A second CGI-animated film attempted to take a slice of the family pie this weekend, while Pierce Brosnan tried to show that he can still smolder. Chucky became a daddy, and Bridget Jones continued being neurotic. In the end, Pixar is going to emerge victorious again.
Friday Box Office Analysis
By Kim Hollis
November 13, 2004
The Polar Express
After taking in a decent $7.3 million on Wednesday and Thursday, the Tom Hanks-centric film managed to start the weekend with $6.7 million on Friday. Naturally, since it is a film aimed directly at the family audience, it's going to have strong holds over the entire three days. Look for a weekend multiplier in the 3.5 range, which would indicate a debut weekend of $23.5 and a cumulative total over $30 million. That number has to be somewhat disappointing for Warner Bros., as an article published yesterday stated that the film would need to make in excess of $500 million (including ancillary sales such as DVD and television rights) to be profitable. The holiday season is fast approaching, though, which means that The Polar Express should have a nice, long life at the box office.
After the Sunset
Audiences still like Pierce Brosnan, it seems. Despite mixed-to-poor reviews, the film is nonetheless a crowd-pleaser, and kick started the weekend with a $3.6 million Friday. Since the film skews very heavily adult, it's going to have a strong showing over the Friday-to-Sunday period. The weekend multiplier should wind up around 3.1, which would give the caper flick a solid-if-unspectacular opening weekend total of $11.2 million.
Seed of Chucky
The Child's Play franchise, on the other hand, appears to have lost steam. Rather than open this film on Halloween, a date that would have been appropriate and might have attracted some of the Grudge/Saw audience, Rogue Pictures instead saw fit to push it to mid-November. The move seems to have been a bit of a miscalculation, as Seed of Chucky had an opening day total of $3.1 million. With the typical horror film multiplier of 2.5, it's going to limp along to a three-day total of $7.8 million, throwing well under the previous entry in the series, which had a first-weekend take of $11.8 million.
Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason
Along with The Incredibles, the other big winner this weekend looks to be Universal and their sequel to Bridget Jones's Diary. Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason rolled out in a limited 530 venue theater count, and managed to equal Seed of Chucky's Friday number and approached that of After the Sunset. Again, it's an adult-skewing, female-friendly film, and will have a solid three-day multiplier. Given a 3.3 for Friday-to-Sunday, Bridget Jones should find herself with $10.2 million and a decent chance for the best per-screen average.
After jumping out to an impressive start in weekend one, The Incredibles is holding up, well, incredibly. It dropped a mere 28% on Friday, as word-of-mouth has clearly kicked in that this film is truly top-notch. Look for a strong second weekend showing of $49 million and another asterisk alongside the "competition is overrated" mantra.
Alfie, on the other hand, is precipitously close to falling off the face of the earth. It dropped 54% from last Friday and is looking at a second weekend total of $3.1 million.