Weekend Report: “Pan” Flops, “Martian” Easily Holds First

While Pan and The Walk both bombed in their nationwide debuts, The Martian had a fantastic drop in its second weekend, proving just how successful this sci-fi adaptation is. It dipped just 32% in its second weekend to gross a fantastic $37M, down from $54M last weekend. That brings it;s new domestic total to $108M, which also happens to match its $108M production budget. Its worldwide total is now up to $227M, more than double last weekend. That means in just two weeks of release it has already more than doubled its production costs and is well on its way to turning a very solid profit. That 32% drop is much better than Interstellar‘s 40% drop but not quite as good as Gravity‘s 23% drop. Also comparing to those movies, the $108M two week total is above Interstellar‘s $96M at the same point and below Gravity‘s $122M. If it winds up in the middle of those two films, it will likely finish with a domestic total around $230M.

Hotel Transylvania 2 continued to do strong second place business with $20M in it’s third week of release, down 39% for a new domestic total of $116M. That’s quite a bit above the original Hotel Transylvania‘s three week total of $102M. Clearly it is proving to be a very strong choice for families. However, it will face direct competition from Goosebumps next weekend, another silly Halloween horror comedy film (that also happened to be budgeted at $85M and be made by Sony). Goosebumps may end up as a surprise if nostalgiac teens and young adults show up in addition to younger kids, as the books have a very wide appeal across a large demographic. Still, Hotel 2 is doing very strong business, and is probably well on its way to a third installment.

Now, we get to the story everyone wanted to hear: Pan, was, unsurprisingly, a massive flop. It took in just $15M in its opening weekend against a massive $150M budget,  which makes it one of the biggest disappointments of the year. It was very clear that Warner Brothers knew it was destined for failure and just wanted to get it out of the way, but $15M for a film that quite literally cost tenfold that is an utter disaster. As far as other notorious flops go, that $15M start is less than the $18M for Jupiter Ascending ($176M budget) and $10M less than the $25M start of Fant4stic ($120M budget). It was originally set to be released back in July, but was unceremoniously dumped into October after heavy competition from Ant-ManPixels and Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. It seems like something that would’ve done better in the Spring or even February, but October was probably the worst time to release it. Of course, if the film looked appealing than audiences would’ve shown up. If the film looked appealing. The trailer was truly bizarre and failed tofeel like a Peter Pan story, rather just looking like some crazy adventure featuring an overly eccentric Hugh Jackman playing Paycheck the Pirate. As a result, it wasn’t clear who it was for, and with a deluge of more enticing options, audiences just bowed out all together. Not to go out on a limb and make crazy assumptions, but if I had to guess, those planned sequels probably aren’t going to happen.

Even though it had a much smaller budget, The Walk still bombed pretty hard. Yeah, you thought that $35M budget would get you out of all the headlines and attention, didn’t you? Not on my watch. The 3D biopic opened to just $3.6M in seventh place, bringing its total up to a very weak $6.3M including its IMAX release from last weekend. The story wasn’t really well known enough for audiences to show up, the trailers didn’t seem all that appealing and Joseph Gordon Levitts ridiculous French accent became notorious before the movie even released. All together, this is a bomb through and through.

The Intern had another strong hold, down just 26% for a third weekend total of $8.7M. So far the film is up to around $50M domestic and $85M worldwide, and will probably be able to take in another $25-$30M domestically. This is a very solid performance and is clearly clicking with older audiences looking for something different.

Sicario had a relatively strong 40% drop in its second weekend, down to $7.4M for a domestic total of $26.7M. That’s much better than the 48% drop of Prisoners, and if it follows a similar path will likely wind up with around $40M total. Given the modest $30M production budget and solid overseas results, it is safe to say that this is a win.

In the limited release area, one film clearly stood out among the rest, and it was Steve Jobs. The controversial biopic opened to a phenomenal $521,000 from just four theaters, giving it an incredible per theater average of $130,250. For comparison, Birdman opened in (likely the same) four theaters and averaged $106,000. That’s one of the best per theater average starts ever for a live action film, behind only a few very big titles such as American SniperThe Grand Budapest HotelRed State and The Master. Obviously the interest surrounding this film is quite high. In comparison, a documentary about Steve that also happens to be playing right now, Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine opened a few weeeks ago in 68 theaters yet made less than a third of what Steve Jobs did. Whether or not this will translate to a solid nationwide debut is yet to be seen, but it still has a small expansion next weekend where it will likely post more strong numbers.


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