Daily Box Office Analysis

By David Mumpower

July 10, 2012

At what point does this change from second-hand smoke to first-hand?

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Today’s daily box office discussion picks up almost exactly where last Friday’s edition ended. The Amazing Spider-Man remains the key topic of conversation as people continue to debate whether a significant decline from Spider-Man 3 is acceptable or not. This evaluation will be math intensive at times. Let’s quickly bring everyone up to speed on yesterday’s results.

Monday represents The Amazing Spider-Man’s seventh full day in theaters. Yes, there was some revenue earned last Monday, but Sony announced the total as part of Tuesday’s revenue, $35.9 million. We now know that $8.4 million was earned from midnight and slightly earlier exhibitions. I’m going to use this as a point of reference for Monday’s box office when The Amazing Spider-Man earned approximately $7.5 million. Yes, it performed stronger from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. last week than it did in the entire day yesterday.

What can we conclude from this? In a vacuum, the numbers reflect that The Amazing Spider-Man is slipping in demand. In combination with the film’s actual weekend box office, there is serious cause for concern. After Sony projected the latest Spider-Man movie to earn $65.0 million over the weekend, its Sunday total fell $3 million short of their estimate. Was this a surprise? Hardly.


Given that The Amazing Spider-Man earned $23.7 million on Saturday, Sony’s projection required the movie to earn another $20.9 million on Sunday. That’s a full $400,000 more than it grossed on Friday and a decline of only 12% from Saturday to Sunday. For perspective, consider that Spider-Man 3 fell 22% while Spider-Man 2 dropped 35% and the first Spider-Man depreciated 27%. The Amazing Spider-Man demonstrated no behavior that would indicate such a modest decline and yet Sony provided a round numbers estimate anyway in order to win the press conference Sunday. $140 million sounds better than $137 million when people read the stories.

As we evaluate the true performance of The Amazing Spider-Man, however, we use the box office receipts that happened rather than the ones Sony wanted to publicize. In this instance, I have already mentioned that a reasonable if not best case scenario multiplier for Spidey’s six-day take would be 2.05, the one Transformers possessed with its similar release pattern/calendar configuration in 2007. If The Amazing Spider-Man mirrors this, it winds up with a domestic take of $280 million, a respectable total, although over $50 million short of the worst in the series thus far. The doomsday scenario is if there is further sign of frontloading.

Here are some important totals to consider. Transformers fell only 14% from Saturday to Sunday then 55% from Sunday to Monday. Its Monday revenue represents 38.6% of its Saturday revenue. The Amazing Spider-Man fell 24% from Saturday to Sunday and then another 58% Sunday to Monday. Its Monday box office of $7.5 million is only 31.7% of its Saturday earnings. In other words, it has fallen short of Transformers yet again. Based on my early evaluation of the upcoming week, I expect it to earn $50 million from now until Sunday, which should put it just at $200 million by next Tuesday.

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