Box Office: Fangirls Fuel A Record Breaking Weekend For ‘New Moon’

Picture 3Last week I mentally predicted that New Moon would come in around the $80 Million mark. Obviously, there is a reason that I am not in the business of box office predictions. New Moon grossed over $140 Million during its opening weekend, and broke a few records along the way. Fangirls (and a few fanboys) showed that they are an emerging force to be reckoned with, as New Moon ($72.7 Million) broke the opening day record previously held by The Dark Knight ($67.2 Million.)

According to Entertainment Weekly, over 80% of the ticket sales were from women, a truly rare occurrence. Although the film was critically drummed, (currently 29% on Rotten Tomatoes) audiences gave it an A- cinemascore, indicating that they were very happy with the film. The film opened on a massive 4,000+ screens, and averaged over $34,900 per screen. There was a drop off from Friday to Saturday of about 40%.

Also of note: New Moon now has the 3rd biggest opening weekend ever behind The Dark Knight and Spiderman 3. Its midnight screening averages on Friday morning garnered over $26M, setting a new record for that. The world box office take was over $258 Million. Director Chris Weitz must feel vindicated after the disastrous box office performance of The Golden Compass, his last directorial effort.

Early estimates show that The Blind Side had an opening weekend gross of $34.5 Million, which is nothing to sneeze at. This marks the best opening ever for Sandra Bullock, just behind last summer’s The Proposal. The film also got a remarkable A+ cinemascore, which means it will start getting some seriously good word of mouth. Expect it to remain in the top ten for a long time.

2012 dropped off 60%, but still made $26.5 Million for third place. Planet 51 and A Christmas Carol both brought in about $12 Million, for fourth and fifth. Precious still continues to perform remarkably, earning over $11 Million on just 665 screens for an average of over $17,000.  Its cumulative total stands at over $21.4 Million, and it has not even opened wide yet.

The Men Who Stare At Goats, Couples Retreat, The Fourth Kind and Law Abiding Citizen rounded out the top ten. This was overall a huge weekend for movies. Box Office Guru reports that ticket sales were up almost over $100 Million from last weekend, and up over 58% from the same weekend a year ago. For Thanksgiving weekend, Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox, Ninja Assassin, The Road , and Old Dogs will all open Wednesday.

  • Shannon Hood
    November 24, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    @Caley. Understood 🙂

  • Caley
    November 24, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Still not really, though. New Line hadn’t been its own company since 1996, it was just being operated separately from Warner Brothers Pictures even though both were under the same Time Warner banner. Indeed, they sold the rights to fund the movie, and because of that New Line lost out on a sizeable chunk of money (even though most of the production costs had been covered by selling the rights), and as such was folded into Warner Brothers. There was no threat of bankruptcy, as that would involve Time Warner going bankrupt. This was not Robocop 3 killing Orion Pictures.

    Ultimately the point I’m making is that Golden Compass was a huge success. It may not have made New Line (or Time Warner) a ton of money, but that wasn’t the point I was making. It just wasn’t a disastrous box office performance, by any means.

  • Shannon Hood
    November 23, 2009 at 2:02 pm

    Caley, your point is duly (and respectfully) noted.
    The reason this movie is still called a disaster, is that New Line Cinema took an almost $100M loss on the film, and had to actually restructure and eventually merge with Warner Brothers because of its domestic performance.

    New Line received very little of the foreign profits, because they had sold them to fund the $180M budget. That money went to the folks who owned the foreign rights. So to New Line, the box office was indeed a disaster, they essentially went bankrupt because of it.

  • Caley
    November 23, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Really? Disastrous? Golden Compass had a budget of $180 million, and did $372 million worldwide. Yeah, it tanked in america because of bad press from the Christian right, but it still did very, very well.

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