Monday, December 12, 2011


I was not at the movie theater this weekend, and from what I hear, neither were you. But if you were, let me introduce you to a fellow from Massachusetts who's willing to bet you $10,000 that the theater was pretty empty.

The word is that this past weekend was the worst box office weekend of 2011. In fact, it was worse than that -- you had to go back to September of 2008 for a weekend this terrible. The total domestic movie gross: $78 million.

To show you how bad a showing this is for the entire movie industry: one blockbuster summer movie can normally expect to make this much in a weekend all by itself.

Part of the problem was that nobody was too interested in New Year's Eve, Garry Marshall's star-studded New Year's movie that was along the same lines as his previous Valentine's Day. It was expected to finish Number One.

What happened was the critics pelted the movie with tomatoes, and then the fans didn't show up. It did finish first, in the end, but with a haul of only $13.7 million dollars! Also, Jonah Hill's flick The Sitter looked simply lame and did even less business, at $10 million.

I am planning to do my movie column later this week on the miserable box office numbers we have seen, not only this weekend but the entire year. It really has been a year to forget at the box office in 2011. My theories basically all have to do with 3D and with a populace refusing to put up with these increased ticket prices. Especially since Hollywood is insisting on sending our way the "same old, same old" all the time. 

Anyway, look for a column on all my thoughts on the box office numbers later this week.

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