Weekend Forecast for March 9-11, 2012

By Reagen Sulewski

March 9, 2012

C'mere, Lorax, I have something underneath this heavy log I want to you check out....

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There's little good that can happen when a film is brought out several years after it's made. When it's also from a guy who's had some of the most epic bombs in cinema history, you could have something really special brewing. A Thousand Words is Eddie Murphy's “latest”, by which I mean when he made this film, Obama and Hilary were still fighting it out in the Democratic primaries. In the hopes that film ages like wine, it's finally hitting theaters in a slightly-more-than token release, with about 1,800 venues deigning to take it.

In the film, Murphy stars as a motor-mouth agent who is cursed to only have one thousand words left to say in his life (Oh, I see how they got the title now). Which just leads him to some outsize mugging and gesticulating. It's a weird strategy, hiring Murphy and then getting him not to talk, which is kind of like hiring Usain Bolt to run for you and then tying his shoelaces together.

Murphy's had some of the biggest flops in this vaguely family-friendly area in the last few years, with Meet Dave and Imagine That sticking out prominently with $5 million apiece for opening weekends. There's also The Adventures of Pluto Nash back in 2002, which set records for futility relative to cost for a major star that aren't likely to be matched anytime soon. Well, unless it happens this weekend, which I can't rule out. Currently running at a perfect zero positive reviews, A Thousand Words should be soundly rejected this weekend, with about $4 million.


A secondary risk for John Carter this weekend is to be beaten out by the second weekend for The Lorax, which stunned with its $70 million take. The question that needs to be solved is which is the real Lorax – the one that earned $17 million on Friday, or about what everyone thought, or the one that earned $31 million on Saturday, close to double what you'd figure. If it's the latter, we could be in for a huge followup weekend close to $50 million. If it's the former, that's about $35 million. My guess is that it splits the difference, but a little towards the higher end, and we get a $42 million weekend.

The found-footage party film Project X came in with about $21 million, beating most expectations, though teen films typically drop like a stone. The gimmicky nature of this film will likely exaggerate that effect, and I'd expect only about $9 million this weekend for it. Still, for a film that cost basically nothing to make, it's a win.

Act of Valor held over decently for its genre, with around $13 million, and appears headed for about a $75 million final domestic total (overseas revenues, I imagine, will be negligible). Give it $7 million this frame.

Forecast: Weekend of March 9-11, 2012
Number of
Changes in Sites
from Last
Gross ($)
1 The Lorax 3,745 +16 41.8
2 John Carter 3,749 New 34.9
3 Silent House 2,124 New 10.6
4 Project X 3,055 0 9.4
5 Act of Valor 2,951 -102 7.5
6 Safe House 2,145 -408 4.9
7 A Thousand Words 1,890 New 4.6
8 The Vow 2,478 -348 4.4
9 Tyler Perry's Good Deeds 1,516 -616 3.4
10 Journey 2: The Mysterious Island 2,525 -535 3.4

Continued:       1       2



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