Depp's Dark Shadows Pale To Heroic Heights - Week 2 | The Avengers | The Dark Knight Rises | Dark Shadows

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Depp's Dark Shadows Pale To Heroic Heights - Week 2

The Avengers
The Dark Knight Rises
Dark Shadows
There are several positive ways you could attempt to spin Dark Shadows' opening weekend. You could make the case that it debuted larger than last year's sleeper smash Bridemades. You could point out how much better it opened than last fall's The Rum Diaries. You could also say that even with The Proclaimers "I Would Walk 500 Miles" song getting stuck in everyone's head for the entire summer, Dark Shadows has already topped Benny and Joon's final gross. What you can't defend is that this Warner Bros. vanity project was budgeted at $150 million. Wait, wha? $150 million! It costs money to make Johnny Depp have pale skin and look half-dead?! Talk about havering into you.

Dark Shadows sucked $28.8 million in its first three days. The normal trajectory for a film is that a third of its final box-office total comes from its opening weekend. If Dark Shadows followed this pattern, finishing with $85 million wouldn't seem too embarrassing. This film would mirror Johnny Depp's Depression Era gangster flick Public Enemies to a tee. Then again, that movie only had a $100 million budget. In this case, director Tim Burton believed the only way to accurately recreate a TV soap that probably spent a buck thirty-five each episode on special effects was to increase that cost by 18 million-kajillion dollar percent. Considering 73% of the audience was over 25, I wouldn't expect a strong second weekend. Shuttles from retirement communities only go to the movie theaters once a month.

The Avengers continued to obliterate the record books and freak the olestra out of anyone who didn't put it as their top film this summer. There's a reason olestra came with the warning of "may cause anal leakage." Not only did The Avengers fail to plummet in its second week with an incredible (considering how huge it opened) 50% drop from its first weekend, its second weekend registered as at the 18th biggest weekend ever. Yes, it made more in its second weekend than either opening weekend of Iron Man or Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of Raping All The Memories of Your Childhood.

Avenging another amazing $103.2 million dollars, Earth's Mightiest Heroes have already beaten down $373.2 million in only 10 days. It's already the 18th biggest grossing film of all-time... in 10 days! There's no amount of bumped-up 3D and IMAX ticket prices that completely explain this utter rewriting of all the rules. We'd pretty much thought a film can really only make so much in such a short span of time. That number has been blown out of the water. The only good news for poolers who picked The Dark Knight Rises as their top film, is that if The Avengers found a way to see there is no spoon, hopefully The Dark Knight Rises can find the same path to eating with its hands.

[For those new to the pool, a film normally drops about 40% from weekend to weekend. So, when a film drops by less than that (usually due to positive word-of-mouth), it's seen as a good thing and if a film drops by more (usually due to negative word-of-mouth), it's seen as not so good. The caveat for "blockbuster" films is that they tend to frontload and get so many people in the first weekend that they naturally have larger drop-offs. With this is mind, a 50% fall would still be grand, but anything more is a sign that the film will be coming to DVD sooner than you might think.]

The Top Five If Today Was Labor Day:

#1. The Avengers - $207.4 million
#2. Dark Shadows - $28.8 million
#3. n/a
#4. n/a
#5. n/a

by Matt Neuenburg on 05/13/2012

Movies Mentioned in this Post: Dark Shadows, The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises
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