits at $215 million, a figure slightly higher than its $200 million budget.
The biggest nose-dive at the Box Office this weekend was “Sex and the City 2”, which fell almost 60%, taking in another $12 million to bring its domestic total to $73 million. This is another film that has made up for a less-than-stellar domestic showing by creating a higher profit margin overseas. The worldwide total currently sits at $163 million, and as the budget was $100 million, the film could not make another dime theatrically and still be considered a banner success.
In other opening weekend news, the greatest failure of the week may have been “Marmaduke” which opened in seventh place with $11 million domestically, and a worldwide total of $16 million. With a production budget of $50 million, its currently easy to see the film not turning a profit during its theatrical run, yet it should do well on DVD, making it very likely a good investment for FOX.
“Splice” opened in eight place with $7 million, with worldwide figures unavailable at this time. As the film reportedly cost $30 million to produce, it would be easy to consider the opening weekend a failure. Still, the film was independently financed with no original intention of a wide release, so Warner Brothers which distributed the film will likely be happy with the opening weekend to a certain degree, and the film could easily recoup its budget on the worldwide scale and on DVD.
“Raajneeti” opened in a limited release but took eleventh place with $917,000. Although no production budget or worldwide gross was available at this time, the film appeared to have a successful weekend due to a large Indian-American audience creating one of the weekend’s higher per-theater-average.
The only other film opening this weekend was the horror/documentary “Cropsey” which took in $6,500 on one screen.
The film that took in the highest per-theater-average this weekend was “Agora”, written and directed by award-winning filmmaker Alejandro Amenabar (“The Sea Inside”) and starring Academy Award-winner Rachel Weisz (“The Constant Gardener”). The film took in $43,500 on four screens for a $10,875 per-screen-average and a $97,500 domestic total.
What drew you to the theater this weekend? Whether you were catching up with this summer’s blockbusters or this weekend’s genre fare, as always, we at the Awards Circuit would love to hear what you saw, and as always, and awards potential you see. On behalf of all of us at the Circuit, thank you so much for reading and we hope you’re enjoying your summer at the movies.