BOX OFFICE: ‘Shrek’ Wins, ‘MacGruber’ Bombs

The argument against ever making an Saturday Night Live sketch into a feature film again has become stronger as the latest addition to the SNL genre has totally flopped. Despite MacGruber‘s extensive marketing campaign the film had one of the lowest per theatre averages of the week and even failed to surpass the Queen Latifah comedy Just Wright or the sentimental chick flick Letters to Juliet in their second weeks.

Overall the Box Office totals were significantly lower than projected. Blame it on the beautiful weather or inter-league play for baseball or a number of other things, but the bottom line is people are not going out to the theatres this summer as much as expected. I have a feeling the release of Eclipse will change that in several weeks.

Box Office Estimates
May 21st-23rd

1) Shrek Forever After (Prediction: 1st)
ACTUAL: $71.25 million | PREDICTION: $92.2 million

Despite having the advantage of inflated 3-D ticket prices, the fourth installment in the Shrek franchise has made significantly less than predictions indicated. Either Shrek: The Final Chapter will not be one of the top films of the summer, or overall we can expect a light summer.

2) Iron Man 2 (Prediction: 2nd)
ACTUAL: $26.6 million | PREDICTION: $22.2 million

I’m pleased to see that I actually underestimated a movie for once. The additional money that was headed towards Iron Man 2 was likely due to the lack of money that went to MacGruber. The young adult male audience chose to see Robert Downey, Jr.’s film for the second or third time than see Will Forte’s film once.

3) Robin Hood (Prediction: 4th)
ACTUAL: $18.7 million | PREDICTION: $14.9 million

I’m also pleased to see Robin Hood doing better in its second week than most expected. I know I’m in the minority, but so far the Ridley Scott movie has been the best I’ve seen in this lackluster summer. (MY REVIEW)

4) Letters to Juliet (Prediction: 5th)
ACTUAL: $9.1 million | PREDICTION: $8.2 million

I knew that this film would mark the drop-off for the weekend – several million dollars behind the front of the pack. However, I did not expect MacGruber would be behind it instead of in front.

5) Just Wright (Prediction: 6th)
ACTUAL: $4.23 million | PREDICTION: $4.6 million

I’ll admit that I don’t think MacGruber looks like a good movie, but I think that the saddest news of the weekend is that more people wanted to see this Queen Latifah comedy than an SNL movie. I really hope that the producers at SNL take the hint.

6) MacGruber (Prediction: 3rd)
ACTUAL: $4.1 million | PREDICTION: $16.3 million

I think that expectations for this movie were set way too high. People (including myself) got mislead by the unexpectedly high Rotten Tomatoes score and the positive word of mouth going into the weekend. Then Friday hit and the rating dropped from 90% to 54% in about 6 hours. It was also overlooked that the film has no bankable stars and is based on an SNL skit at a time when SNL is receiving some of its lowest ratings in history. Why didn’t we see this coming?

7) Date Night (Prediction: 9th)
ACTUAL: $2.83 million | PREDICTION: $1.9 million

This is the only top ten film of the weekend that didn’t gain or lose position. It hung right on at number 7 for the second week in a row.

8) A Nightmare on Elm Street (Prediction: 7th)
ACTUAL: $2.29 million | PREDICTION: $2.9 million

This film has gone from the number one spot to the number 8 spot in four short weeks. I predict a similar fate may be in store for Shrek 4.

9) How to Train Your Dragon (Prediction: 8th)
ACTUAL: $1.84 million | PREDICTION: $2.3 million

With 9 weeks of theatrical release, How to Train Your Dragon remains the longest running film in the top ten. It just goes to show you that films that are actually good will prove their staying power at the Box Office. Which summer film will accomplish this?

10) Kites (Prediction: N/A)
ACTUAL: $1.04 million | PREDICTION: N/A

Where the hell did this come from? A film that opens in 208 theatres manages to break the top ten with very little buzz. I have no analysis to offer on this film. If you have any, please do share.

Well, MacGruber screwed me up this weekend giving me a measly 2 out 10 predictions correct. However for the third weekend in a row I have gotten the first and second film on the list correct. Next weekend look for Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and Sex and the City 2 to compete for the top spot knocking Shrek down to number 3.

[Source for Estimates: Box Office Mojo]

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  • Jose

    No , Alex, Toy Story 3 will change all that, not Eclipse.

  • Brandon Cooley

    Toy Story 3 and Twilight 3 will bring people to the theatres. If Inception is advertised the right way it could be successful.

  • Jose

    I know that Brandon, it’s just that Toy Story 3 comes out first.
    Hey Alex, are you also seeing girls in your high school with “Team Woody” and “Team Buzz” like the Twifans?

  • No, the Toy Story obsessers tend to be an older bunch. People of my generation who are too old to get uber excited about things.

  • I agree, where the hell DID this come from? I can’t believe “MacGruber” flopped this badly. I thought this was absolutely hilarious. Childish, yes, but no more so than “The 40-Year Old Virgin”. The fact that more people were interested in “Just Wright” indicates the total collapse of our society. My complete analysis of “MacGruber” can be found on my blog if anyone is interested. I thought it was great.

  • I love the Toy Story movies, awesome animation.

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