Prediction: "The Big Year" will be the last bird-watching movie Hollywood ever makes.
The birding bomb made only $3.3 million over the weekend, averaging a paltry $1,500 per location. Somehow, the combined talents of Steve Martin, Jack Black and Owen Wilson turned into a sort dark energy that yielded career troughs for all three -- it's Martin's worst wide release since "Mixed Nuts," Black's worst since "Tenacious D In The Pick of Destiny" and Wilson's worst since "The Big Bounce," says BO MOJO. WHich raises a question: what the hell was "Mixed Nuts?"
"The Big Year" rolled out against some pretty weak competition -- remakes of "Footloose" and "The Thing," neither of which could unseat "Real Steel," still number one with $16 million.
A weird feature of the recent box office results -- several movies have opened poorly, but are playing well. "The Ides of March" dipped only 28 percent to $7.5 million, "50/50" dipped 23.7 percent to "$.7 million, "Moneyball dipped 26 percent to $5.5 million, and "Dolphin Tale" dropped 30 percent to "6.3 million. Word of mouth is good on all of them. More evidence that Hollywood marketers are having a tough time reaching people with ad traditional methods.
And the industry is losing touch with formerly reliable audiences. "The Thing" posted an opening weekend of $7 million -- 31st among horror remakes over the past 10 years. That's got to be scary to Hollywood. What's scary to me is that there are been 31 horror remakes in the last 10 years.
Up this week: "Take Shelter," a completely original, highly effective movie with elements of horror. It stars Michael Shannon as a man plagued by apocalyptic visions. He may, or may not, be crazy.
Also "Paranormal Activity 3" and "The Three Musketeers."