Friday Numbers Analysis

Bourne Again

By David Mumpower

August 4, 2007

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If there had been any lingering doubt about which espionage franchise was the choice of modern consumers, those concerns were dismissed last night. The Bourne Ultimatum earned a dazzling $23.7 million, guaranteeing it will become the largest opener in the franchise to date. In fact, this Friday performance almost matches the entire $27.1 million opening weekend of the first title in the series, The Bourne Identity. It also represents a 28.8% increase from The Bourne Supremacy's $18.4 million Friday debut, 17.8% if we adjust for 2004-2007 ticket price inflation. The real kicker here is the fact that Casino Royale, the well received franchise re-boot of James Bond, managed only $14.7 million in its first day of release with a total first weekend of $40.8 million. Clearly, The Bourne Ultimatum is going to torch the latter number and has already beaten the former one by 61%. Bond might be the biggest selling franchise of all-time, but Bourne is the spy of the moment.

The natural question is what we should expect from the rest of the weekend. Could this title be front-loaded more than the prior two titles in the series? Obviously, this is a concern for any sequel with a massive Friday. Given the exemplary word-of-mouth, reviews and buzz for The Bourne Supremacy, however, I am less worried about the possibility than I was last weekend with The Simpsons Movie. The Bourne Identity's internal multiplier was a solid 3.08 while The Bourne Supremacy's was 2.85. This is an indication that Ultimatum should hold up well over the weekend with a 2.75 multiplier giving it an expected total of $65.2 million. A larger estimate tomorrow wouldn't surprise me but a lower one would.

The next biggest opener yesterday was third place finisher Underdog. The childhood favorite of BOP's own Kim Hollis earned a moderate $4.1 million, which is solid but nowhere near the expected George of the Jungle/Inspector Gadget territory Disney was forecasting earlier this year. A solid internal multiplier of 3.35 would give the crime fighting superhero canine $13.7 million for the weekend. Underdog is likely to have legs, but this is not the type of performance we have come to expect from Disney for this sort of film.




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The other two noteworthy openings this weekend are Hot Rod and Bratz. The former title is the latest attempt from a largely unknown Saturday Night Live featured player to become a movie star. Hot Rod managed a weak $2.0 million Friday. While the results are better than It's Pat, to be sure, they are basically a wash with The Ladies Man (once adjusted for inflation), and they aren't even as good as the dreadful A Night at the Roxbury. Frankly, I had expected more from this title than a $5.2 million weekend. Conversely, those effin' Bratz dolls did better yesterday than I had wanted, earning $1.7 million in ticket sales from fans of Whore Mannequins. There might be some fanboy rush on this one (and isn't that a scary thought?), but I suspect it will hold up well over the weekend, slightly edging out Hot Rod in the end. A weekend of $5.4 million is in the cards.

The big news for returning titles this week is that The Simpsons Movie absorbed a body blow with box office of only $7.9 million, dropping a devastating 73% from last Friday. Some would argue that this is expected given how brilliant its first day of $30 million was. Those of you who have been reading BOP's Daily Numbers columns know better. All of the hallmarks of major front-loading have been present from Tuesday forward, with the end result being a likely second weekend of $24.9 million, which is a loss of two thirds of its revenue from last weekend. There is no way to sugarcoat that as a positive. The news for the less interesting No Reservations is more positive. It fell only 48% from last weekend, earning $2.1 million. A weekend of $6.5 million appears likely for the least imaginative project on the summer schedule.


Projected Estimates for the Top Ten (Three-Day)
Projected
Rank
Film
Estimated Gross
1 The Bourne Supremacy 65.2
2 The Simpsons Movie 24.96
3 Underdog 13.7
4 I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry 10.2
5 Hairspray 9.7
6 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix 9.0
7 No Reservations 6.5
8 Bratz 5.4
9 Hot Rod 5.2
10 Transformers 4.9

     


 
 

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