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  1. #1

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    POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Before its release, people thought that it could be the first $200 million+ opening weekend. However, I noticed less hype surrounding the release of #3 than #2 last year. Its lesser opening weekend confirmed that. However, perhaps even more alarming is the midweek business. While POTC: DMC earned $15,731,919 on its first tuesday of release and $14,154,725 on its first wednesday, AWE earned merely $7,788,937 and $6,405,448, respectively. Furthermore, DMC didn't drop below $10,000,000 in the daily box office returns until its 2nd monday of release. This coming weekend will be even more telling.

    So, what is going on here? Have people been staying away en masse expecting huge crowds and simply waiting for them to die down... or is AWE suffering from what I call "Matrix Revolutions syndrome," that is the 2nd movie of a trilogy is highly successful (more so than the first) but is ultimately a little disappointing. That, combined with the 3rd film's following the 2nd too closely timewise, causing the bad taste left by #2 still too fresh in audience's mouths, leading to reduced box office for the 3rd outing? I'm afraid we are indeed seeing a little of the syndrome. What do you think?

  2. #2

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Don't forget that Dead Man's Chest was released in July whereas At World's End came out in May. All the schools in my area are still in session this week, so that could be a contributor to the low weekday sales. I do think that, inevitably, what people thought about the second film affected whether or not they'd go see the third. I don't think it's played such a large factor yet, though. For now, I'm pinpointing the low weekday sales on schools. I fully expect this film to cross the 300 million mark and make more than Curse of the Black Pearl (which hauled in $305 million). I'm not expecting it to reach Dead Man's Chest's $423 million, though, nor was I ever expecting it. Very rarely will a third entry prove to be the most successful in a series. It usually falls on either the first or second film, depending on how well-received the first one was both in theaters and on DVD. My prediction for the film's final gross is somewhere around the $320 million mark.
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  3. #3

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    I think you're mostly correct in your evaluation. In fact, I've been comparing Pirates to the Matrix series all week in conversations as an example of something truly groundbreaking followed by typical Hollywood mediocrity. I consider both trilogies (Matrix & Pirates) as one awesome movie, and a couple other okay films with roughly the same plot.

    I think it will see a bump over the weekend as the "crowd averse" make it out to see it, but then we'll see it quickly dwindle away. This installment just doesn't have the raging word of mouth praise that Black Pearl and to some extent Dead Man's Chest had, so I think quite a lot of people are just going to wait until Netflix has it.

    One more point. I saw Black Pearl four times in the theater, once at the drive-in and still wanted to see more. Dead Man's Chest I saw once each place. I have absolutely no desire to see World's End again, so unless it shows up with a big draw on the drive-in double bill I'll only have seen it the one time. I think the lack of other repeat watchers is also partly responsible for its box office decline.

  4. #4

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Then, of course, there's always the fact that DMC really had no competition whatsoever last year...the only movies that released in July which could have possibly even come CLOSE to actually being a threat were, well, few and far between. I think Monster House and Miami Vice might have been the only movies that were expected to come anywhere close to Pirates. The only thing that proceeded it was what many thought of as the ultimately disappointing Superman Returns (unless you want to consider The Devil Wears Prada too).

    The reason why this matters is because this year is a drastically different story. I would have held off on releasing AWE to 1) give the writers and everyone else more time and 2) perhaps look towards a better release date. I mean, in terms of "BIG" movies that have people buzzing this summer is ABSOLUTELY huge. You have at least one MAJOR blockbuster a month and most months have at least 2 or 3 in succession. The only reason I think they held off on a July release was because July would have been a minefield.

    Frankly, had it not had the competition of Shrek's second week, given what Spider-Man clocked in at last week, AWE would have quite possibly blown Spidey's record out of the water and be in a very healthy position to make a run for the money. I wouldn't necessarily be too surprised to see a repeat #1 weekend for AWE because I'm not sure Knocked Up or Mr. Brooks can bring in the money necessary to actually compete.

    As for word of mouth praise, even if the ratings ultimately leveled out for DMC, I'm not sure that a majority of what I was hearing at the time was praise. I mean, it's to be expected. The original Pirates movie was seen as something that was almost guaranteed to flop, but the fresh originality of the picture and the stellar acting by members of the cast (especially Rush and Depp) led the movie to success at the box office, and praise in general. Naturally, sequels are very often not going to get the same sort of response because suddenly people have expectations. Nobody really had any true expectations when Pirates first showed up on the scene. I distinctly remember the advertising campaign for the movie as being a teaser trailer for the LONGEST time. But once sequels come out, moviegoers get expectations about the quality of the movie and can't help but prepare it to the first one which isn't entirely fair.

    I think in terms of box office and DVD sales, this movie will do incredibly. DMC set global box office records and also set DVD sales records, passing a ludicrous amount of DVD sales in a short amount of time. Sure, AWE may not beat DMC, and depending on how June goes, may not get anywhere close, but it is STILL a financial success for Disney, especially considering globally it is already over $400 million, and those figures are a couple of days old.

  5. #5

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    I don't know where you all live but around her it is getting raging word of mouth as well as where my parents live. The fact that school is still in session in MANY places across the country is a hugely significant factor. Another factor is the running time. Theaters can't get in the same number of showings without adding more screens so it takes a hit from that as well. In a few weeks when schools across the country start to let out, expect there to be a jump (no idea how much of one, but there should be one).

    So far it's global box office puts it at #80 on the all time worldwide list with $418.3 million. $167.2 of that is domestic. Again, this reflects the time of year (school). Cracking the top 80 in under a week is pretty incredible especially for a movie that long.

    As for 3rd movies in trilogies out performing the others, the one that really comes to mind is Return of the King which is the #2 movie of all time with $1.1+ billion. #3 is DMC with just over $1 billion. You really can't compare this movie to either DMC or CotBP until its time in theaters is equal to them. You can only compare its box office to present to 1 and 2 up to this same day in their runs. Even then you have to adjust for factors like the school year and competition.

    It is a much more complex and dynamic environment with many more variables than simple box office amounts alone.

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  6. #6

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    I live close by...near the center of all that is Disney.

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    I think the two biggest factors are competition and that school is still in session. I don't think reviews are that much of a factor, DMC wasn't that well reviewed either. This weekend will indeed be very telling.

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Some schools are still in session but others have been out for the past 2 weeks.

  9. #9

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pirate Lover 68 View Post
    This weekend will indeed be very telling.

    Here's an industry trades' look at this weekend:
    Box office could get 'Knocked Up'

    'Brooks' looks set to walk 'Pirates' plank

    By Dade Hayes, Dave McNary
    Variety
    June 1, 2007

    Hollywood is easing up on the pyrotechnics after a May for the ages, offering a trio of openers with R ratings, modest theater counts and expectations to match.

    Universal's "Knocked Up" is the most prominent entry. Reteaming helmer Judd Apatow with "40-Year-Old Virgin" co-star Seth Rogen, the R-rated comedy follows two twentysomethings (Rogen, Katherine Heigl) whose drunken hook-up results in a pregnancy.

    Pic will bow in 2,873 locations, 34% fewer than the number at which "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" opened last weekend. After racking up more than $400 million worldwide in its long-weekend launch, "At World's End" should easily retain the weekend crown. The second installment dipped 55% in its second week last summer; a comparable drop would leave the third outing somewhere around $50 million.
    On the foreign front, it's still all pirates, all the time. "At World's End," which grossed a record-setting $251 million internationally in its first six days through Monday, won't face any major openings this weekend amid what's likely to be strong continued demand.

    BVI reported additional foreign coin of $22 million each on Tuesday and Wednesday, driving the foreign cume to $295 million and the worldwide to $462 million. Best foreign cume came from the U.K. with $43.6 million, followed by Germany with $28 million and France with $24 million.

    Execs were particularly enthused over how well "At World's End" held on Sunday and Monday, so it's probable that the pic will wind up the frame somewhere in the eye-popping range of $100 million. On a weekend-to-weekend basis, that would represent a decline of 54% from the opening $216 million weekend.

    The plunder from "At World's End" also will see some significant coin from this weekend's opening in India, which is emerging as a solid mid-tier market for Hollywood tentpoles.

    The third "Pirates" is likely to cross one significant international milestone during the weekend when it passes the $350 million mark -- equaling the entire foreign gross for "Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl" in 2003. It's also going to be well over half the way to matching the final international take of $642 million for "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest." And on a worldwide basis, "At World's End" should finish the weekend as the newest member of the club of 32 pics with combined domestic and foreign grosses topping $600 million.
    http://www.variety.com/article/VR111...goryid=13&cs=1
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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Pirates is not doing bad.
    1) I don't care who you are, $153 million in 4.16 days & $400m in 6 days worldwide is a whole lot of booty.

    2) It is breaking all sorts of records overseas. It is tracking ahead of DMC and looks to battle it out with HP5 as the biggest movie, worldwide, of the year (nearly $1b). Put it this way, after maybe 8 or 9 days overseas, it has already grossed the entire overseas run of Pirates 1.

    3) Weekday grosses aren't going to be anywhere near as strong as DMC, schools are still in session. They are, however, doing quite similar to how SM3 did in its first week. Which is impressive for a movie nearly three hours long, leans towards the teenage crowd in the middle of finals & the school season.

    4) Unlike SM3, AWE faces competition. SM3 had the first 2 weeks to itself at the theaters, virtually no competition. Thanks to Spidey & Shrek, Pirates faced 3 times the competition SM3 faced in its opening week. The fact that it is able to make this much despite coming off the heals of two behemoths, is extraordinary (or for all you pun-likers..... AWEsome).
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  11. #11

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Quote Originally Posted by TheDisneyInquisitor View Post
    4) Unlike SM3, AWE faces competition.
    I don't believe competition is much of a factor here. Spidey2 and Shrek2 were not cliffhangers. DMC definitely was.

    AWE would have done well, no matter what. Everyone wanted to see what happens to Capt Jack.
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  12. #12

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    Re: POTC: AWE not doing so well?

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueSkyDriveBy View Post
    I don't believe competition is much of a factor here. Spidey2 and Shrek2 were not cliffhangers. DMC definitely was.

    AWE would have done well, no matter what. Everyone wanted to see what happens to Capt Jack.
    Yes, competition matters a whole heck of a lot. The market can only hold so much. The cliffhanger buildup was taken care in the Thursday night previews (which grossed a record setting $14 million with an extra $3m at midnight). Over the 3-day weekend, Pirates faced about $85m in competition (about $120m over the 4-day). Comparitively, SM3 faced roughly $30m in competition. The number two film that weekend was Week 4 of Disturbia with $5.8m. The number two film last weekend was Week 2 of Shrek 3 at $53m ($67 million over the 4-day). Now while that was a much lower number than Shrek 2's second weekend, it still is a whole heck of competition. People can only spend so much money in the market. And just as a comparison, DMC faced about $74m in competition when it debuted.
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