Friday Box Office Analysis

By Kim Hollis

January 8, 2011

They're big Shakespeare in Love fans.

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A weak-looking January starts out with only one new wide-release, along with an expanding Country Strong. Would they be able to break through the pack and get to the top, or would holiday holdovers still dominate?

Season of the Witch

With a glorious 1% fresh rating at RottenTomatoes, the Nic Cage slummer Season of the Witch was hoping that that group of people who just goes to see the actor in his movies, no matter what, would be up for a weird and dumb looking movie about witch hunting (or something like that). It was good enough for about $3.7 million on Friday, which is about $3.6 million more than it deserved for the entire weekend (gotta account for that one reviewer who liked the movie, and his/her friends). The studio *might* estimate it over $10 million, but they'll be lying if that's the case. Realistically, Season of the Witch should finish the weekend with $9.3 million before it fades into happy obscurity.


Country Strong

The movie with Gwyneth Paltrow and Leighton Meester as country singers earned $2.6 million on Friday, but considering that its budget was $15 million versus Season of the Witch's $40 million, that doesn't sound all that bad. It hadn't pulled in that much in limited release, but this weekend's expansion should be good enough for a $7.5 million finish over three days. Not bad, but not great either.

Notable Holdovers

True Grit once again overtakes Little Fockers for the top spot on Friday, and once again, it's going to be very close for the weekend top film title. Even with that #1 placement, True Grit still fell an expected large amount from last weekend's holiday-inflated total, as Friday's $4.5 million is a 46% drop from its previous total. It should even out some over the rest of the weekend, though, and a weekend total of $17.6 million would be a reasonable expectation.

Close behind True Grit is Little Fockers, whose $4.2 million is a 46% drop from last Friday, pretty much identical to what the western saw. That might mean the weekend will give way once again to the Fockers, but family films do seem some dropoff once January hits. I think it's due for about $17.4 million, but it wouldn't surprise me to see the studio go as high as $18 million and take the victory.

Black Swan increased its Friday take to $2.4 million, meaning this film is getting some strong heat heading into awards season. That's a 23% bump from last Friday, and Black Swan may even get into fourth place for the weekend if it holds up really well. That would be impressive indeed, but I think it's going to just miss with $9.1 million.

Projected Estimates for the Top Ten (Three-Day)
Estimated Gross
1 Little Fockers 18.0
2 True Grit 17.6
3 Tron: Legacy 12.0
4 Season of the Witch 9.3
5 Black Swan 9.1
6 The Fighter 8.5
7 Country Strong 7.5
8 The King's Speech 6.6
9 Yogi Bear 4.9
10 Tangled 2.6



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