Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
July 2, 2012
It's much less impressive when you look at it that way. But when you've made the same movie this many times and you STILL cover your production budget opening weekend, you're the one laughing last. Still, if you've got anything to say about Tyler Perry Presents Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection by Tyler Perry Starring Tyler Perry as Madea (still checking on that title, but that's what I was told), say it today. Because now that every African American woman over 40 has seen it, there should be no reason to discuss it again.
Edwin Davies: This is about right for Perry when he puts the fat suit on, since the Madea films in general perform better than his non-Madea ones (point of comparison: 's Good Deeds opened to only $15 million back in February), but considering that this is probably the broadest Madea film since 's Madea Goes To Jail, if only based on how easy the premise is to sum up in a single sentence, I would have expected it to perform a touch better. I also thought that the addition of Eugene Levy and Denise Richards as a couple (wait, what?) might draw in people beyond Perry's usual audience. In fact, there seem to be reports suggesting that this is the case. If so, this perhaps suggests that Perry's films are starting to see a very gradual case of diminishing returns as audiences get a bit bored of the same schtick. Still, his films cost hardly anything to make, and they all cover their budgets on opening weekend, so any decrease is unlikely to hurt him too badly, and the forthcoming Alex Cross suggests that he is preparing to move beyond just appearing in his own stuff, so he continues to be one of the savviest men in the industry.
David Mumpower: This performance is right in line with my expectations. I also feel that we are being too critical of a $25.4 million debut. Yes, this is "only" the third strongest debut for a Madea movie behind Madea's Family Reunion ($30.3 million) and Madea Goes to Jail ($41.0 million). This is missing the forest for the trees a bit, though. These films are all critically reviled with 2011's Madea's Big Happy Family being the highest rated thus far at Rotten Tomatoes at only 38% fresh. There have also been a slew of them with four Madea movies released in six years. Saturation ostensibly should have set in by now yet it hasn't. This speaks volumes about how well Tyler Perry understands his fans and continues to deliver exactly what they want as consumers. If anything, I admire the fact that he managed to reinvent the franchise a bit with the Witness Protection concept. And with a budget of only $20 million, Perry has once again delivered a marketable product at a fraction of the cost of most $25 million openers. Hollywood execs should be paying him to consult on his secrets for frugal filmmaking that appeals to the masses.
Kim Hollis: Yes, it's right in line with expectations and as long as the Madea movies keep making money, Lionsgate will keep throwing money Tyler Perry's way so that he can make more of them. I'd like to say that it'd be nice to see him explore other opportunities, but I've seen the trailer for Alex Cross and...well, let's just say that Madea looks far, far preferable.