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Thompson on Hollywood

Box Office Preview: 'Zero Dark Thirty' Achieves Mission; 'Haunted House' Edges 'Gangster Squad' for Second Place

"Zero Dark Thirty" stood out among eight Oscar Best Pictures nominees in release the weekend after the nominations with a strong $9 million and a likely dominant #1 position expected for the weekend. But the shocker so far is Open Road's unheralded "The Haunted House," which for its opening day seems to have slightly edged Warner Bros.' delayed release of "Gangster Squad" for #2 so far. The latter was thought to possible be a rival to "Zero Dark" for the top spot. Instead, even though it is showing at 1,000 more theaters than "Haunted," it looks to be in a battle for second place, a very disappointing result for this bigger-name driven, much more expensive film.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 12, 2013 2:49 PM
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  • 3 Comments

2012 Box Office Wrap: Wide Release Blockbusters, Underperformers and Bellyflops, Studio Winners and Losers

It's not easy figuring out what films were hits or misses (or something inbetween). Domestic gross totals don't tell the whole story. You need to look at revenue as well as production and marketing costs to assess global returns. (Remember, theaters return about half of what they take in at theater wickets to distributors.) Here's our stab at sorting out 143 films initially released in 2012 that played wide (750 screens or more) for at least one week.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 6, 2013 5:35 PM
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  • 12 Comments

Arthouse Audit: 'Zero Dark Thirty' Expands Strongly, '56 Up' First Doc Hit of 2013?

Late year releases, many expanding, dominate the specialized market this weekend. By far the biggest, "Zero Dark Thirty," is mainly playing in upscale multiplexes, providing fierce competition to such already strong wide releases as "Django Unchained" and "Les Miserables."
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 6, 2013 4:05 PM
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  • 4 Comments

Weekend Box Office Top Ten: 'Texas Chainsaw' Wreaks Havoc; 'Django' Bests 'Les Mis;' 'Zero Dark Thirty' Soars

Three strong Christmas pictures have been battling for box office supremacy for ten days, with "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey," "Django Unchained" and "Les Miserables" switching positions almost daily. But none of them ended up on top this weekend. Younger audiences, bored with the the adult and family films dominating the holidays, responded to the first new horror film since Halloween by making "Texas Chainsaw 3D" number one for the weekend.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 6, 2013 12:55 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Saturday Box Office Preview: 'Texas Chainsaw' Opens at Number One, Followed by 'Django,' 'Zero Dark Thirty' Expands

Younger moviegoers eagerly greeted Lionsgate's "Texas Chainsaw" (3D and 2D), the first new horror release since Halloween with a $10 million-plus Friday gross, much bigger than expected and heading to a likely #1 spot for the weekend. Although it has a $4 million edge on the day's #2 ("Django Unchained"), genre films like this tend to have their best day on Friday, so the final weekend lead could be challenged.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 5, 2013 2:16 PM
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  • 0 Comments

'Django' Nearly Beats 'Hobbit' for #1 New Year's Day

The first day of 2013 saw grosses for the top 10 films rise about $3 million - better than 6% - above New Year's 2012. The top 10 stayed the same as for the weekend, with the order finally stabilizing after much shifting, particularly in the top 3. But the film that looks strongest going forward could be "Django Unchained," which was edged out by "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" by a narrow margin - $9.2 million to Peter Jackson's film's $9.4 million, with "Les Miserables" coming in third at a still strong $7.6 million for the day.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • January 2, 2013 5:29 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Sony Boasts Biggest Year Ever in 2012

2012 was Sony Pictures Entertainment's biggest year ever. The studio's films generated $4.440 billion worldwide. The studio hit all time highs with $1.768 billion in domestic ticket sales and $2.672 billion internationally. The studio ended the year as the top-ranked studio in both domestic and worldwide marketshare. While Twentieth Century Fox beat Sony internbationally, Sony still claims number one worldwide.
  • By Anne Thompson
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  • January 2, 2013 4:20 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Arthouse Audit: 'Zero Dark Thirty,' 'Amour' Lead Limited Releases

With the Top Ten continuing to skew to adult-oriented, critically acclaimed films, specialized theaters playing more limited releases continue to scuffle, often at levels below previous holiday seasons. "Zero Dark Thirty" and "Amour" stood out again in their two-city platforms, although both declined in their second weeks, while multi-city openings of "Promised Land" were modest at best. The increase for "The Impossible" in its second stanza would be more promising if it weren't quickly headed for wide release.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • December 30, 2012 4:20 PM
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  • 2 Comments

Post-Holiday Weekend Box Office: Three Top Films Battle for Placement

Three juggernauts grossing $28 million or more dominated a strong post-Christmas weekend, all jockeying for position since last Tuesday. The shakeout led to the top film on December 25 ("Les Miserables") falling to third by the weekend, beat out by top dog "The Hobbit" followed by "Django Unchained." But all three films contributed to a weekend total more than 20% above last year's results.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • December 30, 2012 1:34 PM
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  • 0 Comments

Boffo Four-Day Holiday Box Office, Led by 'The Hobbit,' 'Django Unchained' & 'Les Miserables,' Rings Out Record Year

It's an embarrassment of riches. The days following Christmas have been a rollercoaster ride of ups and downs in grosses. On Friday, "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey" repeated the #1 spot it regained on Thursday, but "Django Unchained" climbed ahead of "Les Miserables" for #2, with the latter falling to #3 narrowly after leading all films on Tuesday and Wednesday.
  • By Tom Brueggemann
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  • December 29, 2012 4:10 PM
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  • 0 Comments

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