Weekend Wrap-Up

Horrible Bosses, Zookeeper; Mystery Meat of a Tentpole Sandwich

By John Hamann

July 10, 2011

They serve as a warning sign that you should save yourself from their horrible films.

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These R-rated comedies are sizzling this summer. Bridesmaids opened to a similar $26.2 million nine weekends ago, and has amassed $160 million. Bad Teacher opened to $31.6 million three weekends ago and had a strong weekend this frame despite the opening of Horrible Bosses, and of course Hangover II has mopped up over a half billion worldwide since opening seven weekends ago. These raunchy comedies have become the quick go-to for movie ROI. Bridesmaids cost on $37.5 million to make, and Bad Teacher cost only $20 million. Both of these films are or are going to be $100 million plus earners, with Bridesmaids carrying an opening-to-total multiplier of what will likely be 6.3 – higher than the original Hangover's 6.2. Obviously, these movies are playing as excellent counter-programming versus the effects-laden Hollywood fare, and Horrible Bosses should be no exception, as it goes up against the final Harry Potter next weekend.

Third is Zookeeper, a film I am sorry that parents are getting dragged to this weekend. Kevin James - who I want to like – looks uncomfortable in the marketing, but families didn't mind. America's everyman drew $21 million to the comedy this weekend. I say getting this one over the $20 million mark should be considered a success, and restrict the losses for Sony and MGM. It is a painful 15% fresh at RottenTomatoes, with only ten positive reviews out of a possible 66. It's Garfield all over again – same Tomatometer, same opening weekend gross, and likely a similar domestic gross at $75 million. Considering Zookeeper cost $80 million to make, Sony and MGM will make out just fine once overseas grosses are counted.

In holdover world, Cars 2 is fourth, as it stabilizes a bit before continuing downward against Potter next weekend. The Pixar sequel earned $15.2 million in its third weekend, off 42% compared to last weekend when it dropped 60% against Dark of the Moon. Following last weekend, Cars and its sequel were neck and neck with $117 million following two weekends of business. The sequel now lags after three weekends, as the original had earned $156.7 million, and the sequel has pulled in $148.8 million.

Fifth goes to Bad Teacher, and as mentioned above, the Cameron Diaz film had a decent third weekend. The Sony release earned $9 million in its third frame, off 38%, which improves on the 54% drop the comedy had last weekend. There has never been bad news for this release, as its $20 million budget was easily carried in its first two days of release. Bad Teacher still has a shot at $100 million, as it currently has a total of $78.8 million.


Sixth is Larry Crowne, which seems to have run out of senior citizens to entertain. Larry Crowne earned only $6.3 million, as the Tom Hanks/Julia Roberts dramedy dropped a searing 52%. If there's good news here, its the fact that Larry Crowne cost Hanks only $30 million to make, so it won't be a complete disaster. Give it $26.5 million at the domestic box office so far, with a $35-$40 million finish expected.

Super 8 is seventh this weekend. The JJ Abrams flick took in $4.8 million in its fifth weekend, and dropped 39%. Call it another hit for Spielberg and Abrams, as this one cost $50 million and has already returned $118.1 million at the domestic box office alone.

Monte Carlo is eighth, and has a fair hold considering the target market. The movie with Justin Bieber's girlfriend (I don't know who she is, don't care, and won't look it up) earned $3.1 million in its second weekend and dropped 49%. The $20 million Fox release has now earned $16.1 million. Huzzah.

Ninth is The Green Lantern, and tenth is Mr. Popper's Penguins, two examples of quality film-making for the blind and deaf. Green Lantern earned $3.1 million and dropped 52%, while Penguins earned $2.9 million and dropped 48%. Green Lantern is losing the earnings vs. budget battle, as it has accumulated $109.7 million domestically against a budget of at least $200 million (plus marketing). It has also taken in only $33 million so far overseas. Penguins is not quite a disaster, but it's close. The film has earned $57.7 million domestically against a $55 million production budget.

Overall, the box office this weekend wasn't close to the awesome results put up last year. A year ago, Despicable Me was on top with $56.4 million, followed by Twilight: Eclipse at $31.7 million, Predators at $24.7 million and Toy Story 3 at $21 million. Six titles earned more than $10 million and the top twelve combined for $184 million. This weekend, the top 12 drew only $150.8 million. Next weekend brings Pottermania, and this one is going to be huge.

Top Weekend Box Office for 7/8/11-7/10/11 (Estimates)
Rank Film Distributor Estimated Gross Weekly Change Running Total
1 Transformers: Dark of the Moon Paramount $47,025,000 -52% $261,000,000
2 Horrible Bosses New Line Cinema $28,110,000 New $28,110,000
3 Zookeeper SONY $21,000,000 New $21,000,000
4 Cars 2 Walt Disney Pictures $15,209,000 - 42.1% $148,828,000
5 Bad Teacher Sony/Columbia $9,000,000 - 39.0% $78,757,000
6 Larry Crowne Universal $6,264,480 - 49% $26,525,765
7 Super 8 Paramount $4,825,000 - 52% $118,056,000
8 Monte Carlo Twentieth Century Fox $3,800,000 - 49% $16,124,903
9 Green Lantern Warner Bros. Pictures $3,125,000 - 52.3% $109,709,000
10 Mr. Popper's Penguins Twentieth Century Fox $2,850,000 - 49% $57,746,774
11 Midnight in Paris Sony Pictures Classics $2,706,235 - 24% $38,650,502
12 Bridesmaids Universal $2,672,350 - 27% $158,186,095
  Also Opening/Notables
  Beats, Rhymes & Life: the Travels of a Tribe Called Quest Sony Classics $120,016 New $120,016
  Project Nim Roadside Attractions $25,000 New $25,000
  Sholem Aleichem Int'l Film Circuit $18,405 New $18,405
  Terri $45,000 - 31% $145,000
  A Better Life SUMMIT $314,000 +221% $543,254
  Buck IFC Films $400,000 -17% $1,715,000
  The Trip IFC Films $120,000 - 25% $960,000
  X-Men: First Class Twentieth Century Fox $1,475,000 - 50.0% $142,091,737
  Beginners Focus Features $543,472 - 9.2% $3,239,404
  The Hangover: Part II Warner Bros. $1,185,000 - 50.5% $250,804,000
  The Tree of Life FOX SEARCHLIGHT $770,000 -28% $8,990,761
  Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides WALT DISNEY $1,087,000 -50% $236,283,000
Box office data supplied by Exhibitor Relations
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