No Great Flood to See Noah; Sabotage Drowns
By John Hamann
March 30, 2014
The real winner this weekend may be Crowe, as he has worked hard to put his checkered, phone-throwing past behind him. Crowe, who has earned three Oscar nominations and a win for Gladiator, had it all seemingly go south for him due to an ugly temper. After being the toast of the town after appearing in The Insider, Gladiator and A Beautiful Mind over a three-year period, Crowe followed those hits up with Master & Commander, a $150 million epic that earned $94 million stateside, Cinderella Man, a $90 million piece of Oscar bait that earned $60 million domestically, and A Good Year, the $35 million flick that earned only $7 million in North America. During that period, there were numerous reports of fights, not to mention an incident where he threw a phone at a hotel employee in New York. The first iteration of the Crowe comeback was between 2007 and 2011, where he made 3:10 to Yuma and American Gangster, amongst a few others, before topping it off as Robin Hood, the $200 million feature that earned $105 million stateside. The latest comeback began with Crowe in Les Miserables and then Man of Steel, which brings us back to Noah. His next two films are from Crowe’s own Fear of God Films (not kidding) and are The Water Diviner, as Crowe goes back to his Australian roots, and Fathers and Daughters, where Aaron Paul is the lead.
Finishing second this weekend is Divergent, last weekend’s much-ballyhooed YA weekend winner. Last weekend, the supposed second coming of the Twilight series opened to $54.6 million, an okay start for The Next Big Franchise. This weekend, Divergent did what it was expected do. It earned $26.5 million, and fell 51%. Divergent now appears to be a $135-$150 million finisher on the domestic side, and should it find a similar total overseas, will show a small profit for Lionsgate, as this one cost $85 million to bring to the screen. Like Noah, this result is nothing to get excited about on the positive or negative side, as Divergent now has a running total of $95.2 million.
Third is Muppets Most Wanted, and after a subdued opening at $17 million, the Muppet film holds decently – but not spectacularly – this weekend. The Disney sequel earned another $11.4 million, off 33% compared to last weekend. The Muppets Most Wanted continues to play more like a film for adults than for kids, as the drop is higher than most kids’ releases that open in the same area, but is slightly better than an adult film usually does. At this point, Muppets Most Wanted looks like it will meet its $50 million budget stateside, but will have to rely on overseas results to maintain the franchise. So far, Kermit and friends have earned $33.2 million. Again, nothing much to see here.
Fourth is Mr. Peabody & Sherman, the animated Fox release that appears to have done well, but it still struggling against its budget. Mr. Peabody and Sherman earned another $9.5 million and dropped 20% compared to last weekend. The throwback cost $145 million to produce, and has earned $94.9 million stateside, and $102 million overseas, but simply isn’t enough after prints and marketing costs are factored in on a global basis.