Monday Morning Quarterback Part II
By BOP Staff
April 20, 2010
Dragons = $$$$$
Kim Hollis: When How to Train Your Dragon opened three weeks ago, we were not exactly lavish in our praise of its debut, which - let's be honest - barely beat Bee Movie, a film that did not have 3-D ticket price inflation. Now that How to Train Your Dragon is up to $158.2 million after four weekends, we obviously need to re-evaluate its status. Do you credit its success to word-of-mouth, RealD box office inflation, a combination of those, or some other factor?
Josh Spiegel: Can the answer be all four? 3D prices always help, and even the onslaught of Clash of the Titans didn't take that many screens away from this film. The word-of-mouth has been strong and consistent since the film came out; I've read of people (by people, I mean those who have no children) seeing it six times. In IMAX. They've obviously got big pockets, but the point is people really like this movie. And, as with Avatar, competition is low. There's no real family film coming out until Furry Vengeance on April 30th, and let's be honest: it's no threat. This movie was always going to do well by having great legs, which it's got.
Matthew Huntley: I'll be honest, I'm kind of baffled why HTTYD has garnered such overwhelmingly positive reviews and word-of-mouth. I liked the movie, yes, and I'm happy it's holding on so strongly to help fuel the box-office, but I wouldn't exactly call it a masterpiece (although the dragon himself was awesome and reminded me of my dog). What I think it ultimately boils down to is lack of competition (the RealD inflation also plays a role). There are no other family films out right now, let alone "children's" movies, and these are known for their incredible staying power, especially when they have the market all to themselves (believe it or not, even Tooth Fairy showed good legs). Aside from Furry Vengeance, does the film have any real competition until Toy Story 3? The Losers, A Nightmare on Elm Street and Iron Man 2 are certainly no threat to Dragon's audience, so there's no telling how far it can stick around.
Shalimar Sahota: I agree with what Josh said. Though as already mentioned, I think the biggie has to be lack of competition. A few weeks ago it was talk about Clash of the Titans taking away its potential earnings from 3D screenings. 3D or not, people are being drawn to a good film.
Tom Macy: I thought this movie was awesome. It deserves every penny. In IMAX 3D it was truly breathtaking - in some ways I thought more so than Avatar. It's another case where audiences are getting something that feels new at the movies and they not only want to experience it again but they also want to share their experiences with others using words of their mouth.
Reagen Sulewski: You can certainly add some inflation from 3D into its totals, but I don't really see that it has much to do with legs. The best 3D in the world isn't going to get people in the theatres if the movie's no good. This looks more to me like the continuation of the pattern we saw last year where consumers seemed to rally around a few films based on word-of-mouth. Taken, Couples Retreat (ugh) and The Proposal were the big winners last year, and I think we've got our first winner this year.