Dukes, Counts, etc.
Contempt, Vivre sa Vie
Meow Door
Trix, Kix
The Golden Compass $26,125,000 $7,405 $26,125,000
Enchanted $10,706,000 (-34.7%) $3,041 $83,865,000
This Christmas $5,000,000 (-37.0%) $2,660 $42,760,000
Fred Claus $4,660,000 (-15.3%) $1,463 $65,589,000
Beowulf $4,400,000 (-46.4%) $1,478 $75,983,000
No Country for Old Men $4,233,000 (-3.5%) $3,197 $28,861,000
August Rush $3,525,000 (-29.8%) $1,525 $25,148,000
Hitman $3,475,000 (-42.3%) $1,437 $35,810,000
Awake $3,301,000 (-43.6%) $1,631 $10,716,000
Bee Movie $2,612,000 (-41.2%) $964 $121,028,000

Is there a positive spin on The Golden Compass number? The possible positive is that word of mouth could keep it going through January, play long that way. Except word of mouth isn’t good. With less focus on the atheistic bent on the material internationally, perhaps it will do better overseas. Domestically, the competition for young adults specifically is Alvin and the Chimpmunks next week and then National Treasure 2… but maybe people will want the fantasy epic. Playing long is the only hope this film has to hitting nine digits at this point. Which I’m going to call here and now as not going to happen. Basically, it’s going to take a 50% drop next weekend with Alvin (which shouldn’t open that great, but well enough to beat Compass) and the towering I Am Legend. Hell, even The Perfect Holiday could outperform it next weekend. With a $26 opening, New Line may be looking at a final total of closer to $60-70. You don’t spend that kind of money to do Saw business. New Line may get into the creative accounting business (which Peter Jackson will tell you, they already are) and limp the film to $100, but they tend to be relatively truthful about this. Or less desperate. We shall see.

Again, what happens immediately? Likely nothing. Will Robert Shaye be let go when his contract expires next year? Well, let me invoke the words of Wesley Snipes: “Always bet on Black.” Is that code? I think it’s the peyote talking for me. It often does. It often starts writing Harlequin romance novels that play like sexier versions of Jane Austen novels (or, that is to say, Harlequin romance novels), except set in the Second World War, and involving nubile young French gamines. I would wonder what this says about me, if I wasn’t more curious about what it says about the peyote. I asked it, it said: “no comment. Also, always bet on black.” Good advice, peyote. Honestly, I have nothing against Bob Shaye, and New Line was once a fairly good studio. Much of that may have had to do with Mike De Luca, but – unlike either Nikki Finke or David Poland – I have no vested interest in the outcome. I can say across the board that the people I’ve worked with at New Line are some of my favorite, and only they give me any sort of rooting interest. I’m just reading the tea leaves, or in my case, peyote.

So, yeah, New Line’s been made a man out of on this one, cause I can’t see it getting good. In more positive news, Enchanted held reasonably strong and should get to $100 without too much work. What’s also good is that this will be a strong video performer, and I could see it becoming a tweener favorite. Become a Princess Bride-esque “all the women you meet have grown up on this film, so expect to see it in their DVD collection and is often watched as comfort food” type of film.

Will This Christmas last until Christmas? At this point, maybe, it depends if I Am Legend and Perfect Holiday eat up all its business. But this would be considered a victory if anyone cared about it besides the people who made it. That said, it is a small victory. Fred Claus has been doing okay weekend numbers, so I guess it will get to $70, maybe a little more. But will Beowulf get to $100? I’m doubting it, again, it’s the Imax that becomes the question. Right now, it’s a limp. Paramount really eats it on this one. But they will do so quietly as long as The Golden Compass is around. Still, if word hadn’t gotten out that TGC cost $250… I have no idea how much Beowulf actually cost, and it’s quite possible that Paramount is taking it just as poorly. But I don’t know. They’ve dodged that heat, the heat that comes with fiascos.
No Country is kicking ass in expansion run, holding steady, doing solid business, so a run at over $50 is more than likely, and in the next couple weeks the critical support will be legion. The rest of the chart is pathetic, and Will Smith should knock some heads together come Friday.

In summation, I would like to invoke the words of a poet, scholar, genius. That man? Plato. Except I can’t think of anything he said, even though he’s a genius. Since that didn’t work (damn it, I’m too lazy to google it, nor can I think of anything he said that might have relevance to what I’m talking about), let me close by offering the lyrics to Eddie Murphy’s best song, “Boogie in your Butt”

In your butt
Put the boogie in your butt
Put, put the boogie in your butt
In your butt
Put the boogie in your butt
Put, put the boogie in your butt

I ain’t puttin no boogie in nobody’s butt
That’s nasty, man
What you talkin about
Puttin boogie in people’s butt
Are you out your mind or something?
Could go to jail for doin something like that

Well step aside my friend
I been doing it for years
I say, sit on down, open your eyes
And open up your ears
Say, put a tree in your butt
Put a, a bumblebee in your butt
Put a clock in your butt
Put a big rock in your butt
Say, put some fleas in your butt
Say, start to sneeze in your butt
Say, put a tin can in your butt
Put a little tiny man in your butt
Say, put a light in your butt
Say, make it bright in your butt
Say, put a TV in your butt
Say, put me in your butt
Everybody say


I, hey, that’s, man, I ain’t putting no trees in nobody’s butt,
no bees in nobody’s butt, putting nothing–
You must be out your mind, man,
y’all get paid for doing this?
Cause y’all gotta get some kind of money
Cause this don’t sound like the kind of–
I’d rather golf, to be perfectly honest,
than put somethin in somebody’s butt
to be truthful

Well step aside my friend and let me
show you how you do it
When big bad E just rock rock to it
Put a case in your butt
Say, put a metal case in your butt
Say, put her face in your butt
Say, put a frown in your butt
Say, put a clown in your butt
Say, sit on down in your butt
Say, put a boat in your butt
Say, put a moat in your butt
Put a mink coat in your butt
Put everything in your butt
Just start to sing about your butt
Feels real good
When you sing about your butt, sing



Now wait a second, now,
Do y’all get paid for this, for doing this?
Puttin the butt and all that stuff?
What’s this? A 100 dollar bill?
I get to keep this 100 dollars if
I be puttin stuff in people’s butts?
Really? Step aside.

Put a telephone in your butt
Say, put some dust in your butt
Say "it’s a must" in your butt
Say, pizza crust in your butt
Say, put a telephone in your butt
Put a dinosaur bone in your butt
Put a radiator in your butt
I’ll say "see you later" in your butt
Put an alligator in your butt
Say, put some money in your butt
Sure it feels real funny in your butt
Say, squeeze it, please it, but don’t tease it
Put it in your butt
Well, let me, let me just say
Put a hot cup of Brim
Fill it to the rim
And put it in your butt
To the beat
Two sugars, stuff so sweet

In your butt
Put the boogie in your butt
Put, put the boogie in your butt


Put a quarter, put a penny,
Put a dime, put a nickel
Sure do tickle
Just put it in your butt
Put some change in your butt
Feels mighty strange in your butt
Put some grass
Put a shot glass
Put it in your butt, sing!