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Weekend Forecast for July 6-8, 2007

By Reagen Sulewski

July 6, 2007

For reasons passing understanding, he is inspired by Shia LaBeouf.

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Earning a meager $5 million over its first two days, License to Wed is looking to be yet another film for the ever-growing pile of regrettable choices for Williams. Not that he seems to have to worry for his career – not many other stars have so many flops on their record and continue to get steady work. The probably $8 million weekend is actually about in line for Moore's track record, and Krasinski...well, he's got Leatherheads to look forward to this winter.

This brings us to our returning films. Ratatouille came in with a surprisingly low opening weekend total of $47 million, the lowest opening weekend for a Pixar film since A Bug's Life. Things have picked up since then, though, and it has now racked up Pixar's highest Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday totals, and is on pace to bring in an astounding 60 to 65% of its weekend total in the four day inter-weekend period. Word-of-mouth is clearly kicking in here, though the extent is still to be seen. I expect a pretty strong hold over of about $33 million, and while a Finding Nemo result is out of the cards, we can't rule $200 million plus out yet for the Little Chef.

Another disappointing result last weekend was the opening of Live Free or Die Hard, which opened to a mere $33 million, well below the inflation adjusted opening weekends of either Die Hards 2 and 3. Perhaps the 12-year gap between sequels was a bit too much to overcome, perhaps action tastes have changed, or perhaps there's no coming back for Bruce Willis. In either case, this has to be a bit of a disappointment in today's environment of huge opening weekends for blockbusters. The film isn't sunk by any means, as it's performed moderately well mid-week and has decent if unspectacular word-of-mouth. Look for a second weekend of about $19 million, pushing its total to about $85 million after 12 days.




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The next few films in the top ten are a group that isn't threatening to stick around past the month of July. Evan Almighty, 1408 and The Fantastic Four 2 all fell around or greater than 50% last weekend, though each of these films is in quite a different situation. Evan Almighty remains a tremendously expensive flop, and will do well to earn even half of its extraordinary $200 million budget in domestic receipts. 1408 has the benefit of being cheap, so its probable $75 million final figure should be spun as a win. And The Fantastic Four at least got out to a hot start, though it's shed an amazing 85% of its opening weekend in two short weeks.

Knocked Up continues to show legs, although with just $7 million last weekend, it is close to the end of its run. All in all, it's been a very impressive one, and the schlubby Seth Rogan will soon be able to claim that he was the lead in a $150 million grossing film where he got to have sex with Katherine Heigl. Tough life he's having.

Finally, the latest Michael Moore documentary, Sicko, continues its expansion, jumping to 702 screens after making the top ten in just 441 last weekend. It boasted the second highest per screen average of all films, behind only Ratatouille, which is a decent feat for a film about health care. It's not quite as controversial a film as his last two documentaries, though it's certainly achieving some notoriety and ruffling feathers, Moore's general goal for all his films. I would look for another $5 million this weekend, and continued expansion in following weeks.


Forecast: Weekend of July 6-8, 2007
Rank
Film
Number of
Sites
Changes in Sites
from Last
Estimated
Gross ($)
1 Transformers 4,011 New 81.8
2 Ratatouille 3,940 0 33.4
3 Live Free or Die Hard 3,411 +3 19.7
4 License to Wed 2,604 0 8.0
5 Evan Almighty 3,466 -170 7.1
6 1408 2,631 -102 5.3
7 Sicko 702 +261 5.1
8 Knocked Up 2,211 -454 4.6
9 Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer 2,618 -806 4.0
10 Ocean's Thirteen 2,102 -801 3.2

Continued:       1       2

     


 
 

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