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Weekend Report: 'Jack' Not Very 'Giant'

by Ray Subers
Jack the Giant Slayer
 

 
March 3, 2013

The month of March got off to a terrible start this weekend thanks to disappointing debuts from Jack the Giant Slayer, 21 and Over and The Last Exorcism Part II. The Top 12 earned a meager $92.8 million, which is off a whopping 39 percent from last year.

At 3,525 locations, Jack the Giant Slayer took first place with $27.2 million. That's lower than nearly all comparable titles, including last March's John Carter ($30.2 million); it hurts even more considering the movie wound up costing nearly $200 million. A tiny silver lining is the fact that it experienced a huge jump on Saturday (up 56 percent), which suggests it could hang on better than its similar movies.

Making an expensive, violent, CGI-heavy adaptation of a children's fable was always a risky proposition, and as a result Jack the Giant Slayer has been plagued with issues for years. It was originally scheduled to open last June with the title Jack the Giant Killer, but Warner Bros. bumped it back and switched in a gentler title in an effort to woo family audiences. Unfortunately, the movie never wound up looking very appealing, and WB's modest, unenthusiastic marketing effort didn't really help. At this point, the hope is to score big international, where the movie could conceivably earn north of $200 million.

Jack's audience was 55 percent male and 56 percent over the age of 25, which suggests that families didn't make up a large portion of the crowds. They awarded the movie a solid "B+" CinemaScore, which improved to an "A" among the under-18 crowd. Warner Bros. reported that IMAX showings accounted for 12 percent of the gross, while the 3D share (inclusive of IMAX) was 58 percent.

In its fourth weekend, comedy hit Identity Thief dipped 31 percent to $9.7 million. So far, the movie has earned $107.4 million, and it's on pace to ultimately top director Seth Gordon's first two comedies—Four Christmases ($120.1 million) and Horrible Bosses ($117.5 million)—by the end of its run.

At 2,771 theaters, 21 and Over bombed with $8.75 million. That's less than half of what Project X made at the same time last year, which is very disappointing considering the strong similarities between the two movies (The Hangover connection, similar release date, drunken debauchery, etc.).

Relativity is reporting that the audience was split evenly between men and women, and skewed younger (73 percent under 25). They gave the movie a "B" CinemaScore, which suggests it won't get any word-of-mouth boost.

In fourth place, Snitch fell 41 percent to $7.77 million. Through 10 days in theaters, the Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson thriller has earned $24.5 million.

The Last Exorcism Part II
earned just $7.73 million this weekend, which is a fraction of the original Last Exorcism's $20.4 million in August 2010. It's also lower than last weekend's horror bomb Dark Skies ($8.1 million), which is truly surprising given the movie's franchise tie-in. In fact, this weak start can probably be blamed in part on the first movie's bad reputation: at the time, it received an awful "D" CinemaScore, and could barely double its opening weekend gross by the end of its run.

The Last Exorcism Part II
did a bit better with audiences—it earned a "C-" CinemaScore—but there's still almost no chance it winds up earning over $20 million. Also, the audience breakdown was 52 percent male and 65 percent under the age of 25.

There's not necessarily a connection here, but it is at least worth mentioning that Project X and The Last Exorcism both utilized "found footage" and both opened over $20 million, while 21 and Over and The Last Exorcism Part II did not and wound up under $9 million.

While the Academy Awards are over, the winners sure aren't done earning money at the box office. Silver Linings Playbook—which saw a win for Best Actress Jennifer Lawrence—held even with $5.72 million. To date, the romantic comedy hit has earned $115.3 million.

After winning four awards, including Best Director, Life of Pi improved 48 percent to $2.38 million, and made its way back in to the Top 12 for the first time in 2013. The movie has now earned $117 million at the domestic box office, and is closing in on $600 million worldwide.

Finally, Best Picture winner Argo improved 15 percent to $2.1 million, which is an impressive haul considering the movie has been available on DVD/Blu-ray/On Demand for the past week-and-a-half. The Ben Affleck-directed Iranian hostage crisis thriller has now earned an excellent $132.7 million.

Submarine thriller Phantom opened in 1,118 locations this weekend, but first-time distributor RCR has yet to report box office figures; other sites are reporting a terrible figure less than $500,000.

Discuss this story with fellow Box Office Mojo fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @boxofficemojo, and follow author Ray Subers at @raysubers.

This Weekend's Forecast:
Forecast: 'Jack' Unlikely to 'Slay' the Box Office This Weekend

This Weekend in Past Years:
• 2012 -
Little 'Lorax' Is Box Office Giant
• 2011 - 'Rango' Moseys Into Top Spot
• 2010 - Moviegoers Mad About 'Alice'
• 2009 - 'Watchmen' Rages in the Top Spot
• 2008 - '10,000 B.C.' Dominates Weak Period
• 2007 - 'Wild Hogs' Easily Ride to the Top
• 2006 - '16 Blocks' Gets Clocked by 'Madea'
• 2005 - 'Pacifier' Packs Them In

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Weekend Box Office Results
2013 Yearly Box Office
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