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MONDAY AM: Great holds for the highest-grossing concert movie of all time as AMC’s Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour ,with a revised second weekend of $33.2 million at the domestic box office after a $9.55M Sunday. That’s a bigger Sunday than the $8.8M estimated yesterday, and overall, the three-day total is bigger than the $31M AMC called. Domestic total is just under $132M.
Swift will cede No. 1 to Universal/Blumhouse’s Five Nights at Freddys in the pre-Halloween frame this coming weekend, with that day-and-date Peacock movie expected to go wild with as much as a $40M-$50M three-day total in its debut.
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Apple Original Films and Paramount’s Killers of the Flower Moon was also higher in its 3-day with $23.25M; Sunday came in at $5.7M. Eras Tour pauses it showtimes Monday through Wednesday this week. Killers of the Flower Moon does not.
SUNDAY AM WRITETHRU: After Saturday update… The overall box office, at around $86.8M, is off 24% from a year ago. But AMC’s Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour and Apple/Paramount/Imperative Entertainment’s Martin Scorsese movie, Killers of the Flower Moon, kept the business afloat and popcorn popping with respective weekend takes of $32M (AMC says $31M) and $23M. We’re still waiting on Apple & Paramount’s official number, but it’s $23M. Kudos to Apple here from changing up the release of the Scorsese pic from limited to wide; there was no need to tee-off in a very noncompetitive marketplace with demand like this.
Killers of the Flower Moon is an exceptional start for what is a very long movie — longer than Oppenheimer– and a great beginning for Apple’s foray into the wide theatrical business, especially at a time when actors can’t promote because of the actors strike. Imagine if there wasn’t an actors strike, how much higher this could go?
Also, it’s an applaudable start for a period movie, this being set in the 1920s. Quite often, tracking sources pin ‘period’ as a factor that dogs grosses. And the exits are great for Killers of the Flower Moon: With an A- CinemaScore, Killers of the Flower Moon is one of three “A” grades for Oscar-winner Scorsese with CinemaScore, the other two being The Departed (A-) and Goodfellas (A-).
Comscore/Screen Engine’s PostTrak remains high at 88% and 4 1/2 stars, and a 72% recommend. CinemaScore audiences have been hard on several Scorsese classics, and haven’t handed him many A grades during his career in the pollster’s era, i.e. Casino (B-), The Aviator (B+), Gangs of New York (B), Wolf of Wall Street (C), and Shutter Island (C+).
With exits like these, expect this awards season front-runner to play for weeks on end, some estimating that it will have a 4x or 5x multiple stateside in the end, off its opening here. Some 50% bought their tickets to the movie day-of, and that’s a very encouraging sign for word of mouth. Also hopeful is the fact that 44% of the audience was under 30 here.
Some might wonder how a $200M+ movie before P&A from Apple Original Films, even with a global opening of $44M, might be considered a win here. Quite often, we’d be throwing hatchets at such P&Ls. While this might be considered a flop for a motion picture studio, several sources tell me that a tech company Apple doesn’t count it this way. “This is a form of advertising for them to get people to come to their ecosystem; that’s how they see it. They don’t see it as pure profit and loss, in fact, it’s a marketing expense for them,” says one wise film finance executive. Entertainment for Apple is but a sliver of their prime revenues amid iPads, computers, and iPhones. When it comes to determining the success of a theatrical release from a streamer such as Apple or Amazon, one distribution source tells me “as long as the theatrical rental covers their marketing expense, it’s a job well done.”
In the case of Air, which Amazon shelled out $125M for and only made $90M WW, I understand the streamer continues to relish the long tail of the movie and its impact on Prime Video in terms of views, subscriber hold, and resonance on other parts of Amazon.com. It’s all because it was a theatrical release. There’s just other boxes that a theatrical release ticks for streamers other than just pure P&L. Says one source close to the pic, “This movie is synonymous with the Apple brand for quality, and the quality of this movie speaks volumes about what they want to accomplish in the film space. It’s incredible and something to be admired.”
At $23M+, Killers of the Flower Moon is just north of DiCaprio’s opening box office average with Scorsese of $19M, and it’s the best start for a De Niro and Scorsese combo, beating Cape Fear‘s $10.2M opening, back when Ska music was in style.
Taylor won Friday at $10.4M to Killers of the Flower Moon‘s $9.4M, which includes Thursday previews of $2.6M. Swift stayed strong on Saturday, climbing 27% over Friday with $13.2M yesterday. Killers of the Flower Moon eased -14% with $8.1M. Eras Tour becomes the first concert film in history to make more than $100 million at the domestic box office, and did so in just five days of showtimes.
What’s working here for Killers of the Flower Moon? First, let’s start with the fact that the movie was promoted to the entire Apple sub base on Apple TV+, and they were told not to stay home. It’s DiCaprio, Scorsese, and De Niro, and to any clear-thinking adult moviegoer, that’s a call to get off your couch (81% were over 25). Throw in the fact that the movie is based on a best-selling book. Apple, since blasting the movie off with the support of its cast out of Cannes, has kept the loudspeakers on in the pic’s promotion, with a robust outdoor campaign (go to the Century City Mall and digital billboards for Killers of the Flower Moon are all around you).
iSpot measured a very robust TV ad spend for the film at $15.4M, which reached 1.12 billion household TV impressions. Spots aired across NFL football, (13.7%), college football (6.9%), MLB (4.6%), Law & Order SVU (3.0%) and House Hunters (2.4%), with top network ad runs on ESPN (9.6%), Fox (9.5%), CBS (8.6%), NBC (6.3%) and ABC (6.2%).
It’s also a western, and while some thought this movie would simply play well in New York and L.A., its strongest regions are the South Central and the West. op markets that over-indexed include LA, NY, SF, Boston, Seattle, Denver, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Austin, Minneapolis, Vancouver BC while top markets that under-indexed include Houston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Miami, and Tampa. Top theaters came from NY, LA, OKC, Boston, SF, Tulsa, Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver BC, Washington DC, Dallas, and Albuquerque.
For Paramount, in some ways, this is reminiscent of the Coen Bros’ True Grit, which was a wide-appealing western for them, and had a $24.8M start. However, that pic had some legs. We’ll see where Killers of the Flower Moon roams. Top theater in the nation belongs to AMC Lincoln Square, which has minted more than $122K so far. PLFs and Imax are driving 37% of ticket sales. Imax’s global weekend take for the Scorsese movie was $5.1M from 750 IMAX screens in 74 markets. Of that $3.3M is from U.S./Canada or 14.3% of the pic’s current total from 402 auditoriums.
Demo diagnostics for Killers of the Flower Moon on PostTrak are 62% Male/38% Female, with 46% of the audience between 18-34 years old and the largest quad being 25-34 years old at 27%, with an amazing 38% of the audience over 45. Diversity demos were 60% Caucasian, 17% Latino and Hispanic, 8% Black, 8% Asian, and 7% Native American/other, the latter who gave the movie about the Osage Nation tragedy an 84% grade. Best grades for the movie were from the under-25 guys demos, who didn’t show up in bulk at 13%, but who gave the DiCaprio-De Niro movie a 90% grade.
Prathyangira Cinemas’s Leo: Bloody Sweet (with prints in Tamil, Hindi, Telugu) did huge numbers this week in Toronto, Seattle, Dallas, Austin, San Francisco, New York and Montreal.
1.) Taylor Swift: Eras Tour (AMC) 3,855 theaters, Fri $10.4M (-72%), $13.3M Sun $8.8M, 3-day $32.4M (-66%)/Total $131.1M/ Wk 2
2.) Killers of the Flower Moon (Apple/Par) 3,628 theaters Fri $9.4M, Sat $8.1M Sun $5.5M 3-day $23M/Wk 1
3.) Exorcist: The Believer (Uni) 3,323 (-361) theaters Fri $1.68M (-56%) Sat $2.4M Sun $1.4M 3-day $5.6M, -49%, Total $54.2M/Wk 3
4.) Paw Patrol 2 (Par) 3,364 (-343) theaters, Fri $1.15M (-26%) Sat $2M Sun $1.2M 3-day $4.4M (-36%) Total $56M/Wk 4
5.) Nightmare Before Christmas (re) (Dis) 1,650 theaters, Fri $1.45M Sat $1.6M Sun $1M 3-day $4.1M/Total lifetime $81.4M /Wk 1
6.) Saw X (LG) 2,756 (-302) theaters, Fri $1.1M (-40%) Sat $1.57M Sun $947K 3-day $3.58M (-37%) Total $47.2M/Wk 4
7.) The Creator (New Reg/20th)2,490 theaters (-470), Fri $750K (-36%) Sat $1.1M Sun $700K 3-day $2.6M (-39%), Total $36.7M/Wk 4
8.) Leo: Bloody Sweet (Prath) 720 theaters, Fri $732K Sat $816K Sun $530K 3-day $2.05M Total $4.6M/Wk 1
9.) A Haunting in Venice (Dis) 1,600 (-690) theaters Fri $350K (-40%) Sat $450K Sun $300K 3-day $1.1M (-41%)/Total $40.9M/Wk 6
10.) The Blind (Fath) 1,049 theaters (-101) Fri $320K Sat $394K Sun $296K 3-day $1M (-48%), Total $15.6M/ Wk 4
The Nun 2 (NL) 1,364 theaters (-764), Fri $255K (-49%) Sat $395K Sun $237K 3-day $887K (-45%) Total $85.3M/Wk 7
UPDATED, FRIDAY MIDDAY: AMC’s Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour is currently looking to hold onto the No. 1 spot at the domestic box office with a second estimated Friday of $10.25 million, off 73% week over week, for what’s looking like a second weekend around $32 million at 3,855 theaters, -66%. That’s a very similar second-weekend decline to Disney’s 2008 concert film Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert. The running total for Eras Tour by EOD Sunday would be $130.7M.
Meanwhile, Apple Original Films and Paramount’s 3-hour and 26-minute Martin Scorsese movie Killers of the Flower Moon is looking pretty good. Booked at 3,628 theaters, Friday is shaping up to be $9M ahead of a $22M three-day opening. Some rival distribs even have it higher.
Third place at 3,364 theaters is PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie with $1.2M in its fourth Friday and a fourth weekend of $5.1M, -26%, and a running total of $56.7M.
Disney rereleased Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas in 1,650 theaters with an estimated Friday of $1.45M and a three-day total of $4.3M.
Universal/Blumhouse’s The Exorcist: Believer is looking at fifth place with $1.25M in its third Friday at 3,323 theaters and a three-day of $3.95M, -64%, and a running total by Sunday of $52.6M.
PREVIOUSLY, FRIDAY AM: The AMC-distributed Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour returned to theaters Thursday at around noon after a three-day pause, pulling in $5.9 million per industry estimates. This takes the running total of the Sam Wrench-directed concert film to $98.7M at 3,855 theaters. Meanwhile, Apple Original Films’ big splash into wide theatrical releases with Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon, distributed by Paramount, drew $2.6 million in previews that began at 2 p.m. Why so early? The movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro is 3 hours and 26 minutes long.
Comps to Killers of the Flower Moon are Ford v. Ferrari at $2.1M and Elvis which did $3.5M. Elvis at 2 hours and 39 minutes opened to $31.2M, while Ford v. Ferrari at 2 hours and 32 minutes had a $31.4M start.
Heading into the weekend, many are expecting it’s Swift’s to lose with, at a bare minimum, a second-weekend take of $27M, off 70% from Week 1. However, no one has been able to gauge 100% the trajectory of this young female-skewing pic. While we heard most of the presales were for last weekend, we’ll see if the Swifties show up again this weekend.
That said, in an autumn box office season turned upside down by the actors strike, and thespians unable to promote, many are bullish on the first-weekend prospects of Killers of the Flower Moon exceeding a $20M+ start. By the way, that’s just north of the $19M opening-weekend average for a DiCaprio movie with Scorsese.
Paramount made sure that Killers of the Flower Moon had all the Imax and PLF screens working to its upside this weekend. Some wouldn’t be surprised if it beats Swift. The last time the actors promoted the movie was back at its Cannes Film Festival world premiere in May. After the wattage of such movies like The Creator and A Haunting in Venice were squashed by the actors strike, how could a long movie like Killers of the Flower Moon actually break through? Many attribute its possible upside to DiCaprio’s star power, the fact that Scorsese (who brings in moviegoers) has been out there promoting, a vacancy for such star -owered big pics on the marquee, plus the fact that the movie is based on a bestselling novel by David Grann.
Among several exclusives that Deadline has reported about Killers of the Flower Moon, Imperative Entertainment’s Dan Friedkin and Bradley Thomas won the book rights back in 2016, shelling out $5M. Apple won the auction for the Scorsese-DiCaprio-De Niro package, the film costing around $200M-lplus after Oklahoma tax credits.
Already, early audience Comscore/Screen Engine exits are showing there’s not a divide between moviegoers and critics when it comes to Killers of the Flower Moon. While movie reviewers are at 93% certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, PostTrak shows 4 1/2 stars, 87% positive and a 72% recommend. While men over 25 repped half of last night’s crowd and women over 25 another 30%, it was men under 25 at 13% who gave the movie its best grades, that being 95%. Overall guys showed up at 64%. These demos will fluctuate throughout the weekend.
Apple Original Films has not set a streaming date for the movie as they want a long theatrical window during awards season.
Top theaters last night for the Scorsese movie came from New York, Los Angeles, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, San Francisco, Toronto, Boston and Vancouver.
Rest of yesterday: Universal/Blumhouse’s The Exorcist: Believer saw around $746,000, -9% from Wednesday, for a two-week running total of $48.6M. Pic was booked at 3,684 theaters.
Third belongs to Indian action movie Leo: Bloody Sweet. Although it made $679K yesterday stateside and $1.87M on Wednesday at 720 theaters for a two-day total of $2.5M, the Joseph Vijay-starring feature directed by Lokesh Kanagaraj broke several box office records with Rs 63 crore (630 million) in India on day one across all languages, the biggest opening for a Kollywood film in India. Abroad, the pic made Rs 66 crore (Rs 660 million). Global take is Rs 130 crore (1.3 billion). Leo has joined blockbusters like RRR, Baahubali 2, KGF 2 and Pathaan among titles that have crossed Rs 100 crore (Rs 1 billion) worldwide on their opening day.
Pic follows Parthiban, a mild-mannered cafe owner in Kashmir, as he fends off a gang of murderous thugs. He gains attention from a drug cartel who claims he was once a part of them.
Here’s the trailer:
Lionsgate‘s Saw X saw $499K yesterday, -3% from Wednesday, for a $43.6M three-week running total. The sequel is playing at 3,058 theaters.
Paramount and Spin Master’s PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie earned $424K at 3,707 theaters, +11% from Wednesday for a three-week running total of $51.6M.
Another Indian movie Bhagavanth Kesari was on the charts, opening Wednesday with $541K at 620 locations, and grossing another $155,600 yesterday for a two-day take of $696K. The Anil Ravipudi-directed movie follows Nelakonda Bhagavanth Kesari, who is adamant about getting even with a powerful businessman who cost him money. He is prepared to square off against the formidable foe and resolve their issues amicably.
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