Daily Box Office Analysis
By David Mumpower
August 7, 2012
In this forum, I have spent a lot of time demonstrating what The Dark Knight could do what The Dark Knight Rises has not. Today, I am going to flip the script a bit. Let’s talk about the one thing the latest Batman movie has managed that its predecessor did not. There will also be further good news about The Dark Knight Rises later in the column.
On August 1, 2008, an instantly forgettable sequel called The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor debuted in first place. In the process, the (hopefully) final Mummy movie upended The Dark Knight, ending Batman 6’s 14-day run as the number one movie in North America. The following day, The Dark Knight was back in first place and it wound up winning the weekend box office as well.
On August 6th, 2008, The Dark Knight’s 20th day in theaters, two new releases debuted. In a shocking upset, a film with the title of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 managed to earn more revenue than Batman 6. Of course, this was not the real story of the day but instead a footnote. A stoner comedy called The Pineapple Express was also released into theaters; it became the number one film for the day, dropping The Dark Knight all the way down to third place. From that day forward, Batman 6 finished in first place for only three additional days.
The Dark Knight was the number one film in North America for 21 non-consecutive days with its longest streak being 14 straight days in first place. The Dark Knight Rises will at a minimum tie The Dark Knight for most days spent at the top of the box office, barring an unforeseen showing of strength by this Wednesday’s upcoming release, Hope Springs. The avenue in which The Dark Knight Rises will surpass its predecessor is consecutive days in first place.
Last Friday, The Dark Knight Rises repelled the first day of Total Recall in order to maintain its place at the top of the box office charts. This was Batman 7’s 15th consecutive day in first place. Given the obvious frontloading of Total Recall, the Colin Farrell movie will never finish in first place. The other new release last weekend, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days, has too large a financial gap to challenge The Dark Knight Rises. As such, Hope Springs is the only title that can derail Batman 7 before Friday, all but assuring it a 21-day run in first place. Given everything that has transpired involving the movie, this is a long overdue bit of good news.
Yesterday, The Dark Knight Rises managed $4,725,498. This brings us to sunny point number two. After some absolutely horrible numbers from its first Saturday until its first Thursday and again largely disappointing weekdays last week, the movie has staged a bit of a recovery. Its 42% decline over the weekend was again indicative of an overestimation from Warner Bros. Even so, that’s a strong performance, all things considered. Part of the explanation for this is that it continues to have a stranglehold on IMAX theaters throughout the country, but let’s not quibble about the causality right now.