Did the calendar turn back a couple weeks to the Awards season?
I think it might have and nobody noticed because this week is oddly reminiscent of last season. First, we have a Wednesday opening for “Miracles from Heaven”, which means no Thursday preview numbers in the Friday/Saturday/Sunday take for the weekend. Then we have “Allegiant, Part 1” and yeah I know that’s not the official name of this movie but that’s what I’m calling it because this whole split-a-book-into-multiple-movies madness won’t stop unless we collectively, as a society, use words that describe the lunacy accurately. Plus, in this case, it is being done with what is by far the weakest novel in the series (nobody ever confused it with awesomeness of “Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows”), which is weird in itself.
Finally, we have “The Bronze” and if you heard of this movie before Monday at 5:00p Pacific you are totally lying. I kind of like the concept (although, is Keri Strug suing the producers of this film?), but when it is making a run at “Pixels” for lowest Rotten Tomatoes rating I’ve seen since playing FML it worries me.
Before I get to the normal predictive stuff, some clerical items.
Some Clerical Items
It turns out, I’m kind of an idiot sometimes. Last week, for example, I repeatedly referred to “The Young Messiah” as “The Last Messiah” and I apologize for any confusing that caused. I was at least consistent in my idiocy since I managed to not only write it incorrectly six times in my column last week I also referred to it as such on the podcast. Thanks to those who pointed this out to me. Keep calling ’em as you see ’em.
My attention-to-detail score also dropped when on the podcast I referred to the wrong film Angry Geek told me about in his post about bad movies he likes watching. That too got corrected on the podcast but I thought it was worth noting here.
Finally, for Week 5 of the Spring season I’ll be on a family vacation that coincides with my daughters Spring Break. Rather than risk divorce from my wife or having a poor quality rest home being selected for me in 30 years by my daughter, I’ll be taking a break from FML activities to concentrate on a week of fun. In my place, I’m happy to announce that Bill’s Kitten will be taking over the picks column that week.
And now back to our regularly scheduled column.
Week 3 Summary Table
Here is the summary table that I use to assess the results of my model (full table):
With no forecast from ShowBuzzDaily as of publishing time, the professional forecasts is just from ProBoxOffice.com are shown above. The Value column divides the Average by the FB$. The Use column applies the average of the Value column to non-forecasted films based on their FB$ and is the full list of what I use in my model. The PPP Showtimes column is data, courtesy the kind folks at Gracenote who let me use their showtimes API, from the Phil’s Phun Plicks Chatter post on showtimes in his metro area. I like that number because it is often more revealing than theater counts since the latter doesn’t tell you how often a particular theater might be showing a movie. Week of release refers to how many weeks a film has been out in theaters, an important number given that pro forecasts are weaker for the first and fifth weeks (or later).
That math generates a list of Best Performer (BP) candidates that includes “London Has Fallen”, “Deadpool”, “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot”,”Zootopia”, and “The Young Messiah”.
Week 3 Perfect Combo Probabilities
There was quite a bit of discussion this week on Chatter about the history of BP candidates and a special shout out to IKAIKATILTON for staring a thread on the topic of “bonus chasing”. You can read my response to the question posed there, but my model is predicated on the idea that BP comes from among the top 4 candidates each week 79% of the time and that most professional forecasts are within a margin of error of +/- 15%. When you gyrate on that math this week, you get the results above and it’s worth nothing that the Perfect Cinema from last week came up as #3 on my model results from last week, so 8x “Deadpool” didn’t completely come out of nowhere by any stretch of the imagination.
This week, my model likes three core combinations starting with 1x “Miracles from Heaven” + 7x “Deadpool”. This assumes “Deadpool” is Best Performer and the Summary Table shows us that it has the showings to make that happen. As mentioned last week, M37’s recent findings on how the pros struggle past the 5th week of release come into play here as “Deadpool” sees its 6th weekend in theaters and has had a strong following throughout its run.
If you believe in “Zootopia” or “London Has Fallen” as Best Performer, though, my model likes 1x “Zootopia” + 5x “London Has Fallen” along with two low end fillers. If you think “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” or “Zootopia” will get BP, you can hedge between them with a combination of 1x “Zootopia” + “10 Cloverfield Lane” + 6x “Whiskey Tango Foxtrot”.
As always, I’ll play the top line in the output above from my “model only” account, but I’m leaning towards one of the “Zootopia” line ups from my main account. It’s hard to ignore the momentum “Deadpool” has maintained, though, and I’m going to use input from folks in the Chatter to make my final call.