Friday Box-Office: ‘Super 8′ Opens Strong With $12.2 Million

So, apparently the $12.2 million Super 8 brought in on Friday is being referred to by most as the film “overperforming”. Nikki Finke at Deadline writes, “It’s encouraging to see an original summer movie overperforming at the North American box office as well as receiving an overall ‘B+’ CinemaScore.” I don’t really see this as much of an overperformance, though I guess since tracking had it in the low 30s for the weekend this is an overperformance if we want to get technical about it.

Also, to that “original” comment, considering this is a film everyone has pretty much agreed is writer/director J.J. Abrams biting off the films of Steven Spielberg I guess I am alone in thinking it isn’t necessarily all that much of an “original” film, even though I acknowledge it is, by definition, “original”.

Alternatively, it is nice to see a film like this doing well, a film that doesn’t have any name actors and is simply a good time at the cinema, marking what most of us used to equate with summer blockbusters. As far as that $12.2 million number is concerned, that does not include the $1 million the film made from sneak previews on Thursday, but does include the $500,000 it made from midnight screenings. Taking that into consideration, we’re looking at somewhere around a $33.5 million opening for a film budgeted at a reported $50 million. However, I have to wonder how much money was spent on marketing. I have seen commercials all over the place lately and Paramount sprung for a Super Bowl commercial for this bad boy. Also, how do you guys see this one playing overseas?

In second is Fox’s X-Men: First Class, which won the weekend last week with $55.1 million. After $7.6 million on Friday, I’d say we’re looking at about $25 million for the weekend, signaling a 54.6% dip. However, this seems like the kind of film that could maintain something like 30-35% drops after this second weekend and have a few good weekends in a row, that is, if Green Lantern wasn’t releasing next weekend, which is now the superhero film I believe will end up making the most this summer if it is good in any kind of way.

The week’s other newcomer, Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer, managed a meager $2.2 million on Friday for what will probably be around a $5 million weekend. I was talking with someone about this one and they believe it’s harder to sell a film like this to young girls whereas it is easier to sell a film like Diary of a Wimpy Kid to young boys. Does that sound about right to you? I have no idea since I haven’t seen either.

Elsewhere, Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris expanded to 944 theaters and brought in $1.5 million and will likely see about $6 million for the weekend for a $6,355 per theater average. Not too shabby, bringing the film’s domestic cume to $14.1 million, but he still has a ways to go to match the $23 million both Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Match Point brought in over the last few years.

Lastly, The Tree of Life brought in $229,000 from 47 theaters on Friday. The film still hasn’t opened here in Seattle, though it finally arrives next week and I just might have to give it another look. I think it’s time.

The complete Friday top ten is listed below and I will be back tomorrow with a complete wrap-up.

  1. Super 8 – $12.2 million
  2. X-Men: First Class – $7.6 million
  3. The Hangover Part II – $5.7 million
  4. Kung Fu Panda 2 – $4.6 million
  5. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides – $3.1 million
  6. Bridesmaids – $3 million
  7. Judy Moody and the NOT Bummer Summer – $2.2 million
  8. Midnight in Paris – $1.5 million
  9. Thor – $673,000
  10. Fast Five – $512,000

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