The LAST Weekend Wrap Session for 2013

BY TIM BARLEY AND MIKE REYES

It Was The Best of Times & Worst of Times, And The End of Times! The Last Weekend Wrap Session of 2013!

Cocktails and Movies Weekend Wrap Up 12-30Here we are, the last Weekend Wrap Session of 2013. It’s been a hell of a year here at C&M and we’d just like to thank you all again for jumping on board with this little “Dog and Pony Show.”  In the coming days as we look forward to 2014, we’ll be reflecting on what 2013 meant for movies, cocktails, and where Cocktails and Movies goes from here. For now though, we have a bit of a question for you all, so perhaps you could help us answer the riddle of the moment: were there any new movies released this weekend? Looks like your guess was as good as ours, judging by the grosses of this weekend’s new contenders. Here’s the rundown of who placed where this weekend at the movies: 

Box Office Estimates 12/27 – 12/29 (courtesy of Box Office Mojo)

1. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: $29.9 mil

2. Frozen: $28.8 mil

3. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues: $20.2 mil

4. American Hustle: $19.6 mil

5. The Wolf of Wall Street: $18.5 mil

6. Saving Mr. Banks: $14 mil

7. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty: $13 mil

8. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: $10.2 mil

9. 47 Ronin: $9.9 mil

10. Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas: $7.4 mil

 – C&M –

So, returning favorites The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Frozen, Anchorman 2, and American Hustle all took the top four slots of the weekend, while The Wolf of Wall Street was the most powerful beast in the stable of holiday slated releases. It’s made a decent start for itself, but here’s hoping that Golden Globe and (presumably) Oscar nominations will bump the film up into a higher stratosphere. Meanwhile, studio accountants are probably asking Jonah Hill to rub their temples this weekend, as two very high profile (and high budget) films opened with not-so-high profile Christmas grosses.

Cocktails and Movies Weekend Wrap up Keanu Reeves 47 roninOne film is clearly worse off than the other though, as The Secret Life of Walter Mitty has a better chance of making its $90 million budget back (with a “meh”-tacular $13 million opening) than the utterly dismal, trashed and bashed, delayed to great expense 47 Ronin does with a $9.9 million opening on a $200 million budget. Yeah, you read that right: $200 million to produce another lackluster Keanu Reeves vehicle. Universal is lucky that the Fast and Furious and Despicable Me franchises saved their neck this Summer, putting them in the 3rd slot for Studio Market Share in 2013, but if they continue to make huge Battleship like gambles, they’re going to lose ground once more.

An interesting trend that seems to be developing though, is “prestige pictures” on Micro Budgets. Saving Mr. Banks and American Hustle are both in the this wheelhouse of $30 – $40 million budgets, and they’ve not only made their budgets back, they’ve also managed to secure top flight casts and awards buzz to boot. Maybe we’re just noticing this, or maybe it’s emerging, but it still needs to be noted that the movies everyone will be talking about this awards season (be they nominated or snubbed) seem to be tightening the purse strings a little bit. Unless you’re at Paramount, of course, but they probably still have some Avengers money to burn. Not to mention, there’s a healthy profit on Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, which has Odin’s beard by the white hairs at 3rd place.

– C&M –

Working our way down the line, we see that The Hunger Games: Catching Fire is still holding on to a commanding 6th place, while A Madea Christmas has now dropped to 10th. Don’t worry, Tyler Perry probably made his money back, assuring that we’ll be seeing Madea Goes To The Moon in March. (They seem to pump these movies out really quick, at the rate of two Tyler Perry flicks a year.) And yet somehow Grudge Match didn’t even manage to crack the top ten. A movie that has a lot of pull quotes (albeit from the Twitter feeds of average moviegoers) managed to not even break a sweat in its first weekend of release. We’d be worried for the studio in any other case, but this is a Warner Brothers picture and they’re too busy being the top studio of 2013 to even care. Keep counting that money, guys… you’ve earned it!

Ugh, we threw up more than a classic Sunday hangover...

Ugh, we threw up more than a classic Sunday hangover…

But perhaps the biggest loser of the weekend is none other than Justin Bieber. Back in the salad days of 2011, The Biebs raked in $73 million on a $13 million budget with his “inspirational” story Never Say Never. Only two years later, and his follow up, Believe, not only didn’t have the pull of a major studio release, but it didn’t even have the budget of the first film. Still, we guess that a $2 million gross against $5 million budget isn’t that bad. Actually, in this case… it’s pretty bad. $5 million isn’t a huge hurdle to clear, just ask 47 Ronin

We have only a couple of days left in 2013, and 2014 will be upon us with all of the delayed prestige pictures we can stand! It’s going to be a crowded field, and a decent couple of months at the box office, so stick around as we navigate these uncharted waters with a spy glass in one hand and a rocks glass in the other. After all, if you’re going to watch a bad movie, make sure you have a good cocktail! In case we don’t see you, have a Happy New Year!