The box office results for the weekend of July 15th – 17th is the most magical one we’ve seen in three years. Harry Potter’s grand finale has vanquished The Twilight Saga and The Dark Knight respectively from the record books on its opening weekend. Here are the studio estimates:
1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 ($168.5 million)
2. Transformers: Dark of the Moon ($21.2 million)
3. Horrible Bosses ($17.6 million)
4. Zookeeper ($12.3 million)
5. Cars 2 ($8.3 million)
6. Winnie the Pooh ($8 million)
7. Bad Teacher ($5.2 million)
8. Larry Crowne ($2.5 million)
9. Super 8 ($1.9 million)
10. Midnight in Paris ($1.8 million)
Warner Bros. had no problem writing another check for $250 million for director David Yates and company to hash out J. K. Rowling’s final literary vision of the boy wizard. After the monumental opening weekend, the final installment is on pace to dethrone the franchises’s first – and highest grossing – flick in 2001’s Sorcerer’s Stone. It’s kind of hard to believe that with inflation in ticket prices the last ten years that no other Potter flick could beat out the first entry. Obviously 3D prices are playing a huge role; and with critics endorsing the use of the over-played gimmick, more audiences are shelling out the extra cash to see this spectacle.
The Potter film should end up the highest grossing of the year on the domestic front unless all Potter-heads resist the urge to make multiple trips to the theaters over the next few months. Talk of performing like James Cameron’s Avatar and Titanic need to be stymied, for it’s tougher to attract audiences who are not invested in the story that has spanned over 7 installments. All that being said, this Potter flick could make a serious run at the $400 million mark on the domestic front. Sorcerer’s Stone also holds the grandest worldwide total for the franchise with $974.7 million. DH: 2’s current worldwide tally is at $326 million.
Winnie the Pooh was the only other newbie brave enough to play with Harry Potter weekend and faired alright all things considered. The $30 million old-school animation from Walt Disney Animation Studios is most likely expecting a good chunk of the profits to come from its DVD run, as it is an ideal collection for a toddler’s library. Expect this flick to perform better than most during the weekdays.
Super 8 currently owns the longest streak in the top ten with 6 weeks. Paramount’s $45 produced piece is now up to $122 million stateside.
Flop Alert: Zookeeper. Usually a Happy Madison production can reach $100 million at the domestic box office and also double its standard productiong budget of $80 million with overseas totals. After two weeks, this sitting at $42 million and the international totals are providing the necessary assist. This has the potential to be a mild flop.
Sleeper Hit: Horrible Bosses. The critically acclaimed dark-comedy is the only piece to avoid a steep drop from the Potter release, dropping just 38%. Coming in with a production budget of just $35 million, the domestic total is already at $60 million. In most cases, doubling your budget summons the black ink on the balance sheet.
Transformers: Dark of the Moon became the first movie of 2011 to eclipse the $300 million plateau on the domestic front with $302 million. Worldwide the apparent finale is just under $730 million.
This Friday has the last major comic book property of the summer on tap in Captain America: The First Avenger. Based on how others (Thor, Green Lantern) have performed this summer, this could be a letdown for Paramount. And continuing the trend of R-rated comedies, moviegoers will get to sample Friends with Benefits. Reviews will be right here my fellow Shockers.
Report by Joe Belcastro