Weekend Wrap-Up

Holiday Triumph for Night at the Museum

By John Hamann

December 31, 2006

I keep telling you we are too old to become Rockettes.

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The itsy-bitsy spider and her Web inched back up the box office top ten this weekend, finishing fourth compared to last weekend's fifth place finish. Charlotte's Web continued its comeback run earning $12.0 million in its third frame. This Paramount production increased its take over last weekend by a stunning 59%, and now has $52.9 million after three weekends of release.

Finishing fifth this weekend is another unlikely winner this weekend in Rocky Balboa; however the shine is certainly wearing off. The MGM flick that was produced by a plethora of partners earned $11.4 million this weekend, and was off 7% from last weekend. Still, from out nowhere Rocky Balboa has earned $48.8 million against a $24 million budget. That already whips Rocky V's butt, as that one tanked quickly, finishing with only $41 million (however, that's in 1990 dollars).

Falling to sixth this weekend is The Good Shepherd, a film I'm wondering if Universal shouldn't have shelved until January. The Good Shepherd earned $11.2 million this weekend, matching what it earned last weekend ($10.3 million). While the hold is decent, I think this one will tail off quickly in the New Year, which could be costly for Universal. The IMDb reports a budget here of $110 million, a very long cry from its two weekend total of $35.3 million.

Fox's Eragon finishes seventh as it grosses $8.5 million, up 21% compared to last weekend. Currently Eragon sits with $56.7 million, and had better be a big hit on home video, as this one is going to finish with about $70 million.


We Are Marshall's finishes in eighth place, earning $8.0 million this weekend, which is an increase of 31% over the previous frame. Despite that, this one will end as a Christmas miss, as it currently sits with $25.1 million, and will likely finish with about $45 million.

Happy Feet is still earning for Warner Bros., as its long legs have made it an unexpected Christmas winner. Happy Feet grossed $7.8 million in its seventh weekend, increasing its take over last weekend by 50%. For a seventh weekend, that's an incredibly high gross, putting it on par with the likes of Spider-Man, Shrek and Castaway. Happy Feet should finish its run with $200 million, or very close to it. Its current total is $176.2 million.

Rounding out the top ten is The Holiday, another flick that would be a large miss at any other time of year. The Holiday grossed $6.8 million this weekend, and does have a fairly large total of $50.0 million. However, a film like this should be dominating over the holidays, not finishing tenth.

Overall, studios and exhibitors have much to smile about this weekend. The top ten films pulled in $138.3 million, despite having New Year's Eve land on Sunday. Last year, things were worse, as New Year's Eve landed on Saturday, crippling the weekend's busiest day. The top ten last year grossed $123.3 million. In 2000, when New Year's Eve was also on a Sunday, the top ten grossed $117.1 million, with inflation, probably on par with last year.

Happy New Year everyone!

Top Ten for Weekend of December 29-31, 2006
of Sites
Depreciation from Last Week
Gross ($)
Gross ($)
1 Night at the Museum 3,768 +24% 37.8 116.9
2 The Pursuit of Happyness 2,870 +30 19.3 98.3
3 Dreamgirls 852 N/A 15.5 38.5
4 Charlotte's Web 3,745 +59 12.0 52.9
5 Rocky Balboa 3,019 -7% 11.4 48.8
6 The Good Shepherd 2,218 +13% 11.2 35.8
7 Eragon 2,218 +21% 8.5 56.7
8 We Are Marshall 2,606 +31% 8.0 25.1
9 Happy Feet 2,565 +50% 176.2 7.8
10 The Holiday 2,698 +42% 6.8 50.0

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