UK Weekend Box Office (Dec 4th – Dec 6th)
The U.K. couldn’t get into the festive spirit with ‘Christmas With The Coopers’, ‘Krampus’ and ‘The Night Before’ floundering and ‘Victor Frankenstein’ didn’t make a dent despite strong U.K. marketing. All this and more happened at the U.K. box-office last weekend.
There wasn’t much Holiday Cheer at the box-office as the Christmas themed movies performed way below expectations in the first week of December.
Instead, U.K. movie-goers decided to watch ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2‘ again…but the numbers still aren’t great as it’s the lowest grossing No. 1 movie since late September 2015 where ‘Everest‘ earned £1.99M in its second weekend. However, let’s skip WAAAAY down to No. 10 with ‘Carol‘ which earned £345K which may not seem like much but it’s the highest grossing 10th place movie since ‘Minions‘ in its 9th week of release back in August with £390K. But the reason ‘Carol‘ was able to hold in the charts was because StudioCanal added 85 more theatres to its release.
‘The Good Dinosaur‘ seems to also have dwindling prospects as it fell 42% in its second weekend of release. By contrast, ‘Rise of the Guardians‘ only dropped 19% during this season in its second weekend in 2012 and ‘Arthur Christmas‘ actually went up 10%. Once school breaks up for the Holiday season, you MAY see a lesser drop as the 12A rated ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens‘ may drive families for tamer flicks. But I wouldn’t bet on it.
There were no family-oriented Christmas movies this year, instead three older-skewing movies competed for attention with ‘Christmas With The Coopers‘ winning the weekend with a seven-day opening. However, its first four days only earned it £159K which seems very lax and its actual weekend tally was £524K. It opened in 5th but no way near the top 4 films this week. It MAY have legs, however. In 2009 ‘Nativity!‘ opened with £794K which isn’t a great opening, but it had week-to-week drops of only 13%, 5% and another 13% allowing it to become a relative success.
But in terms of flops, we have ‘Victor Frankenstein‘ which bombed in the States but could have done well in the U.K. due to its London setting and English cast comprised of James McAvoy, Daniel Radcliffe and Andrew Scott. But with a Thursday to Sunday tally of £431K in wide-release this movie is a financial write-off. McAvoy hasn’t had a proper U.K. box-office hit outside of the X-Men movies and despite Radcliffe having post-Potter success with ‘The Woman in Black‘ in 2012, he hasn’t brought in audiences since. By comparison, the similar 2009 ‘Sherlock Holmes‘ opened with £3.08M despite facing stiff competition from ‘Avatar‘ and lower ticket prices.
‘Krampus‘ would have bested ‘Victor Frankenstein‘ in its opening weekend had the latter film not had a Thursday preview, but it’s still not a great figure for the off-beat horror-comedy. And ‘The Night Before‘ landed outside the Top 10 in 11th place with £272K which is a disastrous start when you compare it to ‘Bad Neighbours‘ from 2014 which opened with £3.29M without previews and was aiming for the same demographic. Even ‘Bad Santa‘ in 2004 earned £474K in its opening weekend without inflated ticket prices and a cast of bankable comedy talents.
‘Christmas With The Coopers‘, ‘The Night Before‘ and ‘Krampus‘ may have legs over the next 4 weeks but with ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens‘ on the horizon and adding more and more screens to meet massive demand at the expense of other films, that is unlikely, at least in the long-term. But I can see ‘The Night Before‘ and ‘Krampus‘ having a very warm reception on home media in the coming years.
Overall, the U.K. box-office is 35% down from last weekend and 19% down from the same weekend last year where ‘Paddington‘ held the top spot and ‘Penguins of Madagascar‘, ‘Get Santa‘ ‘St. Vincent‘ and ‘Black Sea‘ opened soft. Next week is the calm before the storm as ‘By The Sea‘, ‘Grandma‘ and ‘Sisters‘ are expected to flop since movie-goers will be saving their cash to travel to a galaxy far far away.
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Posted In: 2015 UK Box-Office
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Posted: 16th Dec 15