Monday Morning Quarterback Part I
By BOP Staff
July 16, 2012
Global Warming doesn't exist.
Kim Hollis: Ice Age: Continental Drift, the fourth film in the franchise, opened to $46.6 million. Is this a good enough result in your estimation?
Edwin Davies: I'd say so, since it's within the wheelhouse of the series to date, which only really broke out once before when the second film, The Meltdown, opened to $68 million in 2006. The first film opened to an almost identical number to Continental Drift in 2002, though with 3D prices and inflation it sold more tickets, whilst the third one opened to $66 million over five days in 2009, which suggests that demand for the films had already fallen off somewhat by its second sequel. For the fourth film in a franchise to retain a decent amount of the opening from its predecessor has to be considered a positive, especially since most series run out of steam by that point.
Now, whether or not the film will earn a similar amount to the last two, which earned $195 million (The Meltdown) and $196 million (Dawn of the Dinosaurs) remains to be seen, and I think that it'll struggle since it's coming into an already pretty packed market place for animated films and will, along with pretty much everything else, get flattened by the Bat-Tank next weekend. However, that probably won't matter too much, since the budgets for the Ice Age films are pretty frugal by Hollywood animation standards, so even if it makes 20 of 30 million less than its predecessors, it will still cover its budget domestically. And, of course, the real money for Continental Drift lies overseas, where the Ice Age series has always been more of a phenomenon than it ever has been domestically. It's already earned more than enough to justify at least one or two more films in a series that no one seems to care all that much about, which has got to be considered a win.
Bruce Hall: Could this be the inevitable onset of sequel fatigue? Maybe, but although this result is significantly less than what we saw from the third installment, to even still be in the same range as the first two makes this good, but not great news. Still, it's enough to ensure that this is probably not the last we'll see of Ice Age.
Felix Quinonez: The last movie made almost $700 million overseas and this one has already collected about $340 million overseas. I'd say anything made domestically is just icing on the very profitable cake. So I'd say the fact that it opened in line with the last entry is very good news for them.
Jason Barney: I'd like to branch off from something that Edwin mentioned, and that has to do with the cost of a film. The creative forces behind this one will be smiling, regardless of the result from here, as it is not going to be a "miss." If it cost $100 million to make, they have come in on the first weekend and already made half their budget back. If people don't like the overseas receipts, fine, limit the discussion to just domestic total. Almost half the investment has already been made back. They are four or five days into the release.
I will be really interested to see how this film does during the week, if the day-to-day holds will be strong. I am also of the mind that this film may not get whacked by Batman in a few days. I could be wrong, but this might actually be great counter programming in the sense that families with young kids are not going to take their three, four, and five year old little ones to see Batman. (or well, I hope not) We will see how it all plays out, but if Ice Age holds well through the week, I don't think weekend two will feature that big of a drop.