Thursday, March 31, 2011

Weekend Box Office Predictions (Apr 1 - 3): Hop, Source Code, Insidious

MoviePredicted Gross (m)Change
1. Hop23.0$6,430 PTA
2. Source Code12.0$4,053 PTA
3. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules11.5-51.6%
4. Insidious11.1$4,610 PTA
5. Limitless10.5-30.3%
6. The Lincoln Lawyer7.8-27.4%
7. Sucker Punch7.0-63.3%
8. Rango5.5-43.7%
9. Paul4.2-46.5%
10. Battle: Los Angeles4.1-45.9%

Both Hop and Insidious are in an interesting situation where the tracking figures at the beginning of the week did not favor the film, with MTC coming in significantly less than what ReelSource had (21 vs. 32 for Hop, 8 vs. 12 for Insidious), but other signs later indicate a solid turnout is quite possible. In particular, both are carrying healthy numbers at Box Office Mojo polls and Twitter. Hop's poll of 9.6% Opening Weekend interest is much stronger than Yogi Bear's 5.1% and even a bit better than what G-Force received (7.8%). Both of those benefited from 3D surcharge, but a low-20s opening still appears solid after we take the factor into account. The sentiment is echoed on the Twitter front, as it is on pace to receive 1,800-2,000 tweets from Monday to Thursday, and I would not expect a ratio over 300.

Similar scenario applies to Insidious, except in this case ReelSource could in fact end up closer to the actual, a rare occurrence when the difference between the two trackins is greater that 30%. It is looking at close to, if not exceeding, 7,000 tweets, and although the ratio will be high, it won't be so high that it cannot even get to $3m on Friday. Somewhere in the $4-4.5m range is more likely, and with a PG-13 rating and good reviews, it will have some stamina comparing to other films of the genre. In addition, the 8.5% OW interest at BOM poll is ahead of The Uninvited's 6.9% and Dead Silence's 7.9%. Overall, a double-digit opening looks set.

The same cannot be said about Source Code, even though it also gathered a lower MTC figure. The BOM poll is good enough and on par with what The Adjustment Bureau had, but the presence of Jake Gyllenhaal tends to inflate the online numbers, as indicated by the higher tweet ratio of Prince of Persia (4,605) and Love and Other Drugs (2,372) comparing the similar films. More alarmingly, the film itself has struggled at Twitter as well as advance sales, both of which should have been its strong suit. The sole positive aspect is its excellent reviews, and that could pull in some older audience in the last minutes. However, it appears most viewers will only discover this gem somewhere later down the road.

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