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David Poland

By David Poland

Weekend Estimates by Klady’s March

Weekend Estimates 1-22 at 10.23.52 AM






Split kills it in a multiple of xXx: The Return of Another Old Mediocre Franchise. Hidden Figures holds strong while La La Land sees its first traditional dip, though it will be looking for Oscar nominations Tuesday to turn that around next weekend. The Founder rolls out like a franchise its financiers don’t really believe… to mediocre results. The only movie of any size release to do better than $6200 per-screen was the #1 film, a sure sign of a soft weekend.

Last year, the only $40 million horror opening was for The Conjuring 2 in the summer. Last year, there were only five originals that opened over $40 million (Deadpool, Zootopia, The Secret Life of Pets, Trolls, Moana) and the only one that was live action was only barely an original. The #1 original opening last January was 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi with $16.2m and only Kung Fu Panda 3 opened to more than Split.

The opening for Split remarkable. Was it helped by the Women’s March and men free to head to the theater on Saturday? Does it change the face of theatrical cinema? Obviously not. Would it have been well-served by a day-and-date VOD opening? No. It would have cost this title tens of million of dollars in profits. And if Universal is honest about it (not that anyone will ask them), they know this. Split could do Paranormal Activity numbers all around. Huge profits… in theatrical and post-theatrical. This is why windows matter. Studios will fail if they try to cherrypick box office losers for day-and-date. The theatrical system will collapse in time. Very, very dangerous.

xXx: The Return of Xander Cage continues a clear string of soft results for IP for which there is minimal demand. xXx did $271 million worldwide. The sequel – a better movie, but without Diesel – did $71 million worldwide. Now… the question is, will international territories save this from the ash heap of movie history? Allegedly, it has scored $50 million in its first weekend overseas. Triple that and this film will be within range of profitability, maybe.

Hidden Figures‘ strong holds continue. It’s a terrific audience movie, no matter how poorly directed and how many opportunities for improvement were missed. And I expect an Oscar nominatios for Best Picture on Tuesday, and it will then pass $100 million next weekend.

Also headed over $100 million then is La La Land, which took a funny smack on “Saturday Night Live” this weekend about people getting angry at friends who don’t love the movie 100% ( The film took a 42% hit this weekend, which may or may not have been affected by the Women’s March, but isn’t shocking. Expect an expansion and a big uptick next weekend.

The Founder snuck out like a Big Mac fart this weekend. I like the movie more than a little. Others don’t. But either way, TWC didn’t push too hard. In an era of IP obsession. With the biggest restaurant chain in the world as the center of the film.

Terrible weekend in arthouses overall. The high mark was $6,970 per-screen. Only six films over $2000 per-screen outside of the Top 10. Yick.

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53 Responses to “Weekend Estimates by Klady’s March”

  1. EtGuild2 says:

    SPLIT is one of the few cases where I feel like they may have legitimately inflated the result. Still, great. I liked the movie, though am slightly annoyed there’s an inverse between quality and box office in the “single-word title, weird Big Head McAvoy” sub-genre (Trance, Split, Wanted).

    Question…is DREAMGIRLS the highest grosser fronted by black women/a black woman? If so, it’ll now be HIDDEN FIGURES, which may topple THE BUTLER as well, regardless of Tuesday’s outcome.

    Illumination now has the single-year record for animated gross, easily surpassing the previous high-water marks set by Dreamworks in 2004 (Shrek 2+ Shark Tale) and 2010 (Dragon+Shrek 4+Megamind).

  2. PTA Fluffer says:

    The Oscar hopefuls are certainly all plummeting, desperately need the nominations to come out. Pretty sure SILENCE is dead no matter what.

  3. The General says:

    And over a billion goes Rogue One.

    More and More I hear that this was well beyond Disney’s expectations. Should mean bonuses on the higher end for cast and key personnel (great for them); but I wonder what the “expectation” is going forward. Do we have to deal with non-stop “what went wrong” think pieces if Han Solo tops out around $900 million (or even *gasp* $850)? Do we see them get really daring with the spin offs? Do they put off the next saga trilogy and let the stand alones carry the day for a few years?

  4. Bulldog68 says:

    “Illumination now has the single-year record for animated gross, easily surpassing the previous high-water marks set by Dreamworks in 2004 (Shrek 2+ Shark Tale) and 2010 (Dragon+Shrek 4+Megamind).”

    Wouldn’t Dory and Moana top that, or are you keeping Pixar and Disney fare separate?

    Also, I think it’s kind of screwy that Sing, Moana, Beasts, Strange, will end their domestic gross in this order when their respective opening weekends were in the exact reverse order.

  5. JS Partisan says:

    The Han Solo movie, is going to to make more than rogue one. Why? It will actually be a fun fucking movie, and not Bob Iger’s idea of star wars movie.

    That aside, the trilogy movies matter. When episode eight, comes closer to avatar this time next year. It will be all the more obvious, what Star wars movies matter, in term of box office.

  6. Geoff says:

    They spent more on production for Rogue One than they did on The Force Awakens….and the ancillary sales will be a fraction of what they were for that movie, so I don’t see how it was “well beyond expectations” when it cost significantly more and made half as much.

    Beyond that, the box office for these new Star Wars movies just seems like an extreme seasonal anomaly so far – The Force Awakens made about 80% of its domestic gross by the end of New Year’s weekend and it now looks like Rogue One will make about 90% of its gross by the end of New Year’s weekend. So basically Disney/Lucasfilm has created a mass scale movie version of a Mannheim Steamroller gift set for the holidays…

  7. EtGuild2 says:

    “Wouldn’t Dory and Moana top that, or are you keeping Pixar and Disney fare separate?”

    Separate. I guess you could do that plus throw in “Zootopia,” but I consider DA and Pixar to be separate entities. That is interesting on the reverse BO finals…

  8. Lynch Van Sant says:

    “Question…is DREAMGIRLS the highest grosser fronted by black women/a black woman? If so, it’ll now be HIDDEN FIGURES, which may topple THE BUTLER as well, regardless of Tuesday’s outcome.”

    Ones grossing more than Dreamgirls that come to mind are:
    The Bodyguard (92) – Whitney Houston, $122 domestic, $411 worldwide
    Sister Act (92) – Whoopi Goldberg, $139 domestic, $231 worldwide
    The Help (11) – Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer $169 domestic, $216 worldwide

    Of course, The Bodyguard had Kevin Costner as co-lead, and The Help had Emma Stone.

  9. Geoff says:

    “The Han Solo movie, is going to to make more than rogue one. Why? It will actually be a fun fucking movie, and not Bob Iger’s idea of star wars movie.”

    LOL now that’s funny JS – you mean the SAME Bob Iger who oversaw Monster’s University, Maleficent, Agent Carter, Star Wars Rebels….literally EVERY Star Wars character is either getting a prequel novel or comic book. Yeah Smuggler Babies: The Adventures of Young Han and Lando sounds like it’s RIGHT up his alley. 🙂

  10. Heather says:


    I think you might be off with regards to Star wars..Force awakens has a listed budget of $245 million vs $200 million for Rogue one. Also, I wouldn’t call it a seasonal anomaly by any means. Most of the other top films have grossed 80% of their total by the end of the third weekend. Look at Finding Dory, Civil War etc

  11. JS Partisan says:

    Geoff, the Han Solo movie, is a leftover, from Lucas. That’s why, it will actually be like a Star Wars movie, and not someone’s idea of what a Star Wars movie is supposed to be.

    Also, LFL and Dave Filoni, are responsible for Rebels. I’m not sure why you went off on a tangent about Rebels, but Rebels is the most Star Wars thing Disney has put out.

  12. pat says:

    Imagine how big Dreamgirls would have been if they found a role in it for Kevin Costner.

  13. Geoff says:

    JS I like Rebels and I’m sure Young Han Solo will be fun as well – I’m just not sure what you exactly meant for Bob Iger who has been ALL about the fun and extracting as much “fun” from every IP possible including prequels.

  14. Dr Wally Rises says:

    I’m morbidly fascinated by Arrival wheezing and spluttering its way to nine figures. Hopefully nominations will give it the jumpstart it needs, as the home video streaming release is in two weeks time. Go on Heptapods, you can still make it!

  15. Stella's Boy says:

    Arrival deserves every penny. Hope it gets some love tomorrow morning. Haven’t seen Split but I hope to soon. Shyamalan makes consecutive low-budget Blumhouse flicks, which turn out to be box office successes that receive mostly good reviews, and after this career revitalization he is going to make Unbreakable 2? Can’t think of many movies I’d rather see less.

  16. Pete B. says:

    Unbreakable is a masterpiece. Be hard to top it.

  17. Stella's Boy says:

    I re-watched it a year or two ago. Didn’t do much for me. Find it OK but not exceptional. But even as a big fan of it, are you really clamoring for a sequel?

  18. Pete B. says:

    Unless you could pull off a Godfather Part II to stand along side The Godfather, I’m not sure I’d advise it.

    Be interesting to see what the storyline would be. The first was start of David Dunn learning he had powers, the 2nd would be the end of his crime-fighting career, maybe?

  19. AdamL says:

    Unbreakable is a masterpiece? Only if there are literally 500+ masterpiece out there in film land, and if so then you’re using the term too liberally.

  20. palmtree says:

    If I may add one more to the pile, The Color Purple nearly did $100m back in 1986. And managed to get 11 Oscar noms too.

  21. EtGuild2 says:

    Thanks Lynch Van Sant! “The Help” is a bit of a reach…Stone was front and center, for whatever reason. “Bodyguard” was really about the pairing…but SISTER ACT is indisputable. I guess it will stand awhile longer!

  22. Spacesheik says:

    UNBREAKABLE is cursed by its infamous freeze frame ending – otherwise its a very good film.

  23. Spacesheik says:

    As for ROGUE ONE, well I preferred it over FORCE AWAKENS, and it seemed to have had a great word of mouth – its exciting, gritty, dark and different than a typical STAR WARS flick. I really think ROGUE is the best STAR WARS flick since EMPIRE. I’d watch that again, but FORCE AWAKENS I wouldn’t.

    Unfortunately, after the nostalgia luster of FORCE AWAKENS has petered out, what’s left now is a weak villain (Kylo Ren) who is mocked on You Tube videos – that’s not a very good legacy.

  24. Pete B. says:

    Adam L, you know the old saying about opinions…
    But really, you think there’s 500+ better films out there than Unbreakable? That’s mind-boggling to me.

    Would it be more palatable if I said it was a masterpiece of its genre? The Citizen Kane of comic book films?

  25. JS Partisan says:

    Uh, the auralnauts fleshed out Kylo’s characters. Rogue One, is unnecessary garbage, that doesn’t even come close to being as entertaining, as the previous games and books, that covered the same material.

    Geoff, Iger hates the prequels, and he also has an odd idea what a Star Wars film should be. I don’t need dark or gritty in Star Wars, but some people do.

    Luckily, TFA overcomes Iger’s bullshit, and has Rey, Finn, and Poe. I don’t give a shit about villains, but Kylo is at least interesting. The whole nostalgia bit about TFA, is just lazy… Like the Academy treating La La Land like it’s fucking Titanic!

  26. Bulldog68 says:

    If there is ever an Unbreakable sequel, I think the natural story progression would be the discovery of others. Maybe a guy whose inflammable and a guy who can burn people up when he touches them. Just a thought.

  27. Hcat says:

    I actually think 500 is a little low for clearing the unbreakable bar. There has been at least a hundred films since than that has surpassed it, and going back the 73 years of sound films prior to it…

    But yes we all have different tastes. I think that M Night is the most frustrating director out there. He certainly has the chops, the weightlifting scene, the gun at the breakfast table, the basement in Signs, even the initial carnage in the happening, the guy knows how to build a scene and move a camera. The problem is all his talent is used in the service of some truly silly ideas (though I appreciate what he did with unbreakable

  28. Sideshow Bill says:

    So JS, if someone like Spaceshiek or me say they liked Rogue One and found it entertaining, we’re lying? You say it’s simply “not” when millions have found it so. What makes you arbiter of other people’s opinions?

    You’re welcome to your opions, too, but I almost always found your arguments flawed because they discount, ya know, people other than yourself.

  29. JS Partisan says:

    Sideshow, I discount your view of this argument, because you are assuming there are rules. It’s rhetoric. You’re a smart guy. You had to take a rhetoric class, at some point in life.

    Also, you are assuming, that everyone who paid to see Rogue One… Loves it like you do. You like to find my argument, “flawed,” but that right there is, as flawed as ignoring a fire on the titanic.

    Seriously, that you took the time out of your day to chide me, for disliking something… Is fucking ridiculous. It’s a shit movie, and I’m under no obligation to treat it like it’s quality. I like the DC superhero movies, but I don’t need you to like them, and everyone loves to state how shit they are.

    Seriously. It should be a fucking given, that no one has to quantify every statement they make… On a movie blog. Here’s one: The Academy are a fucking joke, after treating La La Land like it’s worthy of Titanic dap. No need to watch the ceremony again this year.

  30. Sideshow Bill says:

    But a lot of people DID like it. And I’m sure some don’t like R1. But you spoke like you had proof that nobody liked it.

    Mind you, I agree with you sometimes, especially on Marvel Movies. I’m sorta with on DC but I hated Suicide Squad.

    And yes, I know about rhetoric and persuasive speaking. You have a point there. But you’ve been going on about R1 for weeks now. I think people SHOULD take time to quantify statements sometimes. I’m sure I haven’t always but I try to. For instance, I don’t know what the 10 best movies of the year are, but I know what my favorite films are.

    But hey. I get it. We cool.

  31. Sideshow Bill says:

    As for La La Land, I haven’t seen it yet. I probably will but I’m one of those “awful people” that doesn’t really care for musicals. I’ve liked a few but not many.

    In my opinion The Witch should have 14 nods, and Green Room about 8. I’m good with Arrival and Moonlight. The Witch not even getting a production design nod is disappointing but here we are. My picks almost never match up with Oscar, so it’s meaningless to me.

  32. palmtree says:

    The LLL backlash is strong, but it’s probably not strong enough to bring up Moonlight or Manchester.

  33. Bulldog68 says:

    I haven’t seen LLL but it seems like such a lightweight whimsical movie that seems to say nothing meaningful that will last. To think that this got 14 nods is astonishingly embarrassing IMO, as we have had some really good movies this year, both conventional and non conventional that truly were artistic, captured your imagination, and left you with something to think about. These seemingly Hollywood masturbatory exercises really don’t stand the test of time. At least Hidden Figures is making money.

  34. Stella's Boy says:

    So happy Moonlight, Arrival, and Hell or High Water got significant nominations. Each is vastly superior to La La Land. I don’t hate LLL but man it’s not anywhere near Best Picture good.

  35. YancySkancy says:

    I thought Unbreakable was okay, but good lord, of course there are more than 500 better films. Way more. I know some of you folks are pretty young, so maybe 500 seems like a lot, but I’ve seen over 6,000 films in my life, and Unbreakable probably wouldn’t make my top 3,000.

  36. JS Partisan says:

    Bd, fucking nailed it. It’s Hollywood onanism, at it’s highest.

    Bill, if I hate something. I’m not going to quantify, that people like it. It’s a given. My wife, hates when I do this as well.

  37. EtGuild2 says:

    I would agree on LLL, but none of the other major nominees truly reached me this year. I’m more annoyed that this Oscar season is being declared as “good for indies” when, in an Academy first, the movie leading in Indie Spirit noms, AMERICAN HONEY, was entirely shut out. A24, which had perhaps the greatest year of an indie studio in history, achieved recognition for only one movie.

  38. YancySkancy says:

    Seems odd that there’s no dedicated post-Oscar nomination thread here.

  39. Hcat says:

    This is a bloodbath for the studios and shows what a wretched state Hollywood is in. Four of the six major studios shut out of the best picture race with nine slots!! And this isnt like before where Focus, Miramax and Searchlight would get in instead of the Mama studio, this is freakin’ Madea Dirty Grandpa Lionsgate eating the studios lunch. Its one thing for Disney not to make it, they turned into a toy company long ago, but jeez Warners and Uni, you cant field a contender? Paramount’s barely holding on and they managed two.

    Im glad for all the nominees and I am sure they are all deserving and dont have a problem with any of the choices (though Amy Adams and Bening could have had the Meryl slot), but the major movie makers dont seem to be interested in actually making movies.

  40. brack says:

    I wouldn’t say La La Land says nothing meaningful. Nothing original, perhaps, but it has a pretty clear message, and whether or not you think it is worthy of all the nominations is one that could be made for almost any movie of any given year. Probably the best film musical of all time is Singin’ in the Rain, and there’s nothing meaningful about it, and I don’t think there’s a single original song in the entire movie, but so what? And no, La La Land is no Singin’ in the Rain, but it’s not trying to be either.

  41. Spacesheik says:

    Vin Diesel loves cinematic cheese & working on sequels nobody asked for – honestly who wanted to see XXX III?

    Whatever happened to the days he’d make Sidney Lumet movies?

    The only recent good thing of note he’s done is Groot from GUARDIANS.

  42. Stella's Boy says:

    I’m not concerned with whether or not La La Land has anything meaningful or original to say. I expected to be more taken with the romance and didn’t expect to find those two characters, played by people I like a whole lot, so incredibly bland. I wasn’t interested in the plight of either one and didn’t care if they ended up together or not.

  43. brack says:

    What you found bland is what others found charming. I’m not sure what kind of romantic relationship you were looking for in a rather whimsical, light musical comedy, but it sounds like it just didn’t do it for you personally more than a flaw in character development, and that’s perfectly fine.

  44. Stella's Boy says:

    What character development? They are extremely one-dimensional. I was looking and hoping for characters with a little more to them than characters in your average Nicholas Sparks movie, but there’s just not much there.

  45. Mostly Lurking says:

    Very late to the party here, but for whatever it’s worth, Tarantino agrees with calling Unbreakable a masterpiece, and his film viewing credentials are certainly solid.

  46. Pete B. says:

    Interesting that QT thinks Shyamalan got a better performance out of Willis in Unbreakable, than he did in Pulp Fiction.

  47. Stella's Boy says:

    That’s silly. What QT thinks about Unbreakable isn’t going to change someone’s opinion of it. Or it shouldn’t at least. If it does, that person has weak convictions. Plus QT hasn’t made a good movie since Jackie Brown.

  48. Mostly Lurking says:

    Not trying to change anyone’s mind, more in response to Yancy’s post:

    “I thought Unbreakable was okay, but good lord, of course there are more than 500 better films. Way more. I know some of you folks are pretty young, so maybe 500 seems like a lot, but I’ve seen over 6,000 films in my life, and Unbreakable probably wouldn’t make my top 3,000.”

    Not everyone who considers Unbreakable a masterpiece are too young to know any better. That’s the only point I was looking to illustrate. As for your opinion that he hasn’t made a good film in almost twenty years, we’ll just have to agree to agree (different strokes for different folks and all).

  49. Pete B. says:

    I’m the one that originally made the comment about Unbreakable being a masterpiece, and QT is 1 year older than me.

    If Yancy thinks there are 3000 better movies out there, I’m sure we have vastly different tastes.

    Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  50. Movieman says:

    Was a “Unbreakable” naysayer in 2001 (gave it a two-star review at the time), but “Split” made me want to give it another look.
    Was completely blown away this time: felt like I was watching an entirely different movie. Except for the completely unnecessary (written) postscript which almost spoils the chilling final encounter between Willis and Jackson, I now think it’s Shyamalan’s best film to date.
    It really was hauntingly prophetic in foreshadowing 21st century America’s obsession w/ comic book super heroes and urban terrorism.

  51. Stella's Boy says:

    So it’s far superior to Split then?

  52. Movieman says:

    Definitely, SB.
    Although who knows?
    Maybe I’ll give “Split” another look in 15 years and discover that it was a masterpiece, too.

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