Weekend Box Office (August 6 - 8, 2004)
by Gitesh Pandya
THIS WEEKEND Tom Cruise scored his eleventh consecutive number one opening for a starring vehicle playing a ruthless killer in the DreamWorks release Collateral which bowed to $24.7M, according to final studio figures, to lead all films at the North American box office. The $65M hit man pic averaged a strong $7,748 from 3,188 theaters and attracted an opening that was nearly identical to the $24.3M debut of his last film The Last Samurai from last December. Reviews were glowing for Cruise's evil turn in Collateral, however it wasn't enough to lift the rest of the box office. The top ten films grossed just under $94M which was the worst showing for the first weekend of August since 1996.
Part of the marketplace's lack of strength was caused by M. Night Shyamalan's The Village which tumbled an alarming 68% in its second weekend to $16.5M. With $85.6M in ten days, the Buena Vista thriller suffered the worst sophomore decline of any major summer movie this year falling harder than the critically-panned pics Catwoman, The Chronicles of Riddick, and Van Helsing.
Universal's The Bourne Supremacy fell 41% in its third weekend to $14.4M giving the action sequel $124.6M in 17 days. Dropping 49% to fourth was the Denzel Washington-Meryl Streep political drama The Manchurian Candidate with $10.3M putting the Paramount remake at $38M in ten days.
Brittany Murphy's new romantic comedy Little Black Book bowed poorly in fifth place with $7.1M from 2,445 theaters. Averaging a weak $2,894, the PG-13 film met with mostly negative reviews.
Will Smith's sci-fi actioner I, Robot took sixth with $6.5M for a cume of $126.9M for the Fox entry. Fellow effects-driven blockbuster Spider-Man 2 grossed $5.4M in its sixth spin giving the Sony smash $354.5M to date.
The New Line stoner comedy Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle dropped 42% in its second weekend to $3.2M giving the R-rated film $12.3M in ten days. The not-so-raunchy Hilary Duff pic A Cinderella Story collected $2.9M, off 41%, for a $46.9M total. The Warner Bros. failure Catwoman tumbled another 55% to $2.9M and a 17-day sum of $36.1M.
Debuting with a ferocious bite in limited release was the stranded-at-sea drama Open Water which launched in only 47 theaters but grossed $1.1M. The low-budget indie averaged a potent $23,424 per theater and will expand into 2,000 theaters on August 20. Reviews were generally favorable for the Lions Gate title.
Fox Searchlight saw promising results from its expansion of the Zach Braff Sundance hit Garden State which took in $511,589 from 35 playdates for a solid $14,616 average. This Friday, the comedy widens to about 125 locations before a national launch on Aug 20. The distributor generated similar late-summer results two years ago with the independent hits The Good Girl and One Hour Photo.
Two summer successes fell from the top ten over the weekend. Michael Moore's much-talked-about documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 continued to perform well dropping only 39% to $1.9M in its seventh weekend. The Lions Gate/IFC Films release has grossed $113.3M to date and should find its way to around $120M - a stunning figure for a non-fiction title. Will Ferrell's comedy Anchorman stumbled 50% to $1.6M for a $81.8M cume. Look for a $85M final.
The top ten films grossed $93.8M which was down 25% from last year when S.W.A.T. opened at number one with $37.1M; and down 27% from 2002 when XXX debuted in the top spot with $44.5M.
Compared to projections, Collateral was close to my $27M forecast while Little Black Book opened a couple of notches below my $9M prediction.
For reviews of The Village and The Manchurian Candidate visit The Chief Report.
Be sure to check back on Thursday for a complete summary, including projections, for next weekend when Alien vs. Predator, The Princess Diaries 2, and Yu-Gi-Oh! all open.
Marketplace: Shop for videos, DVDs, music, books, and posters at discounted prices using search engines
|#||Title||Aug 6 - 8||Jul 30 - Aug 2||% Chg.||Theaters||Weeks||AVG||Cumulative||Distributor|
|1||Collateral||$ 24,701,458||3,188||1||$ 7,748||$ 24,701,458||DreamWorks|
|2||The Village||16,468,564||50,746,142||-67.5||3,733||2||4,412||85,612,284||Buena Vista|
|3||The Bourne Supremacy||14,388,915||24,167,895||-40.5||3,304||3||4,355||124,602,435||Universal|
|4||The Manchurian Candidate||10,256,421||20,018,620||-48.8||2,867||2||3,577||37,965,327||Paramount|
|5||Little Black Book||7,075,217||2,445||1||2,894||7,075,217||Sony|
|8||Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle||3,191,701||5,480,378||-41.8||2,163||2||1,476||12,320,632||New Line|
|10||A Cinderella Story||2,878,301||4,868,485||-40.9||2,065||4||1,394||46,889,566||Warner Bros.|
|11||Fahrenheit 9/11||1,911,605||3,109,038||-38.5||1,009||7||1,895||113,299,624||Lions Gate / IFC|
|12||The Notebook||1,866,066||2,688,124||-30.6||1,255||7||1,487||72,227,947||New Line|
|13||Napoleon Dynamite||1,739,326||1,402,563||24.0||546||9||3,186||12,531,709||Fox Searchlight|
|16||Open Water||1,100,943||47||1||23,424||1,100,943||Lions Gate|
|19||Harry Potter and the Prisoner...||728,248||989,449||-26.4||409||10||1,781||245,332,214||Warner Bros.|
|20||King Arthur||638,742||1,447,745||-55.9||480||5||1,331||50,151,674||Buena Vista|
|Top 5||$ 72,890,575||$ 113,901,540||-36.0|
|Top 20 vs. 2003||106,439,701||133,684,045||-20.4|
This column is updated three times each week: Thursday (upcoming weekend's summary), Sunday (post-weekend analysis with estimates), and Monday night (actuals). Data source: Exhibitor Relations, EDI. Opinions expressed in this column are those solely of the author.
Last Updated : August 9, 2004 at 6:30PM EDT
Gitesh Pandya can be seen each Friday on "The Biz" airing live at 12:30pm ET on CNNfn with replays at 4:30pm and 9:30pm.