Weekend Box Office Report
It would have been a monumental box office upset if anything other than "The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part" was your box office champion this weekend. However, with a gross of $34,115,335, I think we have our first real head-scratched of 2018 when it comes to an opening weekend. With nearly all the talent back from a movie that opened to $70M and broke $250M domestic when it was all said and done coupled with stellar reviews… What happened?! There's likely plenty of analysis out there I would assume, but there are two items that stick out to me.
"Franchise" Fatigue: Even though this is only the second movie in this series, this is now our third LEGO movie in 24 months. Perhaps the novelty has worn off? I think if WB Animation could, they would take back "The LEGO Ninjago Movie" ever happening. Not only did that movie likely lose a pretty penny, but the diminishing returns on the LEGO formula were never more evident during and after that release.
WB Animation Curse: This isn't the first, or second, or third WB Animation movie to miss expectations. In fact, only two movies opening in over 4100 theaters have ever opened below $40M: "Lego 2" and last year's WBA offering, "Smallfoot." WBA has also been responsible for other underperformers like "Storks" and "Teen Titans Go! To the Movies."
No matter which narrative you choose to believe, the fact remains that "Lego 2" may be a box office champion, but it's no winner this week. And with its lowly 12th place finish in $/Bux value this weekend, it isn't in your PC either (although our PC anchor didn't do much better in value).
Seriously, Rhap it Up!
Someday FML, "Bohemian Rhapsody" will be gone and unable to hurt us any longer. After a record-breaking 15th weekend on the FML slate, it may finally be time to bid adieu to the poor boy this week. And it could have come at a better time for the 494 FMLers who screened the MPC of "Lego 2" x1/"Cold Pursuit" x1/"Bohemian Rhapsody" x6. "Bohemian Rhapsody" didn't do too bad in that it finished Top 3 in $/Bux, but that "Lego 2" anchor… Yikes. There's always next month/season.
Turn it Upside Down
The guys over at VisRec like to say "You gotta risk it for the biscuit," and no week made that more evident than our BP battle this week between "The Upside" and "Glass." Both were priced similarly, and if you liked either for BP, you were likely gambling seven of your eight screens on it with one screen of "What Men Want." While the two were a clear-cut 1-2 in value, it was "The Upside" that managed to reign supreme, dropping just 18 percent to $7,082,763, good for $80,406/Bux and a BP win. Well done to the 206 players who screened the 1/7 combination above!
It was a moving week over in the Season Showdown, with lance1214 (R) taking a small lead over Jon's Cineplex (R) with just two weeks remaining. It's been a season of landmines it seems, so good luck avoiding them from here!
This is a bit of an odd week with Valentine's Day falling on Thursday. We have three new wide releases, and all of them officially open before Friday in addition to the FML debut of Peter Jackson's documentary "They Shall Not Grow Old." On Wednesday, we have the charming "Happy Death Day 2U" and new queen of Valentine's Day Rebel Wilson's "Isn't It Romantic." Then, on Thursday, we have the release with the biggest budget in "Alita: Battle Angel," already projected to be a serious flop from its $200M budget. But hey, a lot of people thought "Lego 2" was going to make over $50M, so who really knows anything, right? Set your lineups by Friday Noon Eastern/9 AM Pacific and we'll see you here next week!