Best Man Holiday

With all the advance tickets sales, and as Tambay on Friday said it was going to happen...

... well it did.

The Best Man Holiday had a solid opening, besting most box office predictions, coming in second behind Thor: The Dark World , which earned $38.5 million.

Holiday actually grossed more than Dark World on Friday, but the Mighty Thor rose up to vanquish Best Man over the weekend.

BMH opened with $30.6 million this weekend, proving most box office experts wrong who predicted a more modest $17--$20 million opening. The one exception being Erik Childress of, WGN Radio and WCIU-TV Chicago, one of the few consistently accurate box office analysts, who predicted a $34 million opening for Holiday a few weeks ago. (Even I thought he was way off.)

This puts Holiday well on track to do Think Like A Man business which opened with $33.7 million and did over $90 million at the box office and it could possibly do even more than that, perhaps even reaching $95-100 million.

Still the film, with its modest $17 million production budget, low budget for a studio film, is already guaranteed to be a huge success for Universal and will far out gross 1999’s The Best Man which made a modest $34 million total at the box office.

But of course I have to be a spoil sport, so here it is…

There are a few things that could keep Holiday from reaching Think Like A Man’s total gross.  First of all, the film could be victim to, as I call it, the  “Comic Con fanboy” factor in that everyone who really wanted to see the film went out the first week and everyone else has a more wait and see, “I’ll get to it later” attitude which could cause a significant drop in the b.o. total in the following weeks.

But there’s another problem too, and that’s the heavy competition that’s coming out, starting next week, through the holiday season.

The film will be going to be going up against such heavy hitters like The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (which is opening in over 4000 theaters next weekend and is already projected to make some $150 million in its opening weekend, and Childress said it could be even higher than that), The Wolf of Wall Street, Lone Survivor, Saving Mr. Banks, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, and Anchorman 2. On top of that there are, of course, other black films coming out soon in the next few weeks, such as Black Nativity, Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, and, dare we say it, A Madea Christmas (which Childress predicted last week will have one of the biggest weekend openings for any Madea film. Once again I disagree and once again we’ll know soon enough).

For Holiday to hit $90 million or more it’s going to need really strong word of mouth, which it seems to be getting,  to keep people flocking to it and to keep the week to week box office drop lower than expected. Time will tell, as the weeks goes by, what the final outcome will be.

As for other films, Gravity has already passed the half a billion box office mark worldwide, both Last Vegas and Jackass: Bad Grandpa have become “where did that come from?” genuine fall sleeper hits, and 12 Years A Slave, still playing in a limited run in 1400 theaters, has made about $25 million to date.

1) Thor: The Dark World BV $38,454,000 Total: $146,965,000 
2) The Best Man Holiday Uni. $30,593,000 
3) Last Vegas CBS $8,850,000  Total: $46,958,000 
4) Free Birds Rela. $8,300,000 Total: $42,218,000 
5) Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa Par. $7,670,000 Total: $90,202,000 
6) Gravity WB $6,280,000 Total: $240,556,000 
7) Ender's Game LG/S $6,200,000 Total: $53,777,000 
8) 12 Years a Slave FoxS $4,700,000 Total: $24,949,000
9)  Captain Phillips Sony $4,500,000 Total: $97,617,000 
10) About Time Uni. $3,462,000 Total: $11,568,000 
11) Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 Sony $1,950,000 Total: $113,016,000 
12) Dallas Buyers Club Focus $1,785,000 Total: $3,044,000