Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
November 14, 2011
Well, this one makes sense. It's the next one that causes us consternation.
Kim Hollis: Immortals, a Relativity Media film that was billed as 300 3D, opened to $32.2 million this weekend. It had an $80 million budget. What do you take from this better-than-expected result?
Edwin Davies: The main thing I'm taking away from this result is that people have been really starved for balls to the wall action for a while now and even though it's a pretty terrible film, Immortals sold itself very well as exactly the sort of blood-pumping action epic that people were apparently clamoring for. If anything, this is result is a tribute to the marketing team of Relativity Media, who were able to drum up enough interest to make it their biggest opening weekend ever.
Going forward, I don't see the film making enough Stateside to cover its budget - I personally think it'll tap out at around $80 million - but it'll probably do very well internationally, so whilst it won't end up being the second coming of 300, financially or culturally, it'll make a pretty little profit when all is said and done.
Matthew Huntley: I'm not sure whether or not Relativity Media planned it this way, but they opened Immortals on a weekend where they could more or less have the male teenage demographic all to itself (the last movie to exclusively target this audience was Reel Steel, which came out over a month ago), and considering teenage boys make up the majority of the movie-going public, it makes sense the movie opened on top and above expectations. Like Edwin, I don't foresee this having long legs, even if there is no direct competition (the rest of this month is mostly family pictures and the behemoth that will be Twilight: Breaking Dawn), but $75-$80 million is a reasonable goal. Plus, this is the type of movie that shines on DVD and Blu-ray, and given how well it performed in 3D (the format made up 66% of its business), it should perform well enough on the home market to be considered a success.
Bruce Hall: I think that a solid opening weekend for Immortals is the best case scenario coming to fruition. Nobody is going to care about this movie next week when Happy Feet Two opens. And, apparently there's a film about vegetarian vampires who go to high school, sweat glitter and are too pure to have premarital sex. That sounds like it might appeal to young people, but I'm not sure.
In any event, I wonder if Immortals won't be more of a financial factor when it drops on home video? While a $32 million opening is definitely strong, in addition to the budget figure Kim mentioned, I believe that boffo marketing campaign Edwin mentioned cost at least half again as much. It's possible that between the domestic cume, which promises to drop off conspicuously after this week, and the international figures are tallied up, Immortals could still fall short of breaking even overall. But as Matthew mentioned (see how I did that?), this is the kind of film that promises to do brisk business on rentals and DVD. People who didn't see it in theaters will rent it, and people who should just rent it will buy it and watch it once. All of it makes Relativity's bank balance fatter.