Saturday, March 15, 2008

Horton Thunders In

Horton Hears a Who enjoys an energetic Friday, gathering in $13.3 million at the Friday box office.

As Variety tells us:

"Horton" posted the third best opening day for both a pre-summer animated pic and a Twentieth Century Fox-Blue Sky Studios production, ranking behind 2006's "Ice Age: Meltdown" ($21.8 million) and 2002's "Ice Age" ($13.5 million).

"Horton" will likely follow a similar B.O. path to the first "Ice Age" this weekend, which bowed to $46.3 million during the third three-day frame of March 2002.

The other c.g.i. animated film (okay, it's only partial) 10k B.C. falls into second place with $4.9 million. It's now collected $49.7 million.

But certainly this is fine news for animation employees, yes?

Update: And Horton enjoys a fine weekend:

"Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears A Who!" trampled its rivals at the North American box office on Sunday with weekend sales of $45.1 million, the biggest opening of the year...

Fox ... said "Horton" ranks as the fifth-biggest G-rated opening ever; the top honor is held by 2003's "Finding Nemo" with $70.2 million. The studio expected Easter school vacations to boost the film's midweek performance ...

Fox has had a string of animated smashes the last couple of years. And as a Fox exec told me recently, the company is adept at getting more bang from its advertising dollar than many of its rivals. "They spend less money than Disney or DreamWorks," the exec said.

Be that as it may, Fox is definitely on a roll. The media sometimes overlooks it, but Pixar/Disney and DreamWorks aren't the only hevy hitters in Animationland.

The other Top Ten flicks with animation in them: 10k B.C. at #2 ($61.2 million); The Spiderwick Chronicles at #10 ($65.4 million).

(You can find the rest of the weekend box office here.)

11 comments:

Bob & Rob "Professional American Writers" said...

Sounds good to me, Steve. Has anyone seen it yet? Looking forward to taking my kids tomorrow. Bob

Anonymous said...

In today's Los Angeles Times, Jim Carrey, Carol Burnett and Steve Carell speak of their "frustration, isolation, creative confusion -- even bodily pain" making the Horton feature. Not exactly a ringing endorsement ...

Anonymous said...

Go Blue Sky!

So happy to see it have a successful weekend for a picture that had a more controlled budget than most other recent CG releases. Hopefully a picture like Horton, seems to have the ingredients for a studio's longevity.

Anonymous said...

That article is sad. They really should have nothing but good things to say about the crew and how animation runs these days. These movies really don't get bankrolled unless people like Jim, Steve, and Carol sign up. They have a responsibility to fill, and they have fallen short.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the New York papers tend to be kinder to their home grown success studio.

BTW is Blue Sky a union shop?

Anonymous said...

I thought it was encouraging that Carrey expressed an intelligent concern about the product: Would it actually look like Suess?

Steven E. Gordon said...

Congrats to the crew at Blue Sky on their success!!

Anonymous said...

So happy to see it have a successful weekend for a picture that had a more controlled budget than most other recent CG releases. Hopefully a picture like Horton, seems to have the ingredients for a studio's longevity.

Haha, yeah, let's talk about "studio longevity" at a place that isn't a studio at all. Blue Sky follows the "slash and burn model" of making animation. Hire a bunch of green, cheap talent, pay them peanuts because they're all so happy to work for a big studio, make them compete with each other for a slim shot at being kept on after production ends, give them crap benefits, then flush everybody except a tiny core crew the minute they're not needed.

That Rupert Murdoch really knows how to "control a budget."

Anonymous said...

Wow. That's surprisingly accurate. You've obviously worked there...I bet we know each other :)

Anonymous said...

Doesn't every studio do that.

Anonymous said...

Nope. Among the 'elite' studios, Blue Sky has raised it to high art. All studios do their BS, but Blue Sky cares the least about having a stable growing artistic staff.

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