The 12 Days of Box Office: Day 12 and Wrap-Up
By David Mumpower
January 4, 2017
In the classic fairytale Cinderella, the clock strikes twelve, the stepdaughter scurries home in a carriage soon to turn back into a pumpkin, and then a prince shows up soon afterward to marry her into a life of regal luxury. The day after the Twelve Days of Box Office is a lot like that, only the prince never arrives to save the day. Instead, the good times end, and the family outcast goes back to mopping the floors without so much as a thank you from her evil stepmother.
Here’s the empirical data to support this assertion. The number one film in North America yesterday was once again Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – and my greatest triumph over the Christmas holiday was that I didn’t once accidentally call it Rogue Nation, confusing it with the latest Mission: Impossible film of a similar name. Anyway, the point is that Rogue One won the box office battle literally every day of release before and during the Twelve Days of Box Office…but what a difference a day makes.
Yesterday, Rogue One’s earnings were slightly less than $6.3 million. It didn’t just fall 61% from Monday’s $15.9 million. No, it totally collapsed. That $6.3 million tally signifies the first time that the latest Star Wars offering failed to earn at least $14.6 million in a day. So, it wasn’t just $3.7 million short of a double digits box office day.
On the first day after the Twelve Days of Box Office, Rogue One grossed less than half of its previous “worst” day. And this is the moment in the conversation where I point out that Rogue One didn’t do anything wrong. Yes, it had the highest percentage decline in the top ten, but that’s reflective of its status as easily the best performer this holiday season. The BEST percentage decline yesterday was 41%. That’s how quickly the gravy train just ended for Hollywood’s major December theatrical releases.
You’ll understand the full picture as we quickly run through the top 10. Sing, which has a real chance to unseat Rogue One today, narrowly missed its chance yesterday. The animated comedy grossed $6.1 million and if we take away rounding issues, the difference is less than $125,000. That sounds terrific across the board, but it hides something gruesome. Sing had earned $14.4 million January 2nd, the official government holiday. While it almost usurped the box office throne from the vaunted Star Wars franchise yesterday, Sing still lost 57% of its daily revenue.
The rest of the top ten is even uglier. We’ve suddenly crossed the threshold from the best time on the box office calendar to the gray period between now and the start of summer. Only four films grossed more than $2 million yesterday. That’s half the total from Monday, which was only two days ago but might as well have been two months ago. The other two $2+ million films yesterday were Passengers, which dropped 47% from $4.9 million Monday to $2.6 million on Tuesday, and Moana.