Here’s a shocker, Sanctum, James Cameron’s newest 3D action adventure landed in second place bringing in an estimated $9.2 million since its debut Friday. Cameron is known for his ability to draw in huge crowds despite extreme production budgets. Titanic, which cost $200 mil, still raked in over $1.8 billion worldwide. Avatar, with a budget in excess of $200 mil had a worldwide take of $2 billion. Sanctum cost Universal $30 mil to produce, a drop in the bucket from the director’s previous budgets.
The Roommate topped the box office with $15.6 million over the weekend. The Roommate was a film that wasn’t even screened for critics, but still managed the top spot over the weekend.
So what went wrong? Perhaps the marketing of their movies is to blame. In the past year – and despite good reviews - Universal has struggled to release a hit movie, with the exception of the continuing adventures of the Fockers and the animated pic Despicable Me. Uni’s entry The Wolfman, featuring two Oscar winners, Anthony Hopkins and Benicio Del Toro failed to entice even the standard horror fans. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, with a production cost of $60 mil, received mostly positive critical feedback yet failed to garner more than $47 mil worldwide. That particular movie was marketed to the online graphic novel fans rather than an overall audience – shortsighted to say the least.
Universal would be well advised to pay attention to the masses rather than a select group of moviegoers and maybe consider other methods to promote their flicks. Or at the very least, take a lesson from the television marketing division, that seems to have a better understanding of how to market their products.
It’s kind of surprising that this is the same studio that the late, great Lew Wasserman (a marketing genius) used to run. Wasserman has to be rolling over in his grave to see what’s been happening with his beloved studio.
No Strings Attached dropped from number two to number three this week and brought in an additional $8.4 million. That brings the total box office to $51.7 million, nearly doubling its $25 million budget in just three weeks.
The Kings Speech continues to hover in the top five movies each week fueled by the 12 Oscar noms and wonderful word of mouth. The pic moved back up to number four from its fifth place position last week and grabbed an additional $8.3 mil between Friday and Sunday. The Kings Speech was made for a modest $15 mil and has amassed $84.1 million to date.
The Green Hornet flip-flopped its fourth place position with The Kings Speech and settled into fifth place this weekend, bringing in an additional $6.1 mil. The movie was budgeted at $120 million, so it still has a ways to go before recouping its cost. The movie has generated $87.2 million in revenue to date.
Rounding out the top 10:
6. The Rite $5.5 million
7. The Mechanic $5.3 million
8. True Grit $4.7 million
9. The Dilemma $3.4 million
10. Black Swan $3.4 million
Posted by Mari Cartel