January 26, 2010

Box Office Update 1/22-1/24: Avatar.... Again

In a way, I am getting a little tired of seeing Avatar at the top of the chart every weekend. On the other hand, it is awfully exciting to see a movie capture the imaginations of so many people across all demographics. No movie has done this since Titanic. How ironic that both are James Cameron films. Yes, The Dark Knight was also a phenomenon, but there is something about this movie that surpasses that in the way it has drawn across the demos and not only have a great run, but be utterly dominant at the box office.

Avatar is doing something else besides shattering a series of weekend records and preparing to become the biggest box office hit in history (in unadjusted dollars). Think about what it must be doing for James Cameron. Yes, it is making him a veritable ton of money, but it could be setting him up for a big disappointment. His films have always done well, but his last two features are now the two biggest hits domestically and in the world. With that cred, he can write his own check for any project that strikes his fancy. What happens when his next film doesn't challenge the box office crown? Perhaps Cameron should make a small $5 million indie film? Then again, maybe not.

Coming in a distant second is the Paul Bettany angelic thriller Legion. The film proved to be a disappointment, despite its interesting concept and a couple of good shots the film fails to truly take flight. It is hampered by a poor script and performances to match. Too bad. I really wanted to like it. I'd recommend catching up with The Book of Eli or Daybreakers.

The Tooth Fairy came in fourth, trailing behind The Book of Eli. Fortunately, it looks like this family film will not last long. I really wish we could get some quality family entertainment. It is hard to get excited about family movies when you get this and The Spy Next Door on back to back weekends. Not to mention the continued success of the Alvin and the Chipmunks sequel.

Continue down the list and you will find the lone remaining new release in eighth place. Extraordinary Measures appears to have arrived dead on arrival, it makes me smile, although I have not seen the movie. It looks like a TV movie of the week you would find on the Hallmark or Lifetime networks that inexplicable features Harrison Ford. I have nothing against the real story and I am happy to the success for those involved, but this movie looks like an entertainment black hole.

Next week will see new competition from the new Mel Gibson thriller Edge of Darkness. It will be interesting to see how Gibson is welcomed back to the big screen. Also hitting theaters across the nation is the new romantic comedy When in Rome, starring Kristen Bell and Josh Duhamel.

Three movies dropped off the list this week: The Blind Side (11), Up in the Air (12), and Leap Year (13).

This WeekLast WeekTitleWknd GrossOverallWeek in release
32The Book of Eli$15,732,493$60,735,6862
4NThe Tooth Fairy$14,010,409$14,010,4091
53The Lovely Bones$8,418,192$31,242,6337
65Sherlock Holmes$6,628,069$191,076,8525
74Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel$6,403,504$204,140,3485
8NExtraordinary Measures$6,012,594$6,012,5941
97It's Complicated$5,810,025$98,270,0855
106The Spy Next Door$4,584,524$18,544,6192

Box Office Predictions Recap
Not bad, not good, but not bad. While I got some of the placements wrong, my dollars were all in the general ballpark with the notable exception of The Tooth Fairy. I am not terribly surprised by the fact I was off on The Tooth Fairy, in some ways I am kind of glad. On the other hand, I did not think I would still be seeing Avatar at the top of this chart. How long can it last?

Here is how the field matched up:



TitleWknd GrossPrediction
11Avatar$34,944,081$32 million
42The Tooth Fairy$14,010,409$20 million


3The Book of Eli$15,732,493$18 million
24Legion$17,501,625$16 million
55The Lovely Bones$8,418,192

$10 million

86Extraordinary Measures$6,012,594$8 million
77Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel$6,403,504$7 million
68Sherlock Holmes$6,628,069$6 million
99It's Complicated$5,810,025$5 million
1010The Spy Next Door$4,584,524$4 million

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