Monday Morning Quarterback Part II
By BOP Staff
August 22, 2006
$15 million is the new $3 millionKim Hollis: Taking a step back from the immediate disappointment for a moment, isn't a $15 million opening for a $30 million production quite good?
Reagen Sulewski: Oh, they're definitely going to come in with a profit. DVD sales will be massive.
Joel Corcoran: I think it's a solid opening in terms of absolute numbers, Kim, but it still seems a rather weak opening based on expectations.
David Mumpower: The financial answer is yes and no. This product will make money, but it's going to make the worst case scenario amount in theatrical release. There is no way to spin that as a positive.
Kim Hollis: If I hadn't been hearing hype on this from a variety of unusual sources (ESPN radio, book blogs and the like), I wouldn't have been so disappointed in this weekend's number. It *felt* like there was more than $15 million worth of potential out there.
Tim Briody: Right, it goes down as one of the most over-hyped flameouts in history, just based on the amount of awareness out there. It'll eventually be a moneymaker, but still.
David Mumpower: What is frustrating for me is that I can't pinpoint anything New Line did wrong other than, arguably, the release date. They were masterful in letting the entire process grow organically.
Kim Hollis: And yet I felt it was sort of manufactured myself.
David Mumpower: What part, Kim?
Kim Hollis: Well, the previously mentioned Samuel L. Jackson phone calls for one thing. Also, Jackson was heavy on the talk show circuit, which isn't really organic in my mind. For me, it always felt like New Line was guiding and having their hand in everything, from poster contests to song contests and the like. If it had been *completely* fan-driven, I would have felt differently.
David Mumpower: That's the part of movie promotion that is going to happen for any potential blockbuster, though. What made Snakes on a Plane an attention-grabbing project was the passion potential consumers had with the name. New Line went with that very well.
Kim Hollis: I agree with that, it just felt like their fingerprints were on everything.
David Mumpower: Snakes don't leave fingerprints!
Justin Long is an actor who appeared in such films as Dodgeball, Jeepers Creepers and The Break-UpKim Hollis: Not enough people asked that kid about his wiener, as Accepted made $10.1 million. How would you describe this performance?
Tim Briody: Guess those Mac ads aren't raising Justin Long's profile as much as I thought they would.
Reagen Sulewski: Yes and no. Compare it to things like Just Friends and Waiting. I'd say those are aiming at the same audience and did much worse.
David Mumpower: Maybe the movie would have done better if they had used the PC guy for the wiener suit role. Nonetheless, I see this as a pretty solid performance for a dirt-cheap project. It also always struck me as a sweet, positive energy one. As such, I am happy for its (relative) success.
Kim Hollis: It did almost exactly the box office I would have expected. And once again, you're looking at Accepted probably finding its best audience on DVD, much like Just Friends and Waiting.
Tim Briody: I still can't believe that they got away with saying South Harmon Institute of Technology in the television ads.
Joel Corcoran: I think a $10 million opening is pretty darn good, though I agree with Tim. This film isn't going to raise Matt "The cool guy in the Mac ads" Long's profile very much.
Kim Hollis: Or Justin Long, even.
David Mumpower: Tim, if you hadn't done the capital letters right now, I wouldn't even see what the big deal was.
Joel Corcoran: Um...yeah...that one.
Tim Briody: He's typecast as Warren Cheswick for life.
David Mumpower: That's the reply I almost made, Tim. "Matt, Justin? Who cares? He's the nerd on Ed."
Kim Hollis: He's a charming nerd, though, with a "hey, it's that guy" kind of face.
Joel Corcoran: I hope he gets his big break though, even if I can't remember his name. He's cute, talented, and seems like a good guy.
David Mumpower: And a ten million opening is pretty damned good for a film starring "a charming nerd" whose name not even some of us at a movie site can produce.
Kim Hollis: I wouldn't worry much about him; he's hooked to the coattails of a lot of frat packers (especially Vince Vaughn).