CG animated hijinks go big at the UK Box Office as Ice Age 4 regains the top spot.
1. Ice Age 4: Continental Drift (522 sites) W/E: £10,087,052 Total: £13,051,881
2. The Amazing Spider-Man (554) W/E: £3,905,474 Total: £18,847,761
3. Magic Mike (446) W/E: £2,651,015 NEW (Includes W/Th previews)
4. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World (270) W/E: £357,200 NEW
5. Cocktail (73) W/E: £296,778 NEW
6. The Five-Year Engagement (305) W/E: £258,618 Total: £4,422,004
7. Men in Black 3 (340) W/E: £215,720 Total: £21,539,847
8. Prometheus (317) W/E: £185,863 Total: £24,385,349
9. Katy Perry: Part of Me (317) W/E: £161,114 Total: £879,293
10. Snow White and the Huntsman (239) W/E: £152,741 Total: £15,519,026
Source: The Guardian
With the oddest release pattern of a wide release that I can ever remember, Ice Age 4 takes a huge jump up in takings this week, though to say the figures are skewed is an understatement. Having been in the charts over the last couple of weekends thanks to a general release in Scotland and Ireland, the film has been playing at weekends in England and Wales but has not been included in any weekly figures as technically these are preview showings. The money taken in these shows has instead been bundled into this week’s takings, as the film is now playing wide in general release everywhere, and as such a mammoth taking has occurred. If we took just this weekend’s takings, the film still would have handily taken first with just under £5 million and the overall take of £13 million is incredibly impressive given that most of the UK hasn’t started its school holidays yet. Things are looking up for this franchise which should be a relief for Fox given the OK but not barmstorming opening in the US this past weekend. While there’s major blockbuster action opening this weekend as we all know, Ice Age could look good to retain a fair bit of money this coming weekend as well, as The Dark Knight may have scared some parents off of taking the little ones which could serve Ice Age well. With recognisable characters, this will also perform just fine against The Lorax when that opens next week and in all, this four-quel will look good to be a steady earner all summer long.
Performing admirably in its second week is The Amazing Spider-Man, which is unseated from the top but managed to hold impressively. The stamina of the web-slinger will be very much called into question this week as The Dark Knight Rises looks set to dominate the chart, but if cinema programmers think wisely, they may position this after shows of the Bat-film as this could be a second choice for those not managing to get seats. But with nearly £20 million banked in less than two full weeks, this is a success any way you look at it, and TDKR aside, its not got a lot of competition for mainstream audiences for a little while yet (though Ted is a huge dark horse waiting to strike in a couple of weeks time).
The highest new entry this week belongs to Steven Soderbergh, as his second film of the calender year opens well with a near £3 million take; impressive even with the two extra days of previews. A dramedy about male strippers is not a film which necessarily speaks to a four quadrant audience, but this debut would seem to suggest a audience beyond those just those wanting to see Channing Tatum strip off. The Soderbergh connection will have got cinephiles out, but in my office based day-job experience, this film just seemed to connect on a bit of a water cooler basis and I can see this experience being replicated elsewhere. This could also hold well enough as counter-programming over the next few weeks and decent reviews can only help matters.
Another new entry follows, as the reasonably hard sell of Seeking A Friend for the End of the World manages to make a decent charting place though makes significantly less than the films above it. A clever trailer which focused on the funny aspects of the film – which essentially all take place in its first half – positioned it as something that you won’t want to slit your wrists too and the presence of Steve Carrell will have furthered this impression. But I question how well this will perform in the weeks to come; there’s no real buzz about the film and having seen it, there’s not all that much to really grab onto and to make people see it but a fourth place finish is still a win given the material. Another new entry comes at no.5, as the Bollywood crowd come out in force for one of the biggest openings of the year for this sector with Cocktail, which will also look to be decent counter-programming in the weeks ahead. The rest of the chart sees mainstays starting to head out mainly though Katy Perry’s big screen adventure looks to be pretty much over before it had even begun.
Don’t expect much movement in the chart next week as there’s only one release coming as all over studios cower and hide from The Dark Knight Rises, which along with The Lorax is the only wide release of any note for the next two weeks. With 5am screenings kicking off proceedings nationwide on Friday, there’s a palpable sense of anticipation for the film which will cross through to a four-quadrant opening, which should be dependably massive and I would think will be the biggest of the year so far, even without 3D surcharges. The film is tracking massively at the moment and with early reviews being almost universally positive, even if not all are singing its praises for the rooftops, this one should look to run and run. Just how much will it make? Find out next week (he says in his best raspy Bat-voice).