Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

HARRY POTTER & THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX (Warner Bros) continued its strong run at the box office on Friday grabbing an estimated $26.5M, bringing its 3-day cume to just shy of $90M. That should put HP5 right at $80M for the traditional Fri thru Sun 3-day weekend, and it will give ORDER OF THE PHOENIX the biggest 5-day opening in the history of the franchise with an estimated $142.6M.

The second weekend of Michael Bay’s mega-hit TRANSFORMERS (Dreamworks/Paramount) is starting off with a solid $10.5M estimate for Friday. Early Saturday, Optimus Prime will fly past $200M domestic, and my studio sources are pointing to a $34M weekend, down just 52% from it’s opening 3-day. Remy and company has added another $5.5M Friday as Pixar’s RATATOUILLE tops the $130M mark. I’m expecting a weekend take of $17.2M for the critically-acclaimed animated film distributed by Disney, down only 41%. LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD (Fox) looks to be just under $3M to start the weekend, and, by Monday, the latest John McClane action pic will have banked a $9.65M 3-day and climbed past the $100M threshold. The Warner Bros misfire LICENSE TO WED added just $2.2M on Friday, and it will struggle to only $6.9M on its 2nd weekend.

For Friday and 3-Day Estimates for the top 14 films, you can visit FantasyMoguls.

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iPhone

The summer movie season is in full effect. I saw Live Free or Die Hard last night and loved it despite the many logic holes and ridiculous stunts (read my review here). Tonight I see License to Wed, which I don’t have much hope for (why does Mandy Moore keep picking the crappiest movies? I really want her to succeed). I would assume the studio also doesn’t have much hope for the film considering it’s being released against Transformers, possibly the biggest movie of the Summer. And before next week Sicko and Ratatouille hit theaters on Friday. I would venture to say that in this 7 day span you will be able to see at least 3 of the best movies of the year thus far (and I haven’t seen Transformers yet, so that could be four). So if there is anytime this summer to make the trip to the multiplex, I recommend you do it this or next week.

The hype for Transformers is now reaching epic heights. I’m seeing the movie on Thursday, but I’ve talked to quite a few people who saw it at the Los Angeles Junket and so far I haven’t heard one complaint. It looks like Michael Bay may have come through this time. I’m so excited for this film that the other day I decided to buy a new transformers movie toy. May-be it was just an attempt to relive my childhood, who knows. The huge Optimus Prime toy is more of a puzzle than a toy, and provided way more fun than it should have. Optimus Prime is now guarding my DVD collection until further notice.

It’s also pretty sweet to see that one of my favorite directors Kevin Smith quoted from my Die Hard review on his website. I’ve had a couple e-mail exchanges with Smith in the past over a story inaccuracy, where the director admitted that he’s been a long time reader of /Film. Anyways, Smith referred to me as “My man Pete at /Film” on his blog post, which is really cool.

And I’m going to try as much as I can not to buy an Apple iPhone on Friday afternoon. The verizon pocket pc I currently use really REALLY sucks. I recommend that no one ever buy a Windows Mobile phone. Windows was never meant to be an operating system for a phone. I’m a little put off by the whole Cingular/AT&T service provider change, but more importantly, the whole slower EDGE internet thing is what concerns me the most. The phone does have Wi-Fi enabled, but you can’t find an open wi-fi network everywhere, and while in transit it’s currently impossible. San Francisco is supposed to eventually (hopefully) get free wi-fi internet courtesy of Earthlink and Google, but that could be a year off. Now that would be cool.

Peter Sciretta
/Film Editor in Chief

June Tracking Numbers are Shocking

Evan Almighty

Jeffrey Wells at Hollywood Elsewhere has published the late June industry tracking numbers. To make things easier, we have filed the numbers in this neat little table below:

Film General Awareness Definite Interest First Choice Definately Not Interested
1408

56%

30%

9%

12%

A Mighty Heart

44%

22%

6%

 
Evan Almighty

89%

40%

15%

 
Live Free or Die Hard

92%

36%

5%

 
Ratatouille

78%

36%

7%

 
Sicko

38%

22%

3%

22%

License to Wed

69%

22%

2%

 
Transformers

87%

41%

12%

 

Here are the things that we immediately notice: More people are interested in Pixar’s Ratatouille than we originally thought. It appears that more people have that film listed as their first choice than Live Free or Die Hard, A Mighty Heart, Sicko or License to Wed.

Live Free or Die Hard has the most awareness by far (with 92%), but is not the film people want to see (36% interested, 5% top choice).

What shocks us the most is that Evan Almighty is tracking slightly higher than even Transformers. How can this be? Is it that we are stuck in our online geek web bubble not able to see the outside world’s interest in the Bruce Almighty sequel? Possibly.

People seem to be pretty disinterested in political movies. A Mighty Heart and Michael Moore’s Sicko have a low 22% interested rate. As expected, the conservatives are very uninterested in seeing Moore’s new film, giving the movie a huge 22% definitely not interested number. It doesn’t help that the people who were interested in seeing the movie have probably already illegally downloaded it off the internet.

Of course, all these numbers will change as the marketing picks up on the early July flicks. I would expect Transformers numbers to increase.

License to Wed Movie Poster and Production Photos

License to Wed Movie PosterI love Mandy Moore, but what has happened to her film career as of late? She had a great run of teen films. She even elevated to some really interesting issue based comedies (Saved! and American Dreamz). Her latest effort, Because I Said So, was unwatchable. It was marketed towards the teen/college crowd, but in reality the film was for the Over-40 woman demographic.

Robin Williams has also had a good run of clunkers as of late (Happy Feet being the only exception. And don’t give me RV and Night at the Museum made money. Money does not mean quality). So it makes perfect sense that the two stars would team up for their next film, License to Wed. And if Warner Bros had any faith in this film, why did they give it a July 4th release date? I mean, going head to head with Michael Bay’s live action big screen adaptation of Transformers doesn’t mean the film is doomed… right? I hear the movie trailer will probably be attached to In The Land of Women, which hits theaters Friday. Expect to see it online soon.

Warner Bros has sent us over the new Theatrical movie poster for the film, seen right. Click on the image for a better view at Mandy Moore’s sour face. You can find 20 production photos and the official plot synopsis after the jump.

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