Looks like we’ve got another depends-on-how-you-look-at-it weekend at the box office. Last week, X-Men: First Class grossed $55.1 million, which is great for most movies, but still the lowest of the X-Men franchise (which, to be fair, had been farted on by Bret Ratner and jizz-toweled by Wolverine by that point). This week, Super 8 came in with an estimated $37 million, which, considering it wasn’t a sequel or remake (even though it was sort of an uncredited rip-off of ten different Spielberg movies) or any stars in it, is a huge number. But not “blockbuster” huge, according to some.
Prior to opening, allegedly soft tracking in industry polling led Paramount and others to project Super 8‘s weekend at $25-30 million. However, even if Super 8 beat last-minute expectations, that doesn’t necessarily make it a success. The most important expectations for any movie are the ones that are set when a movie is greenlighted as well as the ones that guide a marketing campaign. A Spielberg-produced movie aiming to emulate his blockbusters of yore has high expectations attached to it, especially with the super-hyped Abrams at the helm. Super 8‘s marketing was conducted as if the movie were an intended blockbuster: the campaign was massive, ranging from a Super Bowl spot through a raft of television ads as well as promotions on American Idol and the MTV Movie Awards. $37 million is not a blockbuster opening for this type of movie in this day and age. Super 8′s attendance wasn’t even much higher than E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial’s on the same weekend back in 1982, and Super 8 had over three times the locations. [BoxOfficeMojo]
Yeah, well, as I thought when I was watching it, it’s not 1987 anymore. They’re bound to be pleased with a $37 million opening on a movie with a $50 million production budget. Meanwhile, Pirates 4, which cost $400 million to make and market, according to the New York Times, has earned… wait for it… $887 million so far. If my math is correct, that’s close to a billion. It’s been out for three weeks. It all goes to support my thesis, “Foreigners Love Johnny Depp.”
Top 10 chart and Fantasy Box Office standings after the jump.
1. ‘Super 8,’ $37.0 million (3,379 screens), $38.0 million
2. ‘X-Men: First Class,’ $25.0 million (3,692), $98,9 million total
3. ‘The Hangover Part II,’ $18.5 million (3,675), $216.6 million
4. ‘Kung Fu Panda 2,’ $16.6 million (3,929), $126.9 million
5. ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,’ $10.8 million (3,433), $208.8 million
6. ‘Bridesmaids,’ $10.2 million (2,922), $123.9 million
7. ‘Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer,’ $6.3 million (2,524), new release
8. ‘Midnight in Paris,’ $6.1 million (944), $14.2 million
9. ‘Thor,’ $2.4 million (1,782), $173.6 million
10. ‘Fast Five,’ $1.7 million (1,329), $205.1 million
Yep, Judy Moody kind of tanked. Next up, FANTASY BOX OFFICE STANDINGS. I hear the current leader is ruggedly handsome, but with a gentle touch.