THE TOP TEN
1. Prometheus. Weekend/Total: £3,135,504 / £15,471,936 Sites: 536 (1)
2. Men In Black 3. Weekend/Total: £2,533,051 / £15,081,932 Sites: 503 (3)
3. Snow White And The Huntsman. Weekend/Total: £2,210,929 / £9,545,054 Sites: 488 (2)
4. The Pact. Weekend/Total: £932,325 Sites: 310 (New)
5. Avengers Assemble. Weekend/Total: £676,678 / £50,338,151 Sites: 380 (4)
6. Top Cat. Weekend/Total: £561,793 / £1,936,133 Sites: 446 (7)
7. The Dictator. Weekend/Total: £452,175 / £10,584,986 Sites: 263 (5)
8. What To Expect When You're Expecting. Weekend/Total: £445,141 / £3,198,168 Sites: 291 (6)
9. iLL Manors. Weekend/Total: £256,288 Sites: 191 (New)
10. The Angels' Share. Weekend/Total: £218,674 / £718,140 Sites: 95 (9)
(Previous week's placement in parentheses)
Last week, I said that a 50/50 split in audience reactions would likely lead to an above average drop on the opening weekend take. Prometheus fell by 50% exactly. The drop did not harm the sci-fi horror too badly, as it opened to an exceptionally strong £6.24m, so even an above average 50% drop leaves it with a very strong £3.14m. This is especially impressive for a movie rated 15 that cashes in on a 33 year old film.
MEN IN BLACK 3, TOP 5
Word of mouth must be exceptional for Men in Black 3, the sci-fi comedy sequel has retained a remarkable number of its audience during week 3 of release, only dropping by a scant 17%.
This is just the hit Will Smith needed, despite once being the biggest name in Hollywood, the Fresh Prince's last big release was Seven Pounds in 2009. This clunky attempt at prestige drama only managed a lifetime gross of £5.55m. It is safe to say that Smith's stature as a movie star is back on the rise.
Snow White And The Huntsman saw a below average, 38% decline from last week's opening. showing that bad reviews cannot dissuade a militant fan base (say what you want about the Twihards but they are loyal).
Falling shy of a million, newcomer horror The Pact opened on a low screen count but a strong per screen average. No great surprise, horror movies almost always perform well, even when under-marketed or critically slaughtered. It would have been more shocking to see a new horror release fail to crack the Top 5.
Even after 7 weeks in the chart, Avengers Assemble continues to comfortably embarrass most of the competition with a weekend haul of £676,678, dropping by only 20% on last week's taking, putting it ahead of newer/brand new rivals. The Marvel Studios flagship now holds a lifetime gross of £50.34m.
BOTTOM OF THE BARREL
It turns out I was way off about the prospects of the newcomers this week, with Red Tails and A Fantastic Fear of Everything all failing to crack the Top 10. George Lucas' WW2 action movie fell just short of tenth place while A Fantastic Fear slumped down in 20th place, with a limp average of £354 for 100 screens. Even Woody Allen: A Documentary beat that, with just 28 screens, grossing nearly £4k more. Ti West's The Innkeepers even failed to sneak into the Top 20.
Considering that only the Top 3 films overshot the £1m mark, the bar was set much lower in the Bottom 5.
Despite being up 19% on last week's debut, Top Cat only muddles together a £1,260 per screen average, and a larger number of screens than the remaining films, giving it enough to crawl in at Number 6. After two weekends, and a whole week's worth of box office, the much maligned animation hasn't even managed to break £2m. That's a little pathetic.
The Dictator and What To Expect When You're Expecting have dropped 40% and 30% respectively, with repeat business really taking a hit. Meanwhile, newcomer iLL Manors, the directorial debut of Ben Drew (AKA Plan B), opened to £256,288 on just 191 screens. Ken Loach's The Angel's Share managed £218,674 but with a much stronger per screen average on almost 100 fewer screens.
SOMETHING FOR THE WEEKEND...
This weekends big releases include hair rock love-in Rock of Ages, the snappy re-release of Jaws, Olympics feel-goodery Fast Girls and Robert Pattinson/David Cronenberg weird-a-palooza Cosmopolis.
Rock of Ages is likely to perform the strongest of these, with the most star power and the benefit of recognisable tunes (Glee has really popularised laziness in musicals, if you ask me). Adam Shankman's last big screen adaptation of a Broadway hit, 2007's Hairspray, opened to a healthy £2.05m, and bowed out at £12.55m.
Jaws should open to modest success, comparative to its limited distribution. The last Spielberg re-release, Jurassic Park in September 2011, opened to £245,422 so, given the current trend of all non-Top 5 titles performing between £500-200k, it's likely to wade into the Top 10 but unlikely to make a splash.
Cosmopolis will be a hit with the art house crowd, while also luring in a few unaware "Rpatz" fans. I would predict a middle of the chart presence for David Cronenberg's latest.
Fast Girls is one I'm struggling to prognosticate on. I don't see the appeal, the marketing has been on the limp side but perhaps it can cash in on the mounting interest in the Olympics? Or will it suffer from an Olympics backlash? I'm not entirely sure what the public consensus is on athletics right now, so your guess is probably better than mine.