Archive for the ‘The Princess and the Frog’ Category

6 December Movies That Had Poor Box Office Starts, But Major Legs

December 23, 2009

I’m about to go see Avatar, so I’ll have to keep this post short and sweet.  Movies released in December are a breed of their own.  Because students are out of school and many adults are off of work for the last half of December, movies released during the month often see smaller opening weekends, for people feel no need to rush out to the box office and see them.  Most movies released during the year have a multiplier of about 3.0, which means the total gross was three times higher than the opening weekend.  During the holidays, however, every day is like the weekend, and movies will have multipliers of 4, 5, 6 or even higher!  Many films will open with alarmingly poor numbers, but actually go on to see some very nice grosses.  That’s why I’m not too concerned about the initially low grosses for The Princess And The Frog.  Over the Sunday-to-Monday period, the film dropped just 23% to $2.9 million, and it should continue to perform strongly during weekdays for the next two weeks.  Thus, because it is List Wednesday, let’s look at six recent movies that had seemingly poor box office starts, but went on to see much more solid box office finishes.

1. Cheaper By The Dozen 2 (December 21, 2005)

Opening Weekend: $9.3 million
Total Gross: $82.9 million
Multiplier: 8.9

2. Fun With Dick And Jane (December 21, 2005)

Opening Weekend: $14.4 million
Total Gross: $110.3 million
Multiplier: 7.6

3. Rumor Has It (December 25, 2005)

Opening Weekend: $3.5 million
Total Gross: $43 million
Multiplier: 12.3!
**This “opening weekend” was just one day long.

4. Charlotte’s Web (December 15, 2006)

Opening Weekend: $11.5 million
Total Gross: $83 million
Mulitplier: 7.2

5. P.S. I Love You

Opening Weekend: $6.5 million
Total Gross: $53.7 million
Mulitplier: 8.3

6. Charlie Wilson’s War

Opening Weekend: $9.7 million
Total Gross: $66.7 million
Mulitplier: 6.9


Weekend Fix: Avatar Lives Up To Some Very High Expectations

December 20, 2009

Friday Estimates: Avatar Finds $27 Million On First Day, But May Struggle For Rest Of Weekend

December 20, 2009

I’m sorry.  I know I said I’d be backed to regular posting, but my house at school got broken into and robbed last night, and that’s distracted me for the better part of the day.  I wish I had been more present for the first half of this, one of the biggest weekends of the year, and I apologize, but sometimes life throws you a curveball.  And that’s exactly what life is throwing at the box office this weekend.  After a strong opening day of $27 million for Avatar, a massive snowstorm hit the East coast, which will certainly limit box office prospects for the rest of the weekend.  Avatar should end up with about $70 million for the weekend, and based on the superb word-of-mouth, and the Christmas holiday, in which all students are now out of school, we’re looking at a spectacle that’s sure to have great legs in the coming weeks.  When it comes to Did You Hear About The Morgans? the resounding answer from American audiences is “No.”  The romantic comedy only managed to find $2.4 million yesterday.  Keep on reading for the full Friday chart, and then check back here tomorrow for the Weekend Fix!  I haven’t made a video in over a week, so I’m excited!

Friday Estimates for December 18, 2009
1. Avatar – $27 million
2. The Princess And The Frog – $3.4 million
3. The Blind Side – $3.2 million
4. Did You Hear About The Morgans? – $2.4 million
5. The Twilight Saga: New Moon – $1.4 million
6. Invictus – $1.3 million
7. A Christmas Carol – $951,000
8. Up In The Air – $925,000
9. Brothers – $880,000
10. Old Dogs – $709,000

Weekend Preview: Princess And The Frog Should Leap To #1; Delays…

December 11, 2009

My predictions are at the tail end of the video, but that’s all I’ve got for now. I really need to work. After a week of real-world work, I’ll re-focus here. Thanks for being patient, guys.

New And News: This Week Brings Disney’s First Black Princess And Nelson Mandela; Coincidence?

December 7, 2009

Welcome to the Monday column, New And News, where I go over this week’s new releases, as well as some of the best news articles from the past week.  Opening in theaters this week we have two movies that deal interestingly with race.  The oft-criticized black-princess-showcasing Disney release, The Princess And The Frog, and the racially themed Nelson Mandela biopic, Invictus.  After summarizing those two films, keep on reading for news about sequels in the Harry Potter, Twilight, and Bourne franchises.


The Princess And The Frog (Disney) – 3,300 theaters – Reviews

The Disney we all know and love is back to doing what it does best: telling romanticized fairy tales with beautiful music and traditional animation.  Five years after Disney’s rather foolish statement that it would no longer produce traditional 2D animation, the studio is back with another sure-to-be-a-classic princess tale, The Princess And The Frog.  Equipped with jazzy New Orleans music, iconic Louisiana bayou scenery, a voodoo witch-doctor villain, cute animated animals, and the first black Disney princess, this film has a lot of buzz around it, and it’s sure to get nostalgia points from audiences of all ages.  I mean, who wasn’t excited by the first five animated minutes of Enchanted back in 2007?  As a college student, I know that tons of my friends are ready to go see this, and parents and kids alike are sure to be drawn to the theaters.  I know I’ll be taking my little sister once I come home for Christmas!  The Princess And The Frog has done extremely well in its limited release of just two theaters, and it will play very well over the holidays.  My very early estimate for this has it earning somewhere between $150-$200 million, with a $50 million opening.  That will probably change over the course of the week as I do some more research, but for now, that’s what I’ve got.

Invictus (Warner Brothers) – 2,150 theaters – Reviews

Morgan Freeman portrays South African President Nelson Mandela in this presitigious Oscar-bait.  Freeman is beloved by audiences, though he rarely has a major leading role, so there’s a considerable amount of excitement around this feature.  Matt Damon also stars as famous rugby player Francois Pienaar, and between star power, good reviews, strong advertising, Clint Eastwood (who the academy loves… see Million Dollar Baby‘s win for Best Picture in 2004), and racial drama (which the Academy loves…. see Crash‘s win for Best Picture in 2005), this should be a considerable hit for Warner Brothers.  If it does well in the beginning of its run, strong word-of-mouth and awards nominations will carry Invictus to becoming a major financial victory.


Final Twilight To Be Split Into Two Movies

Following in the footsteps of The Hobbit and the final Harry Potter (more on that below), Summit has decided that it will split the final Twilight film, Breaking Dawn, into two films.  Unfortunately, whereas the book versions of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows and The Hobbit have extremely dense and complex plotsthat merit such a split, it appears that Breaking Dawn will simply be an even more drawn out affair, in which Bella and Jacob stare meaninglessly out into the drab, rainy forest.

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Teaser

Warner Brothers has attached a new teaser for the first part of their final Harry Potter installment.  It’s getting me pretty excited!  A little less than a year away, Deathly Hallows is coming out next Winter.

Greengrass Backs Out Of Fourth Bourne Movie

This news broke out on The Playlist blog, and far too many people on the internet have scooped it up, claimed it as their own, and failed to give credit where credit is due.  Paul Greengrass, director of all three films in the Bourne franchise, has backed out of directing a fourth edition.  Where this puts the state of the franchise and Matt Damon’s involvement is unknown at this point.  Personally, I’m cool with this.  The Bourne Ultimatum was a tremendous ending to the stellar action franchise.  I say, why not end on a high note?!

Friday Estimates: The Blind Side And Everything Else Has A Lot To Be Thankful For This Weekend!

November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving Weekend’s Friday box office numbers are finally in, and we are seeing some major  activity at the movies.  New Moon held about as expected, but The Blind Side is blowing up, surpassing even my very high expectations! In fact, pretty much everything is doing better than expected this weekend!  There is a lot of money being made, and it makes you wish that that were the case in the rest of the economy… Anyway, let’s go over this movie by movie:

1. New Moon – $17.9 million

This is a bit below what I was predicting that this would do on Friday.  The vampire blockbuster is looking at a $48 million weekend and $238 million by the end of the frame.

2. The Blind Side – $16.2 million

Here’s the real story of the weekend.  The Blind Side is up a huge 46% from last Friday, and that’s based on strong word-of-mouth alone!   Most analysts were conservative, saying The Blind Side might earn $26-27 million this weekend.  I went way beyond that and predicted a $38 million weekend, but it’s even exceeding my predictions!  The beloved Sandra Bullock football film is giving New Moon a run for its money this weekend, but it should finish in second this frame with a ridiculously strong $40 million.  That would give it $100 million after just ten days.  Wow.

3. 2012 – $7 million

Also held up pretty well this weekend.  A small weekend decline to $19 million seems in order. While this hasn’t been magnificently huge in the US, worldwide, this has already earned $476 million.

4. Old Dogs – $6.85 million

This has a good shot at surpassing 2012 for the #3 spot.  Family films tend to blow up on Saturday and Sunday, so I’m expecting $22 million over the weekend.

5. A Christmas Carol – $6.6 million

About time this started to show some signs of life!  Now that people are actually in the mood for a Christmas movie, this should recover a bit after its lackluster start.  A $18 million weekend will help A Christmas Carol quite a bit, as will the small December declines, but in my opinion, it’s just too little too late for the absurdly expensive feature.

6. Ninja Assassin – $5.7 million

This is definitely a better result than I was thinking.  Ninja Assassin already earned $7.9 million on Wednesday and Thursday, so a likely $15 million weekend will bring its 5-day total to about $23 million.

7. Planet 51 – $4.1 million

Actually improved upon its last Friday, but I’m sorry: I just didn’t care last weekend, and I don’t care this weekend.

8. Fantastic Mr. Fox – $3 million

The Wes Anderson animated film isn’t going to break any records, and I’m not about to call it a huge hit, but it might actually earn double digits this weekend.  $8.5 million seems to be in the cards for the inventive picture.

9. Precious – $2.8 million

Maybe this is finally showing some signs of losing a bit of steam.  Once award nominations start up (and the Precious-themed Oprah episode airs) this should pick back up.  Still, $7.5 million ain’t bad at all for a film in 663 theaters.

10. The Men Who Stare At Goats – $630,000

Told’ya this would be a front-loaded liberal fanboy movie!  It started off okay with $12.7 million, but it’s barely going to pass $30 million total this weekend.

11. The Road – $560,000

People who love this film will gloat about its “amazing” box office, saying that it’s only in 111 theaters and earned $560,000 this weekend. But if people were hoping this would break out and be a big hit, then I’m sorry to say that they’re in for some bad news.  The Road is going to need a lot more than a $1.6 million weekend and a $16,000 per theater average to merit much expansion and promotion, and that looks to be where the grim film is headed.

12. The Princess And The Frog – $277,000

This is an astounding figure.  Out of 2 theaters, The Princess And The Frog captured all that money.  While this does bode very well for the film’s future, we have to keep in mind that people were paying about $30 for each ticket…

Disney’s Next Move

May 20, 2009

May 28th brings another Disney Pixar movie, which means I’m excited. Up has garnered a lot of positive pre-release reviews, which I’m sure everybody is shocked to hear. They have gone 9 for 9 on great movies, and when it comes to original imagination, Pixar can’t be beat. Their whole film-making philosophy is awesome. There are no bad ideas to them; they make everything work. And they make it work well.

But what about the other half of that partnership? That is, the Disney half. Outside of their live action films (both good and god-awful), what’s up with Disney animation? Bolt was respected by the critics, the first CGI movie made only by Disney to really do that. In fact, it’s the first animated movie in a while that has given Disney any sort of success without attaching the Pixar name (I might be mistaken, but I can’t think of any. The only recent movie I can think of is Chicken Little, which… Well, you know). So what is the company doing now?

Awesome things, that’s what. Remember the Disney Renaissance? Of course you do. Especially if you’re my age, because we grew up in it. It started with The Little Mermaid and took off from there, releasing great movie after great movie, as its affiliate Pixar does now. Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King, Tarzan, Mulan, Hercules, even the least respected of the bunch Pocahontas had some good ideas and moving moments. Then we seemed to hit a wall. We got The Emperor’s New Groove which was entertaining, I suppose, but not memorable. Treasure Planet, Brother Bear, and Atlantis fell flat. Lilo and Stitch was the only movie released to achieve high critical acclaim as well as any sort of financial success. What’s the company to do? What they do best. They’re going back to the basics.

This holiday season they’re releasing The Princess and the Frog, the classic fairytale set in a Cajun themed Louisiana. Despite some unneeded controversy (it stars Disney’s first Black princess), the film is on its, ahem, hind legs and is looking strong. The first official preview was released recently, and is embedded here:

It’s a return to the classic, hand-drawn, musical Disney movie. It has been rumored that the 2-D animation style was dead, but I think this film will prove that false. We’ve just been waiting for a really good, well-made 2-D film. Those aforementioned didn’t quite do the trick. I think this one will.

Next year they’re releasing Rapunzel. I was always surprised they hadn’t made this movie already, but it’s nice to know there are still some classic fairy-tales left for them to put the Disney spin on. Rapunzel has an interesting animation style that blends the 2D with the computer imaging. It looks like the perfect balance of the old and the new, and while little has been released about this movie, it looks like it could aid in bringing Disney animation back into the limelight.