In Contention


BOX OFFICE: ‘Secretariat’ slow out of the gate

Posted by Kristopher Tapley · 9:28 am · October 10th, 2010

For the second week in a row, “The Social Network” tops the U.S. box office charts in a photo finish with “Life As We Know It.” (I’m happy to say I offered up some money for the Fincher cause and saw it a second time yesterday.)  But the real story is the soft opening for “Secretariat.” Or will it mirror the subject of the film, start out slow out of the gate and prove to have some endurance?  Doubtful.

[Courtesy: Exhibitor Relations]




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→ 43 Comments Tags: , , , | Filed in: Box Office

43 responses so far

  • 1 10-10-2010 at 9:52 am

    Jake D said...

    I’m amazed The Town is still at #6.

    Also, I feel like I barely noticed that Wall Street 2 came out.

  • 2 10-10-2010 at 10:07 am

    Jacob S. said...

    A 30% drop for TSN is impressive. Very impressive. I’m also surprised at how well Legend of the Guardians is holding, but it’ll still lose a lot of money.

  • 3 10-10-2010 at 10:07 am

    Graysmith said...

    A film like Secretariat could have decent legs though, depending on the word of mouth. Adults don’t rush out to see movies, so it could chug along to a fairly decent number.. Or it could just vanish. Definitely not a great opening though (Seabiscuit opened with $20m), Box Office Mojo has it at a far-lower $12.6m, with The Social Network taking the weekend at $15.5m and Life As We Know It at $14.6m.

  • 4 10-10-2010 at 10:11 am

    Chad Hartigan said...

    Occam’s razor- The movie looked exactly like every other horse racing movie ever made, including a big hit from just a few years ago.

  • 5 10-10-2010 at 10:20 am

    tony rock said...

    Kris…BoxOfficeMojo has more reliable numbers, not sure why you’re grabbing from Exhibitor Relations…

  • 6 10-10-2010 at 10:20 am

    Ben Linus said...

    That’s strange, Box Office Mojo says that Secretariat only opened to 12.6 million.

  • 7 10-10-2010 at 10:29 am

    Chad Hartigan said...

    Exhibitor Relations publishes a chart on Saturday morning with weekend estimates based solely on Friday numbers. They republish the chart on Sunday morning around 9 with weekend estimates based on Friday and Saturday. Kris just copied their chart before it was updated this morning.

  • 8 10-10-2010 at 10:45 am

    red_wine said...

    There’s still hope because box office mojo shockingly lists an extremely modest budget of 35 million. The movie looks way more expensive than that. Seabiscuit was apparently made for 87 million and this is less than half of that but similarly handsome looking.

  • 9 10-10-2010 at 11:01 am

    James D. said...

    Diane Lane is not Sandra Bullock, and horse racing is not football. Enough said, really.

  • 10 10-10-2010 at 11:23 am

    Derek 8-Track said...

    to add to James D’s comment, Diane Lane wasn’t in Demolition Man. so why would we care.

  • 11 10-10-2010 at 12:05 pm

    Angry Shark said...

    hahaha, I knew Secretariat wouldn’t be a contender. When you pick a film to do well in the Oscars entirely because a vaguely similar one got nominated last year, you’re bound to be disappointed. The Blind Side getting nominated is emphatically NOT evidence that every year there will be a middle-America, family values movie in the mix. But people are acting as if that is the case. Secretariat won’t have legs, won’t catch on, won’t get a single Oscar nomination.

  • 12 10-10-2010 at 12:36 pm

    Hans said...

    So TSN has the best #1 movie drop since Inception, well-deserved.

  • 13 10-10-2010 at 12:47 pm

    Jack said...

    This doesn’t look good for Secretariat’s Oscar prospects.

    I knew they should have marketed it to frat guys. Derby Day at the movies!

  • 14 10-10-2010 at 12:52 pm

    adelutza said...

    I didn’t see any resemblance between Blind Side and Secretariat.
    Secretariat is a terrific story about a least-probable winner race horse and least-probable to succeed people and what can happen if you follow your dream . And I was really impressed ( not knowing the story ) about the manner the horse won the last race. What’s that story got to do with “family values” I don’t know. That being said, I would be as horrified if Diane Lane won the Oscar for this as I was when Sandra Bullock did, even if I like Diane Lane a lot and I consider her very likable.

  • 15 10-10-2010 at 12:57 pm

    Tye-Grr said...

    Other polls are having ‘The Social Network’ at #1 and ‘The Town’ at #5…

    Either way, both films are having great holdovers, and I’m feeling better about my inclusion of ‘The Town’ in my last Best Picture predictions.

  • 16 10-10-2010 at 12:57 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    tony: It’s what we’ve always done.

  • 17 10-10-2010 at 1:00 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Actually, I think I may have had their estimates chart up earlier. I’ve replaced with the official numbers chart now. Same as BOM, pretty much.

  • 18 10-10-2010 at 1:00 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Yeah, what Chad said.

  • 19 10-10-2010 at 1:03 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    Angry Shark: Lovely Monday morning quarterbacking there. But at least in my case, the thought process had to do with the film and its reception from an industry crowd, not merely the fact that The Blind Side was nominated (which is something I’ve been knocking since the first “it could be a middle America thing” comparisons started flying).

  • 20 10-10-2010 at 1:06 pm

    red_wine said...

    The major intent of remaking “Let The Right One In” was to bring the story to a wider audience. “Let Me In” was utterly and completely failed in that regard. I daresay by this point, the original is the more widely seen movie because it found a life on DVD and has actually been seen by many people.

  • 21 10-10-2010 at 1:14 pm

    JJ1 said...

    Just back from Secretariat.

    On it’s quality: it’s certainly not bad, but it’s nothing to go crazy over, either. And it’s probably one of the worst films I’ve ever seen that actually made me cry no less than 4 times, lol.

    The movie is beautiful to look at, the acting is decent, but aside from some nice moments from the black guy who cared for Secretariat, as well as the dramatization of the 3 races (particularly the first one), I wasn’t overly moved. Diane Lane was stellar, but her character irked me.

    Overall, 6.5-7ish out of 10.

    I saw it with 3 friends, all 3 loved it. I heard some adults leaving the theater say they really liked it. But I don’t think many of the children in attendance got what was going on most of the time.

    My theater also only had about 20-25 people in it.

    On it’s box office, I still think this can climb past $50 million, but it’s Oscar chances look slim to me, right now.

  • 22 10-10-2010 at 1:55 pm

    al b. said...

    The Town is having a fantastic run, while Wall Street is falling down after it’s opening weekend. I must say now that the Oscar prospects for Affleck and crew look better every week.

  • 23 10-10-2010 at 2:11 pm

    sp said...

    Diane Lane is definitely out of the crowded Best Actress Oscar contest now. It is sad box-office adds a lot of weight toward the Oscars.

  • 24 10-10-2010 at 2:18 pm

    SJG said...

    I went and saw The Town and The Social Network this weekend, and I was totally blown away by the latter but I found the former kind of unimpressive.

    Affleck’s movie is really entertaining and interesting and well-put-together, but it’s pretty much fluff. It’s the sort of movie that will be great to have playing on the TV in the background when I’m doing something else someday. But the thought that it could get any Oscar nods seems really bizarre to me. It did exactly what it needed to do to get me to enjoy it, nothing more, nothing less. I don’t have a problem with people loving it, but I don’t see where they’re coming from.

    The Social Network, on the other hand, totally captivated me for every frame. The only things I didn’t like were the fake cold-breath and the too-rapid pace of the delivery of lines… it sounded like actors not necessarily always understanding what they were saying, so as long as they got it out fast they thought that would make up for a shallow understanding of computery-businessy talk.

    And, as someone who doesn’t really care for any of David Fincher’s movies (they’re all just okay, in my obviously minority opinion), the fact that I’m now really rooting for a Fincher film to win at least Best Picture, Director, Actor, Screenplay, Editor, and maybe a few others, means a lot.

    I’m stupefied by the fact that Garfield seems to be garnering more praise than Eisenberg, however… not that Eisenberg is lacking in praise, or Garfield undeserving, but I can’t help but feel that being the better-looking actor in a more identifiable role plays to his favor. Eisenberg’s performance is much more nuanced and real to me, whereas Garfield comes across as melodramatic and soap-operaish at times.

    I think it will be a shame if anyone but Eisenberg wins Best Actor, because I’m having a hard time imagining some of the other upcoming contenders outperforming him.

  • 25 10-10-2010 at 2:31 pm

    SJG said...

    And by “identifiable” obviously I mean “relatable”.

  • 26 10-10-2010 at 2:43 pm

    Sean C. said...

    Thank “The Social Network” for saving us from “Life As We Know It” as #1 at the box office.

  • 27 10-10-2010 at 3:40 pm

    Dylan said...

    Everyone keeps complaining about the bad CGI in the Social Network with someone’s breath in the cold. I’ve seen the movie twice now and I still don’t know what people are talking about. Can someone tell me what scene this is in?

  • 28 10-10-2010 at 3:48 pm

    Hans said...

    “The Town” = this year’s “District 9″?

    I’d certainly have no problem with that.

  • 29 10-10-2010 at 4:15 pm

    JJ1 said...

    Dylan, thank you. I don’t even remember a scene with cold breath. Outside the caribbean dance, maybe? Don’t remember cold breath.

  • 30 10-10-2010 at 4:36 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    It’s pretty obvious guys. When Eisenberg talks to Garfield outside the Caribbean-themed party. Clouds of digi-breath everywhere. Thick and rather fake. Happens one more time, I think after they leave the Bill Gates event.

    That’s before we get to the digital snowflakes, but I didn’t notice them until the second viewing.

  • 31 10-10-2010 at 5:32 pm

    JJ1 said...

    Funny, I DID notice the digital snowflakes, but not the breath. In any case, can’t wait to see the movie again.

  • 32 10-10-2010 at 5:33 pm

    tim said...

    SJG, I wouldn’t count on Eisenberg winning. It’ll be great to see him nominated, which I’m not even 100% sure about at this point, but this is definitely Colin Firth’s year. He has the baitiest role of the year in one of the big movies of the year that critics and bloggers seem to love. And it appears he still has a lot of sentiment for his performance last year in “A Single Man.” It’s his to lose right now.

  • 33 10-10-2010 at 6:20 pm

    Speaking English said...

    The CG breath is my biggest gripe with “The Social Network.” So that says a lot, haha.

  • 34 10-10-2010 at 7:37 pm

    Carlo said...

    Not surprised to see Let Me In out of the top ten.

    Shame.

  • 35 10-10-2010 at 7:54 pm

    Hilary said...

    I have seen TSN for the third time.
    Once at advance screening at twice with my own moola.

    I agree with Garfield seemingly getting more praise is because his character is deemed more relatable. His acting while good, gets over the top towards the end. He did fine but not deserving of all the praise he has been getting.

    Eisenberg portrayals of Zuckerberg is just so damn fascinating . It’s a role that fit him perfectly.

    I really enjoyed Timberlake’s acting too.
    There was a surprising depth to the way he portrayed smarmy, wheeling and dealing who gets his comeuppance at the end.

    Who would have thought there would be more subtle acting done by Timberlake than Andrew Garfield?

  • 36 10-10-2010 at 8:17 pm

    SJG said...

    Regarding good performances in TSN and the quality of certain special effects, was anyone thoroughly impressed by the Winklevoss portrayals? I kept trying to figure out if it was real twins or one actor playing both, and for the life of me I couldn’t figure it out. I’m usually pretty good at spotting the tricks of using one actor, so I consider it a stroke of genius that they used two actors and superimposed one’s head on the other’s body to get the dynamic of two actors while only using one’s face and voice.

    It was pretty seamless, and Artie Hammer (?) should be commended for doing such a fantastic job to keep up the illusion with his performance.

  • 37 10-10-2010 at 8:19 pm

    McAllister said...

    Just came back from “Never Let Me Go.” Absolutely gutted… but taken aback by the beauty. Loved it. Especially Carey Mulligan and Rachel Portman’s ethereal score. Bought it as soon as I walked in the door. Totally going to be a similar emotional soundtrack for me as Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ “The Assassination of Jesse James…” score.

  • 38 10-10-2010 at 10:12 pm

    Ryan said...

    I guess I’d be much more impressed by Eisenberg’s portrayal if I hadn’t already seen him play awkward douchebags in a few other movies. I mean he did it masterfully, don’t get me wrong, but then again Michael Cera was also perfect as Scott Pilgrim.

  • 39 10-10-2010 at 11:46 pm

    Glenn said...

    ” I’m also surprised at how well Legend of the Guardians is holding, but it’ll still lose a lot of money.”

    If it does well internationally it could make profit. It’s budget was only $100mil, but $80mil when you include the producers offset tax from the Australian government.

  • 40 10-11-2010 at 6:15 am

    JJ1 said...

    On NLMG: I also found Mulligan to be exquisite in her restraint, and yes, the cinematography & score were great … but that screenplay contained more plot holes than any major Oscar contender than I can remember in recent history (with direct regard to the source material).

    On TSN: I still think the best performance/acting of the piece was Garfield; sympathetic character or not. Eisenberg was great, as well. GREAT. But I admit that even I find it hard to shake his other onscreen personas; even when I liked them. And yes, Armie Hammer REALLY impressed me, as well. Where did he come from?

    And I’m also kinda happy by Ga’Hoole’s holds. Sure, it was cliched & familiar, but also exhibited some of the best animation I’ve ever seen. To me, that means something.

  • 41 10-11-2010 at 7:45 am

    Joe said...

    Are either The Social Network or The Town expected to hit $100 mil? I think (right or wrong) that each would need to hit that mark in order to be nominated (The Town) or the favorite (TSN).

  • 42 10-11-2010 at 10:30 am

    Sawyer said...

    I thought it was questionable before but now I’m certain – Secretariat should have opened around Thanksgiving instead of mid-October. The buzz would have been bigger in the Heartland, which is what this movie needed to get the kind of box office that grabs the Academy’s attention.

    So instead of The Blind Side we have Rudy. Which is fine, I liked Rudy better.