June 3, 2012



Universal, having eaten a poisoned apple with Battleship, is relieved by this weekend’s tastier produce.

OPENINGS:  SNOW WHITE & THE HUNTSMAN (Universal) muscled its way to a $56.3M opening, which is what it needed, considering its $175M (plus marketing) cost.  The $39.3M pulled in from 45 territories overseas is initially underwhelming, although there’s plenty of the world still to come.  (Next week’s big US opening, Prometheus, made $35M this weekend in only 15 territories.) 

The Catholic-targeted FOR GREATER GLORY (Arc) had little impact with a $2400 average at 757 theatres.

HOLDOVERS:  MEN IN BLACK 3 (Sony) got the number it needed overseas:  $79M, down only 42% from last weekend.  That hold puts it at $275M internationally, on track for $400-450M.  With its US weekend of $29.3M and a current total of $112.3M, that should get the film ultimately to around $600M worldwide.  Depending on just how rich Will Smith and Steven Spielberg’s back-end deals are, that still may not mean much profit for Sony, but it should guarantee no loss, which is sometimes the best one can hope for with these kind of mega-budgeted projects.

THE AVENGERS (Disney) declined only 45% from last weekend, on a march to $600M domestically (which would still be $59M behind Titanic‘s #2 slot).  BATTLESHIP (Universal) sank again by 56% (better, at least, than Warner‘s low-budgeted CHERNOBYL DIARIES, which plummeted 61%), while THE DICTATOR (Paramount) and DARK SHADOWS (Warners) fell close to 50%.  WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU’RE EXPECTING (Lionsgate) continued its slow decline by 38%.  The early summer sleeper THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL (Fox Searchlight) added just a handful of theatres and fell a tiny 28%, with a total already over $25M.  Meanwhile, THE HUNGER GAMES (Lionsgate), down to about a quarter of the theatres it started with, fell only 35% in its 11th weekend, and should hit $400M next weekend.

LIMITED RELEASE:  A weekend of expansions.  MOONRISE KINGDOM (Focus/Universal) went to 16 theatres, with a less historic but still wonderful $53K average.  BERNIE (Millenium) increased its theatre count by 50% to 302, but made only 10% more than last weekend, with a $3100 per-theatre average.  THE INTOUCHABLES (Weinstein) climbed to 50 theatres and had a decent $7K average.  HYSTERIA (Sony Classics), doubling to 65 theatres, managed a $2900 average.

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."