November 15, 2015

Behind the US/Worldwide Weekend Box Office – 11/15/15


OPENINGS:  LOVE THE COOPERS (CBS/Lionsgate) was the best of a bad bunch, launching with $8.4M.  That’s 30% less than the $12.5M start of 2005’s The Family Stone, but the studio can take some solace from the fact that Stone (which opened closer to Christmas) earned a 5x multiple from its opening weekend.  If Coopers can do likewise, it would be considered a mild win, and it has several weeks of play ahead with no real competition for its market..

THE 33 (Alcon/Warners) isn’t the kind of event movie that Warners knows how to sell, and it floundered at $5.8M (and probably with higher marketing costs than it really needed, since the studio tends to throw money at its openings).  It’s Alcon and not Warners that’s on the hook for most of the expense, and the production company will hope to find more success overseas, particularly in Spanish-speaking territories.

MY ALL-AMERICAN (Clarius) went after the Christian market but failed to make a dent at $1.4M.

SUFFRAGETTE (Focus/Universal) hit a low level of wide release with an expansion to 496 theatres.  However, it also became the latest prestige offering to falter beyond the arthouses with a slim $2000 per-theatre average for the weekend, less than The 33‘s average at 5x as many theatres.

HOLDOVERS:  The newcomers gave last week’s blockbusters no reason to sweat.  SPECTRE (MGM/Columbia/Sony) is reporting a Weekend 2 drop of just 50% (to $35.4M), which would be somewhat better than Skyfall‘s 54%.  (Skyfall, in its defense, had to face a Twilight opening in Week 2.)  However, that number relies on a very strong Sunday, so we’ll see if it holds up tomorrow.  In any case, at $130.7M in the US, Spectre continues to run 20% behind Skyfall domestically.  Overseas, the studios and producers made a big commitment to develop the franchise in China, and it paid off with a $48M opening weekend–almost as much as the $59M Skyfall earned there in its entire run.  Spectre‘s overseas total is $413.1M after a $152.6M weekend in virtually all world territories.

THE PEANUTS MOVIE (Blue Sky/20th) slid a moderate 45% from its opening to $24.2M.  That’s not as good as animated hits often manage, for example the recent 32% Weekend 2 drop for Hotel Transylvania 2.  With Pixar’s The Good Dinosaur ust 10 days away, and $82.5M earned so far, Peanuts still seems to be on track for a $150M US total.  It’s barely started its overseas run at $8.1M to date.

THE MARTIAN (TSG/20th) and BRIDGE OF SPIES (DreamWorks/20th/Disney) continue to have strong holds on audiences.  In its 7th weekend, Martian was down just 26% to $6.7M, and is now at $207.4M in the US and $477.9M worldwide, with China yet to come.  Bridge declined 27% to $4.3M, and has earned $61.7M in the US, plus $19.3M overseas in what’s still the early part of its international run.

GOOSEBUMPS (Columbia/Sony) and HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2 (Columbia/Sony) are still selling tickets, with Goosebumps down 32% to $4.7M for a $73.5M US total (plus $29.7M from its first overseas engagements), and Transylvania down 35% to $2.4M for $165.2M in the US (plus $252M overseas).

LIMITED RELEASE:  It’s good that Angelina Jolie Pitt has a day job, since BY THE SEA (Universal) cratered after terrible reviews and a half-hearted marketing campaign, with a sad $9500 average at 10 theatres.  Meanwhile, PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO (FIP) once again demonstrated how strong a niche audience can be, as it pulled in $2.4M from just 286 theatres, almost as strong a per-theatre average as the far more high-profile By the Sea in almost 30x the scope of release.  SPOTLIGHT (Open Road) continues to lead the arthouse holdovers, expanding this weekend to 61 theatres with a solid if unspectacular $23K average.  BROOKLYN (Fox Searchlight) was close behind in average at $21K, but was in just 23 theatres after a slower expansion, making the achievement somewhat softer.  TRUMBO (Bleecker Street) is well behind with a $7K average at 20 theatres.  ROOM (A24) widened to 133 theatres with an OK $4300 average.

NEXT WEEKEND:  Katniss Everdeen will dominate the multiplexes as THE HUNGER GAMES: MOCKINGJAY PART 2 (Lionsgate) finds the odds ever its in its favor one last time.  Counterprogramming comes from two directions:  R-rated comedy with THE NIGHT BEFORE (Columbia/Sony) and star-laden adult drama with THE SECRET IN THEIR EYES (STX).  The major new arrival on the arthouse circuit is CAROL (Weinstein), which is hoping to make its mark in awards season, as wel as LEGEND (Universal), which seems to have subsided after a film festival push this fall that didn’t yield much.

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."