Black Friday Box Office Analysis

By Tim Briody

November 29, 2014

He's probably drawing a beer.

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The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Audiences opted for leftovers on Thanksgiving weekend as Mockingjay Part 1 continued to lead the box office, with $11.1 million on Thanksgiving and a strong $24.1 million on Black Friday. It still badly trails Catching Fire’s pace at this point, with $192.9 million compared to Catching Fire’s $253.6 million as it earned $110 million over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend last year. It’s even behind The Hunger Games as well, which had $208.5 million total after its second Friday. We now know for sure that Mockingjay Part 1 will be the lowest earner in the franchise by a significant amount, and we’ll have to wait a year to find out how Part 2 will perform given this development. Do people catch up on Part 1 via Netflix and then buy a ticket to Part 2? Are audiences done with paying for two tickets for one book? Mockingjay went from a sure thing to one of the bigger stories of 2014 in the span of a week. Mockingjay Part 1 wins the weekend very easily with $56.6 million.

Penguins of Madagascar

The Madagascar spinoff earned $10.5 million on Friday and has earned $20.4 million in its first three days. This is okay, but Big Hero 6 is in its fourth weekend and has made it way too close of a race on the weekend. What the Penguins are hoping for is to avoid a complete collapse in the next couple of weeks before we hit the Christmas season, which brings the strongest days of box office in the entire year. It’s probably not too likely but hey, it worked for Frozen last year. Black Friday mostly negates the Saturday bump that family films get, which would give Penguins of Madagascar $26.3 million for the weekend and $36.2 million in five days.


Horrible Bosses 2

The turkey of the weekend, the Horrible Bosses sequel, earned $6.2 million on Friday (good for fifth place) and has earned $13.5 million since Wednesday. Horrible Bosses took in $28.3 million in its opening weekend back in 2011. Horrible Bosses 2 will not make that much over five days during a holiday weekend. Sometimes there’s just no reason to make a sequel. Give it $15.5 million for the weekend and $22.8 million in five days.

Notable Holdovers

Black Friday is a good time to be holdover film, as people take the day to see movies presumably after waking up at 2 a.m. to go shopping. Everything in the top 10 saw a Friday-to-Friday increase with the exception of Mockingjay (which was expected) and Dumb and Dumber To (because nobody cared after opening weekend). Big Hero 6 increased 76% to $7.8 million, Interstellar increased 57% to best Horrible Bosses 2 and the Steven Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything added screens and increased 375% from last Friday to $1.9 million as it’s a leading Best Picture and Best Actor contender that will continue to add theaters in the next month.

Projected Estimates for the Top Ten (Three-Day)
Estimated Gross
1 The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 56.6
2 Penguins of Madagascar 26.3
3 Big Hero 6 20.2
4 Interstellar 17.8
5 Horrible Bosses 2 15.5
6 Dumb and Dumber To 9.1
7 The Theory of Everything 5.1
8 Gone Girl 2.6
9 Birdman 2.1
10 St. Vincent 1.9



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