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2015 Oscars: The Buzz And The Biz

Best Picture 2015

This year’s Best Picture nominees brought in the most box office gold since 2012 but the winner…

Once again, it’s my annual look at this year’s top Academy Awards contenders and how they fared at the Box Office. This was something that once again had to wait until one month after the end of the Oscars to get the full picture. Boy did they have a lot to tell. Once again, all credits for my research to Box Office Mojo.

Before I get into explaining the box office results, I’ll let you all in that Awards Daily showed an interesting graph. It showed how not even $500,000 was spent on a For Your Consideration ad for a Golden Globe win but a win brought in megamillions. It also showed how millions are spent on For Your Consideration ads for the Oscar but the box office draw isn’t even half of what one gets from a Golden Globe win. Something to think about. Especially as we all read on.

When the nominations were announced, two of the eight Best Picture nominees–Mad Max:Fury Road and The Martian— had already grossed over $100 million. That wasn’t the case last year when none of them passed that mark on ‘Nomination Day.’ And that was the Thursday just before American Sniper had its wide release. Actually the eight-set of Best Picture nominees turned in an average of over $75 million. Very impressive.

The film that definitely had its biggest boost since its Best Picture nomination was The Revenant. Between Nomination Day and Awards day, it grossed $116.5 million. A significant boost also came to Room which only grossed $5.2 million before the nominations but $8.2 million between Nomination Day and Awards Day. Films like Spotlight, The Big Short and Brooklyn didn’t double their grosses after their nominations like The Revenant and Room did but their Oscar nominations did give them a good added boost. The Big Short received an additional 423.9 million: more than 50% more than before its nominations. Brooklyn also showed a bigger-than-50% increase in its box office results after their nominations. Spotlight also had an increase but it was just slightly over $10 million.

The only three movies that didn’t see a significant boost after their Oscar nominations were Mad Max: Fury Road, Bridge of Spies and The Martian because they had already neared completion of their box office run with their totals as impressive as they would get. Actually Mad Max: Fury Road wasn’t re-released after its Oscar nominations.

Now Awards Day came and three of the eight Best Picture winners had grossed over $100 million. However the Best Picture winner was a film that was one of the lowest-grossing of the eight nominees: Spotlight. It didn’t even have $40 million grossed by Awards Night. Ever since it’s only grossed an additional $5.2 million and it’s highly unlikely it will hit $50 million. This makes it the second year in a row the Best Picture winner failed to gross $50 million and the third year in a row it fails to gross $100 million. This is a bit of a surprise since I said to myself months earlier: “One more Best Picture winner that fails to gross $100 million and I’m done with Oscar tracking.”

Actually those were temporary feeling as despite Spotlight‘s low gross, it was a film that gave something to admire. However it does point some interesting stats. This will make it the fourth Best Picture winner of the 2010’s that didn’t gross $100 million and there’s still four more years left. The naughts, the decade before the 2010’s, only had three that failed to do so as did the 90’s. You’d figure that the title of Best Picture Winner’ would be a draw to the box office but now it appears less than ever. This shows an interesting detail about how the Academy is in terms of voting for Best Picture. In the past, it was almost always a Hollywood picture. Then things changed with the 1996 Oscars when Jerry Maguire was the only one of the five Best Picture nominees done by a major Hollywood studio to receive a Best Picture nomination. All of the other four nominees including winner The English Patient were independent films.

Since then, the independent films have been winning the Academy over. This has led to a bigger gap than ever between blockbuster films and critical darlings. It has definitely become evident over these last ten years. It’s a bit of a downer for me because I’d really like to see good cinema do well at the box office deep down inside. However it’s becoming more fact. I read an article from Awards Daily which talked about how independent films and films of critical renown don’t so well nowadays at the box office. In the past, you had the movie box office which gave a first run and second run of movies before it even hit video. Now we have such a wide variety of media methods like Netflix and Shomi. It seems like if you want to bring people to the movies, you have to have what it takes to do it. Moviegoers are now choosier as they can decide whether a movie is worth seeing in a cinema or worth waiting for it on Netflix. That would often mean big special effects and often theatre things like showing them in 3D or AVX or in D-Box seats. You mostly won’t get that with the films that win the biggest critical renown. That could have a lot to do with the Best Picture winner constantly grossing lower and lower. For the record, the last Best Picture winner that grossed $100 million+ is 2012’s Argo.

The box office may not have been friendly to Spotlight but it was friendly to the eight Best Picture winners as a whole. The eight have grossed a combined total of $803.8 million– just over $100 million per film for the first time since 2012– an all of them have grossed over $10 million. Spotlight wasn’t the only nominee to bag some extra money after the Oscars. The Revenant took an extra $11.4 million, The Big Short gained an extra $1.6 million, Brooklyn grossed an extra $1.5 million and Room grabbed an extra $1.2 million. Overall The Revenant and Room were the two with the biggest boosts from the Oscar buzz.

The box office results of this year’s nominees told a lot about moviegoers and their choices this year. The winner told lots about the Academy and how they’ve changed as far as voting for Best Picture. Next year should tell more.

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2015 Box Office: On Pace To A Record Year

Movie (640x306)Usually during the year, I do a lot of focus on the box office and how it’s doing. This year I’ve been involved with so many other blogs, I’ve been distracted from it. However with only two months to go, I decided to do a focus on the box office of 2015 and boy has it been bustling!

Once again, I thank Box Office Mojo for all the monthly details.

The $405 million of January 2015 was not a record breaker but it was almost $20 million higher than January of 2014. They year started with the continuation of the success of the last Hobbit movie leading into Taken 3 and the monstrously successful American Sniper which had four #1 weekends.

February 2015 was a rather dull month with the successes of the SpongeBob movie, Focus and the critically panned 50 Shades Of Gray. The box office didn’t even hurt that much as its $711.1 million in February was only $1 million less than the previous year.

The $858 million of March 2015 was not the highest-grossing March by far but it outdid March 2014 by $17.2 million. The box office saw the #1 spot with a variety of movies and movie styles like Cinderella, Chappie, Focus, Insurgent and Home.

The $639 million of April 2015 was not only more than $100 million less than the gross of April 2014 but it lost whatever gains 2015 had accumulated over 2014 and sent it at least $60 million behind pace. Basically Furious 7 was not only the biggest thing that month but pretty much the only happening thing that month.

The summer season began in May on a questionable note as well with $1.182 billion. That was more than $50 million less than May of 2014. Sure, The Avengers: Age Of Ultron grossed enough to be one of the Top 10 highest grossing movies ever but most of the other movies did not perform as well despite pushes from Pitch Perfect and Tomorrowland. Even Mad Max: Fury Road and San Andreas didn’t perform well enough for the May to overtake last year’s May.

Leading into June 2015, trailing last year’s box office by $100 million seemed like a lot of ground to make up at first until the monster success of Jurassic World helped that along with strong openings from Inside Out, Spy and Ted 2. Three box office records were set this June. Two were by Jurassic World for highest opening-weekend gross of $208 million and highest non-opening weekend gross of $106.6 million. I believe that’s the first time a movie grossed more than $100 million in a weekend that wasn’t their opener. Also that weekend, Inside Out opened at $90.4 million making it the biggest opening weekend gross for a movie not at #1 for the weekend. June 2015 ended $1.378 billion, way more than the $997 million of June 2014 and putting 2015 back into pace of setting an annual box office record.

July 2015 continued outgrossing the year before with $1.293 billion: almost half a billion more than July of 2014. Keep in mind the June and July of 2014 were the first months in years to gross under a billion. You can imagine how much of an upper the summer of 2015 was. The month began with Inside Out finally taking #1 and releases like Ant-Man, Minions, and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation pumping in that energy.

Box Office Mojo doesn’t have an exact total for August 2015. They have it at $546.5 million which is noticeably off if you look over the weekly charts of that month. One thing is sure and that August 2015 was less than the $1 billion made in August 2014. M.I.: Rogue Nation continued its reign at the top at the beginning of the month but the month delivered the summer’s biggest surprise hit in Straight Outta Compton. It’s safe to assume August 2015 made at least $700 million.

September is traditionally the quietest month of the movie calendar especially since the summer months went for it and now people are returning back to either work or their schools. This September set a record for September’s total gross: $690.5 million. You could tell the month gave a lot for moviegoers to see in September such as War Room, The Perfect Guy, Maze Runner 2 and Hotel Transylvania 2.

October 2015 is another month Box Office Mojo hasn’t totaled correctly. They have it at $550.1 million although it should be totaled around $700 million. Still it’s less than October 2014. This October was dominated by The Martian that was at the top all but one weekend which was taken over by Goosebumps.

November hasn’t ended yet so it’s too soon to tell if the total will outdo November 2015. This November’s tour de forces were The Peanuts Movie, Spectre and Mockingjay Part 2 which just opened surprisingly lower than expected. Next weekend will be Thanksgiving weekend and there’s a lot of promise for movies like The Good Dinosaur, Creed and Victor Frankenstein. December also has a lot of movies with buzz like Christmas Eve, MI: 5, In The Heart Of The Sea, The Big Short, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Sisters, Joy, the latest Chipmunks movie and The Hateful Eight.

I will admit there’s no guarantee that 2015 will set a new box office record–that will be decided at the very end of the year– but its chances are good. Anyways stay tuned. And go out and see a movie.

Oscars 2013: The Buzz And The Biz

It seems like every year, I take a longer time to post my review on the Academy Awards and their affect on the winning films as well as nominated films. My 2011 review was five weeks after, my 2012 review was six weeks after and now my 2013 review comes almost eight weeks after. Hey, I’ve been busy with other preoccupations. But I have time now.

Thank you again, Box Office Mojo for my references. Here are my charts in review:

-2013 Best Picture Nominees

-2013 Nominees: All Categories

Last year there were six films nominated for Best Picture that grossed over $100 million including the winner Argo. This year there were less Best Picture nominees that made $100 million or more. Four to be exact and Best Picture winner Twelve Years A Slave is not one of them. Nevertheless it’s still better than just the one for 2011. Another plus is that Gravity became the highest-grossing Best Picture nominee in three years as well as the first one in three years to break past the $250 million mark.

This years list of Best Picture nominees gives an interesting look at the Best Picture contenders. Gravity, American Hustle and Captain Phillips already made $100 million before the nominations were announced. The oldest release of the nine was Gravity which was released in October. This marked the first time in five years there were no Best Picture nominees released in the summer or spring. If there were any that finished their theater runs before the nominations, they were back in time after the nominations were announced. Captain Phillips was the only nominee that finished its theater run before the Oscars were awarded.

Looking at the chart with its pre-nom, pre-awards and post-awards stats, Captain Phillips had the least benefit from its Oscar nominations of all the nine nominees with just over $2 million. It’s no wonder it called its run quits before the awards. American Hustle had the biggest added gross from the nominations and the wins, even though it didn’t win any of their ten nominated categories. The Wolf Of Wall Street was next with an added boost of $35 million after the Oscar noms and wins. The biggest Oscar boosts as far as percentages go went to Nebraska and Her as both movies more than doubled their grosses after the nominations were announced. Big percentages from the Oscar nominations included the Dallas Buyers Club which grossed an extra $10.4 million and Philomena which grossed an extra $15 million. Gravity‘s grosses may have already been huge enough but its Oscar nominations gave it an added $17.6 million.

The Best Picture winner Twelve Years A Slave also had some noteworthy box office results. It already grossed $39 million before the nominations, $11.3 million between the nominations and the awards, and $6.3 million after winning Best Picture: about the same as Argo’s post-awards gross last year. Twelve Years A Slave is the only one of the nine nominees to gross more than $5 million after the awards. The last time the biggest post-awards gross of all the nominees was that low or lower was back in 2006.

Since we’re on the topic of the gross of Twelve Years A Slave, here’s an additional thing to focus on. It seems right to focus on how the decade of Best Picture winners are doing considering the decade has awarded four Best Picture winners already. Back after The Hurt Locker won the 2009 Best Picture Oscar, it was noted that the Noughts–the decade of the 2000’s– was the first decade whose ten-set of Best Picture winners failed to outgross the previous decade’s ten-set. That decade’s winners grossed a total of $1.426 billion and the $17 million from The Hurt Locker sure did quite a bit to miss outgrossing the $1.8 billion of the 90’s. The teens don’t look too optimistic even though it’s only four years old. Here are the four Best Picture winners and their grosses:

2010: The King’s Speech – $135.5 million

2011: The Artist – $44.7 million

2012: Argo – $136 million

2013: Twelve Years A Slave – $56.6 million

That makes a total gross of $372.8 million: $93.2 million per film. Four years ago, I made a point on an Oscar message board about how the term ‘Oscar contender’ is becoming more of an enigma. That came especially since I overheard a conversation at a restaurant where a young woman rented two DVDs of Oscar nominees and hated what she saw. That has been a big head-scratcher of mine even before that.  Ten years to be exact. It lead me wonder if the term Oscar-contender’ would mean a film that actually deters crowds. Hey, I’ve been paying attention to the Best Picture nominees and the grosses that came with it. There were some years with bad results like 2005 and 2011. There’ve also been some with great results like 2012 and 2003. However I often get questioning during the years of low grosses for the combined nominees and even for the winners. This year was quite good for the nominees especially with Gravity grossing high. However seeing how Gravity lost out to Twelve Years A Slave makes me wonder how this will impact the term ‘Best Picture winner.’ Especially since that brings back memories of four years ago when The Hurt Locker won over record-breaking Avatar. However I won’t panic. There are still six more years left this decade and who knows? Maybe at least one blockbuster will win Best Picture.

So this year’s mix of Best Picture contenders included some films that already had enough juice to win big crowds before the awards. There were also some films that received big boosts from their nominations. Each year’s nominees and winners tell their own story about the Oscars and their box office results. I’m sure the years to come will tell their own stories.

 

2013 Box Office: The Year In Question

Cinema
You may remember from my tracking of the box office last year that it was a record-setting year, right? 2013 was given a hard act to follow and so far it hasn’t followed well.
The month of January looked well with the box office topping with Hansel and Gretel, Mama and Zero Dark Thirty but it wasn’t enough to outgross January 2012. February had it tougher when successes from Identity Thief, Warm Bodies and A Good Day to Die Hard failed to even touch February 2012’s results. Actually none of the weekends in February 2013 succeeded in outgrossing the previous year’s weekend. In fact February 2013’s gross of $536 million made it the lowest-grossing February since 2006. March 2013 wasn’t as bad but it also didn’t outgross the previous year. Mind you there was no Hunger Games in March this year. This March’s box office-toppers–Jack The Giant Slayer, Oz: the Great And Powerful, The Croods and G.I. Joe: Retaliation–failed to top with a big bang. There was at least one March weekend this year that did outgross the previous year’s weekend and that was when Oz was on top. Nevertheless the first quarter of 2013 added up to a dismal grossing of $1.85 billion, down half a billion from $2.36 billion: a dip of over 20%.
April 2013 was also lower than the year before. Yeah, not having a movie with buzz like The Hunger Games does hinder. It wasn’t all dismal as the first two weekend’s weekend toppers like Evil Dead and 42 did outgross the weekends the year before. However the spark didn’t carry with weekend toppers like Oblivion and Pain and Gain. May 2013 however was a ray of hope in 2013’s box office year. This came thanks to Iron Man 3 opening the very first weekend. It opening weekend of $174 million was the second-highest opening weekend ever. Oh sure, it didn’t outgross that weekend the year before because opening that weekend last year was opening weekend record-holder: The Avengers. The following weekends kept the buzz rolling with strong showings from Star Trek Into Darkness and The Fast And The Furious 6. As May 2013 came to an end, May became the first month of 2013 to outgross 2012. Its total gross of $1.438 billion set a record as the highest-grossing May ever and outgrossed May 2012 by over $250 million. June however was back to showing the box office struggle of 2013. This June’s box office toppers–Purge, Man Of Steel and Monsters University— lacked the buzz of 2012. In the end June 2013’s gross of $1.1 billion was more than $200 million less than June 2012 and the lowest-grossing June since 2008. Despite the low showings the second quarter of 2013 did show a plus sign. Yes it failed to outgross the second quarter of 2012 but by a slim margin: only $56 million.
So with 2013 halfway done, the box office results are not too impressive right now. Already 2013 is more than half a million behind 2012’s pace and it’s safe to assume 2013 won’t outgross 2012’s record year. Neverhteless there will be attractions in the coming months. This weekend features two action movies–Red 2 and R.I.P.D.–opening this week and even Turbo that actually opened today. Next weekend plans the release of The Wolverine. The first weekend in August plans Two Guns and The Smurfs 2. The following weekend has the action movies Elysium and the Percy Jackson sequel. Other August releases with big buzz is Jobs, Paranoia, Kick Ass 2, The World’s End, The Butler and One Direction: This Is Us. September has Riddick, The Family, Prisoners, Rush and Baggage Claim to perk up what is normally the quietest movie month of the year. October has Gravity, Captain Phillips, Escape Plan and a remake of Carrie to attract crowds. The end of the year promises more attractions like Ender’s Game, Frozen, American Hustle, Saving Mr. Banks, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty and sequels to Thor, The Hobbit, Anchorman and of course The Hunger Games.
So even though 2013’s box office results look like this year won’t be a record-breaker, it doesn’t mean it won’t be a good year to draw people to the theatres. So go out and see a movie. Not for the sake of the box office but for your own enjoyment.

WORKS CITED:

“Monthly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2013. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/monthly/

“Weekend Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2013. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/weekend/

“Quarterly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2013. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/quarterly/

Oscars 2012: The Buzz And The Biz

Last year I gave my analysis almost five weeks after the Oscars. This year, thanks to my slacking off, I do it six and a half weeks after the golden boys were given out. My hiatus however did give me a better example on how this year’s Academy Awards contenders fared at the box office.

Once again I’d like to thank Box Office Mojo for my charts of reference. Here are this year’s charts:

-2012 Best Picture Nominees

-2012 Nominees: All Categories

Remember how last year there was only one Best Picture nominee that made over $100 million? The Help? This year had a better turn of things as six of the nine Best Picture contenders had made over $100 million. This is the most in the four years since the Academy expanded their Best Picture nominations past five. This was one year where Oscar contention attracted people to the theatres rather than the opposite last year.

Before the Academy Awards nominations were announced, there were four films that had made more than $100 million: Lincoln, Django Unchained, Argo and Les Miserables. Movies that already completed their main theater run or their run was dying down were Beasts Of The Southern Wild and Argo. Beasts was a summer release and Argo was released back in October. All the other seven nominees were released between the beginning of November and just before New Year’s Eve. Lincoln was already the highest-grossing of the Best Picture nominees as it looked like the best bet to win. There was strong box-office buzz already not just for Lincoln but Django Unchained, Les Miserables and the Life Of Pi. There was however quiet but ever growing buzz surrounding Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty but neither had amassed even $40 million by nominations day.

Between the nominations and the wins, the strong buzz of Lincoln, Django Unchained, Les Miz and Life Of Pi continued but was rather calm as all four of those pre-awards buzzers grossed in between $20-50 million. Life Of Pi managed to gross enough to become the fifth Best Picture nominee this year to pass the $100 million mark. A reboost of Argo after it had already made $110 million before the nominations helped it acquire an additional $19 million before awards night. A re-release of Beasts Of The Southern Wild which had finished its original theater run by September helped it earn an additional $1.3 million.

However the two films that gained the most between nominations morning and awards night was Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty with both grossing an additional $71 million and $86 million respectively. Partly because of the Best Actress chances of both lead actresses. Also in part because of its own factors: Playbook because of Jennifer Lawrence’s growing stardom and Zero because of its apparent fearlessness in touching on the the search for Osama. Zero had the biggest gross between nominations and awards with $86 million but it’s not to say it didn’t have a bumpy road. During that time there were smear campaigns from some of Hollywood’s most outspoken liberals about its nonpartisan depiction of war torture. Some say Zero could have grossed more than $100 million during that time had it not been for the mudslinging.

The six Best Picture nominees that grossed $100 million or more this year all did it before Oscar night with Silver Linings Playbook becoming the sixth and last passing that mark just before Oscar weekend. The Oscar results did play in a bit in terms of each film’s post-awards gross. Life Of Pi which won four Oscars has grossed an additional $10.5 million, Silver Linings Playbook continued to go strong grossing an additional $22.7 million and Best Picture winner Argo also got a post-awards boost with an additional $6 million. Yeah, winning the Oscar can give an extra boost. Unfortunately none of the other movies were able to gross even $5 million after the awards. Most noticeably affected by the post-awards grosses were Lincoln which was a heavy favorite to win Best Picture and Zero Dark Thirty because of its win of only a single technical Oscar. To think Zero missed becoming the seventh Best Picture nominee to pass the $100 million mark by just a few million.

One thing also to take notice of is the gross of Amour. Yes, that was the one Best Picture nominee I had not yet touched upon. This was one of those rare years when a foreign language film earns a Best Picture nomination. Sometimes those films would earn a huge boost at the box office because of its Oscar buzz. It worked for Il Postino, Life Is Beautiful and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. It didn’t work so well for Amour as it only grossed $6.7 million, less than the $7 million made by last year’s Best Foreign Language Film winner A Separation. Nevertheless the Oscar buzz for Amour’s five nominations did help in achieving a good gross for a foreign language film. Nothing out of the ordinary.

So there you have it. The Oscars and its impact on the box office results. Last year’s Best Picture nominees were mostly the type to attract a modest sized crowd. This year’s were mostly the types to win well-sized crowds. Each year paints a different picture. Makes you wonder what picture 2013’s Best Picture nominees will paint.

2012 Movie Year In Review: A Record-Setter

Movie (640x306)

As some of you have noticed over the year with my blog, I’ve been paying big attention to what has been happening at the box office in 2012. I’m sure those who’d want to see an increase in the annual box office total this year also would have paid such big attention. Anyways 2012 has ended and the movie year has ended on a positive note.

The reason for 2012’s big attention has to do with years past as I have pointed out in previous box office posts. 2009 not only set a box office record of almost $10.6 billion but became the first ever $10 billion year. The following years were not so impressive. 2010 just missed breaking the record by a measly $30 million but the bigger news was of the ticket sales being the lowest since 1996. 2011 was even more humbling by being over $400 million shy of 2009’s record and even less ticket sales than 2010.

For 2012, I was looking forward to see if it was going to break the record with both eagerness and nervousness. Eagerness because I wanted to see the new record set. Isn’t that the goal of every year to be the box office record-setter? Nervousness because if there was another dip in the box office or in ticket sales, who knows what that could mean for the future of movies? Especially in this multimedia universe?

January and February shows signs that the box office was improving. March and April showed the success to continue assuredly, if not spectacularly. May and June added to the promise of 2012 being the record breaking year. July to September showed the chance of finally breaking the record continuing well. With three months to go, 2012 was $240 million more than last year at that same time and $363 million more than the first nine months of 2009’s record-setting year.

October continued the steady success with continuation of Hotel Transylvania and the big opening of Taken 2. Success of the opening of Paranormal Activity 4 and the slow but steady building buzz of Argo also added to October’s success. October actually finished with $559.2 million: $13 million less than October 2011 and almost $60 million less than 2009. Not that much of a downer. November began with the big openings of Wreck-It Ralph and Flight. Further excitement came via the latest James Bond flick Skyfall opening at $88.3 million: the biggest opening weekend ever for a James Bond movie. However it was the opening of the final Twilight movie Breaking Dawn Pt. 2 and the steady climb of Lincoln that led November to a total gross of $1.423 billion to make it the highest-grossing November ever.

December however lacked the buzz. Excitement continued with the success of Breaking Dawn Pt. 2 but excitement was weak in the first weekend of December as the weekend of Breaking Dawn was only $17 million with Skyfall, Rise Of The Guardians, Lincoln and the Life Of Pi close behind. Further lack of excitement for an opener continued the following week as Skyfall found itself back at the top with a paltry $10.7 million. Excitement came back in the third weekend of December 2012 with the long awaited The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey opening with $84 million. The Hobbit remained at the top of the box office until the end of 2012 despite challenges from opening from Jack Reacher, This Is 40, Django Unchained and Les Miserables. In the end, December 2012 ended rather weakly with a total gross of $988.5 million: the first December since 1999 to gross less than $1 billion.

Now that the year has ended, how does it all stack up for 2012? It actually stacks up quite well. 2012 had strong showings with excellent opening weekend including four opening weekends to rank in the all-time Top 10 and The Avengers setting the record with the first ever $200 million opening weekend. 2012 also produced two movies in the Top 10 list of all-time highest grossing movies with The Avengers at #3 with $623 million and The Dark Knight Rises at #7 with $448 million. The whole year brought a total record gross of $10.835 billion. Ticket sales were also the biggest in three year with a total of 1.364 billion sold.

Now that the record has been accomplished for 2012, this means a new challenge for 2013 to attempt to set a new record or sell more tickets. Will they do it? It all depends what the year has in store.

WORKS CITED:

“Monthly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2013. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/monthly/

“Yearly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2013. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/yearly/

2012 Box Office – With Three Months To Go

NOTE: This blog was meant for the beginning of October but was put on hold because of my writings for the Vancouver International Film Festival. And just right after the VIFF concluded, my RAM dies on me. Now that things are back to normal, I can post this.

Another three months have passes. Two months of summer heat featuring a September that usually slumps but they still want to give people reasons to go. Meanwhile people eyeballing the box office stats are hoping 2012 will be a record-setting year. Already I talked about 2011’s grief as well as the upswings of January and February, March and April, and May and June. Even if the months didn’t set records it still added to 2012’s consistency. The big question is how did July to September stack up?

July had the big struggle of trying to cope with the shootings that happened in the midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, Colorado. Despite the tragedy, it did not deter moviegoers. The month started off strong with Ted being the sleeper hit of the summer and one of the biggest hits of the month. Strong showings by Brave and Magic Mike and a strong Top 10 ending by The Avengers also started the month off well. The following week saw a healthy opening for The Amazing Spider-Man followed by a good opening with Ice Age: Continental Drift. The tragic shooting in Aurora didn’t prevent The Dark Knight Rises from achieving the third-highest grossing opening weekend ever. The monster success continued into the following weekend. Overall this year’s July ended up being only the sixth-highest grossing July ever and almost $200 million less than last July. It’s unknown whether the shooting in Aurora had much to do with the drop but I’m sure most people knew this was a one-in-a-billion incident.

August showed some slight improvement. Action or adventure movies ruled the month as it began with The Dark Knight Rises continuing with its reign on top and the remake of Total Recall debuting at #2 in the first weekend of August. The following weekend saw The Bourne Legacy on top with some comic relief at #2 in the form of political goofballs in The Campaign. The following weekend had The Expendables 2 open on top but not without family movies like ParaNorman and The Odd Life Of Timothy Green opening strongly that weekend. The following week was weak in debuts as Premium Rush was the strongest debuter that weekend and it was only #8. The Expendables continued to be on top. Overall 2012 grossed more than $40 million more than August 2011. It stands as the second-highest grossing August ever with only 2009 being the highest.

In September, there’s always the mark of the slowdown of the movie season with the summer wrapping up and the remaining weekends having lukewarm results. The Possession opened the month on top that Labor Day weekend and continued to be on top the following week. The third weekend in September featured more excitement with strong debuts from Resident Evil: Retribution on top and the 3D re-release of Finding Nemo opening strongly in second. The fourth weekend saw three debuting movies on top–End Of Watch, House At The End Of The Street and Trouble With The Curve–but their opening weekend grosses were between $12.2 million and $13.1 million. It was the fifth and final weekend of September that added more excitement with the animated Hotel Transylvania opening with $42.5 million–the biggest opening weekend ever for a September release–and Looper in second with an opening of $20.8 million. September ended with a total of $532.4 million, almost $75 million less than last year’s September.

So with nine of the twelve months of 2011 completed, it appears that 2012 is poised to be a record-braking year: $240 million more than last year and $363 million ahead of 2009’s record-setting pace. However don’t get excited too soon. We should not forget that these last three months were what helped propel 2009 to the record and the milestone of being the first $10 billion movie year. That quarter’s total gross of over $3.5 billion is still the highest total gross for that quarter. 2010 failed to overtake it and just missed the record. And 2011 was on record-breaking pace by $120 million but a weak fourth quarter even with a Twilight movie failed to break the record. A fourth quarter of over $3.15 billion will finally do it. So let’s hang tight.

Also you notice I left October out. As I said at the beginning, this article was meant to be published weeks ago so that’s why it’s not there. Plus with Box Office Mojo not complete in totaling up October, I think waiting is a good thing.

WORKS CITED:

“Monthly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2012. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/monthly/

“Quarterly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2012. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/quarterly/

2012 Box Office: May and June Make For A Good End To First-Half

The first half of 2012 has passed already. A lot of movies have been released. A lot of hits and a lot of flops have been decided. But the success of the first six months of the movie year has also been decided. There was a lot of yo-yoing but its success has been determined and has allowed for studios to set goals to make 2012 a record-breaking year for them and for the movie year as a whole.

As some of you may know, the box office of 2012 is an interest of mine ever since the box office slump of 2011. 2009 still remains the highest-grossing box office year ever. Since I’ve been writing and paying attention, January and February showed big signs of improvement while March and April had a bit of a yo-yo.

May is usually seen as a month of excitement as it’s the month when the summer movie season opens. This May opened full of excitement as The Avengers broke box office opening records left, right and center and continues to draw audiences to this day. It reigned supreme over the first three weekends of May only to be dethroned in the last weekend by Men In Black 3. Even strong debuts from movies that didn’t open at #1 like Dark Shadows, Battleship and The Dictator as well as continued success of The Hunger Games helped May 2012 in ending with a strong total of  $1.141 billion. It wasn’t has high as last May but didn’t go under by that much: only $52 million. This year’s May is actually the sixth-highest grossing May ever. 2003 is the highest grossing ever with $1.4 billion.

June opened well in its first weekend with Snow White And The Huntsman debuting on top along with continued strong showings with MIB 3 and The Avengers. The following weekend was also strong with the debuts of Madagascar 3 and Prometheus both grossing over $50 million that weekend. Its successes in the Top 2 continued the following weekend with the debuts of Rock Of Ages and That’s My Boy lacking muscle. The following weekend saw Disney/Pixar’s latest picture Brave opening strong with $66 million. Nevertheless it was the final weekend of June leading into July 1st that saw strong debuts for Ted and Magic Mike. They don’t call the summer movie season a tight competition for nothing. June 2012 ended with a total gross of $1.169 billion: $27 million more than June 2011 and the third highest-grossing June ever. Only two other Junes have had higher total grosses: 2004 with $1.376 billion and 2010 with $1.41 billion.

Now that the months have all been looked at, it’s now time to look at the first half as a whole. And upon looking at the first half of the year, it appears that 2012 is on a record-setting pace. The first six months of 2012 have grossed a total of $5.184 billion. This makes it the first time the first six months have grossed a total more than $5 billon. Its total is $320 million more than the first six months of last year and $255 million more than the first six months of 2009, the year that holds the total-gross record.

So for those who are also keeping track of this year’s box office stats, remember that 2012 has $5.41 billion dollars to go in order to break 2009’s record. July opened well with continued success of Ted and an impressive debut for The Amazing Spider-Man. A strong chart-topping debut of Ice Age: Continental Drift also continued the success the following weekend.

However it was this weekend that has been hit hard. The Dark Knight Rises was expected to open phenomenally this weekend. Instead it opened with tragedy in Aurora, Colorado on Thursday as a crazed gunman named James Holmes opened fire in a theatre killing 12 people and injuring more than 50 of others. This incident has sent shockwaves in the US, around the world and in the entertainment industry. Warner Brothers was saddened by the shootings and cancelled premieres in Paris, Mexico and Japan, suspended marketing in Finland and won’t release box-office figures until Monday the 23rd. Director Christopher Nolan spoke on behalf of the film’s cast and crew and called the incident ‘devastating’. Many moviegoers remained undeterred by the incident and continued to show up. I myself plan on seeing this knowing that the shooting is a one-in-a trillion incident. The last time I ever heard of a shooting in a theatre was when Boyz ‘N Tha Hood opened back in 1991.

The second half of 2012 opened on an exciting note however currently stands on a tragic and nervous note. Will there be any changes in terms of cinema admittance in the future? Will the showings of movie trailers be changed or altered? Will this year’s box office be affected in the long run? Only time will tell.

WORKS CITED:

 “Monthly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2012. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/monthly/

“Quarterly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2012. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. http://www.boxofficemojo.com/quarterly/

WIKIPEDIA: 2012 Aurora Shooting. Wikipedia.com. 2012. Wikimedia Foundation Inc.  <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2012_Aurora_shooting&gt;

2012 Box Office: March and April’s Continued Success

Another two months have passed and the box office has enjoyed a continued increase this year, if not completely consistent. If there’s one message to be made so far,  it’s that Hollywood’s doing all the right stuff these past four months of 2012.

As many of my followers already know, I’ve been paying close attention to the total box office results this year. I started doing it every year only in recent years. This year I’m paying special attention this year because you can bet Hollywood is hoping for its biggest year ever. Also you can bet Hollywood is looking to rebound after the disappointments of the last two years as noted in my article about 2011’s Box Office.

2012 shows signs that the box office is looking up for sure. I made previous notes in my focus on January and February of the reasons for Hollywood to be optimistic. Its total gross was over $320 million more than last year’s and the biggest January/February total gross ever. March and April gave box office stats impressive enough to keep Hollywood smiling too.

The first weekend of March 2012 showed continuing promise for the box office as Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax opened with $82.8 million. It was even strong enough to keep the heavily-promoted John Carter from debuting at #1. The following week saw 21 Jump Street debut with a strong opening. However nothing could compare in March for the opening of the heavily-anticipated The Hunger Games. Its opening weekend of $152.5 million raked as the third-highest opening weekend of all time at the time and its buzz was even able to outdo the openings of Wrath Of The Titans and Mirror Mirror the following weekend. The end result for March 2012 was $1.071 billion: the highest-grossing March ever; only the second March ever to gross more than a billion dollars and $412 million more than the gross of March 2011.

April didn’t have as strong buzz as last year this time around. The month began with the continuing endurance of The Hunger Games keeping it at #1 during the first two weekends of April. Its box office domination even warded off debuts like American Reunion, Titanic 3D, The Three Stooges and The Cabin In The Woods. It wouldn’t be replaced as the #1 movie in North America until Think Like A Man opened. Think still continued as the #1 movie the following weekend, even outdoing the debuts of The Pirates! Band Of Misfits and The Five-Year Engagement. Nevertheless Think Like A Man’s opening weekend was only a humble $33.6 million.

The lack of sizzle of April’s openers led to a roughly estimated total gross of $725 million: $200 million less than last year’s record-setting April. Nevertheless April was only a minor box office setback as the box office of those four months amassed a total roughly over $500 million more than last year. So 2012 remains on pace for being the highest-grossing year ever.

As we head into May, we already know the box office is getting more boost as the very first weekend saw the release of The Avengers which not only broke the box office record for opening weekend but set a box office milestone too. Its record-setting opening weekend of $207 million made it the first-ever $200 million weekend! May promises more box office excitement with The Dictator, Battleship and Men In Black III. The rest of the summer is also full of buzz with Battlefield America, Madagascar 3, Disney/Pixar’s Brave, and the latest movies in the Spiderman, Jason Bourne, Expendibles and Batman franchises.

2012 is continuing on another impressive year and the buzz in the following months should continue long enough to make this a record-setting year.

WORK CITED:

“Monthly Box Office Chart” BoxOfficeMojo.com. 2011. Box Office Mojo. Owned by IMDB.com. <http://www.boxofficemojo.com/monthly/>

Oscar 2011: The Buzz And The Biz

Well how about it? Exactly thirty-four days have passed since the Academy has given out the golden statuettes. The box office results of the nine Best Picture nominees also have a lot to say too. Some good, some bad.

Box Office Mojo does it every year. They have charts of the Oscar nominees and winners. They also have a special Best Picture chart where they divide the grosses into Pre-Nom (before the nominations are announced), Post-Nom (after the nominations are announced) and Post-Awards: after the Oscars are decided. Here are the charts of reference:

    2011 Best Picture Nominees

    2011 Nominees: All Categories

This year’s charts shows some interesting stats involving the nominees. Four movies–The Tree of Life, Moneyball, The Help and Midnight In Paris–had already completed their box office runs long before the nominations. Some opened again after the nominations were announced but it attracted modest-size crowds compared to its heydays months earlier. War Horse opened late in the year but it had already neared its total gross just before the nominations were announced and the nominations had very little effect on its gross.

The movies with the biggest boosts of the Oscar nominations were Hugo, The Descendants, The Artist and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Hugo grossed most of its total share before the nominations but the Oscar nominations helped increase its gross an additional $13 million before the Oscars. Oscar wins helped give Hugo an extra $4 million even though it was already on DVD just two days after the Oscars. The Descendants was another movie that was already doing well before the Oscars possibly because of George Clooney’s star power. Nevertheless this film had the biggest post-nominations gross of all nine Best Picture nominees with $31 million including an additional $3.9 million after the Oscars were awarded.

Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close and The Artist were the two Best Picture nominees whose grosses more than doubled after the nominations. Both films did so-so before the Oscar nominations with Extremely Loud grossing just under $12 million and The Artist grossing just over $12 million. The nominations would change lots as Extremely Loud has grossed an additional $20 million since the nominations. The Artist would also gross an additional $19.4 million between the nominations and awards but its Oscar wins including the Best Picture win would help give it an additional $11.4 million to date currently standing at $43.3 million. The Artist is the only Best Picture nominee this year to gross even as much as $5 million after the awards.

The biggest surprise about this year’s set of Best Picture nominees isn’t necessarily because there are nine instead of ten but that only one, The Help, has grossed more than $100 million either before or after the Oscars. Even last year, there were five that would at least have a total gross of more than $100 million. The average gross of this year’s Best Picture nominees of $69.6 million is actually the lowest average since the more-than-five nominees system was reintroduced at the 2009 Oscars and the lowest since the 2006 Oscars fivesome. This year’s hit movies were left out of the cold. There was no Disney/Pixar blockbuster that found itself in that group. There was no movie with a lot of Oscar buzz that caught on in a big way. Even the family-friendly Hugo didn’t hit the $100 million mark. A shame since the movie cost $170 million to make. Even seeing how The Artist hasn’t even hit the $50 million mark tells quite a bit about the box office crowds. Its gross isn’t as low as say the The Hurt Locker was two years ago but it still says a message not just about box office crowds but even the Academy and their voting, how nowadays crowd fanfare doesn’t mean an awful lot in choosing Best Picture.

So there you have it. The rundown of this year’s business involving the Oscar nominees and winners. Each year tells a different story on both the Academy’s voting and the box office outlook. Next year’s should also tell a lot too. Stay tuned.