September 24, 2016

EARLY FRIDAY BOX OFFICE: “Magnificent 7″” Respectable, “Storks” Doesn’t Hatch


THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN (Village Roadshow/MGM/Columbia/Sony), an expensive action movie in a month that doesn’t often feature them, and toplining the potent combo of Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt, is starting off moderately well but not exceptionally.  Preliminary numbers at Deadline have its opening day at $13M (including $1.75M from Thursday night), slightly ahead of the $12.5M for the last collaboration between Washington and director Antoine Fuqua (also a September release) The Equalizer.  That had a $34.1M opening weekend, and Seven may get to $35-36M.  The catch is that Seven cost about $35M more to produce than Equalizer, and the western genre is a lot chancier internationally.  So earning back $200M in production/marketing costs isn’t a sure thing.

STORKS (Warners) is off to a quiet start with $5.5M on Friday, with a $20M weekend ahead.  As big-studio animation features go, it’s relatively inexpensive at $70M, but once marketing costs are added, this looks more like a breakeven proposition than a potential new franchise.

SULLY (Village Roadshow/RatPac/Warners) continues to hold well, down 35% from last Friday to $4.2M, for a likely $14M weekend, which will put it on track for a solid $120M in the US.

BRIDGET JONES’S BABY (Universal) fell 48% from last Friday to $1.6M, for a $5.5M weekend.  It’s unlikely to get past $30M in the US, and its prospects rest entirely with its international performance.

The more expensive SNOWDEN (Open Road) is in even worse shape, down 53% from last Friday to $1.4M for a $4-5M weekend.

The two low-budget horror movies in the market are a contrast in results.  DON’T BREATHE (Screen Gems/Sony) will top $80M in the US this weekend, down less than 30% to $1.1M on Friday and $4M for the weekend.  BLAIR WITCH (Lionsgate) may not get past $25M after a 70% Friday-to-Friday plunge to $1.2M on Friday and a $3.5-4M weekend.

QUEEN OF KATWE (Disney) looks like that studio’s latest non-blockbuster misfire, with a bland platform run that’s likely to generate a $6K per theatre weekend average at 52 theatres.

THE DRESSMAKER (Broad Green), at 36 theatres, may have an OK $5K per theatre average for the weekend.

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."