Box Office Barometer 3-4-11: [Insert Holiday] The Movie
Hop opened the weekend at #1, which means a lot of people like Easter. This is what Universal was banking on when it developed this movie: a popular holiday that didn’t have a movie. Christmas has It’s A Wonderful Life, Elf, and A Christmas Story. The Fourth of July has Independence Day, Glory, and The Patriot. Halloween has Halloween and every other horror movie. New Year’s Eve is following its opportunistic predecessor Valentine’s Day. Other than Family Movie Night, holidays ensure that a movie will be watched every year (think of what Groundhog Day did for that holiday!).
Holidays are the best bet for adaptations. The hottest properties have been superheroes, board games, and fairy tales. Of the three, superheroes and fairy tales already have stories that people grew up with, so creators have to worry about interpretation and authenticity. Board games don’t have stories, but audiences have already written off this trend once it was started. With holidays, people appreciate the tradition, but don’t know or care about the history. If somebody is developing a Lucky Charms movie, people won’t care about St. Patrick. The United States is already okay with mascots like the Celtics and the Fighting Irish. What they will care about is who voices the leprechaun and who is the live-action supporting actor. So, kudos to you, Universal. But please, make a better movie next time.
There are some solid titles in the Top 10, like Source Code (2), Insidious (3), Rango (8), and Paul (9), to push the needle from ARMOND WHITE to BRAINWASHED!