Saturday, May 3, 2008

And the numbers roll in...

Bad news for Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. Really bad news for Chris Nolan. Good news for Marvel (I knew I should have bought stock, and then sold it before June 13th). By the way, I can't believe Iron Man ended with Tony Stark brutally murdering the Iron Giant. It's really sad... he just didn't want to be a gun anymore.

Iron Man's Friday/Thursday numbers are in and there will be no stupid articles about not measuring up to inflated expectations. Iron Man allegedly pulled in $38 million on Thursday and Friday. That means it pulled in $5.5 million in Thursday night advance showings (starting at 8pm and pretty much running all night on the half hour) and $32.5 million on Friday.

The phrase of the day/weekend is 'biggest -blank- for a non-sequel, second only to the first Spider-Man'. To wit so far - opening day, opening Friday. Likely to take the silver medal - biggest Saturday, biggest Sunday, total opening weekend.

As for what that weekend total will be, numbers this huge make it harder to do the math. Will it be front loaded (most likely, by virtue of pent-up demand)? If so, how much? Will word of mouth be positive (it would seem so, I was only so-so on it and I seem to be in the minority)? Since Spider-Man is the comparison point, let's do the math. Spider-Man did $39 million on it's Friday (it was the rare event movie that didn't cheat with Thursday night or midnight showings). It ended up with $114 million over three days. If it follows the Spider-Man pattern (emphasis on IF), it'll end the weekend with a huge $96 million for the Friday-Sunday portion, and thus close out the weekend just over the $101 million mark (an ungodly victory indeed). If it only behaves like X2: X-Men United, then it closes with a 'mere' $91 million for the 3.5 day weekend. Either way, Vince Vaughn is now very, very jealous.

Congrats to Marvel and Paramount and all involved. This is a terrific win. Obviously, the saturation marketing roped along everyone, even the very women who weren't even officially targeted. I'm dying to hear idiots blabbing about how women went soft for the love story between Pepper Potts and Tony Stark, that they approved of the 'stand by your man' element or whatever such nonsense. Nevermind that there was no hint of romance in the trailers and it's barely in the movie for that matter (one of several underdeveloped threads that should be dealt with in the sequel). Women went for three reasons. They either went because they were dragged along by their boyfriends and husbands, they have prurient interests in Robert Downey Jr, or they went because some of them like shiny toys, manly men, comic book adventure, and explosions as much as boys do (just like they went to see 300 last year because they enjoy handsome, barely clothed muscle men wielding swords and hacking at each other as much as boys do). There will be more tomorrow as the dust settles. God I love summer box office.

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