In the third busiest weekend of the year, R-rated releases "Ted" and "Magic Mike" easily found their adult audiences and surpassed expectations, with "Ted" earning a surprising $54 million in opening revenue and "Magic Mike" hauling in $39 million. Tyler Perry's "Madea's Witness Protection" also got off to a decent start with a $26 million opening intake, though inspirational drama "People Like Us" tanked and ended up barely cracking the top ten. The weekend was also the first that "The Avengers" failed to land in the top ten since its record-breaking opening at the beginning of May.
From Seth MacFarlane, the creator of hit TV series "Family Guy," "Ted" was expected to have a sizeable built-in audience when it launched over the weekend, though it blew past industry expectations with one of the most impressive openings of the year. With a production budget of just $50 million, "Ted" ended up with a studio estimated $54.1 million in opening revenue on an eye-popping per theater average of more than $16,000.
"Ted" also smashed the 2012 R-rated opening record of $40 million, which "Safe House" set back in February. With such an enormous opening weekend, "Ted" should easily surpass the $138 million in domestic revenue brought in by "21 Jump Street," which is the top R-rated hit of the year so far after dominating adult audiences in March and April. "Ted" should go on a similar run over the next few weekends and will very likely end up the top R-rated hit of the year.
While "Ted" posted an enormous opening weekend, "Magic Mike" was equally as impressive. From director Steven Soderbergh, known for the "Ocean's Eleven" trilogy and many indie films, "Magic Mike" looked like it had some commercial appeal over the weekend, but the Warner Brothers distribution shattered expectations and posted a $39.2 million opening despite playing at just under 3,000 venues. "Magic Mike" also carries a production budget of only $7 million, making it far and away the top opening weekend of the year for a low-budget release. The only other release close was "Think Like a Man," which cost $12 million to produce and hauled in $33 million in its opening weekend back in April.
For "Magic Mike" star Channing Tatum, 2012 also continues to be a career-turning year. After his releases "The Vow" and "21 Jump Street" were two of the biggest hits of the winter/spring, "Magic Mike" should give Tatum his third $100 million domestic earner of 2012. The critical support and surprising mainstream appeal of "Magic Mike" should also help it maintain its sway with audiences well into July.
Taking a backseat to "Ted" and "Magic Mike" was "Madea's Witness Protection," though Tyler Perry's latest comedy still hauled in a very solid $26 million at just 2,161 total venues. For Perry, $26 million is a fairly mundane opening, but a per theater average of more than $12,000 for a $20 million production is still outstanding. Like most Perry releases, "Witness Protection" should see a significant drop in the weekends following its release, though it still looks like another significant hit for one of the busiest writer/directors in the movies.
The only new release that failed to hit with its intended audience was drama "People Like Us," which brought in a disappointing $4.3 million at 2,055 theaters this weekend. With a per venue average that barely cracked $2,000, "People Like Us" clearly doesn't have any audience support and a light amount of critical backing isn't likely to change that in the coming weeks. "People Like Us" should see a drastic cut in screenings in the next few weekends and isn't likely to come close to the top ten for a second time.
The weekend was also likely the last time that PG-13 action-adventure "Snow White and the Huntsman" will land in the box office top ten after a so-so run since its early June opening. "Snow White" has done considerably better than "Mirror Mirror" at the box office, though a $145 million domestic intake isn't that strong for a $170 million production. While "Snow White" did break $300 million worldwide, expectations were quite a bit higher for the Universal distribution.
This week should be a very busy one as franchise reboot "The Amazing Spider-Man" reaches theaters in time for the Fourth of July. Hitting theaters this upcoming Tuesday, "Spider-Man" should put up enormous revenues thanks to holiday audiences and a high level of fan interest. Oliver Stone's R-rated thriller "Savages" will hit theaters a few days later as will music documentary "Katy Perry: Part of Me."
Early Studio Box Office Estimates for 6/29/12 - 7/1/12 (In Millions), [RTT Prediction]:
1. Ted (Universal): $54.10 [$33]
2. Magic Mike (Warner Brothers): $39.16 [$19]
3. Brave (Disney): $34.01 [$34]
4. Tyler Perry's Madea's Witness Protection (Lionsgate): $26.35 [$31]
5. Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (Paramount/Dreamworks): $11.82 [$12]
6. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (Fox): $6 [$8.2]
7. Prometheus (Fox): $4.93 [$5.2]
8. Moonrise Kingdom (Focus): $4.87 [N/A]
9. Snow White and the Huntsman (Universal): $4.41 [N/A]
10. People Like Us (Dreamworks): $4.31 [$8]
by RTT Staff Writer
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