Thursday, August 14, 2008

Free advice - Paramount should use the Potter move to reposition Star Trek.

Of course, now a relatively weak 2008 holiday slate becomes incredibly weak (basically you have Quantum Of Solace, Walt Disney's Bolt, Twilight, and Madagascar 2). For what it's worth, if I were Paramount, I'd immediately use this opening to move Star Trek back to the holiday season, perhaps the same November 21st date that Potter just vacated. The buzz isn''t that all hot, so this move would be a sign of confidence and garner the film lots of free press. Besides, the last Trek film to open in the summer was Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, not exactly a comparison you want to start with. In it's current slot, it's just another summer film, a badly positioned one at that.

Opening May 9th, it's in the notoriously lousy second major weekend of summer slot that doomed Poseidon, Speed Racer Dating all the way back to 1996. If you recall, Warner Bros. officially started the modern early May summer kick-off with Twister in 1996, opening a full two weeks before Memorial Day (after a very successful trial run in 1992 with WB's Lethal Weapon 3). For at least the last thirteen years, the summer kick-off film usually repeats in the top spot, with only Troy opening number one in 2004 and doing even remotely well in that second-week of summer spot.

Be that slot the second weekend in May or the third, the second-big movie never takes number 01 and usually flops or performs modestly in regards to expectations. Let's just say that I'm pretty sure that Paramount would not be happy with Monster In Law or Horse Whisperer numbers. Push it up to November 21st and it becomes the event of Thanksgiving (it can co-exist with the just moved Bolt) Or it can open in the now-empty November 28th slot. Either way, it becomes the second-biggest film of the holiday season along with Quantum Of Solace. Just my thoughts, with no knowledge of how close the Trek film is to being finished.

Scott Mendelson

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