Weekend Wrap-Up For June 6/22 - 2/24, 2007
Evan Not So Almighty at Weekend Box Office
By John Hamann
June 24, 2007
Our second place film is another opener, this time of the quality variety, in 1408, a suspense/horror flick based on a short story by Stephen King. The John Cusack movie earned an impressive $20.2 million from 2,678 venues, and had the second-best average in the top ten at $7,534. From the usually idiotic MGM, 1408 overcame its lack of star power, a downturn in the horror business and heavy competition in summer to turn into a hit. 1408 almost grossed as much as its production budget, as it cost MGM only $25 million to produce. They did it with a snappy trailer and marketing campaign, and created buzz via some sensational early reviews. At RottenTomatoes, 72 positive notices were posted versus 26 negative ones, leaving 1408 with a fresh rating of 73% (and an even better 91% from Users of the site). This isn't the first time in the last few years Cusack has opened a thriller successfully. In April 2003, Cusack starred in Identity, a fantastic thriller from James Mangold (Walk the Line), and that movie debuted to $16 million (if you haven't seen it, go rent it, it really is that good) and finished with $52 million. MGM would have been looking for a similar gross with 1408, and it should easily reach $50 million, with $60 million not out of the question. Surprisingly, this is the biggest debut for a horror flick since Saw III opened in October 2006.
Finishing an ugly third is Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, as we have another sequel plunging drastically in its second weekend. The Marvel sequel grossed $20.2 million in its second frame, dropping a hurtful 65%. Silver Surfer earned more last weekend on its opening day than it did over its entire second weekend. It's not a complete surprise. The first film chucked 59% of its audience over its second weekend, but still managed to finish with $155 million. The Silver Surfer should finish short of the original, ending its run around the $140 million mark. So far, this $130 million picture has earned $97.6 million. Let's all say a prayer that Fox doesn't make another one.
Fourth goes to Ocean's Thirteen, as the George Clooney flick approaches the $100 million mark. The Warner Bros. sequel earned $11.3 million in its third frame, dropping 42%. After three weekends, Ocean's Twelve had earned $86.6 million, so Warner Bros. has to be happy with a $91 million gross so far.
Finishing fifth is Knocked Up, the film Steve Carell should have chosen over Evan Almighty. Knocked Up earned another $10.6 million this weekend, as the film continues to see small drops since opening to $31 million four weekends ago. Despite facing off against Evan Almighty, Knocked Up dropped only 24%, and has now seen drops of 36%, 28% and 24%. The small comedy with no major stars crossed the $100 million mark on Friday, it's 22nd day of release - the same amount of time it took Borat to reach that figure. I see Knocked Up finishing with more than Borat's $128 million domestic total. Currently, the comedy that was made for $30 million has earned $109 million.
Sixth goes to Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, as the Disney blockbuster continues to trudge toward $300 million. Johnny Depp's gang of thieves earned another $7.2 million, but dropped 42% compared to last weekend, as there is no relief from the big drops for the big sequels this summer. So far, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End has earned $287 million, a figure that Disney has to be somewhat disappointed with.