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David Poland

By David Poland

Box Office Hell Kicks Ass

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23 Responses to “Box Office Hell Kicks Ass”

  1. a_loco says:

    Just saw it and while I enjoyed it greatly, I have to affirm LexG’s sentiments that “New York” has rarely looked less like New York.
    Also, the high school entrance is a Subway station. Roffle.

  2. Joe Leydon says:

    Hmmm. Early numbers indicate everyone’s projections may be off. Yikes.

  3. Martin S says:

    Joe – I didn’t have time to comment last night, but if this thing pulls in above 25 and beats Death At…, I’ll be surprised.
    The trailers look like a Seth Green parody and it plays the same way, to one quad of one segment.
    Dave was one the first to point out the fanboy number tops out around 20Mil. Add the R and they’re out the Marvel demo. K-A isn’t go to pull the 300 college audience, especially with NBA playoffs and MLB. Then you lose the “urban audience” to Death At… so how is there another 10Mil in waiting? 20-24Mil has to be the target.
    The only way I can see Rock, Morgan and Lawrence not winning the weekend is because the NBA playoffs go from 2pm-1amEST Saturday and Sunday.

  4. Lesson – “It’s the studio, stupid”
    As I posted in HE as well, it looks like Kick Ass is performing exactly like a top-line Lionsgate picture that isn’t a Saw sequel or Tyler Perry film. Take those two away, and Lionsgate has never had an opening weekend above $23.9m (Fahrenheit 9/11). After that and the unexpectedly high $23m debut of The Haunting in Connecticut, Lionsgate films are all $21m and below. I’m not sure why anyone thought Lionsgate could somehow pull a rabbit out of its hat. This thing was basically Rambo ($6.6m first day, $18m opening weekend) with more controversy, and that’s about how its playing. No big deal, the film will still make money in the long run. It’s just a case of box office pundits not doing the math/history before making predictions.

  5. Martin S says:

    Scott- LG drop 50Mil on the purchase, which IIRC, didn’t include P&A. I think someone recently said it cost 35Mil to make, but that seems high to the number I heard last summer.
    It will make its money, but LG is/was looking for another franchise. If it does below 20… one shot and done.

  6. movieman says:

    …not to piss on Lex since he simply reiterated a sentiment I previously expressed, Loco. But I mentioned the phoniness of “K-A”‘s ertsatz “New York” setting in a comment on here last weekend.
    Does anybody know where the movie was actually shot? Vancouver maybe?
    That $7.5-million opening day figure has got to be considered a disappointment. Maybe the sequel I assumed was it’s destiny won’t happen after all.
    Guess that makes it two underperformers in a row for Matthew Vaughn after 2007’s “Stardust:” another movie that was expected to be a lot bigger than it turned out to be. (And launch a franchise that never happened.)

  7. Agreed Martin, and I felt that LG paid too much when the deal first went down. For whatever reason, there is a Lionsgate ceiling for original pictures. Kick-Ass was a chance to prove that they could truly play in the big leagues (which was partially the reason for the large bid) and it didn’t work out accordingly.

  8. Chucky in Jersey says:

    Y’all are missing a major factor. Carmike, the 4th-largest US theater chain, has banned “Kick-Ass” because of its title.
    If you’re stuck in a Carmike-only town like Dover (DE) or Auburn (AL) the closest “Kick-Ass” theater is an hour away. Columbus (GA), where Carmike has its head office, is worst off — the closest theater with “Kick-Ass” is 2 hours north in metro Atlanta.

  9. Gustav13 says:

    I hope these so-called experts steer clear of box-office futures trading…

  10. chris says:

    It was shot in Toronto.

  11. movieman says:

    Ay caramba! That’s the unkindest cut of all.

  12. a_loco says:

    Toronto and Hamilton, I believe.
    You can tell every supposedly downtown alley shot is just in the parking lot behind some grocery store or something.

  13. Cadavra says:

    Coming so soon after the flop of another “surefire” hit, HOT TUB TIME MACHINE, dare I suggest that maybe these arrested-development comedies have finally hit the wall?

  14. The Big Perm says:

    This is another case where the internet whips itself into a frenzy over a movie people love without understanding that a lot of times those types of movies DON’T open huge. Watchmen, Grindhouse, Kick-Ass…super violent hard R rated movies that someone would have to be crazy to think would be a giant hit. A 300 only happens so often. I’m not box office guy but this is pretty much opening where I would have thought.

  15. gradystiles says:

    Chucky, Carmike’s decision not to play K-A has absolutely nothing to do with the title. It’s a dispute with Lionsgate over the split of box office revenues. It’ll affect all Lionsgate releases until it’s resolved.

  16. Chucky in Jersey says:

    @gradystiles: That ruckus is news — if Carmike were as big as Regal or AMC that would have been all over the trades.
    Carmike is heavily in smaller markets, military towns and the Bible Belt. Think that doesn’t play into the decision?

  17. jennab says:

    I think for this film to bust out of the hard-R ghetto, it would have to pick up the young teens; my 14-year-old son was set to go on a “double date” tonight…and then the mother of the other girl said “no” based on the reviews, which mentioned “graphic, realistic” violence and profanity…so, they’re seeing Date Night.

  18. christian says:

    So tracking is still bullshit?

  19. NickF says:

    Tracking is bullshit, so is Cinemascore, Nielsen ratings, Gallop polls, and anything else like that.
    I’ve never been asked to participate in these things. They may sometimes reflect my opinion but their accuracy has been far and few between.

  20. gradystiles says:

    “Carmike is heavily in smaller markets, military towns and the Bible Belt. Think that doesn’t play into the decision?”
    No, actually, I don’t. Again, this dispute has absolutely nothing to do with the title of the movie–or anything else to do with Kick-Ass specifically. I know this for a fact. If you have any evidence otherwise, please post it.

  21. Chucky in Jersey says:

    If Carmike were having a spat with Lionsgate over terms Carmike would not be playing “Why Did I Get Married Too?”

  22. Bob Violence says:

    You mean the movie that opened a full two weeks before Kick-Ass?

    You are relentlessly terrible at everything

  23. brian says:

    Carmike played “Why Did I Get Married Too?” based solely on a one film agreement between Lionsgate and Carmike. The specifics of the deal focused on that movie and that movie alone. All existing deals between the two companies are on hold. Movie titles have nothing to do with Carmike’s decisions. They played the latest Tarantino movie with no problems.
    All Lionsgate trailers and posters have been removed from Carmike, as well.

Quote Unquotesee all »

It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon