With HALLOWEEN 2 and FINAL DESTINATION 4 opening this Friday WHY are two horror films opening on the same weekend
Don’t even get me started as to why The Weinstein Co. is opening Rob Zombie’s Halloween 2 in August when everyone knows it would be much better suited as an October release to coincide with Halloween month. While I understand Zombie’s first Halloween opened in August of 2007 and performed well it just doesn’t feel right, at least not to me. That aside, the big question is why didn’t The Weinstein Co. and Warner Bros work out an arrangement so Zombie’s sequel and WB’s The Final Destination 4, two films competing for the exact same audience, wouldn’t go head to head on the same weekend. It just makes no sense from a business point of view as both entities will ultimately be hurt financially.
On August 31, 2007 Zombie’s re-imagining of the classic John Carpenter film opened to a solid $26,362,367 in ticket-sales in its first weekend, eventually going on to gross $58,272,029 at the U.S box-office on a reported budget of $15 million.
Final Destination 3 opened on February 10, 2006 and had a $19,173,094 first weekend and a total U.S gross of $54,098,051 on a reported budget of $25 million. While I wasn’t a big fan of Zombie’s Halloween (while well shot it just drifted too much from Carpenter’s vision), I have enjoyed The Final Destination franchise – these movies are just a lot of fun.
Clearly both these new films in their respective franchises would have had the opportunity to be the top attraction this weekend but a huge monkeywrench has been thrown into the works when both parties decided to stand pat on this specific release date. Coming off the news that Paramount has moved its release date of Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island from this October to February of 2010 due to $60 million marketing costs in our tough economic climate, the stupidity of Warner Bros and The Weinstein Co. not compromising is just plain bad business. Clearly there is a cash crunch in Hollywood and every dollar is more important than ever. So why throw away money when you don’t have too?
They might both pay a steep financial price from either this bad judgment or plain stubbornness. I’m confident they will by splitting the target demographic that won’t pay to see both films in one weekend. I would expect each movie to lose between five and ten million a piece in potential ticket-sales from opening weekend grosses. This is just one of those decisions that makes no sense from any standpoint. Who said Hollywood executives were smart!
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