Box Office: Zack and Miri Make No Money, HSM 3 Wins Again

Reject Report: Zack and Miri

I hope you folks out there enjoyed Halloween, because I sure didn’t. It was a scary weekend to say the least, trying to figure out what was going on at box offices all over North America! On Friday night the attendances were so low it looked like we might get a movie winning at the box office with a haul of under $10 million. In fact, High School Musical 3: Senior Year did so badly on Friday night (only $1,700,000) that it looked as if the box office title was completely up for grabs. Some people thought Saw V (which won Friday with a haul of $3,120,000) or even Changeling might end the weekend on top. Also, the haul for Zack and Miri Make a Porno was so bad on Friday (only $2,220,000) that people were thinking it might only end up with just over $8 million!

In any event, things went back to normal on Saturday and Sunday and all the predictions about the order of finish ended up pretty much in the ballpark. HSM 3 made something like $8.2 million on Saturday alone, which pretty much cemented another weekend back on top. As you can see below, though, nobody went to the movies this weekend. The grosses were way off the mark all across the board. High School Musical 3 was down 64.2% from last weekend and Saw V was down 66.4%. Also, Seth Rogen had his worst box-office opening ever with Zack and Miri making only $10.6 million.

The damages:

1. High School Musical 3: Senior Year $15 million
2. Zack and Miri Make a Porno $10.7 million
3. Saw V $10.1 million
4. Changeling $9.4 million
5. The Haunting of Molly Hartley
$6.0 million
6. Beverly Hills Chihuahua
$4.7 million
7. The Secret Life of Bees $4.0 million
8. Max Payne $3.7 million
9. Eagle Eye $3.4 million
10. Pride and Glory $3.3 million

By the way, RockNRolla was a flop, taking in $1.8 million.

As for Zack and Miri’s non-performance, well, what did you really expect? Unless a movie has superheroes in it or appeals to a family audience, it’s generally not going to do great business. That’s a fact of life these days. (Keep in mind Judd Apatow’s movies haven’t exactly been blockbusters recently, either, though most of them do much better than this.)

Incidentally, I read a story out there from the Hollywood Reporter that the estimate of $10.6 million might even be too high by a million! If that’s the case this will have been a dismal weekend for the Weinstein Company, for Kevin Smith fans, and everyone involved with this flick. It’s obvious to me that the title of the movie caused a lot of trouble and hurt the box office. Just put the word “porno” in a title of a movie and people will go nuts in the United States, regardless of whether or not it’s meant to be a joke! The fact that there was even a controversy about this Zack and Miri movie to begin with (with people banning movie posters, ads and so on) tells you all you need to know about the United States and the general mentality of the folks who live on this side of the Atlantic.

On that note — let’s go to the other side of the Atlantic and take a brief look at the British box office! Quantum of Solace, the new James Bond flick starring Daniel Craig, had its premiere this week in the United Kingdom and everyone of importance showed up (including the Royals). It broke the box office bank with a £4.9 million haul, more than the previous Friday record set by Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire of £4.025 million. We are looking at a weekend haul of over £15 million. That’s pretty good. It also set record openings in France and Sweden, so that bodes well for Bond on this side of the ocean.

You have to remember, though, that when Casino Royale rolled out on screens across America in 2006, it still got beat at the domestic box office by Happy Feet. In any event, I still think we are in for a big showing for Bond when it rolls out Nov. 14 on this side of the world.

That’s all for now! Stay tuned later this week when we preview what might happen with the return of those lovable Madagascar animals to the big screen. As for me, it’s back to watching political ads on TV.

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