A superhero movie primarily set in the 1980s with no real stars, a 2 1/2 hour running time, was rated R and is based on a graphic novel over twenty years old? Make no mistake, online hype aside, an opening day gross of $25.1 million, including Thursday’s mindnight shows is a remarkable achievement for Zack Snyder’s “Watchmen.”
More importantly than Friday’s big opening, Saturday’s box office may determine how big the movie will play over the long haul. While current estimates fall within the $55-58 million range, if the Saturday total bumps up to get the movie closer to a $60 million plus gross, Warner Bros. could easily have a true blockbuster on its hands. There are some concerns, however.
According to Variety, audience polls showed that 65% of the audience was over 25 and 70% were men. This means that while a lot of young people went overall, the studio still couldn’t convince a majority of teenage boys to go and, obviously, with such a low percentage of women, the picture is not playing broadly. Unless word of mouth is extremely positive over the next week, it will be difficult for the film to reach the $200 million level of Snyder’s “300.”
The most disturbing news of the weekend has to be the bottom falling out drop for “The Jonas Bros.: The 3D Concert Experience.” With a cume of only $805,000 on Friday and a new cume of $14 million, the picture is turning into a major disappointment. Walt Disney Studios will still generate a profit because of the low production and targeted marketing costs, but it’s clear the tween stars have less appeal than the media recognizes.
As for last weekend’s champion, Tyler Perry’s “Madea Goes to Jail” weathered the “Watchmen” storm well generating another $2.5 million. The biggest hit of Perry’s career should make anywhere from $7 to 9 million over the weekend raising it’s cume to almost $80 million and with the magic $100 million number not out of reach.
Here are Friday’s top ten grossers according to Box Office Mojo. Look for final numbers tomorrow on HitFix.
1. “Watchmen,” $25.1 million
2. “Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to Jail,” $2.5 million, $70.2 million to date
3. “Taken,” $2.3 million, $112.9 million to date
4. “Slumdog Millionaire,” $1.9 million, $120.4 million to date
5. “He’s Just Not That Into You,” $1.3 million, $81.9 million to date
6. “Paul Blart: Mall Cop,” $1.14 million, $130.5 million to date
7. “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” $1 million, $36.2 million to date
8. “Fired Up,” $920,000, $11.6 million to date
9. “Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience,” $850,000, $14.8 million to date
10. “Coraline,” $805,000, $63.1 million to date
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