New Moon opens huge, falls hard and fast

by Paul William Tenny

With four days in the books I figured I'd take a look at how New Moon is doing at the box office compared to the only other two films with bigger weekend openings: The Dark Knight, and Spider-Man 3. These are undoubtedly some very impressive numbers. Dark Knight is the record holder with $158.4 million, Friday through Sunday. Spider-Man 3 is second with $151.1 million, and New Moon is the new third entrant with $140.7 million.

But of course there is a problem. It's rare if not unheard of for a chick flick -- I say that with a new found respect for the chick hoards, who now scare the hell out of me -- to be a blockbuster. Maybe there's precedent for this but I'm not aware of it. There are two components at play with blockbusters, huge openings and having legs. A movie can open big and seemingly vanish within a week, just as some films can open low but stick around far longer than anyone would really like.
Comedies tend to be like that.

So which is New Moon? Just looking at the four-day data, my guess is that it's one of those movies that opens huge and flames out fast. Perhaps that's just how the chick hoards operate. They come, pillage, and then disappear.

Like ghosts.

That pillage.

I made a graph comparing the first four days of New Moon to the first ten days of Dark Knight and SM3, which I'll probably update one more time once New Moon hits the 1st of December.

New Mox box office data

A falloff like that is bad news for a movie that started that big. It'll undoubtedly recover a little bit this coming weekend and might see either a spike or a dip on Thanksgiving. But overall you can't help but think that everyone who wanted to see New Moon has already done so, and that it'll be off the radar by the second week of December.

Understand that I'm not knocking this film, what these folks have accomplished is amazing under any circumstances and deserve all the credit in the world for pulling it off. Although the reviews for New Moon were pretty awful, it sure seems to have made a lot of people very happy. Good for them.
in Film


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