Movie Modeling & Box Office Analytics

Box office forecasting for domestic and international markets based on our proprietary database of all wide releases — 3,305 movies


Weekend Box Office Notes:  Apr 19 to 21, 2019

Domestic Opening Weekend Box Office, Apr 19 to 21, 2019
Curse of La Llorona (WB/NL) $26.0M franchise launch
Shazam! (WB/NL) $16.5M franchise launch
Breakthrough (Dis/Fox) $10.9M
Captain Marvel (Dis) $9.0M franchise launch
Little (Uni) $8.2M
Dumbo (BV) $7.1M franchise, remake
Pet Sematary (Par) $4.6M franchise, episode #3
Missing Link (UA) $4.6M
Us (Uni) $4.1M franchise launch
Hellboy (LG) $3.8M franchise, episode #3

Current Top-10:  Seven of the top-10 movies this weekend are franchises, with 75% of top-10 box office and 68% of all domestic box office coming from these seven films.  Seven franchises in the top-10 is above average (average is 40% of all wide releases).

Of Note

The non-franchise drought

Since the beginning of 2017 there have been fewer strong, single episode, non-franchise releases.  Among dramas, only Bohemian RhapsodyA Star is Born and Dunkirk have earned more than $180 million at the domestic box office.  Compare that with American Sniper ($350M, 2014), Inception ($293M, 2010), Gravity ($274M, 2013), The Martian ($228M, 2015), Interstellar ($188M, 2014) and The Revenant ($183M, 2015).

Among comedies, only The Upside and Girls Trip have earned more than $100 million, compared with Bridesmaids ($169M, 2011), The Heat ($160M, 2013),  Identity Thief ($134M, 2013), Silver Linings Playbook ($132M, 2013), and Central Intelligence ($127M, 2016).

The movie business needs these non-franchise films to stay fresh and expand audiences.  Where will they come from in 2019?  At the moment they are missing.

Rotten Tomatoes rising

  • Between 1997 and 2010 wide release movies averaged a  44.6% Tomatometer score;
  • From 2011 to present the average picked up to 52.6%;
  • And in 2018 wide releases scored 57.6%.

Rotten Tomatoes’ scores started rising in 2011 and they continue to improve to this day.  Have movies improved critically?  Probably not.  Did Rotten Tomatoes adjust its algorithm?  Don’t know for sure.  Warner Bros. bought Rotten Tomatoes/Flixster in 2011, and NBCUniversal/Fandango bought a majority stake in 2016.

This is a positive trend — there’s no reason the movie review cup should be less than half-full.  However, if you were involved with a pre-2011 movie that carries an unduly negative review score for the rest of its life throughout the internet, you’re out of luck.

Franchise creation update

New franchises are the lifeblood of the commercial movie business (see chart 03 on Movie Industry Charts page here):

  • There were 14 new franchises in 2018, following 19 in 2017 and 21 in  2016.  The 14 new franchises in 2018 was the fewest since 2011.
  • The new franchises in 2018 opened 27% higher than the new franchises in 2017 when you include Black Panther;  however, without Black Panther, new franchise openings were 6% lower in 2018 than in 2017.
  • In 2019, the number of new franchises will increase to 22 — a positive development.

We recommend the following to stay current with industry commentary (alphabetically):  Michael Cieply/Deadline, Todd Cunningham/Rotten Tomatoes, and John Horn/KPCC’s The Frame.