Monday Morning Quarterback Part I

By BOP Staff

November 27, 2012

What did you do for *your* Thanksgiving holiday?

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Santa's gonna bring all you haters a lump of coal.

Kim Hollis: Rise of the Guardians earned $32.3 million over the five-day Thanksgiving holiday weekend. What do you think of this result?

Jason Barney: The tracking for the opening had it coming in at around $40 million, and as was mentioned in the Weekend Wrap-Up, the studio was expecting around $35 million. $32.3 million is okay, but you have to think that executives are wondering why this one did not pull in a larger audience. Competition was tough, but you would think that the major kids movie of the holiday season would be a bit more of a draw. Still, numbers were not that far off, but I don't think the creative team is going to like being in a position of hoping for strong holds over the next few weeks. I do think the film will do fine. I took my son to see it and he loved it, and I was pretty impressed with what they put together.

I can't help thinking that the numbers should have been higher, though, especially against that $145 million dollar budget. Perhaps I am measuring this against the success of Wreck-It Ralph, which opened to nearly $50 million a month ago and is about to match its budget. Rise of the Guardians will need some very strong holds as we get closer to Christmas.


Bruce Hall: I'm going to call this a straight up disappointment. The five-day opening for Rise of the Guardians is less than the three-day opening for any DreamWorks feature released since 2006. Attendance seems to have been flat over the weekend, and it looks even worse when you contrast this with Wreck-it-Ralph, which pulled in $23 million over the same five day period - in its third week of release. This suggests that one film is getting good word-of-mouth, and one perhaps is not. Still, Guardians should find a pair of holiday legs under it, at least until The Hobbit drops on December 14th, but it doesn't look good. It's a long shot to make back that massive budget, let alone break $100 million.

Which makes the real question whether or not the other books in the series will eventually make their way to the big screen, or will the film franchise just kind of quietly go away, like the Chronicles or Narnia and The Golden Compass?

Matthew Huntley: I'm in full agreement with Bruce on this, because even if Guardians was to show the same kind of legs as, say, The Polar Express (which is a big IF by the way), it won't break even any time soon, not when you take into account the theaters' share and the prints/advertising costs. A $32 million opening is simply not enough and there's unfortunately no way to spin this into good news. And I don't think the film's themes are as prolific worldwide as they are here so that it could gain ground internationally. On the plus side, I've heard good things about it and with any luck it will break through the century mark so that it can at least save face.

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