As the summer blockbuster season of 2012 comes to a close
this Labor Day weekend, let us try to appreciate the sacrificial virgins the
studios are throwing into the proverbial volcano. Remember, “The Possession,” “Lawless,”
and “Oogieloves” are taking the fall so that next summer, we are assured of
being thoroughly entertained again by films like “Marvel’s The Avengers,” “The Dark
Knight Rises,” and “Ted.” So, please, greet them with a moment of silence and
take time to bow down to their general unworthiness.
Now, I’m certainly not saying that you should go see these new
flicks, mind you, just that you recognize the merit of these filmic flops and
how each movie has its own part to play in the great box office show. Well…except
for “Oogieloves,” I don’t know what the hell that’s actually doing at your
local multiplex and why they are giving away free glow sticks. Seriously. I
mean, buried on the second or third screen at Redbox, sure…but certainly not on
the big screen. Someone must like the smell of burning money or just had a
closet full of puppets that they didn’t know what else to do with.
“The Oogieloves” actually may go into the record books if
Wednesday’s debut is any indication; it opened with a disastrous $102k from 2,160
theaters--$47 per. That right there is hand-of-God type stuff…if he were to
bitch-slap you. Now, if the per-theater-average holds up for the entire weekend,
we will officially be recognizing the G-rated film from the mind of Kenn
Viselman (“Thomas the Tank Engine,” “Teletubbies”), as the worst film ever to
open in wide release. If that were to happen, it would be a wonderful bookend,
as “The Avengers” kicked off the summer with the #1 opening of all-time,
earning $207 million.
I just love that it is being pitched as the first movie to
have 3-to-5 year olds dancing in the aisles. What? Really? I got news for you
Viselman...that’s every film that 3-to-5 year olds go to…which is exactly why
parents rarely bring them to theaters. Hey, where’s the love? Sorry. I would
go, but my 5-year-old daughter told me while watching the preview that it
looked like it was—and I quote—“for babies.” Though, truth is, she did love
Barney…when she was 1 ½. Wait, I just found out Cary Elwes plays a character
named “Bobby Wobbly” in this?!? As you wish, Westley, as you wish.
Sam Raimi’s Ghost House Pictures and Lionsgate certainly
know how to make things go bump in the night at the box office. They’ve both
had innumerous successes in the horror genre; however “The Possession”
certainly doesn’t have the “found footage” flair that has been “bumping” up
grosses lately. Still, Warner’s “The Apparition” had the third best per-theater
average in the Top 12 last weekend despite coming in at #12 on 810 screens.
That likely means demand is pretty high, and this latest chill pill may swallow
a bit of cash. Debuting in 2,700+ graveyards, expect around $13 million for the
3-day and $16 million for the extended holiday.
Normally, Weinstein’s prohibition period piece, “Lawless,”
would be in line to take the top spot, but with a weak debut of $1.1 million on
Wednesday, odds are the R-rated drama won’t be able to handle its liquor and
bottom out with $7 million for the 3-day and $10 million through Labor Day.
Besides, the real boozers will be parked in front of their TVs watching
football all weekend long. Fooooooooootbaaaaaaaaall!
Will “Lawless” be the next “Warrior?”—a movie everyone was
talking about, but nobody actually went and saw. Hopefully “Lawless”
underperforming has less to do with Tom Hardy’s appeal, and is more to do with
LaBeouf overload. Now, when is that “Even Stevens: The Movie” coming out?!?! Pretty
sad when a flick starring Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce, Gary Oldman, Jessica Chastain,
and Shia LaBeouf loses out to a documentary.
Speaking of that. Could we have a dark horse victory this
weekend? Maybe, if “Possession” craps out. “2016: Obama’s America” finished 8th last weekend with $6.5 million, however it will be expanding from 1,080
theaters to almost 1,800. That, combined with the heat of the Republican
National Convention, may have the film approaching similar or even higher
numbers…which could give it the narrow victory. Oh, the Republicans would have
a field day with that one, wouldn’t they?
Meanwhile, “Marvel’s The Avengers” is looking to finish off
its smashing summer, as it returns to the land of wide release. Yes, Disney is bringing
back the #1 film of the summer, rolling it out in 1,705 theaters for its well-deserved
curtain call. Should be able to crack $1.5 million or so, giving it upwards of
$620 million, but still doesn’t have a chance to catch #2, “Titanic,” which
sits at $658 million. Still, a belt-to-belt run is quite impressive, especially
given the fact that the majority of films usually don’t last more than a month
in theaters anymore.
1. The Possession - $13M
2. The Expendables 2 - $8M
3. 2016: Obama’s America - $7M
4. Lawless - $7M
5. Paranorman - $6M
(Aug 30, 2012) - Comments (30)