Question #1 on this weekend’s boxoffice: if The Dark Knight Rises is a blockbuster but everything else Warners releases this summer is a bomb, is the studio having a good summer? Based on preliminary Friday numbers at Deadline, ROCK OF AGES joins Dark Shadows (and Chernobyl Diaries, too) as a Warner Bros summer flop. Rock had a lousy $5.5M opening day that probably won’t get it beyond $15M for the weekend. By way of comparison, Mamma Mia started with a $9.9M Friday and Hairspray with $11M, so Rock isn’t even close. (It did beat the disastrous Rent‘s $4.4M opening day–but that picture was in 1000 fewer theatres.) Considering the very particular subgenre of musical Rock inhabits, its failure probably means little for the upcoming Les Miserables, but Universal can’t be thrilled to see the movie play dead anyway.
Question #2: is Adam Sandler still a big-time movie star? THAT’S MY BOY (Sony) had a $5M opening day that will probably mean a $13-14M weekend, which will make it Sandler’s worst opening (exempting his “serious” efforts like Spanglish) since he was just starting his movie career with Happy Gilmore and Billy Madison more than 15 years ago. That comes on the heels of Jack & Jill, which was itself Sandler’s lowest opening in more than a decade–but at $25M, will end up almost doubling That’s My Boy. The inevitable excuse that will be spun all weekend is that this is Sandler’s first R-rated comedy in a long while, but that’s silly, considering how well hard-R comedies like The Hangover and Bridesmaids have done in the last few years, and that Sandler’s own R-rated Funny People opened to $22.7M just 3 years ago.
The bad news didn’t stop there. PROMETHEUS (20th) is having a terrible 2d weekend fueled by disastrous word of mouth, with a Friday down more than 70% from last week’s. That will moderate over the course of the weekend, but it’s still likely to plummet close to 65% over Weekend 2, and may not get much higher than a total $125M at the US boxoffice. MADAGASCAR 3 (Dreamworks Animation/Paramount), on the other hand, is holding very well with what should be around a 45% drop for the weekend.
Among longer runs, SNOW WHITE & THE HUNTSMAN (Universal) will likely fall another 50% in its 3rd weekend, while MEN IN BLACK 3 (Sony) may only drop 40% in Weekend 4. THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL (Fox Searchlight) is holding even better, down around 30%. MOONRISE KINGDOM (Focus/Universal) expanded well to 178 theatres, with what should be around an $11K per-theatre average, almost double The Darjeeling Limited‘s average at the same point of its release.
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