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Daily Box Office Analysis for June 4, 2007

By David Mumpower

June 5, 2007

Pick the dorkiest between the cast of Freaks and Geeks and the 'ask me about my wiener' guy.

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Starting today, BOP's daily box office analysis returns for the summer season key period of June through Labor Day. This will be a Tuesday-through-Friday column in addition to the one Tim Briody already does for Friday numbers analysis. Some of these updates will be numbers-intensive, detailed examinations of box office behavior. Others will be more simplistic. Daily box office numbers have a tendency to be repetitive over an extended period, so the column will be more detailed when appropriate. The rest of the time, the format will be closer to "here it is, do with it what you will".

In particular, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in the week will see more detailed analysis, with the reason being that weekend openers will still be early in their behavioral patterns. So, tracking them will be more educational for the reader as well as more rewarding for BOP's writers. We love what we do here, but anyone who was around long enough to report on Titanic's box office knows that saying "it's doing really, really well" grows tiresome and creatively unfulfilling after a while. We can sugarcoat the reality, but BOP's all about honesty.

One other note: oftentimes, the numbers will be posted first then the analysis will be added later. If you pull up a column and it's just the daily top 10 (or 12), keep checking back in for further details. Our site has been founded upon the philosophy that simple numbers presentation is a soulless endeavor, and that's not going to change any in this series of columns. We are going to continue offering our unique perspective on box office behavior inasmuch as the situations allow. Not every piece will be as fleshed out as the ever-popular Twelve Days of Holiday Box Office updates we do around Christmas, but there will be at least some analysis every day. Over time, behavioral patterns will be made clear to our newer readers and, hopefully, the folks who have been with BOP since its inception will also learn a thing or two along the way.




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Today's starter course will be relatively brief. The main topic of discussion is the first Monday of Knocked Up. Judd Apatow's latest directorial offering has been a splendid performer thus far, surpassing expectations each step of the way. After a $9.8 million debut on Friday, there was debate about how the production would hold up over the weekend. Would it play out like a teen movie, or would it show the legs of a more adult title? A 15% increase to $11.3 million on Saturday went a long way in eliminating those doubts with the point driven home by a $9.6 million Sunday. Knocked Up beat Universal's Sunday estimate by $1.3 million, giving it a total of $30.7 million over its first three days. For a film with a production budget of $30 million, this is a glorious accomplishment.

After becoming the fifth best R-rated comedy opening of all-time, what could Knocked Up do for an encore? The correct answer is "continue to beat expectations". Knocked Up earned another $4.4 million on Monday. To put this in perspective, let's compare it to some similar projects from prior years. The caveat is that I am not going to adjust for inflation today. The explanation is that given the overall lousy legs of summer 2007 releases to date, it's fair to do a straight dollars to dollars comparison for now. The ticket price inflation is theoretically off-set by the evolving nature of box office prioritization on the first week of business.


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