Assessing The Weekend: High School Musical Still Rules

So, once again, High School Musical 3 was tops at the box office. But it was a down weekend overall, actually the smallest weekend of the year, and the smallest since December 7th-9th 2007, which had The Golden Compass as the sole wide release. Last week’s two biggest movies, HSM3 and Saw V, both dropped off over 60% from their opening weekend, a pretty sharp decline. It was all thanks to the Halloween Friday. HSM3 fell off 90% compared to it’s opening Friday and Saw V, 78%. Those are unusually large drops for big movies going into their second week with little competition.

My prediction for Zack and Miri Make a Porno was off $4,734,687.52 (14,800,317.52 vs 10,065,630). It would have been a lot closer, but Halloween killed Friday. Zack and Miri saw a 200% increase from Friday to Saturday. The previous week, Friday was the biggest day for both HSM3 and Saw V. But all in all, the faux-porno didn’t do so bad- $3,680 per screen is decent for a movie without mass appeal on a slow weekend.

I was off $568,000 in predicting The Haunting of Molly Hartley, lending some validity to not penalizing a movie for having a first-time director. Unfortunately for Molly, Halloween can’t fully take the blame for the poor returns, as the movie saw only a 37% increase Friday to Saturday. And at $2,045 per screen, it was cramming the theaters to the tune of 8% capacity. Not very good.

Changeling was the only movie in the top ten to crack $5,000 per screen, and it only did that by $55. Despite mixed reviews and Angelina Jolie’s giant lips on the poster, it had a pretty decent weekend.

While $2,000 per screen isn’t good for most movies, it’s great for Fireproof, which continues to rake in the dough. At $2,000, the movie only needs to show on 250 screens to cover it’s $500,000 budget. It was showing on 887 this weekend and added another $1,731,843 to the total, now up to 52 times it’s budget.

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