Saturday, June 19, 2010

Toy Story 3 opens with $41 million Friday, Jonah Hex collapses.

Toy Story 3 has scored $41 million on its first day, barely beating out Alice in Wonderland's $40.8 million Friday for the biggest opening day of the year. It has surpassed the $38.4 million opening Friday of Shrek the Third to score the biggest opening Friday in animated-film history (although Shrek 3 had more tickets sold, factoring in three years of inflation and higher IMAX/3D prices for Toy Story 3). With $41 million, the Pixar sequel has the 22nd-biggest single day, the 12th-biggest opening day, and the seventh-biggest Friday gross of all time. It is the second-biggest opening day in June history, behind Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen ($62 million). With just part 3s, the film had the fourth-biggest opening day day, behind Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End ($42 million), Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith ($50 million), and Spider-Man 3 ($59 million).

Obviously we can only make educated guess as to how it will play over the rest of the weekend. Alice in Wonderland actually went up 9% on its second day to gross $44.2 million on its initial Saturday. Despite the generally high multipliers exhibited by family pictures (3.5-4.5x weekend multipliers are not uncommon), Toy Story 3 is such a broadly appealing title that it will likely play as a general-audiences smash, so 2.75x ($113 million) to 3.5x ($144 million) seems to be the logical range here. If it plays like Alice in Wonderland (2.9x), it opens with $119 million. If it plays like Shrek the Third (3.1x), it pulls in $130 million. We'll know for sure tomorrow whether Toy Story 3 enters the top-ten opening-weekend list or the top-five list. Oh, and Jonah Hex barely made a mark, opening with just $1.95 million on its first day. Since the movie is pretty lousy, the best this one can hope for is $5.5 million, putting it in the bottom 19% of all comic book adaptations (or $2 million less than what Superman: The Movie opened with on 500 screens in 1978). Game, set, match.

Scott Mendelson

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