Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Kristen Stewart Is First American Actress Nominated for César Awards in 30 Years; 'Saint Laurent' Leads with Ten Kristen Stewart Is First American Actress Nominated for César Awards in 30 Years; 'Saint Laurent' Leads with Ten How They Sustained the Times Square Momentum in 'Birdman' VIDEO How They Sustained the Times Square Momentum in 'Birdman' VIDEO 6 Things to Know About Sexy Sundance Breakout 'Diary of a Teenage Girl,' Part of Sundance's Women's New Wave 6 Things to Know About Sexy Sundance Breakout 'Diary of a Teenage Girl,' Part of Sundance's Women's New Wave Sundance Raves About Ewan McGregor as Jesus and the Devil in 'Last Days in the Desert' Sundance Raves About Ewan McGregor as Jesus and the Devil in 'Last Days in the Desert' Watch: Jason Segel on Playing David Foster Wallace in Sundance's 'End of the Tour' (Exclusive Interview) Watch: Jason Segel on Playing David Foster Wallace in Sundance's 'End of the Tour' (Exclusive Interview) Filmmakers, Give Us Your Numbers! Sundance and Cinereach Unveil The Transparency Project Filmmakers, Give Us Your Numbers! Sundance and Cinereach Unveil The Transparency Project Sundance Market Explodes with 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' and 'Diary of a Teenage Girl' Sundance Market Explodes with 'Me and Earl and the Dying Girl' and 'Diary of a Teenage Girl' Top Ten Takeaways: Polarizing 'American Sniper' Speeds Past $200 Million; Lopez Trounces Depp Top Ten Takeaways: Polarizing 'American Sniper' Speeds Past $200 Million; Lopez Trounces Depp Arthouse Audit: Panic Time? 'Mommy,' 'Red Army,' 'Black Sea,' 'Cake,' 'Duke of Burgundy' All Disappoint Arthouse Audit: Panic Time? 'Mommy,' 'Red Army,' 'Black Sea,' 'Cake,' 'Duke of Burgundy' All Disappoint 2015 PGA Winners: 'Birdman' Steals 'Boyhood''s Awards Season Thunder 2015 PGA Winners: 'Birdman' Steals 'Boyhood''s Awards Season Thunder Watch: Nicole Kidman Talks 'Strangerland' at Sundance (Exclusive Video Interview) Watch: Nicole Kidman Talks 'Strangerland' at Sundance (Exclusive Video Interview) Sundance Acquisitions Market Heats Up with 'The Bronze' and 
'The Witch' Sundance Acquisitions Market Heats Up with 'The Bronze' and 'The Witch' Sundance: Netflix Inks Four-Picture Deal with Duplass Brothers Sundance: Netflix Inks Four-Picture Deal with Duplass Brothers Early Reviews Portend Sundance Breakout in Stylish Historical Horror 'The Witch' Early Reviews Portend Sundance Breakout in Stylish Historical Horror 'The Witch' Sundance: 5 Things to Expect From Alex Gibney's Damning Scientology Doc 'Going Clear' Sundance: 5 Things to Expect From Alex Gibney's Damning Scientology Doc 'Going Clear' Martin Scorsese Breaks Long-Awaited 'Silence,' Set to Begin Filming This Month Martin Scorsese Breaks Long-Awaited 'Silence,' Set to Begin Filming This Month Watch: Meet the Women of 'Birdman' (Exclusive 4-Minute Featurette) Watch: Meet the Women of 'Birdman' (Exclusive 4-Minute Featurette) Watch: Hitchcock's Thwarted Holocaust Documentary Comes to HBO Watch: Hitchcock's Thwarted Holocaust Documentary Comes to HBO Best Actor Oscar Predictions 2015 UPDATED Best Actor Oscar Predictions 2015 UPDATED Oscar Predictions 2015 Oscar Predictions 2015

'Conjuring' Tops Four New Films; 'Fruitvale Station' & 'Way Way Back' Expand Well

Thompson on Hollywood By Tom Brueggemann | Thompson on Hollywood July 20, 2013 at 1:07PM

An unusual four wide studio releases competed for eyeballs this weekend. Only "The Conjuring" (Warner Bros.) showed initial success. With a production budget only slightly higher than its first day gross of $17 million, it is the only one of the four certain to be profitable. Two others - "Turbo" (20th Century-Fox/Dream Works Animation) and "Red 2" (Lionsgate) had softer than hoped for openings, while "R.I.P.D." (Universal) joins the now rapidly expanding list of summer of 2013 big budget flops.
0
'The Conjuring'
'The Conjuring'

An unusual four wide studio releases competed for eyeballs this weekend. Only "The Conjuring" (Warner Bros.) showed initial success Friday. With a production budget only slightly higher than its first day gross of $17 million, it is the only one of the four certain to be profitable. Two others - "Turbo" (20th Century-Fox/Dream Works Animation) and "Red 2" (Lionsgate) had softer than hoped for openings, while "R.I.P.D." (Universal) joins the now rapidly expanding list of summer of 2013 big budget flops.

Why does the industry push expensive tentpole films? This weekend provides one indication. Four new films, with reported pre-marketing production budgets totallng just under $400 million opened, and combined they grossed $34 million yesterday. Exactly one year ago, "The Dark Knight Rises" debuted to a first day total of $75 million (at a cost to make of $250 million) -- providing motivation for the studios' making big bets for big payoffs.

But the results overall for yesterday showed the perils for other strategies as well when budgets outpace interest. While "The Conjuring" shows that there is always a market for lower-budget horror films, even stronger if intelligently made, releases coming from other areas (animation, sequels, comic book originals) proved less bountiful.

 "Turbo" grossed the best of the rest -- Fox' second release of a Dream Works Animation film came in #3 yesterday at $6.5 million (three day total $16.2 million), clearly hurt by competition from Universal's smash cartoon hit "Despicable Me 2," which was #2 for the day at $7.5 million. Compared to past Dream Works' animated releases and the film's reported $135 million cost, this is worrisome at least initially.

"Red 2," a sequel to an older-audience action/suspense hit, opened did $6.3 million to open at only #5. This was below the first day gross for "Red," which with strong word of mouth and a higher than usual multiple from opening weekend scored a surprising $90 million domestic total (and a bit more overseas). With the budget this time around $84 million about 50% higher than the first film, a lower opening day is disappointing.

But the standout failure by far is "R.I.P.D." An attempt to start a new franchise (this is an adaptation of a Dark Horse comic), this attempt at recreating the magic of the "Ghost Busters" and "Men in Black" franchises could only manage $4.8 million (#6) for a film with a cost in excess of $150 million. That's a worse ratio to expense for an opening day than even Disney's "The Lone Ranger (which doubled that figure its first day, but fell to a disastrous #11 for its third weekend). This will be a major loss for Universal, which otherwise has been having a great year.

Sony's "Grown Ups 2" fell 60% from opening day but still managed to place #4 for $6.4 million. ("Red 2" might end up ahead for the full weekend). Warner Bros.' "Pacific Rim" fell even more, ending up #7 at $4.7 million. Fox' "The Heat" took a big fall to #8 ($2.8 million), Paramount's "World War Z" was 9th ($1.5 million) while Disney's "Monsters University" ended up #10 (also $1.5 million).

Two widening specialized releases showed continued strength. Fox Searchlight's "Way Way Back" expanded to 304 theaters for  $616,000, while Weinstein's acclaimed "Fruitvale Station," still quite limited at 34 theaters, did $230,000.

This article is related to: Box Office, Box Office, Box Office


E-Mail Updates