B.O. Analysis, Nov. 16: ‘Quantum’ ‘Smashes Records

The name [in movies] is Bond, James Bond.

Sony’s Quantum of Solace posts a better-than-expected debut as the film earns a whopping $70.4 million in 3451 theaters.

With $27 million on Friday (including 12:01 a.m. showings), $26.1 million on Saturday and $17.3 million on Sunday, the film was an unstoppable force at the box-office. The debut was 73 percent higher than that of 2005’s Casino Royale ($40.8 million) and was the best ever opening for a Bond film soundly beating 2002’s Die Another Day which earned $47 million in its first weekend. A terrific marketing campaign coupled with a movie-going public eager to see the continuation of the story that originated in Casino, made Quantum of Solace a monumental hit both in the U.S. and overseas.

In the number two spot, the animals of Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa made their presence known with a very minimal 43 percent second weekend drop as the film added another $36.1 million and bringing its total to $118 million after just 10 days of release.

Another strong hold-over was Universal’s Role Models, which has been generating great word-of-mouth, dropping a mere 39 percent in its second weekend. The R-rated comedy has been getting very positive reactions from audiences who appreciate this particular brand of humor.

At number four, Disney’s High School Musical 3 continues its dance up the charts as it posts a miniscule fourth weekend drop of 36 percent, as it crosses the $80 million mark.

Finally at number five is Universal’s Changeling, which continues to generate Oscar buzz and is transcending the fact that people seem to be looking for escapist entertainment, earned a solid $4.2 million and is now approaching the $30 million mark. The Clint Eastwood directed drama starring Angelina Jolie is going to be a fixture in the Top 10 for the next few weeks as the Oscar race heats up.

Speaking of which, Fox Searchlight’s critically acclaimed Slumdog Millionaire debuted in just 10 theatres but had a massive per-theatre average of over $35,000. With Danny Boyle at the helm and major critical raves, this is just the beginning of what promises to be a magical run at the box-office for this small, but immensely important film.

For the film industry as a whole this was another great weekend with box-office up over 50 percent vs. the comparable weekend a year ago and with Disney’s Bolt and Summit’s Twilight on deck for release this Friday, the momentum should continue and sets the stage for what could be one of the best Holiday movie seasons ever.

THREE-DAY STUDIO ESTIMATES (Source Media by Numbers)

1 NEW! Quantum of Solace (Sony/MGM) – $70.4M; 3451 theaters; $20,400 PTA

Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (Paramount) – $36.1M; 4065 theaters; $8,888 PTA; -43%; $118M cume

Role Models (Universal) – $11.7M; 2798 theaters; $4,185 PTA; -39%; $38.1M cume

High School Musical 3: Senior Year (Disney); $5.8M; 3202 theaters; $1,836 PTA; -36%; $84.3M cume

Changeling (Universal) – $4.2M; 1896 theaters; $2,240 PTA; -41%; $27.6M cume

Zack and Miri Make a Porno (Weinstein Co.) – $3.2M; 2210 theaters; $1,448 PTA; -49%; $26.5M

Soul Men (MGM) – $2.4M; 2048 theaters; $1,186 PTA; -55%; $9.4M cume

The Secret Life of Bees (Fox Searchlight) – $2.4M; 1449 theaters; $1,656 PTA; -22% ; $33.6M cume

Saw V (Lionsgate) – $1.7M; 2002 theaters; $894 PTA; -56%; $55.4M cume

10 The Haunting of Molly Hartley (Freestyle Releasing) – $1.6M; 1587 theaters; $1,039 PTA; -50%; $12.6M