Daily Box Office Analysis for July 22, 2008
By David Mumpower
July 23, 2008
In yesterday's discussion, I pointed out where all of these films were on the box office meter after four days. Let's update that result with Tuesday's results factored in. After five days, Episode III was at $172,802,507, Spider-Man was at $135,840,755, Spider-Man 3 was at $169,444,466, Shrek the Third was at $138,706,832, Dead Man's chest was $169,506,744 and At World's End was at $160,831,171. Folks, The Dark Knight is at $203,773,518, meaning none of these other $300+ million earners is within $30 million of it. All of these titles needed somewhere between eight and ten days to attain what Heath Ledger's last movie has managed in five days.
Summarizing all of the data above, the only title that is in the discussion for having a better Tuesday holdover is Spider-Man. And the difference in scale between the two titles (The Dark Knight made only $500,000 less on Tuesday than the first Spider-Man movie did on Monday and Tuesday combined) more than compensates for that. This is the most incendiary box office on record. Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan have effectively made the strongest money makers in recent industry history tap out.
So, the logical question becomes, "What else can The Dark Knight do?" I know that some of you want to discuss the T word (the one involving an iceberg and James Cameron). We'll get to that. For now, let's consider the short term possibilities. With additional 15% drops today and tomorrow followed by at least a $65 million weekend (and all of these seem reasonable if not rather conservative estimates), the latest Batman movie breaks $300 million in ten days. That would shatter the record for fastest to $300 million by six days (Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest currently holds the title at 16 days).
Also, if we get a bit more ambitious, there exists the possibility that not only will The Dark Knight have the best second weekend ever (it seems certain to smash Shrek 2's current record of $72,170,363), it may even cross $100 million a second time. This could happen. I think that's ambitious, probably overly so, but I refuse to rule anything out with this project. All of the free news cycles involving its shattering of box office records add fuel to the demand. As for Titanic, it's still early yet. Only two movies have earned $450+ million and I'm not ceding Titanic's record until The Dark Knight has at least passed Star Wars' $461.0 million first. Having said that, the idea does not sound anywhere near as crazy as it did on Sunday. $45 million in box office on Monday and Tuesday changes its outlook a bit from its already lofty standing as the biggest opener of all-time. Clearly, the high level of demand for this product has not been met yet, giving it a chance at standing at $320 million after only ten days or so. We have no point for comparison for a blockbuster performing this well this fast. It is historically unprecedented.
||The Dark Knight
||Warner Bros. Pictures
||Journey to the Center of the Earth
||Warner Bros. Pictures
||Hellboy II: The Golden Army
||20th Century Fox
||Kung Fu Panda
Box office data supplied by Exhibitor Relations