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07/30/13

Hello Everyone!  It's the moment you've most been looking forward to since the last Summer Movie Contest Update; it's a new Summer Movie Contest Update!  

First of all, don't forget to check out http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2013/contest2013.html for the current top 20 of the summer.  

Secondly, I'm going to do something a little different and I don't think that I've ever done this exact thing before.  I've come up with a list that's basically, "if no new movies came out this summer, this is what I think the final top 20 of the summer would look like".  So, it's not exactly what it would look like if the contest ended today, but what I've done is projected out what I think the top 20 would look like if no more movies were released between now and Labor Day.  So I didn't take into account movies like "Elysium", "Smurfs 2", "2 Guns", and "Planes" (and probably others) that could still get into the top 20 for the summer.  

Then, I did everyone's scores.   Some of the points are pretty well locked (I don't see anything passing Iron Man 3 for the number one rank for example).  Others are very much in flux, especially points from Wolverine which I could be way off on.  I also gave quite a few points to several people for "The Heat" and frankly it's probably not going to hit exactly $160 million (my prediction), but it will be in that ballpark.  

Also, the outlook on some movies changes from week to week.  If you had asked me last week, I would have told you that "The Conjuring" probably wouldn't break $100 million for the summer and I now have it making $130.  I have Wolverine passing it, but I'm not super confident in that prediction. 

So, what I'm really trying to say here is that even though this will give a lot of people a pretty good idea of where they stand, a lot of things could still change and someone with very few points now could still end up winning if they hit Elysium and/or Smurfs 2 and/or Planes, and/or 2 Guns exactly right.  The scores are all pretty low so far this year, so really no one is completely out of if.  Except maybe for me.  

So, here's my prediction for the Summer top 20 if no more movies were released this before Labor Day:

1              Iron Man 3          $407

2              Despicable Me 2               $345

3              Man of Steel      $288

4              Monsters University       $263

5              Fast and Furious 6            $237

6              Star Trek Into Darkness $225

7              Wold War Z         $201

8              The Heat              $160

9              Great Gatzby     $144

10           The Wolverine  $140

11           The Conjuring    $130

12           Grown Ups 2      $127

13           Now you See Me             $115

14           Hangover Part III              $112

15           Pacific Rim           $108

16           Epic        $106

17           This is the End   $96

18           Lone Ranger       $93

19           Turbo    $92

20           White House Down         $72


And now, if my predictions are correct, here are the points we'd all get:

J-Lowe 2

April 5

Andrew 5

Steve 6

Dan 7

Don 10

Sean K. 11

Russell 15

Deej 16

May 16

Levi 17

Corey 22

Sean J. 22

Ken 22

Richard 30 - 20 of his 30 points hinge on "The Heat" which isn't great news for Richard, but it could pan out for him.  He's got 5 from Iron Man 3 being ranked correctly and from being within 5 million on Man of Steel which are both pretty much locked.  

Nicole 31 - Has a lot of points right now, but unfortunately for her, almost none of them are locked in.  I can pretty much guarantee her 5 points for ranking Iron Man 3 correctly, but the rest of them are up in the air.  Still, I'd rather be her than me right now in terms of this contest.  

Peter 35 - Perennial contender Peter got within 2 million on Iron Man 3 and is darned close on Man of Steel.  If "The Heat" ends up within 1 million of his $155 prediction or Smurfs 2 or Elysium fall his way, he's got a good chance at winning. 

Christian 36 - 15 points from Iron Man 3 should be a lock as well as ranking points for Man of Steel and Star Trek.  He needs one or two other things to fall just right for him to win, but he's certainly in the running.  Not that he got any points from it, but he's also the only person to have The Conjuring on his list.  

Smokey 40 - Has 10 points which hinge on Turbo staying ranked at number 19.  It could happen, but I don't think it's entirely likly.  Otherwise he's pretty solid gaining 15 points from Monsters University alone.  

Mike C. 46 - Right now he seems like the guy to beat.  He nailed Iron Man 3 dead on for 20 points and is the only person in the contest with the top 4 movies ranked correctly.  He came darned close to having the top 6 ranked correctly.  His "weakness" right now is that I gave him 5 points for having The Wolverine ranked correctly which may not stick.  

Alright everyone, that's it for now.  If you're on the bottom of this list like me, don't give up all hope.  There's still a little over a month to go and lots of things will change.  Speaking of which, 2 Guns and Smurfs 2 both come out this weekend.  But go see Pacific Rim instead.  It's really enjoyable.  I'd see it again even.  

Until Next Time,
Don

 

07/12/13

Hello There Summer Movie Gross Guessers!  It's time for a long overdue update.  This is going to be a long one, so I'll dispense with my usual shenanigans (look, I'm a Shenanigans Dispenser) and get on with the updating.  
In what will be news to no one, it turns out that people like their CGI Cartoons.  Despicable Me 2, which was not named after me as some of you have suggested, made a whopping $143 million over the long 4th of July weekend.  To put that into perspective, if you had that kind of money, you could order 143 million items from the Wendy's dollar menu.  What's almost more crazy is that the movie has made another $31 million ($10 on Monday, $12 on Tuesday, and $9.6 on Wednesday) which is almost a million dollars more than Iron Man 3 made on it's first 3 weekdays.  I don't see it having any trouble passing the $300 million mark for the summer and it's too early to tell, but it could even flirt with $400 million.  The 400 million dollar flirter would be a good title for a romantic comedy.  
On the other hand, The Long Ranger has done so poorly at the boxoffice that he now has to yell, "Hi-Yo Aluminum" and use regular bullets.  It did make $48 million over the long weekend which means it should still break $100 mil, but I don't see it doing much more than that.  It's much too early for me to say this, but J-Lowe at $114 million, Russell at $110 million, Corey at $105 million, Christian at $95 million, Smokey at $119 million, Peter at $122 million and The Deej at $123 million all still have a shot at points from this one.  
Amongst holdovers, The Heat remained..well...hot, and had the smallest weekend to weekend decline only losing 36% of it's opening weekend boxoffice and pretty much confirming that Melissa McCarthy is a moviestar.  It's made a solid $86 million after 10 days and based on that rate of decline it should end up with something north of $150 million for the summer.  Lots of people are in the ballpark for some points on this one including J-Lowe, Sean J., Levi, Richard, Russell, Corey, Christian, Nicole, Mike C. and Mike L.  The rest of us, including me, are two low on it.  
I thought that more people wanted Channing Tatum to Channing their Tatums, but after two weeks, White House Down has only made $50 million which has to be a disappointment to Sony, if not all of humanity.  It had a respectable 45% decline in it's 2nd weekend, but really shouldn't even hit $100 million.  Let's call it $90 million which gives a shot at some points to the following people: Corey.  That is all.  I have it at $112 million and even that's too high.  Why do I mention that?  Because I like making this about me.  When you write one of these, you can make it about you. 
Pixar pretty much has a license to print money and Monsters University has made $216 million after just three weekends.  However, it took a pretty substantial hit with a 57% drop in it's third weekend, probably due to Despicable Me 2.  Last week I would have called it a shoe-in to hit $300 million, but now I'm going to say it will be more like $260-$280.  That's a bit of bad news for Disney, but good news for Andrew ($280), Levi ($256), Steve ($290), Dan ($293), The Deej ($263), April ($289), Mike C. ($277), Smokey ($265), and Me ($290).  
Man of Steel has earned an impressive $271 million in 4 weekends and that's just super, man.  It should also pass the $300 million mark, but probably not by a lot.  Looking over the lists, I'd say that Levi at $297, Deej at $293, Richard at $290, Russell at $303 (looking really strong), Corey at $295, and Smokey at $299 are all still in the hunt for some Kryptonian points.  What are Kryptonian points you ask?  They're just like all the other points in this contest except that they have the word "Kryptonian" in front of them.  Because Superman is from Krypton.  
"This is The End" turns out to be just the beginning of boxoffice success (I just made myself groan with that one) as it's made $85 million in 4 weekends and is rumored to have cost just $30-$40 million to make.  It should just cross $100 million before the apocalypse, er, before the end of summer which is looking great for Ken who's got it at $99 million.  I don't want to jinx him (oh, who am I kidding, of course I want to jinx him), but he could hit it dead on.  That's impressive in and of itself, but the fact that only about 6 people even have that movie on theirs lists makes it even more impressive.   
Dang that took a long time.  I actually started this yesterday and had to finish it today.  I know I didn't get to any of the older movies, but I'll have to save that for another time.  This weekend we get Pacific Rim and Grown Ups 2 which both should make the top 20 for the summer.  The "experts" online are picking both to make between $30-$40 million for the weekend.  We'll see what happens.  
Enjoy your weekend everyone and I'll try to get another one of these out soon.  
-Don

 

06/14/13

Well Howdy Pardners!  It's time for a wild west round up of the current Summer Movie Contest rodeo.  You'll have to pardon the old-timey western style talk, but I visited the place where they shot Deadwood and some of Django Unchained today and all of the western sets put me in the mood.  Why I'm making you suffer for it, I don't know, but I can't help myself.
Anyway, I've gotten a little behind on these updates so I've got a lot of ground to cover.  This is going to be a long one, so make sure to stretch thoroughly, stay hydrated, and if you feel yourself getting overheated, take a rest in a shady spot.  Now let's do this...
In new movie news, the fact that The Purge has one of the silliest concepts in movie history didn't stop it from making an impressive $34 million in it's opening weekend.  Even with a steep 60% drop this weekend, that opening should be a strong enough for it to make the top 20 this summer.  Let me run down the list of people who have "The Purge" in their top 20 in this contest; no one.  There is a chance that it won't make it, but I think it will.  
Conversely, 5 people in this contest do have "The Internship" on their lists (J-Lowe, Ken, April, Sean K., and Christian) and I bet they wish they didn't.  With a $17 million opening, it's highly unlikely for it to make the top 20.  It turns out that it was an unpaid internship.  Get it?  
The movies that came out two weekends ago were also pretty hard to nail down.  After Earth should have been called, "It Turns Out That Will Smith Can Be In A Sci-Fi Movie That No One Goes To See".  It didn't open super strong ($27 million)  and fell a whopping 61% in it's 2nd weekend.  After it's first 10 days it's made $46 million and the the way this summer is going it might not actually make the top 20  which would be crazy.  It's going to struggle to hit $75 million.  If it does make the top 20, Christian has it at $75 million which should be in the ballpark.  None of the rest of us has it making a ton, but we're all too high on it none the less.  
"Now You See Me" turned out to be more of a command like "See Me Now, You" as it opened with an unexpected $28 million and fell an even more unexpected 35% in it's second weekend.  It's already made $60 million and it should make another $60 million+ before it's through.  Only Christian ($169) and Mike C. ($136) even have it on their lists so those guys both look like gross guessing savants right now.  Mike C. might even be really close on it's gross which would be super impressive.  
Right about now I bet you're saying to yourself, "all of this is well and good, but which of the summer movies had the smallest percentage drop in gross this past weekend?" and luckily I'm about to answer that question.  With a 29% drop, Epic brought in another $11 million and has reached $84 million for the summer.  At that rate it should settle in somewhere in the $110-$120 range for the summer which could be good for Andrew, Levi, Dan, Steve, May, Richard, Nicole, Mike. C. Peter, and/or Smokey.  Finally, one that most of us are going to be close on, (but not me).
The Hangover III continues to disappoint in every way possible (if it's possible for $100 million to be disappointing).  At the rate it's going, it might not even make it to $130 million for the summer which would be less than half of what The Hangover II made.  Corey, at $147 million, has it the lowest of all of us and I think that even he has it too high.  
On the other hand, The Fast & Furious 6 has, in three weekends, become the highest grossing film in the "Furious" series with $202 million and it looks to have another $60-80 million left in the tank (that's a car/gasoline metaphor; I am on fire!).  Steve, Ken, and Sean K. might earn some points from this one and I think the rest of us are too low.  
Star Trek: Into Darkness has boldly crossed the $200 million mark, but looks to still fall short of the reboot film from 2009.  It's on pace for something like $230-$240 for the summer and most of our hopes were too high on it, but Christian ($247) and Dan ($250) might pull down some points from it.  

The Great Gatsby is slowing down, but it's already passed all of us by with $134 million (in fairness, Christian has it at $132 which would earn him some points if the summer ended today, but it won't and therefore he won't).  It's looking to get fairly close to $150 for the summer which is good news for none of us.  
In the mighty Marvel way, Iron Man 3 is going to cross $400 million this weekend on it's way to finish around $420 for the summer (give or take a bit).  Richard at $420 million, Steve at $425 million, and Corey at $425 million look like the strongest candidates for points from Tony Stark.  Good on ya.  
This must be what Bananarama was singing about in "Cruel Summer".  
Whew!  I for one am exhausted.  I need a nice beverage.  This weekend a little art film called "Man Of Steel" comes out along with "This is the End"; both of which could make the top 20 this summer.  
It's a beautiful day; go see a movie.  
-Don

05/12/13

Welcome to the Summer Movie Contest of 2013!  This is the first of what Mike and I plan to be at least bi-weekly updates throughout the entire summer.  So buckle up and get ready for the ride of your life!  By "ride of your life", I mean some mildly fun and amusing emails regarding summer movie box office grosses.  But I don't want to oversell it.  Oh, who am I kidding?  This is the greatest contest invented by man and you have the privilege of being a part of it!
I am proud to announce that for the first time in Summer Movie Contest history we've got 20 people playing this year.  Welcome to the rookies and welcome back to the returning playings.  I'm glad you're all here.  
Also, we have a couple of changes this year.  First, we're going to have a tie-breaker. In the case of a tie, the person with the most films within $20 million of the actual gross wins the tie.  AND, as if that wasn't enough, we're going to add a prize for 3rd place this year.  So the money breakdown will be as follows:
$465 for the winner
$125 for 2nd place
$40 for 3rd place  
Cool?  Cool.
The Summer Movie Contest web site for 2013 is up and running and all of your picks are up there:
http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2013/contest2013.html
PLEASE look over your list and let me know if I made any mistakes.  I had to re-type almost all of them (Nicole gets a special thank you for typing her list into a spreadsheet so that I was able to just copy and paste it) and we use the website lists for scoring.  I would hate for a typo on my part to cost someone some points.  
Also, let me know if anyone would rather not have their email address there or if you'd prefer that I use a different one.  No has ever complained before, but we have some new people, so I thought I would ask.  
Now, in more interesting news, the choice for #1 movie of the summer is overwhelmingly Iron Man 3, but we do have two people, J-Lowe and Dan who went for Man of Steel.  Picks 2, 3, 4, & 5 are mostly between Star Trek, Man of Steel, Despicable Me 2, Monsters University 2, but very few of us agree on the proper order of them.  Getting those 5 in the correct order, if anyone does it, will be huge.  
I'm also going to give out the "You're Going to Look LIke a Champ or Look Like a Chump" award to both Christian and Nicole.  Christian is the only one of us to have "The Conjuring" on his list and Nicole is the only one of us to have "The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones" on her list.  So if either one of those gets them some points, they will look like champs. However, if they don't, then it's chumpitude for both of them.  
Speaking of chumpitude, I don't have "The Great Gatsby" on my list (I think I'm the only one in fact), and it will almost certainly make the top 20.  With a $50 million opening weekend I can't see it doing any worse than $100 for the summer and it's more likely to do between $120 and $150 million.  Sean J. has it at $115 and Corey has it at $120, but if I was forced to bet on it, I'd say that Christian, who has it at $132 has the best chance at some points from it.  We'll know more about it's long term gross prospects after this weekend.  
Iron Man 3 is at $284 million after two weekends and really the sky's the limit for it.  If you have it much under $400 million, you're too low.  It's hard to say at this point if it will make it all the way to $500 million, but it certainly could and could even end up with more than that.  This weekend, when Star Trek comes out, will be the real indicator.  
None of us have "Peeples" on our list which is a good thing because it bombed.  Yay us!
That's all I have for now.  Thanks again for playing and watch this space for more updates.  Good luck everyone and enjoy Star Trek this weekend.  
-Don

08/16/12

Okay, okay so here’s the situation; my parents went away on a week’s vacation.  You may be saying to yourself, “Wow, that’s a really catchy opening line, but I feel like I’ve heard it somewhere before”.  And you have.  It’s a classic bit of poetry from “Parents Just Don’t Understand” by DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince.  Now you may be saying to yourself, “I Love DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince and I’m happy to have a mention of them anywhere I can get it, but what does it have to do with the Summer Movie Contest?”.  Well, I’ll tell you.  It’s a little known fact that “The Fresh Prince” suffered a terrible head injury in 1990, forgot who he was, changed his name to “Will Smith”, moved to Bel-Air, and became a movie star.   Now you may be saying, “That’s a fascinating story which I plan to make all of my descendants memorize and pass down to all of their descendants for time immemorial, but I still don’t see what it has to do with The Summer Movie Contest”.  Well you see, “Will Smith” is the star of Men in Black III, which is currently #7 in this summer’s top 20 AND I’m about to explain “the situation” in regards to the rest of the contest AND I took several weeks of vacation from doing these updates, just like The Fresh Prince’s parents did, so in the end, it makes perfect sense. 

 So, I guess the big news is that The Dark Knight Rises, which even though it has made a metric crap-ton of money (learn your metric system people), is not going to pass The Avengers as the number 1 movie of the summer.  It is still going to be one of the 10 highest grossing movies of all time in North America and might just past Shrek 2 to land at number 7 (although that might be a stretch).  It should settle in somewhere between $425-$445 making it the solid, uncontested #2 movie this summer.  That gives Fran ($430), John M. ($440), Sean ($452), and Me ($418) a chance at some gross points from it.  It also means that Corey, Sean, Russell, and J-Lowe have at least 10 points each in the bank from calling Avengers/Dark Knight as #1 and #2 this summer.  Good for you guys.  I’m not even a little bit jealous. 

 On the flip side of that coin, we have a couple of el stinkeroos (that’s Spanish for “The Stinkers”) with Total Recall and The Watch.  Total Recall forgot how to make money at the box office and has managed only $44 million after two weekends.  It’s still going to make enough to stay in the top 20 this summer, but it’s not the $100+ million film that most of us picked it to be.  It might still scrounge up $60-$70 million and it could be really good for April ($60), The Deej ($65) and Levi ($70). 

 I need to give some props (that’s street lingo for “proper respect”) to J-Lowe, John M., Christian, and Nicole because none of you have “The Watch” on your lists and with $31 million after 3 weekends of release it is very unlikely to make the top 20 this summer.  I almost want to also give props to April for having it at only $45 million, but since it’s not going to make the final list, I’m not going to do that.  Although “almost” does sometimes count in the Summer Movie Contest, the movie has to make the list.  And not just this year’s list of crummy movies with Ben Stiller in them, but the actual top 20 grossing movies of the summer list. 

 I must reluctantly give more proper respect to Smokey, Peter, Corey, and Ken who are the elite 4 who have “The Campaign” on their lists this summer.  With a $25 million opening weekend, it’s sure to make the Top 20 and could even flirt with $100 million.  I think it’s more likely we’ll see it land somewhere in the $70-$90 range, but that could be double good news for Ken who has it at $81 and Corey who has it at $85 and Smokey who has it at $91.  It would have been quicker for me just to say “everyone except for Peter also has a shot at some points from the gross”, but it’s too late now.  Anyway, I’ll have a better idea next week as to what’s what with The Campaign. 

  “The Bourne Legacy: F---K you Matt Damon” also opened pretty well with $38 million in its first weekend.  Are you looking at this Total Recall?  That’s how you make a movie about a secret agent who can’t remember stuff.  It may not hit the heights that some of us have projected, but it should do at least $120 million and it may do a decent chunk past that.  All of us have it on our lists and there are some picks that should be in the ballpark, but I hate making those predictions after one weekend so I’m not going to . 

 A movie that might play the role of spoiler this summer is “Hope Springs”.  It opened on a Wednesday and brought in a total of $19 million by the end of its first weekend.  Now that might not sound like much and if it was most other movies it wouldn’t be, but this is a Meryl Streep movie (I just re-read that sentence and I have to apologize for how corny it came out.  Look, I know I write a lot of corny stuff, but usually it’s on purpose.  This time is slipped out by accident which is also what she said).  Her similar films, like “It’s Complicated” and “Julie and Julia” both opened around $20 million and finished with $112 million and $94 million respectively.  I don’t know if “Hope Springs” is going to hold up as well as those other two, but I’d be willing to bet that it holds up well enough to sneak into the top 20 which is important because I have a side bet with Smokey who says it won’t. 

 So, that’s all I’m going to give you for now.  This weekend will probably see the release of the last movies this year that might make the top 20 for the summer (Expendables 2, Odd Life of Timothy Green, and ParaNorman) and I have no idea who’s going to win this thing.  So I will endeavor to sit down this weekend, do a lot of math, and see if I can’t come up with some good guesses as to who might just take home the money.  Are we cool?  I’ll assume that you said, “yes’.

 Until sometime soon,
Don

07/21/12

Alright, I get it.  I really do.  We could talk about how long it’s been since I last did a Summer Movie Contest Update OR we could talk about how cool it is that I’m doing one right now.  That’s right.  At the very second that I’m typing this, I am in fact doing a Summer Movie Contest Update.  So that’s a good thing, right?  Let’s not dwell on the fact that I haven’t done one in a while and instead dwell on the fact that you are reading one at this very moment.  You can’t get any fresher than that.   In fact, I don’t know why you keep bringing it up.  Let’s move on.  Okay?  Okay. 

 It’s Saturday evening, and because of the shooting in Colorado, the studios have decided not to report any grosses over the weekend fearing that it would be in bad taste.  I’m not sure when they will start reporting grosses again, but for now, I have to live with data from Thursday and by default, you do too.  The early estimates from The Dark Knight Rises based on advanced ticket sales and midnight screening had it between $175 and $215 million for the weekend meaning that it could break the Avengers record, but we probably won’t know that for a couple of days.  I saw it this afternoon, and for me at least, Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy has to be included in the discussion when debating the best movie trilogies of all time.  So go and discuss. 

 As a reminder, you can check out the current top 20 movies of the summer and refresh your memory on your guessing by visiting the web site here:

 http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2012/contest2012.html

 Now, on to the news…

 It’s a little known fact that The Ice Age franchise has spent more time in theaters than real dinosaurs actually spent roaming the earth.  If you don’t believe me you can look it up on Wikipedia.  Ice Age 4, had a pretty strong opening, especially for the 4th part in a series of kids movies, at $46.6 million, and it’s held up really well during the week.  As of Thursday it was at $68 million and with no new kid friendly flicks in the theaters this weekend, it should waltz past the $100 million mark, probably by Sunday night.  It should certainly end up passing the $150 million mark for the Summer and could still wrangle some points for Dan, Levi, Fran, Melissa & Duane, Ken, April, Andrew, Mike C., Sean, Russell, and Me.  I think that everyone else is too high on it.  Just like I’m too high on life right now.

 The Amazing Spider-Man is not only able to catch thieves just like flies, but he’s also able to catch box office dollars in the same way a spider would; with all 8 legs.  I’m not sure if that metaphor actually worked, but you get the idea.  The movie’s made a lot of money.  In fact, with $218 million as of Thursday, it’s currently the number 2 box office movie of the summer which means it looks pretty solid to be number 3 when this contest is over.  At the rate it’s going, it should at least flirt with $300 million which to me means Dan ($298), The Deej ($305), Levi ($307), Andrew ($300), and Russell ($309), are looking pretty good.  Of course I may find out on Monday that it’s dropped like a man-sized spider when its web’s been cut so I reserve the right to change my guesses. 

 A movie about a talking teddy bear has grossed $170 million so far this summer and is on track to out-gross The Hangover making the it the number 1 grossing R rated comedy of all time.  That’s right; a movie about a talking teddy bear.  But of course we all saw that coming a mile away and every single one of us has “Ted” as the number 4 movie of the summer with at least $270 million.  No, wait…the judges are telling me that actually only 7 of us even have it on our lists and of those 7 Peter is the closest with $123 million giving him exactly 0 points from it.   Go figure?  By the way, do you think that Teddy Ruxpin is somewhere crying in his beer because it should have been him? 

 Speaking of movies that feature talking bears (well sort of), Brave crossed the $200 million mark this week and it should wind up somewhere in the $230’s by Labor Day.  Christian is looking pretty strong with it at $240 and Peter with $231 could be in for some nice points from it.  And if it really slows down (which it won’t), I might snag some going points from it with my $225 million guess.  There are also a few of you with it in the low $250s who I won’t quite count out yet.  Even though I really want to.  I want to count you out so badly it hurts. 

 Madagascar 3 also crossed the $200 million mark earlier in the week, but it looks to finish a bit behind Brave; probably somewhere in the $215 million neighborhood give or take.  Probably take.  Oddly enough, we’re all too low on it except for Sean who has it too high.  There may be a record this year for lowest score ever to win the contest. 

 Continuing the theme of things that are much bigger than we thought they would be, there’s Magic Mike.  Perhaps I didn’t phrase that exactly the way I meant it.  Or did I?  Only two of us, April and Nicole (who obviously know the most about male strippers in this group) have it on their lists and impressively Nicole, at $125 million, may be pretty darned close to having it exactly right.  It’s had $97 million shoved in its banana hammock in three weekends and looks to me to be on pace for a finish in the $120s.  Even if you don’t end up with any points from it Nicole, I still give you a tip of my imaginary hat for getting so close.  Just don’t ask me where I’m wearing that hat.  You don’t want to know. 

 I think that everything else is pretty much where it was the last time I did one of these and since this is getting really long, I’ll sign off for now.  There’s still plenty of summer left to come and I promise I’ll try harder to get these out. 

 Until Next Time,
Don

 06/28/12

Just when you thought you’d heard the last from me, it turns out that you haven’t.  No, not the last or even the next to the last, but maybe more like 4th or 5th from the end.  Anyway, here’s a Summer Movie Contest Update!  I’ve updated the website with the current top 20 for the summer, and you can check it out here:

 

http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2012/contest2012.html

 

First of all, those Pixar pics are money in the bank (and most of them are good too) as Brave did that thing with the archery and the bow and the arrow and hit the target somewhere in that red dot in the middle which resembles the eye of a bovine creature of some sort.  They should come up with a name for that thing.  Anyway, with a $66 million opening, it was confirmed that Brave has a big summer ahead of it.  If we look at similar movies with similar openings and take into account that Brave has held up quite well during this week, I’d say we’re looking at a final gross somewhere in the $210-230 million range.  It’s way too early to count out everyone else, but Francis, Melissa & Duane, Mike C., Peter and me are looking good based on the early numbers.  Of course I reserve the right to completely change my mind next week and act like I never said any of this. 

 

On the flip side of Brave, we have Rock of Ages and That’s My Boy.  I haven’t seen two bombs this big and close together since Hiroshima and Nagasaki.  (alternate joke: Combine them with Dark Shadows, What to Expect While Your Expecting, and Battleship and I haven’t seen this many bombs since my tour in ‘Nam).  After 13 days of release, which is nearly two whole weeks, Rock of Ages has only managed $31 million dollars.  “We’re Not Gonna Take It” indeed.  Anyway, as far as the contest goes, Rock of Ages has pretty much screwed everybody; April has it the lowest at $74 million and I think that’s even too high for some points.  The only people who have anything to celebrate here are Dan and Fran who are the only two of us who don’t have it on their lists.   Yippee for you guys.  I bet you think you’re so swell.  Well you’re not!  You hear me?  You’re not swell at all! 

 

That’s My Boy started slightly worse than Rock of Ages and has held up slightly better and so it has also brought in $31 million in the same time period.  I’m guessing that “Billy Madison 2: Still in School” and/or “Happy Gilmore 2: He Still Golfs Like a Hockey Player” will be in the works any day now.  Ken has That’s My Boy at $59 million, which means it’s not impossible for him to get a point from it (maybe even 5), but even that is a stretch.  Alls I know is that it’s looking like we might have an awfully low grossing number 20 film this year. 

 

In other debuts, Abraham Lincoln may be handy with an axe, but at raking in box office bucks, not so much.  $16 million in its opening weekend isn’t great news for the 13 of us who have it on our lists.  Especially for Dan and Fran who, I reiterate, are not swell.  Honest, Abe Lincoln was not a good pick. 

 

In holdover news, Madagascar 3 is on pace to pass up both of the first two movies in the franchise and should get past the $200 million mark.   With the possible exception of Mike C., who has it at $185, I don’t think that any of us are going to get gross points from it. 

 

Prometheus is also doing slightly better than I predicted two weeks ago and should flirt with $130 million.  Christian at $145 and Nicole at $115 still have a chance at a point from it, but Peter at $136 could be in really good shape on it. 

 

Everything else is pretty much as I said it was two weeks ago.  And by the way, don’t get too down because you’re not doing very well so far.  No one is.  We’re all terrible and we still have half of the summer to go, so it’s anybody’s game.  Except for Dan and Fran who have no chance at all and who, and I can’t stress this enough, are not swell. 

 

This weekend we have summer movie top 20 hopefuls, Ted, Magic, Mike, People Like Us, and Tyler Perry’s Medea’s Witness Protection.  May the grosses fall where you’d like them. 

 

-Don

06/12/12

Well, well, well.  Look who it is.  It’s a Summer Movie Contest Update!  I’ve posted the latest grosses to the web site and you can peep them here:
 
http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2012/contest2012.html
 
As much as I know you all like ado, I’m going to get to the update without any more of it. 
 
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted was also America’s most wanted movie at this weekend’s boxoffice.  It came in at just over $60 million which is $13 more million than the first one made and just $3 million less than Madagascar 2 brought in.  If Madagascar 3 holds to a similar pattern as the first two, it should end up somewhere in the $170-190 million range.  That should be good news for Ken, Melissa & Duane, April, Mike C., and Me who are all in that general vicinity on it.  Of course if it drops like a rock next week or brings in another $60 million, that will all change. 
 
Harder to pin down is Prometheus which brought in $51 million in its debut.  At first glance that seems like the film has a healthy amount of acid for blood flowing through its veins, (and I certainly don’t mean to knock $51 million), but it was heavily front-loaded making 25% more on Friday than on Saturday.  That’s usually a bad sign for longevity.  Match that with the mixed reviews, and I think we’re looking at a finish somewhere around $120 million (give or take).  That might be an overly pessimistic prediction, but next weekend will give me a better idea of where it stands.  Right now, I’d say The Deej and Nicole have the best shot at getting points from it while Melissa & Duane, Christian, Andrew, Peter, and Smokey, have an outside shot at hitting it on the nose.   I think the rest of us are either two low or two high, but really it’s too early to tell.    
 
Snow White and the Huntsman was a bit more Bashful at the boxoffice in its second weekend falling 59% to $23 million.  I know that sounds Dopey, but the producers shouldn’t be too Grumpy and should instead be Happy that it has managed to bring in over $98 million in 10 days of release.  That’s nothing to Sneeze(y) at.  I see no reason to call in the Doc(tor) on it just yet as it should manage to bring in $150-175 for the summer which gives a shot at points to Dan, Ken, Mike C., Corey, Sean, Nicole, Peter, and Me.  Figuring all of that out has really made me Sleepy.  
 
Dark Shadows has already nearly bled its boxoffice dry and looks to fall short of $80 million for the summer.  If it manages to stay in the top 20 (which it probably will), it should give 5 points to Dan ($80 million), maybe 1 point for Fran ($88 million) and 5 points to Mike C. $73 million.   The rest of us will have to hope that we have it ranked correctly. 
 
The alien containment business isn’t what it used to be and Men in Black III dropped another 50.5% in its third weekend bringing in just shy of $14 million.  That raises its total to $135 for the summer making it likely to finish in the $160-180 range by Labor Day.  That gives The Deej, Levi, Fran, April, Ken, Christian, Andrew, Mike C., Nicole, Smokey, and Me all a shot at some points.  It would have been easier to list all of the people who don’t have a shot at some points from it. 
 
Ken might actually get a point for Battleship as he’s the only one who’s even close on it.  Sure, it’s only 1 point, but it’s one more point than anyone else is going to get from it. 
 
Ken’s also looking good for a point (maybe even 5) for The Dictator.  April might also get a point from it.  Of course it has to hold on and remain in the top 20 for the summer first. 
 
We’re all still too low on The Avengers. 
 
This weekend, two films I won’t be seeing are released; “Rock of Ages” and “That’s My Boy”.   I’m dying to know how each of them is going to do. 
 
Until next time,
Don

05/31/12

Well Hello Fine Folks,

I’m here to brighten up your week with a Summer Movie Contest Update!  I’ve finally gotten the website finished and I’ve updated the current grosses through Memorial Day.  I also fixed the weird glitch that Dan pointed out were the link to the 2012 contest page disappeared from all of the other pages.  Thanks to Dan for pointing it out and making me feel like a fool.  You can check out the website here:

http://summermoviecontest.com/summer2012/contest2012.html

 

Okay, on to the update:

Well, those Men In Black sure are still wearing black and fighting aliens.  And people sure are still going to see them do it too. The movie played to the tune of $69 million for the 4-day weekend and two people here are my work tell me that it’s actually pretty good.  I’m thinking that they must be mentally unbalanced, but you never know.  Anyway, with that opening weekend I’d figure that it won’t make less than $140 million total and could do over $200.  We all have it on our lists and I’m not going to say yet that any of us are completely out of the running for some points for it, but J-Lowe at $315 and Sean at $350 are probably too high on it (and high on something else probably) to get any points.  We’ll know more next week. 

The other new release from last weekend, Chernobyl Diaries, may have used the “found footage” gag again, but it did not use the “found boxoffice success” gag.   It racked up only $9 million in 4 days and is doomed to not make the top 20 this summer.  That’s bad news for Dan, John, and Sean who all have it on their lists.  The rest of us can point and laugh at them, but we won’t because it’s not polite. 

The Avengers led all holdovers and brought in an impressive $47 million for the holiday weekend and brought its cume to $523 million for the Summer.  I’m now thinking that it’s going to flirt with $650 million and might even pass Titanic.  Needless to say, we’re all way too low on the gross, but J-Lowe, Corey, Sean, and Russell should get 5 points each for having it ranked correctly.  Way to go fellas.  I’m not at all jealous and bitter about it. 

The Dictator hasn’t been doing as well as Paramount had hoped, but it’s doing better than I thought it would.  After two weeks it’s now up to $43 million and I give it a pretty good chance of making it into the bottom of the top 20 for the summer.  I’d look for it to get into the low $60s which could mean some points for Levi, April, Ken, Smokey, and possibly even Christian (who has it at $80). 

Dark Shadows has also held up better than I thought it would and managed to suck out another $9 million in its third weekend.  At $65 million so far, It should certainly do well enough to finish in the top 20 for the summer and may even reach the $90 million mark although I think that’s probably out of reach.  At this point Levi, Dan, Fran, Mike C. and possibly even Me have a shot at some points from its gross. 

The biggest bomb of the summer so far has to be Battleship.  With a reported budget of $209 million, it won’t even recover half of that domestically as it’s only managed $47 million in 11 days.  Hopefully Universal will think twice before letting Peter Berg direct another movie, but they may not be that smart since they decided to make this one in the first place.  Anyway, look for Battleship to finish somewhere in the $70s for the summer which gives Ken ($73 million) a decent shot at some points and might even give Smokey and Levi (who both have it at $89) a point. 

“What to Expect When You’re Expecting” is still not going to make the summer top 20. 

This weekend we have the release of Summer Top 20 candidate “Snow White and the Huntsman”.   Although if Moonrise Kingdom is playing near you, go see that instead.  It’s really great. 

Until next week,
Don

 09/07/10

The final numbers for this summer are in and we have a winner!!!  But before I tell you who the winner is, I’m going to tell you who the winners weren’t: 

 

Sean 0  - 0 points has only been done once before and is an accomplishment in and of itself. 

Geoff 10 – Got 5 from Twilight’s rank and 5 from Robin Hood’s Gross.

Nicole 10  - After winning the last two years, she finally decided to let someone else have a turn. 

Meredith 11 – got 5 from Shrek’s rank, 5 from the Expendables rank and  1 from Sex and the City’s gross. 

Christian 11 – Was darned close on a bunch of stuff, but in the end only managed 11

Corey 15 – 5 from Twilight’s rank, 5 from Other guys rank, and 5 from Salt’s gross and 0 from Iron Man 2. 

The Deej 15 – Nailed Salt’s gross exactly right and got 5 more from The A-Team’s Rank

Ken 15 – All of Ken’s point are from correct rankings – Iron Man 2, Salt, Eat Pray Love. 

KB 16 – Finished in the top half this year and was the ONLY player to rank Inception correctly. 

Smokey 18 – Hit Salt’s gross dead on, ranked Twilight right on, and got one point from Other Guys, Robin Hood, and most appropriately, Dinner for Schmucks. 

Don 20 – I hit Twilight almost exactly right and got 5 more from Despicable Me’s rank and nothing else.  At least I got two more points than Smokey. 

Peter 21 – Peter once again flirted with a win and proves that he’s no fluke.  One of these years he’s going to take this thing. 

Russ 22 – Former winner (and former 0 scorer) Russ had another nice showing thanks to nailing the Karate Kid.  “Nailing The Karate Kid” doesn’t sound right somehow. 

April 23 – Came oh, so close, but was foiled by a combination of Eat  Pray Love and everything that could have gone wrong going wrong.  She’s played this game twice and has come in third both times.  I’m keeping my eye on you for next year…

 

And now the money spots:

 

2nd Place - Fran 27 – Always a bridesmaid and never a bride, this is the 2nd time that Fran has finished in 2nd place.  Will next year be his year? 

5 points from Toy Story Rank

5 points from Iron Man Rank

5 points from Last Airbender Rank

5 points from The Other Guys Rank

5 Points from The Expendables Rank

1 point from Toy Story’s Gross

1 points from Sex and the City 2’s Gross

 

And the winner is…………

 

Mike C.! with 36 points. 

5 points from Toy Story 3’s Rank

5 points from Iron Man 2’s Rank

5 points from Twilight’s Rank

5 points from Grow-ups Rank

5 points from Salt’s Rank

10 points from Dinner for Schmuck’s gross which he got exactly right. 

 

Basically Mike C. was the anti-April and had everything go right for him in the last couple of weeks.  Congratulations!  I’m sure that Smokey will send you a check as quickly as you sent one to him. 

 

As a matter of interest to probably no one except me, I’ve consulted with the Summer Movie Contest Historian and it turns out that Mike C. had exactly the same number of points when he tied for first in 2002.  Back then he tied with Sean, who didn’t do quite as well this year.  As another matter of interest, this summer was so screwy that 36 points was only good enough for third place last year and 2nd place the year before that.  

 

If you want to see the actual final top 20 of the summer and/or see your name on the World Wide Web, you can go here:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

Well everybody, it’s with a certain amount of melancholy that I bid adieu to another summer and another Summer Movie Contest.   I hope we can have you all play again next year and maybe bring some new friends in as well.  Before you know it you’ll all be hearing from Smokey for “The Oscar Contest for Smart People” and from me for the “Normal” Oscar Contest. 

 

Until then, be well. 

 

-Don

08/29/10

Hey, Hey, Hey,

 

It’s me, back with what will probably be the penultimate Summer Movie Contest Update for 2010.  And, oh who the worm has turned.  Again.  But before I get to details on the turning of worms, here’s a link to the website:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

Although it technically hasn’t been updated because the official weekend numbers aren’t out yet.  Anyway, I came up with another projected top 10 list for the summer and this is what it looks like:

 

1

Toy Story 3

$407

2

Iron Man 2

$312

3

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

$299

4

Inception

276-279

5

Despicable Me

240-242

6

Shrek Forever After

$238

7

The Karate Kid

$175

8

Grown Ups

$159

9

The Last Airbender

$131

10

Salt

116-118

11

The Other Guys

108-112

12

Robin Hood

$105

13-14

Sex and the City 2

$95

13-14

The Expendables

92-95

15

Prince of Persia

$90

16

The A-Team

$77

17

Knight & Day

75-76

18-19

Dinner for Schmucks

72-75

18-19

Eat, Pray, Love

70-74

20-21

Get Him to the Greek

$60

20-21

The Sorcerer's Apprentice

$60

 

If you look towards the bottom of that list, you’ll see where things get interesting. 

 

Anyway, because I know everyone likes seeing their own name, here’s my most recent best guess at the final points:

 

Sean – 0 points – Sorry Sean, the worm has not turned for you (which is usually a good thing, but I your case you’ll still get burned).

Meredith – 5 – 10 points – Has 5 points from Shrek locked up and has a chance at 5 more if The Expendables doesn’t pass Sex and The City 2

Geoff – 10 points – your 10 points for Twilight and Robin Hood are locked up, but I don’t see you getting any more. 

Nicole – 10 – 15 points – Has 5 points locked in and could get 5 to 10 more from the Eat, Pray, Love gross depending on how close it gets to $75 million

The Deej – Looks to get 5 points from the A-Team and possibly as many as 10 from Salt’s gross.  And I did promise him 5 bonus points for his birthday. 

Ken – 10-15 points – has 10 points locked up from Iron Man 2 and Salt’s rankings and could get another 5 from Eat, Pray, Love. 

KB – 11 – 16 – Only person in the pool who looks to get Inception ranked correctly. 

Christian – 6 – 26 points – You’ve got 6 points locked up from Grown-ups, and you could end up with 20 more if Sex and the City, Eat, Pray, Love, and Get Him to the Greek fall into place for you. 

Corey – 15 – 20 – Unlike two weeks ago, I’m willing to say you’ve got 15 points nailed down and you could get 5 more for Salt if it hits $117-119. 

Smokey – 13 – 22 – You’re run at a miracle comeback is over, but you could still end up with a respectable 22 points depending on Salt and Dinner for Schmucks. 

Don – 21 – 26 points – I pretty much nailed Twilight and look to get 5 points from Despicable Me, but not much else to brag about. 

Russ 21 – 22 points – Nailed the Karate Kid almost exactly right and will be darn close on Twilight

Peter – 21 – 25 points – looks like you’ll get ranking correct for Toy Story, Iron Man, Twilight, and Airbender and you may get some gross points from Expendables. 

Fran – 22 – 32 points – Sorry Fran, I know I got your hopes up, but because I grossly overestimated the amount of money that Inception would bring in, I think the best you can do is finish second this year.  You need for The Expendables to not pass Sex and the City 2 and for…well, see April’s note below about Get Him to the Greek.  Unfortunately for you, if that works out for her it also works out for you. 

 

Fun Fact: The expression “The Worm Has Turned” does not refer to worms at all, but rather to a dragons.  It’s not entirely clear (to me anyway) if the expression refers to a Dragon turning away from one or towards one, but in either case it means “a reversal of fortune”.  Dragons were commonly called “worms” in Shakespeare’s day and “worm” is a derivation of the  Old English word “Wyrm” which means “Dragon or Dragon like creature”. 

 

And, we have a two person race at this point:

 

Mike C. – 31 – 36 points

Mostly, Mike needs for The Sorcerer’s Apprentice to make about $200,000 which will knock out April (see below).  Pretty much all of his other points are locked in although having Dinner for Schmucks land between $71-$73 million will help you with another 5 points. 

 

April – 27 – 58 points

Yep, April’s back in it.  Despite “Eat, Pray,Love” passing Get Him to the Greek, a really lackluster performance over the last two weeks by The Sorcerer’s Apprentice has made her win a possibility again.  Two weeks ago I had Apprentice easily passing “Get Him to The Greek” and now I’m not so sure.  It’s going to be darn close though.  Less than $200,000 separates the two movies right now.  We’ll see.  If Greek holds on for the number 20 spot, that gives April a giant 20 points for nailing it exactly right which will make her the undisputed winner. 

April also (somewhat  ironically) needs for Eat, Pray, Love to pass Dinner for Schmucks which will give her another 5 points. 

Needs Inception to stay at $275 million or below for one more point

 

Of course there’s always the chance that I’ve completely screwed up again.  But in any case it’s going to be a bit of a nail-biter this weekend as April encourages every theater-owner in America to stop showing “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”.   The final grosses will probably be out on the Tuesday after Labor Day and I’ll do my best to have a winner figured out by Wednesday night. 

 

Good Luck and go see Scott Pilgrim; it’s fantastic. 

 

-Don

08/23/10

So, this week’s summer movie numbers came out and I’m afraid that my jinxing powers are strong (more on that in a minute).  Before elaborating, you can check out the latest numbers on the web site:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

For the most part I stand by my predictions from last week.  The part that isn’t covered by “for the most part” mainly involves  two films.  The first one is “The Expendables” which held up much better than I expected it to from it’s opening.  It’s already up to $65 million after 10 days which means that it will for sure pass “The A-Team”, "Knight & Day", and “Dinner for Schmucks”and it’s got a really good chance at passing Sex and the City 2, and Robin Hood.  Without going through all of the math again I know for sure that that hurts Mike C. and could help Smokey if it doesn’t actually pass Sex and the City.  I don’t think that there’s any other major impact, but I might be missing something.

 

The second movie that I was way off on was one that I didn’t even mention last week; Eat, Pray, Love.  Although it fell 47% from weekend to weekend, it did crazy good business on Monday through Thursday and has managed to scrape together $47 million in 10 days.  It only opened with $23 million and so I wrote it off, but it was only a few thousand dollars from being the number 1 movie on Wednesday and Thursday.  Anyway, with two weeks to go, I’d say that there is a really good chance (perhaps a certainty) that it’s going to pass Get Him to the Greek and actually make the top 20.  This would suck for April.  I had given her a locked in 20 points from  Get Him to the Greek because I thought that nothing else could pass it, but unless people just outright stop seeing “Eat, Pray, Love” it’s not looking good. 

 

What this means is that we could still have a race on our hands. Heck, maybe even Russ, Corey, or Peter could win.  I’ll do a more complete update next week when things are more clear. 

 

Until then,

Don

08/19/10

Dang.  As has been pointed out, I accidentally left out Russ and Meredith.  It was not intentional and was probably caused by the champagne that I was forced to drink by a co-worker.  Stupid co-workers.  Anyway, to sort of make up for it…

 

Meredith 6 – 12 points – Her extra 5 points could come from the Expendables making more than $90 mil and less than $95 mil or from Dinner for Schmucks ending up ranked at #17, but unfortunately both things can’t happen at the same time. 

Russ – 16 – 32 points – Russ has a solid 16 points (mostly from nailing The Karate Kid pretty much dead on) and could end up with another 10 if The Other Guys finishes within 1 million of $98, but if my calculations are correct, he can’t pass April because in order to get to 32 points he’d need Inception to not pass Twilight which would also give April 5 more points.  He’s probably still a contender for 2nd place, but the math on that is so difficult that Matt Damon’s character from Good Will Hunting refused to help me figure it out. 

 

On a side note, Russ pointed out to me that he is also expecting a baby next week so I want all of you to be very careful about who you sleep with for the next 3 weeks.  

 

So, there you go. That should be everybody now. 

 

Until next time,

Don

08/18/10

Hey All,

Since Smokey is busy tending to his newborn first child (congrats again chum!) and since we’ve only got 3 weeks left in this thing, I thought I’d better make some time for an update.  Come to think of it, that’s the second Summer Movie Contest baby this year (April’s being the first).  I don’t want to say that Summer Movie Contest will make you or someone you Love pregnant, but the evidence is mounting.

 

Anyway, I updated the web site:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

And, I spent a metric ton of time and tried to figure out who might win this thing.  The first thing I did was come up with a projected top 20 movies for the summer:

 

RANK

TITLE

TOTAL GROSS

1

Toy Story 3

$405

2

Iron Man 2

$312

3

Inception

$300

4

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

$299

5

Despicable Me

$248

6

Shrek Forever After

$238

7

The Karate Kid

$175

8

Grown Ups

$165

9

The Last Airbender

$131

10

Salt

$120

11

Robin Hood

$105

12

The Other Guys

$100

13

Sex and the City 2

$95

14

Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time

$90

15

The A-Team

$77

16

Knight & Day

$76

17

Dinner for Schmucks

$75

18

The Expendables

$75

19

The Sorcerer's Apprentice

$64

20

Get Him to the Greek

$60

 

Now, keep in mind that I’ve been known in the past to be WAY off on this sort of thing, but I think that this will be somewhat close.  There are several random factors though (Inception, The Expendables, and The Other Guys chief among them).   I could be off by as much as 15 million on a few of the movies.  Keeping that in mind, here’s what I see as the potential points for all of us:

 

Sean - 0 points – I looked and looked, but I don’t see any points coming your way this year. 

Nicole – 0-15 points -  You can avoid the basement if The Other Guys ends up closer to $90 Million than to $100 Million.

The Deej – 0-15 points – one of the few people what will be helped by Inception passing Twilight. 

KB - 5 points – It’s a solid 5 though. 

Me – 7-25 points – I stink, stank, stunk this year and still have a chance at ending up 2nd from the bottom.

Ken 10 points – The Force was not with you this year, but you could still finish in the middle of the pack. 

Geoff – 10 – 25 points – I’m pretty sure that you can’t win, but you could have a solid finish.  You need The Expendables to end up really close to $75 million and for Inception not to pass Twilight. 

Christian – 16 – 27 points – Unless I screwed up on April’s numbers, I don’t think that you can win, but you could end up in 2nd place.  Also one of the few people who would benefit by Inception passing Twilight. 

Corey – 0 – 30 points – You could also end up in 2nd place, but you could also end up in last place.  Some of the same things that will help you will also help April, which is the only reason you can’t win. 

Peter – 10 – 31 points – Again, you can’t win because in order for you to get 31 points, it would mean that April gets 35.  I tried to figure out your chances at 2nd place, but it made my head hurt so I stopped. 

 

And now, we get to the heart of the matter.  Who’s going to win this thing.  First, we have the wildcard.  And by Wildcard I REALLY  mean wild card.  Anyway, it’s our old pal Smokey!

 

Smokey - 1-36 points

Could technically still win, but it would be a miracle. 

Needs for Inception to not pass Twilight (which would also help a couple of other people though)

Needs for Salt to finish at almost exactly $116 million

Needs for The Other Guys to finish at almost exactly $102 million

Needs for Dinner for Schmucks to finish at almost exactly $80 million (The other two are unlikely, but this one is the real toughie). 

 

And here we get to the three most likely winners (in my humble opinion of course):

 

Fran – 22 – 42

Needs Inception to pass Twilight; like Smokey, that really helps you and hurts Mike C. and April.

Needs The Expendables to hold on for more than I think it will, but not quite pass Sex and the City 2 (it’s a lot to ask for).

Needs The Other Guys to make more than $105 million.  Not sure about this one. 

Needs for some of April and Mike C.’s stuff to go wrong. 

 

Mike C.  – 22 – 56

Needs for Inception to not pass Twilight (which unfortunately for you also helps April)

Needs Twilight to hold on for $300 Million (not impossible).

Needs for Dinner for Schmucks to get really close to $72 million (fairly likely).

Needs The Expendables to NOT pass Dinner for Schmucks (who knows?).

Needs The Other Guys to make less than $89 million or more than $109 million which would rob April of some points.

 

April – 30 – 60

At the risk of jinxing her, it’s pretty much April’s contest to lose.  She’s got 30 pretty solid points and could end up with 30 more. 

Needs Inception to not pass Twilight.

Needs for The Other Guys to not pass Robin Hood (I’m fairly confident that it won’t).

Needs for The Other Guys to Finish really close to $99 million (she should be within 5 million of it, but it could still spoil her summer)

Needs Dinner for Schmucks to not pass $70 million (a pretty decent possibility).

 

Of course next week I might re-think this and figure out that Sean is actually going to win.  Or Piranha 3D could open with $50 million and really screw things up.  We’ll see. 

 

That’s all I’ve got in me this week folks.  Good Luck!

 

-Don

08/02/10

No, my friends your eyes do not deceive you.  It’s really me doing a Summer Movie Contest Update!! 

 

And if that’s not exciting enough for you, check out the Summer Movie Contest Web Site!!!

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

And if that’s not exciting enough for you, then the rest of your life is just going to be one mind-numbing disappointment after another because it doesn’t get any better than this. 

 

First, I’ll start with some new stuff.  Track 2 on the new Chemical Brothers album makes me so happy that I can hardly sit still when it’s on. 

 

Now, onto some stuff about the Summer Movies.  Dinner for Schmucks opened with a respectable $23.5 million this past weekend.  I went to see this because I thought it was a riveting documentary about Thanksgiving at my house, but it turns out it’s just Steve Carell and Zach Galifianakis mugging for the camera for two hours. Anyway, I suspect it will make it into the top 20 for the summer with something in the $65 - $75 million which would be good news for Mike C., April, Smokey, Me and maybe Meredith, Russ, Christian, and Peter if it makes a bit more than that. 

 

Charlie St. Cloud thankfully only made $12.3 million in its opening weekend which is good for us in the contest because none of us had it on our lists and is good for America because maybe someone will think twice before making this kind of movie again. 

 

Not all of us were so lucky with Cats and Dogs 2 which made just slightly less than Charlie St. Cloud assuring that it won’t make the top 20 for the Summer and that KB (who had it at $74 million) and Sean (who had it at $115 million) won’t get any points from it.  At least a new generation of kids was exposed to the magic and wonder that was the original Cats and Dogs. 

 

Debuting last week was Salt which has brought in the tidy sum of $71 million after just 10 days.   I went to see this movie thinking that it was a riveting documentary about America’s favorite seasoning, but it turns out it’s just a terribly written and directed action movie starring Angelina Jolie.  Look for it to finish with something in the neighborhood of $130-$140 million giving Mike C., Ken, Russ and Me (yay me!) a chance at some points for it.  I think that nearly everyone else is too low on it, but it could die quicker than I think it will giving The Deej ($115) a shot at some points. 

 

And speaking of The Deej, the only person in the pool who’s got “Ramona and Beezus” on his list has to be disappointed with that movie’s $16.3 million after two weekends.  You’ll just have to go out and see it another 10 times or so and bring some friends this time if you want it to make the top 20. 

 

The only disappointment greater than what The Deej feels about Ramona and Beezus has to be the disappointment that Disney feels over The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.  I’m guessing that the $52 million it’s brought in after three weekends doesn’t even cover the cost of the wig that Nick Cage is wearing in that flick.  It’s pretty unlikely to get much past $70 million for the summer (if it even makes that much), but it could possibly conjure up some points for Mike C., KB, and Geoff (who’s got it lowest in the pool with $78 million).   

 

On the other hand, Inception, the movie that teaches us that it is alright to dream of box office glory, has brought in a pretty amazing $193 million after just three weekends.  After this and The Dark Knight, Warner Brothers is just going to drive a truck full of gold bullion up to Christopher Nolan’s house and tell him to make whatever movies he wants.  Or maybe they’ll dive a truck full of vegetable bullion up to his house and tell him to make whatever kind of soup he wants.  Only time will tell. Anyway, Inception is making so much money that it will for sure pass Shrek to be the number 4 movie of the summer finishing around $260-$275 million if I had to guess right now (and I do).  This looks good for April, Peter, and possibly KB.   

 

As I sort of predicted a few weeks ago, Despicable Me is indeed going to finish way north of $175 million as it’s already brought in $190 million after 4 weeks.  The most important thing about this is that it means that I won one of my side bets with Ling making us tied at one apiece this year.  If only I had taken his Marmaduke side bet I’d have something to show for this summer.  Oh, well.  Look for Despicable me to finish around $230 for the summer and possibly for it to also pass Shrek. 

 

There’s not a lot of other news since last time, so I’m going to sign off for now.  Maybe next week I’ll take the time to try and figure out who’s got a good shot at winning this thing. 

Until then,

Don

 07/12/10

Disclaimer: I wrote this yesterday and the final weekend grosses came out this afternoon and most things were overestimated.  Despicable Me only made $56 million for the weekend which might not seem like much, but it makes me want to revise what I said below downward by $15-$20 million.  Continue with caution; IF YOU DARE!

What up gross guessers?

 It’s time for a Summer Movie Contest update!  The web site has been updated with the latest top 20 and if the fancy strikes you, you can see it here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

Well, it’s been a couple of weeks since my last update so I thought I’d better make some time and do one.  And I know what you’re thinking; “whoopdi freakin’ do”. 

As I write this, the weekend estimates are out and it’s clear that America’s Love affair with 3D cartoons starring oddly shaped men with eastern European accents and an army of mutant corn pops is far from over.  I thought we were all tired of that hackneyed plot line, but apparently not, as Despicable Me brought in $60 million in it’s opening three days.  This sort of thing is difficult to predict after just one weekend, but I’d think that it is likely that we’ll see it finish north of $175 million for the summer (and possibly way north) which gives some hope for points to KB, The Deej, Fran, April, Me, and maybe Peter who I think is a little low at $158 million, but you never know.  I supposed I can’t really count out Christian yet at $295, but it seems unlikely for it to make that much.  I think that everyone else who has it is too low. 

I don’t know much about these Twilight movies, but here’s what I’ve gathered; A pasty faced British Emo kid and a guy called “Jo Jo The Wolf Boy” take off their shirts and oil wrestle for the affections of a marginally attractive teen-aged girl because she smells really good (like tater tots or something).  And I also know that after 10 days “Eclipse” has racked up $237 million which gives it a darn good shot at passing Iron Man 2’s $312ish million gross and ending up as the number two movie this summer.  With a 48% drop in its second weekend it still might be a close call, but I’d say that April, Russ, Peter, Smokey, KB, Geoff, Sean, Nicole, Mike C. and The Deej all have a pretty good shot at some points from it..  Corey (with $287) Fran (with $287), Ken (with $349) and me (with $294) can’t be 100% counted out yet, but it’s not looking good. 

Predators had a pretty decent opening weekend brining in $25 million in three days and giving it a pretty shot at making the Summer Top 20.  It’ll probably drop pretty quickly, but it should end up with at least $60 million giving some hope to Mike C. and I guess some of you others who have it making less than $100 million, but I really don’t see it passing $80 million by Labor Day. 

Toy Story 3 has blown past all other films this summer and has amassed $340 million since it’s June 18th release and will easily pass the $400 million mark.  Mike C., Fran, and Apil  are the only one’s who might come close, but Peter also has it as his number one movie of the summer.  If Twilight doesn’t pass Iron Man, and nothing else really huge comes out this summer, 3 of the 4 of them (Fran has Shrek too high) will have the top 4 movies in the right order.  If Twilight does pass Iron Man, then no one will have the top 4 correct. 

Despite the terrible reviews, The Last Airbender, the story of the really pre-mature baldness of a kid in his pajamas, has made just over $100 million in 10 days.  It took a crazy 57% drop in it’s second weekend, but it should still end up with something like $130-$140 million for the Summer giving Fran and Corey a shot at some points.  I suppose if it REALLY dies quickly, I might have a shot with my $119 million pick, but I think that’s wishful thinking on my part. 

I suppose because it’s one of the only “adult” comedies out there, Grown Ups only lost 14% in it’s third weekend bringing its total to $111 million.  I’d look for it to finish in the $150 million range for the  Summer (give or take a bit) which could be good for Mike C., The Deej, Russ, Christian, Geoff, and Nicole.  

Knight & Day had a pretty decent 25% drop in its third weekend, but it’s only managed $61 million so far which has to be considered a huge disappointment.  It should still make the summer top 20 with around $80 million, but that’s way lower than any of us guessed.

I’m running out of time and need to wrap this up, but this coming weekend “Inception” finally comes out along with the Sorcerer’s Aprentice; both of which should make the top 10 this summer, but only one of them might be something that I go and see in a theater.   

Until Next Time,

-Don

06/21/10

What up you crazy gross guessers?

 

It’s time for a Summer Movie Contest update!  The web site has been updated with the latest top 20 and if the fancy strikes you, you can see it here:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

As Shakespeare so eloquently put it in King Lear, “this past week sucketh my balls”.  But luckily I had a couple of movies to look forward to on the weekend.  I was having a really hard time deciding to between Toy Story 3 and Sex and the City 2 and I accidentally went to see “Sex Toys and the City 2” and I think I’m mentally scarred for life.   It might not have been so bad if I’d seen the first one, but as it was I couldn’t follow the plot. 

 

Apparently everyone else did in fact make it to Toy Story 3 this weekend as it brought in a Pixar record $110 million in just three days.  I’d say that makes it a virtual shoe-in to pass $300 million for the Summer and gives it a very good shot at being the number 1 movie.  I wouldn’t count anyone out of the points hunt just yet, but Mike C., Fran, April, and Peter have got to be feeling pretty good about having it at number 1 right now.  I actually did see it in Imax 3-D and I was happy to have the glasses on because I think I cried at least 7 times. 

 

I was also one of the couple of dozen people who saw Jonah Hex this past weekend and it wasn’t what most people would call “good” or “enjoyable” no matter how much I wanted it to be.  The only parts worth watching were Megan Fox’s body parts.  And with the help of my $12, it brought in $5 million for the weekend which means it won’t even get within shooting distance of the summer top 20. 

 

Less than a week after going on record that I thought that Shrek 4 was going to pass $250 million, it took a Toy Story fueled 64% tumble and only managed a little over $5 million for the weekend.  With a grand total of $223 million so far, KB’s $241 million is looking better and better. 

 

I realized just now that I didn’t mention Sex and the City 2 at all last week.  I wonder how that happened?  It’s only one of the 10 best movies ever made about a group of middle-aged women who vacation in Dubai.  It should finish with around $95-$98 million for the summer which means that only Fran and Meredith are even close and it looks like both of them will only get 1 point from it. 

 

Karate Kid had a marginally alright 46% drop in its second weekend to wax-on $29 million for a $107 million total after 10 days.  At that pace it should flirt with $200 million, but I doubt it will go a whole lot past it.  Clearly none of us are ready to join the Cobra Kai Dojo because I don’t think any of us are going to get near it.   

 

The A-Team fell a kind-of respectable 44% in its second weekend (I expected it to drop faster than a helicopter piloted by Howling Mad Murdoch) and brought in another $14 million which raised its total to just over $50 million.  I’ll wager at this point that it will stall just shy of $100 million for the summer giving Ken, Sean, The Deej, and Me (pretty much the Summer Movie Contest version of the A-Team) a shot at some points. 

 

I’ve never played the videogame and I didn’t see the movie, but my understanding is that in “Prince of Persia” he has a dagger that gives him the ability to turn back time.  So every time I think about that movie that horrible Cher song, “If I Could Turn Back Time” gets stuck in my head.  It’s enough to make me wish the summer was already over.  Anyway, for some reason that movie only dropped 14% this past weekend to bring in another $5 million so despite it “only” having $80 after 4 weeks, I’d have to say that it has a shot at hitting $100 million for the summer.  And after a quick check, it turns out that all of us are still way too high on it.  So nevermind. 

 

That’s all of the Gross Guessing news that I have for you this week.  This weekend we head back to blahsville and have a choice between “Grown Ups” which looks like total ass and “Knight & Day” which looks like total ass.  Both of them should make the top 20 for the Summer, but not because of my money.  I really enjoyed Toy Story 3, but except for that  this summer blows.  And Inception doesn’t come out for TWO WEEKS.  It’s like torture. 

 

-Don

 

06/16/10

Hey You Gross Guessers,

 

It’s time for a mid-week Summer Movie Contest update!  The web site has been updated with the latest top 20 and if you’re feeling lucky, you can see it here:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 

Well, the Karate Kid Crane-Styled the hell out of the boxoffice this past weekend bringing in over $55 million in its first 3 days of release.  Parents with kids (as opposed to parents without kids) must be insanely desperate to have something to go see.  Not Marmaduke desperate, but annoying, precocious, karate desperate.  It’s hard to say with these kids movies and Karate Kid could end up hitting $200 million, but my guess is that it will settle somewhere in the $150-$175 million range which makes it the first movie of the summer that didn’t underperform most expectations.  Unless you’re Sean who has it at $250 million.  I’d say that Nichole, Russ, Meredith, April, Peter, and Corey all have a pretty good shot at some points and I suppose it’s possible that Sean can still score, but it will probably pass by the rest of us.  I know that my meager $88 million is too low.

 

The A-Team’s plan didn’t quite come together (see what I did there?) as it was rightfully accused of stealing $25 million from the movie-going public this past weekend.  I pity the fool that had its gross for the summer much over $70 million as I’m guessing it will get court-martialed pretty quickly.  And it turns out that those fools that I’m pitying are all of us.  I think the lowest guess for it is $95 million by Christian and I suppose that the A-Team could hold on enough to get there (which would actually give points to several people), but I really don’t think so.  We’ll see; I was way wrong on Robin Hood, so don’t listen to me. 

 

Get Him to the Greek suffered a not terrible, but not great 43% drop in its second weekend bringing its grand total to $36 million after 10 days.  It’s probably won’t hold on enough to make the top 20 for the Summer, but if the rest of the summer is really bad…

 

I also spy that Killers was assassinated in its second weekend with a 49% drop and a ten day total of only $30 million.  Working for the blah, blah, blah, and having a license to blah doesn’t mean that you’re going to make any money.  Those of us who have it on our lists are out of luck on this one.  Even though I have it on my list, I’m actually pretty glad that people didn’t go see it.  Even those digital camera commercials that Mr. Demi Moore is in bug the crap out me.

 

Marmaduke, Splice, Just Wright, and Letters to Juliet have also all bombed and won’t be making the summer top 20.  If you have any of them on your list, go ahead and cross them off. 

 

Iron Man 2 is narrowing in on a $315ish million finish for the summer.  I think it’s going to be just a bit low to help out KB or Ken who both have it at $333.  The rest of us are way high.  And we’ve also guessed too much for this movie (get it?). 

 

Shrek Forever After is holding on pretty well and brought in another $15 million this past weekend.  The Ogre, The wise-cracking Donkey, and The Spanish Cat look like they will hold on to flirt with the $250 million mark.  I’m not exactly how close it will get, but I’d say that KB at $241 could be in good shape, and a couple of the lower guesses like myself and Corey in the mid $260’s  might have a shot.

 

It looks like Robin Hood’s bulls eye is roughly going to be $103 million for the Summer (give or take a bit) and Geoff is going to be darned close to getting it exactly right with his $101 million guess and unless it really picks up steam and ends up with $106 million, Smokey will get a point out of it.  That’s about it for Mr. Hood. 

 

This weekend we’ve got Jonah Hex and Toy Story 3 (finally at least one movie that I really want to see and I’ll probably see both of them).  I guarantee that one of those two movies makes the summer top 20, but I’m keeping it a secret as to which one.

 Until next week,

Don

06/05/10

That’s right, the Summer Movie Contest Web Site is Go!!! 

 And yes, that is a timely homage to “Thunderbirds”.  And that’s only slightly better than an homage to “The Fabulous Thunderbirds”. 

 Anyway, you can check out the web site here:

 http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2010/contest2010.html

 You can peep out what everyone else picked and see an already out of date top 20 for this summer. 

 Please do me a favor and proof read your own list: I had to re-type them all so there is a chance that I made a mistake.  Let me know.

 Here are some things that I noticed:

 We’re all going to look like chumps if some combination of Iron Man 2, Toy Story 3, Twilight: Eclipse, and Shrek Forever After doesn’t end up as the top 4 movies this summer.  Almost all of us have those 4 as our top 4 although there is one “Karate Kid”, one “Eat Pay Love” and one “Inception” in the top 4.   

 Sean is going to look like a genius if The Karate Kid finishes near $250 million.  The next highest guess is $186 million.

 The Deej is going to look like a genius if “Ramona and Beezus” makes the top 20 for the summer; he’s the only one who has it on his list. 

 Meredith is going to look like a genius if “Eat Pray Love” makes close to $243 million.  The next highest guess is $91 million and only 8 of us even have it on our lists. 

 The word “Sorcerer” is very tricky for me to type for some reason. 

 And as a special treat, here’s a mid-weekend update: Get Him to The Greek made $6.2 million on Friday, Killers made $5.7 million, Marmaduke made $3.4 million, and Splice made $2.7 million.   I would say that that means that “Greek” is the only one of the four that even has a chance at making the top 20 this summer and even that is on the doubtful side.  Bummer for me who has “Killers” on my list and bummer for all of us who had any of those movies on our lists.  The Summer if disappointment continues…

 -Don

05/31/10

Mike hasn’t sent me all of your picks yet, so I haven’t gotten the web site finished and I don’t really know what everyone picked, but I figured I’d better do some kind of update before things get too far along. 

 Starting with Iron Man 2, it’s made about $279 million so far and I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it will probably finish with a “disappointing” $320-$340 million.  It may end up with a gross too low to help any of us, but KB and Ken still have a shot at some points and I won’t yet could out Peter, April, Nichole, or Froude.  I also think it’s still got a really good chance at being number one for the summer, but Toy Story 3 and the Twilight movie could both give it a run for its money (so to speak).

 Robin Hood cracked the $85 million mark for the Summer (meaning that I lost my first side bet) and is looking to finish with something in the neighborhood of $110 million (Maybe $120).  That could be good news for Geoff, Smokey, Corey, and possibly Russ and Fran.  Meredith and I are too low on it and think that everyone else it too high.  Has anyone seen it?  It looks completely boring to me, but obviously a decent number of people are interested in checking it out.  I personally think it would be better to call it “Robin Shouldn’t”.  Or on second thought maybe the actual name of it is better. 

 Shrek 17 has made $145 million after 11 days which is way below the pace of the last Shrek movie (I think it was called “Shrek vs. Jaws”, but you should Google it to be sure).  That previous film ended up with $322 million, but I’m guessing that this one doesn’t cross much over $250.  I’d say more likely it will end up with something in the neighborhood of $235, but it’s a bit difficult to nail down at this point.  I have it at $261, so here’s hoping that I’m wrong and that it holds on into the high $250s. 

 And further continuing the avalanche of disappointment, Sex and the City 2 brought in $51 million after a 5-day opening which is again substantially lower than the $57 million opening of the first movie.  It’s a not a good sign when a sequel can’t even reach the opening of the original and it seems doubtful that SC2 (as the kids call it) will reach the $152 million total of the first one.  Look for it to finish in the $130 million ballpark which could be good for me (I have it at $133). 

 I wish that I was about to talk about a film exceeding most expectations, but instead I’ve got to talk about Prince of Persia.  With only $37 million over a holiday weekend, I can’t see it having a really good chance at much more than $120 for the summer and even that might be wishful thinking.  Of course if you have it making $117 million for the summer like I do, then it actually is good news.  So see, things are looking up.  Of course in the “glass half empty” scenario it will probably make $106 million giving me no points at all. 

 Anyone who’s got “Just Wright” or “MacGruber” on their lists, I have some really bad news for you.  Just Wright has only made $18 million so far and MacGruber has only made $7 million.  That has to make MacGruber one of the biggest bombs in recent memory.  I know that it’s reported production budget was only $10 million, but I frankly think that number is way low and they had to spend at least that much on advertising.  I felt like I was seeing commercials for it about every minute and a half before it came out.  The bottom line is that neither of them is going to make the top 20 for the summer, so if you have them on your list, then you got those picks Just Wrong.  See what I did there?  Maybe if I had written MacGruber people would have gone to see it.

 This weekend is that bizarre “Get Him to the Greek”, “Killers”, ”Marmaduke”, “Splice” weekend which could see 4 wide releases that don’t get anywhere near the Summer Top 20.  My bet is that “Killers” will get somewhere near the bottom of the top 20 for the Summer and Maramduke could screw me up with a big opening (those kids movies always get me), but that “Greek” and “Splice” will both open below $20 million and not make the list.  I’m also hoping that no one goes to see Marmaduke, but that may be too much to ask.   If there’s one thing America can’t get enough of its giant dogs who wear sunglasse

 Hopefully I’ll get the web site completely up at some point this week, but until then you can still go there and look at all of the movie posters.  www.summermoviecontest.com 

Until next week,

Don

09/09/09

Hey Everyone,

 

It’s with what they call in them fancy reading books “mixed emotions” that I give you the results for the Summer Movie Contest of 2009! 

 

In order to build a little bit of suspense, I’ll go from lowest score to highest:

 

Christian 1 (you saved me from last place!  Yay!)

Don 2 (my worst year ever and I had such high hopes for a while there)

Mike C. 7

Melissa/Duane 10

Zak 10 (respectable for a rookie)

The Deej 11

Sean J. 16 (You tied the founder of this contest in your first year). 

Smokey 16

Corey 20

Sean K. 20 (and he actually paid!)

Fran 21 (looked really strong in the first 2/3 of the summer and then everything fell apart)

KB 21  (getting better every year)

Peter 29  (I’m keeping my eye on you for next year…)

April 30  (a fantastic score for a first timer; future contender??)

 

And in second place (and a prize of $80; more than double your investment) is:

 

Ken B.  with 51 points Congrats Ken!!! I shouldn’t rub it in (I just can’t help myself), but if UP had made just $1.4 million more, you would have won this year. 

 

And as you’ve probably guessed, the winner for the SECOND YEAR IN A ROW:

 

Nicole with a hefty 56 points and a $400 prize!  She had 5 movies ranked correctly, 4 movies within 5 million of the actual gross, and two bonuses for having the rank correct AND gross within 5 million.  I don’t know what your secret is, but I’m hoping to steal it one day. 

 

I haven’t updated the website yet (www.summermoviecontest.com), but I will within the next couple of days (maybe today).  So keep checking back (you know you want to). 

 

Thanks again everyone for a great summer and a great contest.  We’ll be back next year and I hope all of you will be too.  In the mean time you have my Survivor Pool, Smokey’s Oscar Contest for Smart People, and a  “normal” Oscar Pool to look forward to. 

 

Until next time…

-Don

09/04/10

Hey Everybody,

 

I know this might be a little too little too late, but I wanted to get one more update in before the final results on Tuesday night or Wednesday.  I decided to do my own guess at the final top 10 (without looking at Mike’s) and it’s almost identical to Smokey’s except that I think he’s just a bit high on District 9.  I think it will finish in the 101-104 range, but in the end I don’t think it will matter.  Here’s what we’re looking at final points wise:

 

Me 2 – If Ice Age 3 doesn’t make it to $194 million, I will come in last place for the first time ever.  Ugh. 

Christian 1-5 points – my only competition for last place

Zak 6 (you still did better than I did and it’s your first year)

Mike C. 7-8

Melissa/Duane 10

Corey 10-16 – Could finish exactly right on Night at the Museum

The Deej 11

Sean J. 11

Sean K. 11 – 15

Smokey 15-16

 

Honorable Mention goes to:

KB 20-21 – Could have had a lot more with a slightly lower guess on Harry Potter

Fran 17 – 32 – Needs GI joes to climb to $142 million and for Inglourious Basterds to pass Public Enemies. 

April 30 to 35 – Needs Harry Potter to not pass $296 million

Peter 20-38 – Needs GI Joe to finish with $140 million or less. 

 

Those who have a chance at this thing:

Ken B. 42 – 51 – Needs Star Trek to make it to $257 million and Julie and Julia to finish with less than $81 million (which at the same time gives Nicole the Win). 

Nicole 46 – 56 – She needs Julie and Julia to finish with less than $81 million (which will give her another 9 points) and Secondarily for GI Joe to make at least $140 million (which gives her 1 more point)

 

So, I probably did something wrong (which I’m sure Smokey will point out), and I’d like to steal Smokey’s disclaimer about not making an promises that things will actually turn out this way, but it looks to me like Nicole is going to win this thing AGAIN and Peter is going to grab 2nd place.  I wish it could add some more suspense to it, but sometimes you just can’t  spin the numbers enough. 

 

That would make 2 years in a row for Nicole which hasn’t happened in modern history (and maybe not ever). 

 

But, don’t could on it until the final numbers are in. 

 

Have a great Labor Day Weekend!!!

08/31/10

Greetings movie folks,

Don's still enjoying his vacation these days, so I'm (re) taking charge once again...and it's a good thing too as we're down to the final seven days of the contest!! (Funny, how in the years Don is towards the bottom point-wise, these updates become fewer and fewer...but I digress).

Anyway, since I'm a little rusty at these weekly updates I'm gonna do things a bit different this time.

I've already figured out the 'final top twenty' flicks of the summer and will now unveil them to you lucky folks a whole week in advance (of course, I make no promises things will actually turn out this way, Labor Day weekend has broken stronger men than I, in terms of predictions).

One quick aside, before the exciting list....it really is just about anyone's ball game this year.

However, If I were a betting man (which, come to think of it, I am) I'd be wagering a few bucks on Peter, Nicole, Ken and maybe even April to be among the top peeps this time next week....but I also might bet on myself as I'm that kinda guy (and would be losing $$ on me for sure!!).

 Second quick aside....(just to two folks)....Corey and Kernan....pay me.....this week....please!!!

Ok, business out of the way now, here's Smokey's top 20 of 2009*

 1. Tranny 2  $399

2. HP 6  $297-298

3. Up  $ 290

4. Hangover  $272

5. ST  $256

6.  Ice 3  $ 193-194

7. Wolvie  $ 179

8. Museum 2  $ 176-177

9. Proposal  $ 160-161   (and really, Americans should be ashamed for this)

10. GI Joe  $140-145  (speaking of embarassments)

11. Angels/Demons  $133

12. T4   $125

13. G Force  $114-116

14. District  $ 105-109

{15. Inglorious  $98

{16. Public  $97   these two will come down to the wire  ....not that it matters too much }

17. Ugly  $ 88

18. Julia  $78-81

19. Pelham  $65

20. Bruno  $59   (everyone's favorite talking penis movie rounds out the top twenty...beating out Adam Sandler's latest flick...insert your own joke here _______________________)

So..assuming I'm not smoking crack here at the office (again!!)..what's all this tell us? That's where you, the lucky reader, come in.  Head over to the site, check out the rules and figure out the scores for everyone...or at least the folks I named dropped and compare their scores to your own...if you beat everyone on that short list, you've got a great shot at some prize money...if not, you'll still beat Don!!     (sorry, but he just had a really bad year....easing the pain at my own terrible showing   :  \

Good luck and I'll be back next week to officially tell ya who's just a bit richer!!

Your pal,

Smokey

In case you forgot where our fancy site is, here's a hint--

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

* By top 20, I mean a hastily scribbled down list of random predictions through next weekend...not a real top 20....but ya never know, every dog finds a nut some days...or something like that.

08/11/09

Hello Folks,

 I took a week off last week just because I felt like it, but I’m back and here is the current top 20 of the summer:

 http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

 Here’s what’s going on:

 First of all, Aliens in the Attic, A Perfect Getaway, and The Collector all had debuts too low to be of concern for this contest.  None of us had those movies on our lists, so it really doesn’t matter. 

 Funny People had a decent opening weekend with $22 million and a disastrous 2nd weekend with a 65% drop and $7.8 million.  Mid-week grosses have brought it’s 10 day total to $40 million and it should have enough steam to make the top 20, but it may only barely reach the $60 million mark at the end of the Summer.  That could be good for April who has it at $50 million, but it looks like the rest of us all have it making too much to do us any good. 

 GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra did a pretty respectable $56 million in it’s opening 3 days, but I can’t imagine that the studio is too happy with that considering it’s reported $175 million budget and the fact that it dropped 18% from Friday to Saturday.  I know that some people will probably give me guff for saying this (because they’re guff givers), but I can’t really see it making a whole lot more than $120 million.  There are too many people in the right neighborhood to list everyone, but a lot of people could end up with some points from it.  Not me however who has it only making $70 million. 

 In the role of possible spoiler this summer, Julie and Julia opening on only 2300 screens and brought in an impressive $20 million.  It’s really too early for me to make a solid prediction, but seeing as it’s the only movie of its kind out there, it should be a shoe-in to hit at least $60 million and make the top 20 this summer.  Only Nicole, KB, Fran, and Ken B. even have it on their lists and although I think that KB’s guess is too low, I’m not going to count out any of them just yet.

 Here are some things that have changed (depending on your opinion of my earlier predictions):

 Harry Potter is looking like a lock for the number two spot this summer as it should end up in the low $300’s. 

 G-Force is going to sail past the $100 million mark leaving all of us pointless.

 The Ugly Truth looks to also flirt with $100 million (at least hight 90s) and that means that Peter’s looking pretty good at $96 million and Ken B. could get a point or two as he has it at $92 million. 

 Bruno is dead in the water at $60 million which will give Mike C. 1 point assuming it makes the top 20 at all.

 I think that’s good enough for this week.  Next week we may have a clear enough picture for me to attempt a guess at the final top 20 for the summer (minus Inglourious Basterds (and Shorts?) which doesn’t come out until the following week).  This weekend we have the releases of Summer Top 20 hopefuls Bandslam, District 9 (which looks great), The Goods, and The Time Traveler’s Wife.  We have so many movies grouped in the high 50’s low 60’s, that any one of these could sneak into the bottom of the list (except for Bandslam). 

Until Next Time,

-Don

07/28/09

Hey All,

 

Well I skipped a week mostly because of going to Comic-Con, but I’m back!  Aren’t you lucky!

 

Here’s the current top 20 of the Summer:

 

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

 

Here’s what’s happened since my last update:

 

After a massive $158 million opening, Harry Potter fell a somewhat surprising 62% in its second weekend bringing its total so far to $225 million.  Although this is slightly more than the “The Order of the Phoenix” made after the same number of days, “Half Blood Prince” is falling at a faster rate.  I’d look for it to finish close to $300 million which gives hope for points to Sean J., April, Corey, Sean K., Peter, KB, The Deej, Ken B., Smokey, and Me.  A few others still have an outside chance as well, but I think anyone who has it much over $310 million is probably out of luck. 

 

In what has to be a surprise to most of us, America still loves talking animals.  G-Force was the number 1 movie of the weekend and opened with a pretty strong $31 million.  Knowing kids movies, it’s probably got a pretty good chance at cracking $100 million, but I’d say that Sean K. at $83 million, Peter at $92 million, and Christian at $86 million all have a decent chance at some points from it.  Corey at $66 million is almost definitely too low and The Deej at $217 million is almost definitely too high.  The rest of us don’t have it on our lists at all and I even bet Corey $5 that it wouldn’t make the top 20 this summer so at least he has that to look forward to. 

 

The Ugly Truth had a fairly strong opening as well and brought in $27 million this past weekend further proving that America loves talking animals.  I really don’t know what to guess for a final gross as romantic comedies perform all over the place, but it should make $60 million without a problem and will probably get close to $90 million, but it could also be another “Proposal” and end up making $120+ million.  I’d say that everyone who has it on their list (except for me who probably has it too low) still has a chance at points from it. 

 

Bruno’s been dropping like a rock and has only managed an additional $26 million in the two weekends since its $30 million opening.  I looks like it’s going to finish right about $62 million for the Summer which would mean 1 point for Fran and 1 for Mike C. (5 points if Bruno makes it over the $63 million mark which isn’t out of the question). 

 

That’s about all that’s truly new. 

 

However, in the absence of an edition of Smokey’s Scratches I decided to see if I could come up with some sort of barometer to gauge how everyone is doing so far this year.  So as not to copy Smokey, I came up with “Don’s Best Guess at How Many Points You’re (probably) Guaranteed to Get Up To Now in This Year’s Summer Movie Contest”.  Or “DBGAHMPY(P)GTGUTNITYSMC” for Short.  I know that’s not as catchy at “Smokey’s Scratches”, but it’s the best I could think of.  Basically (as the name would reveal) I’ve tried to figure out how many points each of us is (probably) guaranteed to get so far.  For example, everyone who has Transformers listed as their number 1 movie gets 5 points below.  Keeping in mind that this is extremely unscientific and that I did it quickly and took some liberties (mostly with Harry Potter), here’s how I see the standings so far (in order from lowest points to highest points so as to build suspense).

 

At the very bottom we have…

Christian              1

Not picking transformers #1 really hurts (same for me and a couple of others). 

 

In the bottomish area we have…

Melissa/Duane 5 (however, they are the only ones who might still get Transformers exactly right)

Don                        6

KB                           6

The Deej              6

Smokey                6

Peter                     7

 

It’s a crummy Summer so far for some of us who have won this thing in the past. 

 

Then we get a nice section of people that I like to call the “middle and upper middle”…

Sean J.                 10

Zak                        10

Sean K.                 10

Mike C.                 10

Corey                    11

Ken B.                    13

 

Two of our three rookies are hanging in there. 

 

Next we have the “leaders so far”…

April                       15

Nicole                    15

 

April “The Third Rookie” looks like she could be a threat. 

 

And finally the “guy who I’m trying to jinx by saying he’s in first place right now”…

Fran                       17

 

He’s got a number of grosses in the ballpark and despite his numbers 2-5 picks looking pretty bad in terms of rankings, his Wolverine pick at number 6 could give him another 15 points.  He’s got to hope that Wolverine doesn’t manage to make it to $181 million and that no other movies this summer make more than Wolverine. 

 

Keep in mind that we still have 6 weekends left in this contest and quite a few movies still to come out.  Christian just needs to hit one movie exactly right to suddenly be in first place.  Also, there a LOT of ranking points still available that I didn’t count because aside from Transformers it’s still not possible to narrow down the rankings. 

 

Well that’s about it for this week.  This coming weekend we get three more contenders for the top 20 this summer; “Funny People”, “Aliens in the Attic” and “The Collector”.  I may just end up seeing Harry Potter in Imax 3D instead. 

 

Talk to you soon,

Don

07/14/09

Hello Summer Movie Prognosticators,

Another Tuesday Update!  I was too busy dragging my cat to the vet and then having my teeth drilled by Shaky McShakerson (that one’s for KB) to do this update yesterday, but until someone else volunteers for this job you’re stuck with working around my schedule.  You’re not the boss of me! 

Anyway, check out the current summer top 20 here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

I start off this week with a riddle: What are the two biggest differences between Transformers 2 and Bruno?  Answer: 1.  Transformers 2 is going to make a lot more money than Bruno.  2.  Transformers 2 is way gayer than Bruno.  Zing!

Bruno opened this past weekend with just over $30 million which is technically more than Borat’s $26 million opening, but Borat only played on 800 or so screens while Bruno was on 2500.  Additionally, Bruno had an incredibly steep drop off between Friday (14.4 million) and Saturday ($8.8 million) which does not bode well for its future.  Normally with a $30 opening I’d say that it was likely crack $100 million, but with that huge one day drop, I’d give Bruno more of a chance to finish in the $60-$80 range and even that may be a bit optimistic.   I’d say that Peter, Fran, Mike C., and Me all still have a chance at some points from it and I’m going to say that the rest of you have it too high.  However, Mike C. at $68 million and Fran at $71 million have the best chances.  Personally I really enjoyed the movie and thought it was damn funny. 

Beth Cooper tanked at $4.5 million, but we all knew that was going to happen. 

Ice Age had a pretty slim 33% drop in its second weekend and brought it’s two weekend total to $119 million.  With that kind of a drop, I’m going to upwardly revise my last week’s prediction and say that it should get into the $200 million neighborhood.  I’d say that Zak, Sean K., Nicole, Christian, The Deej, Melissa/Duane, Ken B., and Mike C. could still score some points from Ice Age 3. 

Public Enemies fell a steeper than I expected, but not terrible at 45% in its second weekend bringing in another $13 million and boosting its total to $66 million.  I’d say that it won’t get much past $100 million and may even finish in the high $90s.  Sean J. at $97 million is looking pretty good along with April at $99 million, Fran at $104 million, and I’ll even through in KB who has it at $92 million because you never know until you know.  You know? 

I’m now starting to doubt what I said last week about Transformers 2 probably passing $450 million.  Granted it brought in another $24 million this past weekend and it has made $339 so far, but with a 42% drop I’ll say that it’s going to finish in the $410-$420 million range.  That could work out nicely for Melissa/Duane who have it at number one for the summer at $420 million. 

Everything else looks to be about the same as I said it was last week.

The only big release this weekend (actually tomorrow) is Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.  I’ll give you a little hint; there’s a good chance it will be number one this weekend. 

Enjoy the rest of your week. 

-Don

07/07/09

Hey Summer Movie Contest Swingers,

I figured that you all were getting too used to having Monday updates, so I thought I’d mix things up and do it on Tuesday instead this week.  The web site is updated and you and can see the current top 20 of the summer here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

Ice Age 3 had a weekend total of $41 million and 5 day debut of $64 million which secures it a spot in the top 20 for this summer.  Knowing kids movies, I’d look for it to finish in the $180+ million neighborhood which gives some hope to Zak, April, Corey, Sean K., Nicole, Peter, KB, Christian, The Deej, Melissa/Duane, Ken, Mike C., Smokey, and Me.  Phew.  It would have been easier to list the people who aren’t going to get any points. 

The terribly disappointing, but not terrible Public Enemies brought in $40 million for the 5 day holiday weekend and will easily make the top 20 for the summer.  I don’t imagine that word of mouth will be super strong on it, but it is one of the few “adult” movies out this summer.  It will certainly crack $100 million, but I don’t think I’d even like to guess as to by how much.  Everyone who has it at $100 million or higher should still have a chance at some points from it.  You all know who you are. 

After only 2 weeks, Transformers 2 has become the number 1 movie of the summer and I can’t imagine that changing before labor day.  It’s already brought in $293 million and fell a better than I expected 61% in its second weekend.  It’s a guarantee to make over $400 million for the summer and will probably pass $450 million as well.  I think I said it last week, but Melissa/Duane at $420 million are the only ones who have a shot at getting points from its gross, but everyone who has it ranked at #1 will get 5 points from that.

Thanks to Ice Age 3, Up is slowing down a bit and “only” brought in another $6.5 million this past weekend which was a 50% drop from a week ago.  It should finish up in the low to mid $280 million range which is bad for everyone except possibly for Ken who’s got it at $293 million. 

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 continues to drop rapidly and only managed a $2.5 million 4th of July weekend which brings its total to $58 million so far.  It’s extremely doubly that it will get past $65 million by Labor Day which might mean 1 point for me (I have it at $74 million), but even that may not happen. 

Star Trek is narrowing in on a $255 million finish for the summer which essentially screws everyone except for Ken who has it at $258 million.  He’s pretty much guaranteed to get 5 points from it and he even has a shot at 10 points if it holds on a bit better than I think it will. If Harry Potter and The Hangover both pass it (assuming that nothing else this summer is going to make more than $255 million) Ken would also have the rank correct which would give him 5 bonus points (so 15 to 20 points total).  Not bad for him. 

Speaking of The Hangover, it had the 2nd  lowest percentage drop of the week with 33% to bring in another $11 million.  It should finish with at least $240 million and could reach as high as $260 million.  This won’t get anyone any points from its gross, but could help some with rankings on other movies (see Ken above). 

Further proving that America is bad, The Proposal only fell 30% this weekend and brought in another $12 million brining it’s three weekend total to $94 million.  At that rate it’s likely to finish in the $150 million neighborhood which MIGHT mean a point for Fran who has it at $135 million.

Wolverine looks to finish with $179 million for the summer which should be good for 5 points for Nicole and Fran and one point for Peter. 

Night at the Museum II is narrowing in on a $175ish million finish for the summer which is great news for Corey who has it at exactly $175 million, pretty good news for me who has it at $170 million and, okay news for Peter who has it at $168 million. 

Angels and Demons will finish with $132-$133 million which will give Fran 5 points and nobody else.

Terminator Salvation will finish with $123 million which is lower than any of us have it. 

Ghosts of Girlfriends past is looking more and more like a movie that’s going to get into the top 20 for the summer and has settled in to a $54 million finish.  As I’ve pointed out before, none of us are going to get any points from its gross, but it’s still possible for a few people to get points from its ranking. 

Land of the Lost is going to finish with $48-$49 million and may not make the top 20.  I don’t think that anyone’s going to get any points from this one. 

Drag me to Hell looks like it’s done at $41 million and in theory it won’t make the top 20.

Year One might make as much as $45 million by Labor Day which certainly puts its top 20 hopes into question.  Everyone who has it on their list has it grossing way too much, but Corey and Peter have it at number 19 for rank which still isn’t completely out of the question.  I’d be surprised if it makes it, but it could happen.

 This weekend we get “Bruno”, a movie that I’m terribly excited to see and “I Love you Beth Cooper” another movie that no one should see.  One of those two movies will be in the top 20 for this summer and one of them won’t.  I’ll leave you with that keep you in suspense until Monday. 

 Until next week,

Don

 06/29/09

Hey Everyone,

I hope you all had good weekends, I know I did.  I’ve managed to update the website again and you can scope out the current top 20 for the summer right here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

I begin this week by asking the question, why are you bad America?  Approximately 22 million people paid money on purpose to see Transformers 2 in the last 5 days.  When I saw the number I thought that it must be some kind of mistake, but apparently it really did have the 2nd highest 5-day opening of all time.  With $200 million in just 5 days, it’s almost a certainty that Tranny 2 (copyright Smokey Ling, 2009) will be the number 1 movie of the Summer, but narrowing down a final gross is pretty difficult at this time.  It held up surprisingly well over the weekend for a genre sequel as the Saturday gross was almost 10% higher than the Friday Gross and the Sunday gross only fell 20% from Saturday.  My instincts are that it should drop like a rock this week, but those kinds of weekend numbers show that it might just hang on well enough to blow by the $400 million mark.  Plus, there isn’t any real direct competition for it coming out over the 4th of July weekend.  I’m hesitant to even guess right now, but the couple of us who don’t have Tranny 2 as the number one movie this summer are screwed.  In fact, anyone who has it under $300 is screwed on points anyone who has it under $350 is probably out of luck as well.  I’d say the few of you with it over $350 (Nicole, Peter, Melissa/Duane, and KB) are really the only ones with a chance at points from it from its gross.  Everyone who has it listed at number one should get 5 points for the ranking though, so some of you can take solace in that, but not me.   

Also opening this past weekend was My Sister’s Keeper which did a stronger than I expected $12 million, but that shouldn’t be enough to get it into the top 20 for the Summer.  That’s bad news for Ken who’s the only one of us who had it on his list. 

In other news, The Proposal had a respectable 44% drop this past weekend to bring in another $18 million and boost the film’s grand total to $69 million after 10 days.  If it holds up that pace, it should fall into the neighborhood of $130 million (give or take) for the summer which looks really good for Fran, not too bad for Nicole, and terrible for the rest of us. 

Year One has a massive meltdown and fell 69% in its second weekend bringing in only $6 million.  With $32 million after 10 days, it’s looking like it won’t get much past $40 million for the summer and is extremely questionable for the overall top 20.  If it does make the top 20, it’s not going to make enough to give any of us any points from it.  We’re either going to see a really low “number 20” film this summer or there are still some surprise grosses yet to come. 

Up passed the $250 million mark this past weekend and has temporarily taken the number 1 spot for the summer.  Officially Ken is now the only one if us who has any hope at getting some points from its gross. 

Everything else is pretty much on track with what I’ve said in previous updates. 

After a fairly long lull since The Hangover came out, this weekend we finally get something I’m excited to see with the release of Public Enemies.  It should be a lock to make the top 20 this summer, but funny enough every single one of us picked the other Christian Bale movie this summer to make more money and now there’s a very real chance that all of us will be wrong.  We also get Ice Age 3 this weekend which might also be worth a gander if for nothing else other than the 3-D and to stay out of the heat. 

If I don’t talk to you, Happy 4th of July!

Be Seeing You,

Don

 06/22/09

Hey Again,

It’s another Monday Summer Movie Contest Update!   You can check out the current top 20 for the summer on the web site:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

Well, The Proposal did far better than I ever imagined that it would proving that Sandra Bullock needs to keep making romantic comedies (what am I saying????).   With a $33 million opening it’s a lock to make the top 20 for the Summer and it should do at least $70 million by Labor Day, will probably crack $100 million, and has the potential to do $120 - $150 million.  We’ll have a better idea of its potential after next weekend, but without summarily ruling anything out just yet, I would say that everyone who has it on their list (April, Sean K., Nicole, Peter, Christian, Fran, Melissa/Duane, and Mike C.) all still have a chance at some points from it. 

Year One opened with a more modest $19 million, but that will still probably be enough to get it into the top 20 for the Summer, although it’s chances are quite a bit less certain than the Proposal.  If it drops like a rock, it may not have enough steam to get to $50 million, but if it performs more along the lines of Nacho Libre or School of Rock, it should get into the $60 million range.  In theory it could still do anything, but I’d say that Fran’s pick of $198 million and Sean K.’s pick of $140 million are quite a bit too high.  Everyone else who has it on their list (Sean J., Zak, April, Corey, Peter, Christian, The Deej, Fran, Smokey, and Me) all still have at least some hope of some points (although some of us have more hope than others). 

The Hangover continues to hang over the competition and only dropped an astonishing 18% in its third weekend bringing it to $152 million in just 17 days.  It is now on pace to far outgross “The Wedding Crashers” which ended up with $209 million.  I hate to even narrow it down to a range at this point, but we could be looking at something in the $230 to $250 million neighborhood.  Of course, that’s bad news for all of us as far as the contest is concerned.

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 took a substantial 49% drop in its second weekend and has managed $44 million after 10 days.  I’m sticking with my $60 - $75 million prediction from last week although that may turn out to be a little too high.  It still doesn’t look out of the question for Corey, KB, Melissa/Duane, and Me. 

Land of the Lost made less than $4 million this past weekend bringing its 3 week total to a little over $43 million.  It’s looking like it won’t even make it to $54 million which would give KB one point for it. 

Up is looking more and more like a movie that’s going to cross the $275 million mark as it brought in another $21 million this past weekend.  That takes a few of us out of the running for any points from it and leaves Melissa/Duane and Ken B. the best chance at points from it. 

Night at the Museum II inexplicably picked up some steam this past weekend and only fell 24% for a $7 million take; it’s looking like it might now finish in the mid $170s which is very good news for Corey ($175) and not such good news for Peter ($168 million) and Me ($170 million). 

Everything else is pretty much the same as last week. 

This coming weekend we get a potential contender for number one movie of the summer with the release of “My Sister’s Keeper”.  On Wednesday we also have the release of a little known German art film whose title roughly translates into English as “Transformer: Revenge of the Fallen”.  I’m skipping both of them and will probably hang out at the beach with my visiting sister instead. 

Enjoy your week.

-Don

 

06/15/08

Hello All,

The website has been updated with the current top 20 for the summer and you can lay your peepers on it here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

At least two weird and/or strange things happened in Summer Movie Contest land over the weekend.  The first one is that “The Hangover” only dropped 27% in its second weekend (almost unheard of these days for a non-kids movie) and brought in another $32 million.  That brings its 10 day total to $105 million and means that it will likely flirt with the $200 million mark.  In fact, if it continues to only drop 25% a week, it would go a decent bit past $200 million by Labor Day.  At this point, even Sean J. who has the highest pick with $150 million is going to be too low.  If you had told me a month ago that The Hangover was going to make more money than Angels & Demons, Night at the Museum II, and Terminator: Salvation, I would have said you were crazy.  Now it’s looking like a sure thing for a top 5 finish. 

The second weird and/or strange thing is NOT that “Imagine That” bombed, but how badly it bombed.  I would imagine that (get it?) even the most cynical guessers would have picked it to make more than $10 million its opening weekend. It only managed to make $5.5 million which cements it to the Eddie Murphy HUGE BOMB list pretty much just behind Pluto Nash (although the budget is a reported $55 million, which is fairly low).  Anyway, it’s not going to make it onto the Summer top 20 and that’s bad news for Zak, April, Sean K., Nicole, The Deej, Ken B., Mike C., and Me who all have it on our lists.  Phooey. 

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 opened with a decent $23 million which should easily be enough to get it into the top 20 for the summer.  It’s a bit early to make a solid prediction, but unless it drops like a rock next weekend I’d look for it to finish in the $60 to $75 million range which gives hope for points to Corey, KB, Melissa/Duane, and Me.  If it holds on really well, it might give some points to Sean K., Mike C., and/or Peter, but it think that’s unlikely.  The rest of you either have it too high (probably) or don’t have it on your lists at all. 

Land of The Lost fell slightly steeper than I thought it would and with a 51% drop only brought in $9 million this weekend.  Look for it to finish in the mid $50s.  With a lot of films still to come there’s even a chance it won’t make the top 20 this summer.  We might not know until Labor Day weekend.  As I think I mentioned last week, only KB has a shot at some points from Land of the Lost. 

I don’t think that anything else is drastically different from what I’ve said in previous emails:

Up is on track for $250 million plus – possibly good for Christian, Melissa/Duane, Ken B., and Me. 

Night at the Museum II is going to land around $170 million possibly good for Corey, Sean K., Nicole, Peter, and Me. 

Star Trek is going to finish right around $250 million which is probably good for Zak and may be good for a point for Smokey.  If it picks up some steam and makes it past $265 it would mean at least one point for April (this is unlikely).

Terminator Salvation is looking to end with something in the low to mid $120s which is too low for all of us. 

Angels and Demons should settle in around $135 million which could be good for Fran who has it at $128 million.  It would be even better for Fran if it doesn’t pass $133.  If it somehow manages to make $140 million, that would screw Fran, but Peter would get a point. 

Wolverine is on his last legs and is unlikely to make it to $180 million.  That’s very good for Nicole and Fran who should get 5 points from it and sort of good for Peter who should get 1 point from it.  If it does make it to exactly $180 million, than all three of them get 5 points from it.  If it makes it to $181 million, then Peter gets the 5 points and Nicole and Fran get a single point.  I think it’s going to make Peter unhappy and finish with $178-$179. 

Ghosts of Girlfriends Past should finish with $53 million and is still a question mark for making the top 20 for the Summer.  If it does make the top 20, no one is close enough to get any points from it and its job will be to play spoiler. 

This weekend we have the release of two more contenders for the Summer Top 20 and again we have two comedies coming out the same day.  I worked on “The Proposal” for two weeks which pretty much guarantees that it’s a crappy movie, but it could make some money.  I did not work on “Year One”, but I was in Shreveport when they were making it (I know you’re saying to yourself, “Thanks for the information, Don.  That’s useful stuff”).  Despite what I’ve heard about it, Year One does look pretty funny.  Now that our houseguests are gone, I might have some time to see some movies.  It looks like Catherine and I are going to check out The Hangover tonight just like everyone else apparently. 

Well, that’s all the news I can fit into my day to print.  Until next week.

Good Luck!

-Don

06/08/09

I have once again updated the website with the current top 20 of the summer and you can check it out here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

Well, the biggest news from the weekend is how sore Fran must be after kicking himself so hard for not sticking with his instincts that Land of the Lost was going to be a bomb.  The movie with a budget reportedly north of $100 million dollars only brought in $19 million in its opening weekend which puts it pretty close to the bomb category.  With that kind of an opening I can’t really see it making much more than $60 million for the entire summer and it’s even possible that it won’t even do as well as Ghosts of Girlfriends Past which is just shy of $52 million at this point.  KB, who has it at $64 million for the Summer probably has the best chance at some points from this one with Melissa/Duane at $73 million with the second best chance.  The rest of us are anywhere from too high to way too high to have a shot. 

Other interesting news from the weekend included the surprisingly high (surprising to most anyway) opening for The Hangover.  It brought in nearly $45 million for the weekend which is a good $10+ million more than the highest predictions I saw online.  Its final gross for the summer is a wide open guess, but I’d say it should finish anywhere between $90 and $130 million.  This gives Peter, Christian, The Deej, Fran and if it holds on really well Sean J. a chance at points.  We’ll know more after next weekend. 

Christian can’t be too happy with the $3 million opening of My Life in Ruins.  It pretty much has a 0% chance of making it into the top 20 for the summer.  Sorry Christian.  Congrats to the rest of us!

Up did remarkably well in its second weekend bringing in another $44 million for a 10 day total of #137 million.  It’s $10 million ahead of Wall-E at the same point, $18 million ahead of Ratatouille, $11 million ahead of Cars, and $7 million behind Finding Nemo.  I predict at this point that it’s pretty much a lock to pass $230 million and could very well pass $250 million.  Christian at $240 million, Melissa/Duance at $260 million, The Deej at $228 million, Me at $245 million, and possibly Ken B. at $293 million all have a shot at some points. 

Drag me to Hell fell a steep 53% in its second weekend and as I predicted last week, with $28 million after two weeks it’s going to struggle to make the top 20 for the summer.  Stranger things have happened though. 

Terminator: Salvation is falling even faster than I thought it would and only made about $15 million all week.  I now think that it’s highly unlikely for it to make enough money for any of us to get any points from it. 

Star Trek, Angels and Demons, Wolverine, and Night at the Museum II all remained about the same as what I said about them last week. 

This weekend we get the Eddie Murphy kids comedy “Imagine That” and the Denzel Washington/John Travolta remake of “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3”.  About half of us don’t even have Imaging That making the top 20 for the summer and the other half have it making between $64 and $134 million.  Six of us don’t have “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3” on our lists and the rest of us have predicted between $84 and $111 million.  I definitely don’t want to see Imagine that and I’m only mildly interested in Pelham, but I think that both (especially Pelham) have a damn good chance at making the list.  It depends on how many people want to go see a movie starring a guy who likes tranny hookers and how many would rather go see “Imagine That” (think about that for a second).  We shall see.

Until next week,

Don

06/02/09

Sorry I’ve been a bit quiet so far for this Summer’s Contest, but work and visits and visitors have conspired against me lately. Thanks to the actors/economy/runaway production, I should be able to put out weekly updates for the foreseeable future (i.e. I’m unemployed now).  Anyway, I’ve updated the website with the current grosses for the summer and you can find them here:

http://www.summermoviecontest.com/summer2009/contest2009.htm

Also, please do me a favor and check that all of your picks are correct; I had to re-type most of your lists and one mistake has been discovered already.

Anyway, here are some thoughts and opinions that I have about the contest so far:

Star Trek is hanging tough after 4 weekends and has amassed a franchise record of $209 million so far.  It’s dropping less than 45% a week and I suspect it will finish in the neighborhood of $250 million for the Summer.  In my humble opinion, only Transformers and Harry Potter have a really solid chance at passing that number and I’m going to go so far as to say we might have a crazy upset with Harry Potter ending up the number one movie this year (maybe).  Of course now that I’ve said that “The Proposal” will make $400 million.  Anyway, Zak, Ken, and Smokey probably have the best chances at some points from Star Trek with Peter still having a little bit of hope as well. 

Angels and Demons is far underperforming The Da Vinci Code and has only managed $104 million after three weekends.  It snagged just over $11 million this past weekend and I think it’s going to struggle to make it much past $130 million and it may not even make that much.   Fran is sitting pretty on this one with a guess of $128 million and rest of us are pretty much out of the running. 

Although it’s had the best opening of the summer so far, Wolverine has dropped substantially every week and looks to finish for the summer in the high $170s or very low $180s.  Nicole, Peter, and Fran all look to score at least 1 point from Wolverine and possibly more depending on which side of $180 million it finally falls on.  Nicole and Fran need to hope that people stop going to see it and Peter needs to hope that a few more still want to check it out. 

Night at the Museum II has made $105 million after 10 days, but it fell a steep 53% in its second weekend which isn’t good for any film, but is especially not good for a family film.  Look for it to finish with something between $150 and $200 million (closer to $175 million if I’m forced to guess now) which gives some hope for points to Corey, Peter, Me and an outside chance to Sean J, Zak, Christian, and Smokey. 

Terminator: Salvation has “only” made $90 million after its second weekend and it suffered a terrible 62% drop over the past 3 days as compared to its first 3 days.  It’s going to be pretty difficult for Terminator to even make it to $150 million by the end of the summer.   Every single one of us has it making more than $150 million and I’d really only give Zak ($164 million), April ($155 million), and Fran ($164 million) a chance at any points from the gross on this one. 

The spoiler to watch so far is Ghosts of Girlfriend’s Past which has quietly made its way to $50 million so far this summer and isn’t quite done yet.  None of us looks to be close enough on the gross to get any points, but Ghosts could just sneak into the bottom of the top 20 this summer and ruin some of our fun. 

Sorry to Zak (the only one of us with it on his list), but with only $19.2 million after 2 weekends, Dance Flick is not going to make the top 20 this summer.  Likewise to Next Day Air, but we all knew that. 

Up opened with about $68 million this weekend; $5 million more than Wall-E which finished with $223 million and $19 million more than Ratatouille which finished with $203 million.  It’s way too early to narrow it down, but if it follows the “Pixar Pattern” (I just made that up) it should easily pass $200 million and could soar to $250 million or more (but probably not).  I said that it could “soar to $250 million” because the movie is about a flying house.  Get it?  In my early opinion, I’d give April, Sean K, Nicole, Peter, KB, Christian, The Deej, Fran, Melissa/Duane, Mike C., Ken and Myself all a chance at some points with everyone else (who picked it to make less than $200 million very little chance at some points.

Drag Me to Hell opened with only $16.6 million this weekend and what’s worse is that it made less money on Saturday than it did on Friday which is never a good sign for a movie. Given the track record for horror films dropping like rocks after their opening weekends, I’d say it’s unlikely for DMTH to even reach $40 million and therefore it looks bleak for it to make the top 20 for this summer.  That’s bad news for Christian, The Deej, Mike C., Smokey, and Sean J. who all have it on their lists. 

This weekend we get a comedy battle (why they scheduled both of these movies to open on the same day I’ll never know) with “Land of the Lost” and “The Hangover”.  I want to see both, but I’m leaning heavily towards seeing The Hangover first.  We’ll see what America thinks.  We also get “My Life In Ruins” which only Christian has on his list.  We’ll find out on Monday if Christian is actually some kind of movie guessing genius or whether the rest of us can laugh at him. 

Until next week,

-Don

09/03/08

Well another Summer has come and gone and another Summer movie contest has come to an end. The accounting firm of Ling and Wygal has tabulated the scores and we have a winner...

Congratulations to long-time player and first time winner Nicole! She strolled to victory with a hearty 41 points; 11 points more than the second place finisher. A dominant victory indeed. She was extremely close to getting points in about 10 other instances and could have set the record had things been slightly different. Well done!

In case you're interested, here's the breakdown:

5 points for Iron Man Rank
5 points for Iron Man Gross
5 bonus points for Iron Man Rank and Gross
5 points for Hancock Rank
1 point for Indy Jones Gross
10 points for Hulk Gross
10 points for Hellboy Gross
 

And that's how you win the Summer Movie Contest. 

Congrats are also in order for Sean who nicely racked up 30 points which was good enough for the silver medal (no actual medal will be awarded). We had three people tie for 3rd with 25 points, so honorable mentions go to Melissa, Russ (last year's winner) and Smokey (multiple winner who bounced back after his last place finish a year ago).

I have the Final Summer top 20 and all of the points and ranks updated on the Contest 2008 page.  Check it out if you're so inclined. 

Thanks everyone for playing and we'll see you all when we do this again next May! Your assignment until then is to recruit at least one more player for the game. Good Luck!

The final scores and ranks are below:

Nicole 41
Sean 30
Melissa 25
Russ 25
Smokey 25
Froude 22
Duane 21
Peter 21
Fran 20

Troy 16
Don 16
KB 12
Corey 7
 

See you next year!

-Don

 

09/02/08

The final grosses haven’t been posted yet, but based on the estimates, nearly everything made less than it should have.

Here’s what it looks like based on the estimates:

Wanted did NOT pass the Hulk, so The Hulk will probably be ranked #9.
Neither Step Brothers, The Mummy III, nor Journey to the Center of the Earth passed Zohan. It looks like:

#13 Zohan
#14 Step Brothers
#15 The Mummy
#16- Journey to the Center of the Earth

However, Step Brothers and The Mummy are less than $200,000 apart based on the estimates, so they could flip.

What does all this mean as to who the winner is? I don’t know yet.

Nicole probably still has it, but we could have a surprise on our hands. More will follow once the final numbers are posted and Mike and I have had a chance to do the final scores (probably tomorrow).

-Don
 

08/26/08

Hey folks,
After Don's exciting update, I got to thinking there's no need for scratchers this week but I wanted to give you something (since I'm that kinda guy), so here's what I got.
The (not really but should be pretty damn close to) FINAL SCORES!!!!

Of course, these aren't official so don't go out and buy a new car tonight Nicole...almost every year I do this something does crazy numbers over the hard to guess holiday weekend and changes at least 2-3 people's ranking...sometimes it'll affect the top folks, sometime the bottom...only time will tell.
That said, here's how I see the summer contest ending up for two lucky people (and 11 poor souls)
Nicole 41
Kernan 36
Fran 25
Peter 21
Melissa 20
Troy 17
Duane 17
Smokey 15 ugh
Russ 15
Corey 13
Froude 12
KB 12 (or 21 if Panda leaves theatres TODAY)
Don 11
Entertainment Weekly 0

I'll be back in a week with the final (for reals) numbers, the awarding of the $$ ceremony, and whatever pithy comments I can think of.
Enjoy the holiday weekend folks and thanks for playing this year.

smokey


 

08/25/08

Hey Everybody! We only have one weekend left in the Summer Movie Contest and things are going to be interesting. I’ve updated the web site, www.summpermoviecontest.com with the latest grosses if you want to take a look.

I worked up a probable Summer top 20 and calculated everyone’s “locked” score and the highest score that everyone could possibly make, and below is what I’ve come up with. Keep in mind that this is just my best guess and I’ve been known to be wrong before.

Corey – 2 to 17 points (A bad year for this perennial favorite and my best chance at not coming in last place this year)
Don – 6 to 16 points (not a good year for yours truly)
Troy - 11 to 18 points (he’s better at making movies than he is at picking them – looks for his film “Broken Fences” on DVD soon).
Smokey – 11 to 25 points (needs pineapple express to land between 80 – 82 million to not land near the basement)
Peter – 12 to 26 points (pretty good job for the rookie)
Russ – 15 to 25 points (last year’s winner has a decent showing, but not quite good enough for a repeat)
KB – 16 to 21 points (guessed Kung Fu Panda almost perfectly)
Fran – 11 to 31 – (will probably get 10 points for Hancock’s gross and has a decent shot at 10 for The Mummy’s gross – ALSO has the Hulk ranked at #10 – see note below)
Melissa 20 to 36 points (nice job on what I believe is her first solo effort – Although it might look like she could still win, unfortunately for her, the same things that would help her (mostly the Hulk finishing at #10), would also help Sean, Nicole, and Duane.

Here are the people who can still win this thing:

Christian – 17 to 33 – he could technically still win, but he needs A LOT of help.

1. Needs total disaster to strike for Sean, Nicole AND Duane.
2. Needs Hancock to make it to $229 million.
3. Needs Tropic Thunder to finish with $88 to $90 million;

I think that’s probably too much to ask for, but you never know.

Duane – 32 to 55 points

1. Needs Hancock to NOT pass 230 million (almost a lock – if it somehow doesn’t make it to $227 million (it’s at $226,344,000 right now), that’s 5 more points for him that I’m not counting)
2. Needs Wanted to pass the The Hulk so that The Hulk ends up ranked #10 – This same thing helps Fran, Melissa, Sean, AND Nicole who all have The Hulk ranked at #10 – strange).
3. Needs Zohan to squeeze it out to $100 million (50/50 shot).
4. Needs The Mummy OR Step Brothers to pass Zohan, but not both (it’s going to be close)

Sean 30 to 55 points

Sean needs a lot of things to happen:
1. Wanted needs to pass the Hulk so that the Hulk ends up ranked #10. (probable)
2. The Mummy III needs to pass Step Brothers AND Zohan. (probable)
3. Step Brothers needs to pass Zohan, but not Step Brothers. (probable)
4. The Mummy III needs to get to $107 million (almost impossible)

Nicole 26 – 51 points – May have the best list ever to still not win this contest – she’s within 20 million on something like 10 movies and is one ranking off on 5 or 6 (in addition to the rankings she has correct); it would be difficult for her to do worse than 2nd place.

1. Nicole needs for Wanted to pass the Hulk so that The Hulk ends up ranked #10 (probable).
2. Nicole needs Step Brothers to pass Zohan AND The Mummy III (not likely, but not impossible)
3. Needs some things to NOT go well for Duane and Sean.

Unless I’ve made some crazy error, the one thing I do know is that we’ll have a winner who’s never won before and I guess if it can’t be me, that’s a good thing. Well, now all we can do is wait and see. Good luck to all; I’ll have my fingers crossed for you.

-Don
 

08/05/08

A new edition of Smokey's Scratches has been posted.  Enjoy!

07/31/08

Hey All,

I found a few moments while my parents are visiting to update the Summer Movie Contest Web Site (www.summermoviecontest.com) and I thought I’d send out a little update at the same time. Without further adieu, here are the highlights:

As Smokey mentioned last week, The Dark Knight is going to make more money than any of us have it and will easily be the number one movie of the Summer. This doesn’t help anyone in terms of the contest, but it sure is a good movie. I just saw it for the second time and this time it was in IMAX; well worth it if you get the chance. It looks like The Dark Knight should become the 2nd highest grossing movie of all time (in North America at least) which none is us could have predicted. It has a decent shot at getting close to $500 million before it’s done.

Step Brothers opened with a relatively impressive $30 million this past weekend which should easily secure it a spot in this year’s top 20. I don’t expect it to hit Talladega Nights type numbers, but it should end up in the neighborhood of $100 to $120 million. I’d say that KB, Troy, Smokey, Nicole, and Peter all have a shot at some points here.

The X-Files: I Wanted to Make Money opened with a terribly disappointing $10 million this past weekend and almost certainly won’t make the top 20 this summer. That’s bad news for all of us who have it on our lists which I believe is everyone except for Christian and Sean. Nice guessing guys.

Indy and Iron Man are still neck and neck for the number 2 spot and I actually think it’s too close to call, but since you asked, I think that Indy will just barely hold on. Nicole is looking strong with her Iron Man at $315 (even stronger if it holds on to the number 2 spot) and Sean is just a tad high on Indy with $319 and the rest of us aren’t looking so good.

Wall-E is making far less than I expected it to and will probably top out at roughly $210 million for the summer. Christian and Troy appear to have the lowest guesses on Wall-E with $224 and $225 respectively. It’s possible that it will hold on for enough to get each of them a point, but I doubt it will make much more than that. I guess French rats are more loveable than robots after all.

Christian and Troy and KB are looking strong on Kung Fu Panda which should finish with about $212.

Duane, Christian, and Fran should be in for some points on Hancock which looks to finish in the $220 to $230 range.

Melissa, Corey, Sean, Nicole and I should score with The Hulk when it finishes with $133 to $134 million.

KB looks to get a point from Wanted when it finishes with $133 to $135 million.

Melissa, Fran, and Peter are heading for points from get Smart which should finish with $127 to $130 million.

Zohan looks like it will top out at $99 Million giving some points to Duane, and only Duane.

Sean is looking almost perfect for What Happens in Vegas which should finish with $80 million.

Hellboy II should finish with $75 to $80 million which is looking really good for Smokey, Russ, Corey, Troy, and Nicole.

Mamma Mia is a little difficult to call right now, but it should make $100 and will probably make more like $115. That has potential for Sean and Nicole who are the only two people in the contest to even have it on their lists.

For some reason Journey to the Center of the Earth fell 41% in its second weekend and only 21% in its third weekend making it a little difficult to nail down. It should be a shoe-in for $80 million and could wind up with closer to $100. The following people have it making in that range: Peter and that is all.

That’s about all I can muster at the moment and probably more than you wanted to read anyway. This weekend we get The Mummy and Swing Vote. It might be time to see The Dark Knight (again) or Wall-E (again).

Until next time,
Don
 

07/21/08

A new addition of Smokey's Scratches has been posted for your enjoyment. 

-Don

07/01/08

A new addition of Smokey's Scratches has been posted for your enjoyment. 

-Don

06/30/08

In the immortal words of Dr. Nick: “Hey Everybody!”

It’s time for another Summer Movie Contest Update! More Fun than a barrel of fun things! Let’s start, shall we?

The web site, www.summermoviecontest.com, is updated with the latest grosses, and it will be a surprise to no one that Wall-E opened with $63 million this past weekend; a similar debut to Cars and just a little under The Incredibles and Finding Nemo. If it keeps the usual Pixar Pattern (copyright 2008, Wygal Enterprises), it should make at least $240 million and could wind up with something near $300 million. This is the range in which nearly all of us have it, so it’s still anyone’s game for some points here.

Most of us (Except for me and Corey) are also (possibly) in the ballpark on Wanted which brought in a hefty $51 million this past weekend. I’m guessing that it will drop fairly quickly and end up with around $130 to $150 million which gives KB, Nicole, Smokey, and Peter a good shot at some points. Of course, it’s probably way too early for me to be calling that out and almost anything can happen (except for me and Corey getting points from it).

Get smart fell a steep 48% in its second weekend, but still managed to pull in $20 million and climb to $77 million in just 10 days. Anne Hathaway is pretty. Look for Melissa, Duane, Fran, Peter, Me (whaaaa?!?!?) and possibly Smokey to have a shot at some points from this film as I imagine it to finish in the $115 to $130 range.

The Love Guru on the other hand is dead. With a 61% drop and only $25 million in 10 days, I can’t see it even making the top 20 by the end of summer.

Iron Man and Indiana Jones continue to battle it out (now there’s a movie I want to see!) for the top spot this summer (at least so far) and I really think it’s too close to call at this point. I’m revising my previous guesses downwards and am now saying that both will finish in the neighborhood of $315-$320 million by Labor Day. That’s looking damn good for Nicole who’s got Indy in #1 with $325 and Iron Man in #2 with $315. If Indy can squeeze past Iron Man and nothing else comes out to ruin her order, that could be some big points for her. It’s also not looking too terrible for Peter who’s got Iron Man in #2 with $306 million. It will probably just end up out of range for him to get the big points, but we’ll see. Speaking of big points, Sean also has Indy IV in the number 1 spot with $319 which could be huge.

In other interesting news (interesting to me at least), Zohan will probably just barely make $100 million (looking good for Duane, maybe Fran and maybe Smokey), The Hulk will probably finish in the $135 to $140 range (possibly good news for Russ, Melissa, Corey, Sean, Nicole, Me and maybe a few others who aren’t totally off the mark), Sex and the City looks to finish with about $150 million (good news for no one), Kung Fu Panda will probably finish near $210 million (good for KB, Christian, and Troy), Narnia is almost done already with nearly $140 million (every single one of us is WAY too high), What Happens in Vegas looks dead with just about $79 million (a damn good pick for Sean if it can make it to $80 million, but still good even if it doesn’t), The Happening will probably finish just shy of $70 million (Troy and Smokey both have it at $74 million), and it’s still TBD if Made of Honor, Speed Racer and The Strangers will even make the top 20 as all of them have stopped making money and only the Strangers is over $50 million.

That’s all I’ve got this week. The 4th of July Weekend sees the opening of Hancock and an expanding release for Kit Kitteredge: An American Gigolo.

Good luck and happy Independence Day!

-Don

 

06/24/08
 

Hey all,

A couple of quick notes-
First, the much beloved Smokey's Scratches will be here next week, just in time for the 4th of July. Judging by the shocking grosses so far, there's gonna be some X'ing out of most peeps' lists...though I'm guessing we have at least a dud or two so far this summer.
Speaking of duds, bummer for all the folks that had The Love Guru on your lists, while The Happening might sneak onto the top 20 (with about $70), Mike Meyers painful looking "comedy" will join Speed Racer as hyped flicks not even making the list (I call it Karma for making Shrek 2 and 3)!!

Second, hopefully Don can get the website updated for y'all soon as we near the heart of the summer (contest).

The last bit of business....money!!
Only a few people have paid me (or Don) as of yet, so please toss a check in the mail ($30).


OR you can paypal ($32) to me at my email address.

Good luck and enjoy the summer (we're inching closer to the Dark Knight : )

Smokey

PS I just wanted to toss this bit of "extra credit" fun out there in case anyone wants to hone their guessing skills. EW runs a weekly contest, with prizes, that lasts for 10 weeks. They are starting a new one this week and picks are due Friday...for the record I came in 38th (out of 2430) in the early summer edition so you can try and beat me : )
Here's the link


http://www.ew.com/ew/game/0,,20207745,00.html
 

06/10/08

Hey Everybody! It’s time for another Summer Movie Contest Update! Yay! Exclamation!

I’ve updated the web site (www.summermoviecontest.com) with the official numbers from this weekend (click on the “Contest 2008 link”) and for most of us, the news isn’t pretty.

Kung Fu Panda opened with way more money than I ever imagined and karate chopped it’s way (see what I did there?) to a $60 million weekend. Kids flicks tend to have long legs and there’s every chance that this movie will cross the $200 million mark before Labor day. I’d say $180 million is almost a certainty. That puts KB, Christian, Troy, Duane, Russ, and Smokey in rage of some points. It will be probably be a few weeks before we can narrow it down, but at least some of you have hope.

You Don’t Mess with the Zohan opened with a typical Adam Sandlerish $38 million this weekend putting it in line with almost all of his other comedies to do a solid $120 to $150 million for the summer. That puts all of us (except for Troy and Christian) into the running for some points.

So I guess the news isn’t all bad.

Indiana Jones dropped 49% this weekend to $22 million for 3 days showing a pretty fast decline. It should still flirt with $300 million, but I think my predications of last week were a little high. I’d say there’s a pretty good chance that Iron Man will end up with the number 1 spot this summer (or at least beat Indy).

Speaking of steep declines (and I’m not talking about Sarah Jessica Parker’s cleavage), Sex and the City dropped a massive 62% to $21 million in its second weekend. Despite starring 4 women, this movie has no legs. That is the kind of drop usually reserved for Horror movies and really poorly received event pictures. It looks like most people who wanted to see this movie went the opening weekend. It should still make another 40 or so million giving it a $140 tally for the Summer. If I happen to be right, not one of us will get any gross points from this movie.

An actual horror movie with a steep 2nd week decline is The Strangers whose $9 million take marked a 57% drop. It’s hopes for the Summer top 20 are questionable, but still alive. That’s not good news for any of us.

Iron Man’s 44% drop was little steeper than expected, but other than that, there’s no other real news to report.

This weekend we get The Happening and The Incredible Hulk. I don’t know what will happen, but I do know it will be incredible.

Good Luck everyone.

-Don

06/01/08

Howdy Folks,

It seems like it just started, but it’s already shaping up to be a crazy summer for movie gross guessing. Before I get to the details on that, I wanted to let you know that I’ve updated the web site (www.summermoviecontest.com) with everyone’s picks and with all of the grosses through this weekend (using the estimates). Please take a moment to look over your list and let me know if I made any errors. I pretty much copied and pasted everything, but I did have to tweak the formatting and change some of the movie names on almost everyone to make things fit, so if I accidentally changed a pick, let me know.

Now that that’s over, I wanted to take a moment to share this “poem” from rookie player Peter Woods:

“Will Wanted be left wanting, what's happening with the Happening, will The Incredible Hulk live up to its name, will Get Smart make me look dumm, can Star Wars clone its past success, can I believe in a cult audience from ten years ago, will Step Brothers step up, and what sort of Kung Fu Panda(monium) can we expect from Jack Black, it will be a Dark (K)night indeed if things don't shake out the way I want them to, here it is sealed and delivered with my (John) Hancock on it.

Good Luck to all,
Peter Woods”

Nice huh? The best part is that he spelled “dumb” as “dumm”. Well done.

Well, I don’t think that even the director himself expected Sex and the City to make an estimated $55.7 million this weekend. Some are calling it the biggest opening for a romantic comedy ever and it certainly surprised everyone in this contest except for Christian, Duane and arguably Melissa. It’s difficult to say what it’s final total will be because I suspect it’s heavily front-loaded, but it should certainly make $120 million and really until we see next weekend’s gross the sky is the limit.

And a surprise to EVERYONE in this contest is “The Strangers” making an estimated $20.7 million in it’s opening weekend. Not one of us has it on our lists and in past years a $20.7 million opening would pretty much guarantee a movie a top 20 spot. This year I’m not so sure, but we’ll need to keep an eye on it.

Indiana Jones IV dropped 54% this weekend and brought in $46 million to reach $216 million in just 11 days. The large drop is somewhat understandable, but troubling for anyone who has it making over the mid $300’s. Next weekend will be the true test, but based on word of mouth and what I’m guessing will be a lack of repeat viewings, Indy will probably find itself with somewhere in the neighborhood of $325 to $345 million by the end of the summer (give or take). This gives Melissa, Fran, Sean, and Nicole all a good shot at some gross points for it. Of course I could easily be wrong here and it might hold on to give some of us with higher grosses a chance. I will say that if you have it doing less than $300 million, you can forget about it though.

On the other hand, Iron Man just can’t be stopped and may be an example of “slow and steady wins the race” as its week to week drops stay in the low 30% range. It brought in another $14 million this past weekend for a total of $276 in just 5 weeks. Look for it to bring in another $40 to $60 million (or more) for the summer giving it a total somewhere around $315 - $335. This gives only Nicole at $315 even a remote chance at some points from the gross.

In downer news for anyone whose into the Narnia series, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian brought in only $13 million in its third week bringing its total to $115 million. This is well below the pace of the first Narnia movie which ended up making $292 million domestically. Look for this film to finish below $200 million with something in the $145 to $165 range giving only Troy and Christian (who both have it making over $180) even a glimmer of hope of getting gross points.

What Happens in Vegas continues to do inexplicably well as it brought in another $6.8 million this past weekend bringing its total to $66 million and making it practically a lock to make the top 20 this summer. Look for it to finish between $80 and $90 million giving Sean, who has it at $81 million, a darn good shot at some serious points.

Speed Racer and Made of Honor (or as Christian called it, “Made of On Her”) both continue to flounder; neither will make $50 million for the summer and neither are likely to make the top 20 giving everyone who picked them (I picked both) a big fat goose egg.

So, to sum up, unless Indy Jones somehow manages to hang on to make $381 million, I can already give up hope on 8 of my 20 picks for the Summer. *sigh* I guess that’s why they call it gambling. The good news is that there’s a lot of summer left and so far no one is looking too pretty.

Thanks again to everyone who’s playing and if you haven’t paid Mike yet, you might want to do that (that includes me ).

Until next time, Good Luck!

-Don
 

5/31/08

Hey all,
I'm leaving town again tomorrow (this time Detroit, GO WINGS), but I swear after next weekend I'll have Monday updates for y'all. The web site is coming along as well and hopefully will be done around that time too (though that's Don's job).
Not to leave everyone empty handed, here's a little blurb from my pals over at box office guru about Friday grosses (time to scratch off Sex/City from my damn list : (

"In a huge upset victory, the new highly-anticipated comedy Sex and the City bumped reigning box office champ Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull out of the number one spot with a record-breaking opening day performance fueled by a massive audience of female fans. The new escapades of the Fab Four brought in an estimated $26M on Friday including grosses from sold-out midnight shows from late Thursday night.
Playing in 3,285 theaters, Sex averaged an eye-popping $7,915 per location on Friday. That is an astounding opening day average that even approached Iron Man's $8,583 average from 4,105 sites on its premiere day on May 2.
Sarah Jessica Parker and gang will probably see a front-loaded weekend gross due to the intense demand to see the film right away. A three-day tally of $63-67M for the New Line production could occur setting a new mark for a female-led film.

Last weekend's champ Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was booted from the top spot after just one week. The Harrison Ford vehicle took in an estimated $12.2M on Friday dropping a sizable 60% from last Friday. For the three-day period, a $40-43M tally may result pushing the Paramount sequel past the $210M mark after only 11 days.
Universal debuted the summer's first horror film The Strangers and was met with encouraging results grossing an estimated $7.6M on Friday, its first day of release. For the weekend, a $19-21M opening could result."

Egads, there's a fun way to kick off June, eh? Duane and Christian are the only two with Sex picks over $120 so props to them (the lucky bastards)!!
Have a good weekend/week and I'll talk to ya in 10 days!!!

smokey

05/12/08

Howdy,

First off, I wanted to remind y'all yet again, that your
lists are due into to me by this Friday!!!!
I have them already from Troy, Nicole, Kernan and now Christian so those folks can rest easy...the rest of ya, get busy.

Next up, a quick update on this weekend's grosses (followed by everyone's Speed Racer #'s they wished they didn't have).
Iron Man dropped less than 50% and has $178 already, thus assuring it will do at least $250.
Made of Honor dropped about the same and will have trouble reaching the 40's I'd wager.
Vegas opened with $20 and should end up somewhere above $50.
The big news of the weekend was Speed Racer coming in around $20 as well...this thing could be playing good with the kiddies and hang around to make some mediocre $$ this summer but I kinda doubt it. We'll know for sure next weekend but I think it's safe to say this won't get to $100 and might not even make the list this year.

Remember, it only takes coming close on a few movies to put yourself in the running to win, so don't sweat it just yet...wait til July before worrying too much about where things are going to end up (and we still wont even know that much til sometime in August : )
I just like to toss out some random info for the few masses that worry about this stuff even though we're still in early May (call it a bonus for joining us this year).

Here's the picks for Speed (and some cases Vegas)

Fran 105
Christian 178 (vegas) 153
Don 117
Melissa 225
Duane 70 (nice call!!)
Corey 77         56
Russ 127             63
Troy --- (maybe an even better call!?)
Kernan 295         81
Nicole 130
Smokey 94
KB 144             42
Peter 170

Once again, good luck to everyone and thanks for playing this year!!!

smokey
 

05/06/2008

All right peeps, here is your competition for the summer contest this year-

Before I unveil everyone's Iron Man numbers (which as a whole, are probably gonna be too low) I want to remind y'all that haven't turned in a complete list (about 75% of ya) that you need to get me your predictions for Speed Racer & What Happens in Vegas (if you want those on your list, of course) by Friday!!!

Iron Man guesses are as follows-
Fran 157
Froude 212 (Made of Honor) 68
Don 243         48
Melissa 385         47
Duane 415
Corey 232
Russ 232         34
Troy 285
Kernan 192
Nicole 315
Smokey 262
KB 180         37
Peter 306

For those that didn't hear, Iron Man opened with about 104 million it's first weekend and should easily hit 250 and flirt with 300, if not much, much more.....we'll see how the second weekend goes.
Made of Honor did 15 and should end up between 40-55....will that be enough to get it on the list...only time will tell (some past years, 43-45 works for #20 and others, it's mid 50's to earn a spot on the list).

That's all for now folks, get me your picks for this weekend, your entire lists and of course $$ as soon as you can ($32 via pay pal or checks for $30).
Enjoy the week,

smokey

PS Don, can you get me an email address for Peter please, so he wont miss out on these nuggets of brilliance?

PPS Oh yeah, if you think I have your predictions wrong, please let me know...I copied em down from the emails you sent by there is always a chance I screwed one up (happens every couple of years : )
 

05/03/08

I eventually did look over the scores, and Russ was indeed the winner. 

-Don

 

09/06/07

Hey folks, me again....
I'm still waiting for Don to be the final pair of eyes here, but upon further review I noticed I short changed two of ya on a point (both for the Simpsons).

The REVISED final points now have
Fran with 12
KB with 21

It's just for bragging rights but unless you finish in the $$, that's all you've got.

Sorry for the slight y'all.

-smokey

PS HOPEFULLY I'll get Don to look things over tomorrow and we can put this terrible summer behind us : )
 

09.04.07

Ok, ok, I've been getting emails, calls and letters all weekend about this so I'll cut the chit chat and get right to the scores here.
Well, just a bit of small talk as I gotta say this was a damn close race and a pretty tough year overall. Most peeps seemed to have FF2 and DH3 flip flopped and a lot of us had the 3 pack of RH3, O's 13 and C&L correctly grouped together though no one got more than one of em ranked right...ditto that with the top 4-6 flicks as well (save one lucky SOB).
So, that said, props to y'all for doing something that has never been done before in the 10+ years of the contest (stay tuned for that bit of history) and thanks for taking part in the contest this year...always great to have new players join up and the old ones return.

Here we go folks, the final standings for the Summer Movie Contest, 2007 version.
(I, on rare occasion, have made mistakes before so you might want to double check you points just to be safe...Don is usually my guy here, but he's on vacation and wont be able to do it for another week and I can't wait that long to crown the new champ...nor should they have to wait).

Like I said, this is the first time this feat has happened. That feat is sadly me coming in last place and getting beaten by everyone. I promise you though, it will NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN!!

Smokey 7 points ....oh so close on too many things to mention.
Mike C. 10 points ...a bad year for guys named Mike.
Fran 11 points ....giving props to Stardust wasn't necessary : |
Christian 11 points ...and the plus side Wedding Daze comes out in September now.
Kernan 15 points ...the lowest of the bikkit 3.
Don 16 points ...nailed Ratatouille exactly, and not much else.
Corey 17 points ....at least my record of back to back championships is still intact!!
KB 20 points ....improved upon last year's total (which not a lot of folks managed to do).
Nicole 21 points ...except for Nicole.
Roy 22 points ...and Roy.
Troy 23 points ...and Troy, ok so I lied about "not a lot of folks", how about a few folks?
Duane/Melissa 26 points ... C&L's bad last weekend cost em 10 add'l points

(FYI-only 3 folks broke 35 points this year, last year 51 pts came in 2nd...by 21 pts!!)

and for the bronze medal,
Sean 32 points ...had the first 5 ranked right and so much else really damn close, if only could have managed more than 2 points from the grosses

silver medal, and $75 goes to rookie,
Jamie 35 points ...and to think I laughed at your Spidey $625 pick (which if just 285 million less would have given you the win : )

that leaves us with the champ, this is his first year back since he scored a record ZERO points in 2003, I'm proud to announce this year's winner
RUSS 42 points ...Ocean's 13 hanging onto 13th place by a mere $300,000 gave you an add'l 10 points and that was enough to win this year.
CONGRATS Russ!!!!

I'll get a check for $375.00 out to ya hopefully by the end of next week.
I'm STILL waiting for payment from 2 peeps (one said the checks in the mail and the other I should see this weekend) and want to have eagle eye Don re-check the scores.

Thanks again everyone for taking part this year, hope to have y'all back next year (with your friends, too)!!!!

Have a good fall and keep your eyes peeled for the "Smart Person's Oscar Contest" coming this fall....another Smokeyling Production!

Cheers,
smokey

 

 

 

8/27/07

Salutations gang,
 
First things first, Don swears to me he'll update the site this week and seeing how he's got no job to interfere, I actually trust him....this time.  However, he'll be out of town next week so I'll email out the FINAL POINT standings to y'all (hopefully) Tuesday afternoon/evening once I get the final holiday weekend grosses...Wednesday at the latest!!  The site should have final numbers about a week after that for those that like to see it all fancy and stuff.
 
Second, I only need money from two of ya now...Thanks for Corey and Mike C. for taking care of it before the contest ends, much appreciated fellas.  You last 2 folks I'll be emailing yet again in a bit (you've been warned)!!
 
Lastly, we ain't gonna have any scratches this time as it'd be sad for some of us (myself included) to see that we're officially out of the running this year.  However, I've got a tentative top 20 list done up now (with estimates for next weekend) and I will give you the folks that have a pretty damn good shot at bringing home some cash this season.
Remember, this is only an estimate and things have been known to change big time over the holiday weekend as some films get re-upped in theatres, and others dropped to just a few screens.  That said, we've got 4 peeps that should all be checking the box office this weekend VERY CLOSELY!!
 
Jamie needs Shrek 3 to get back in theatres and make another 300,000...that'll give her 35 points and a chance to finish in the top 2.
 
Sean needs Rush Hour 3 to hang onto to the #12 spot, and Ocean's 13 to stay in 14th, that'll give him a GREAT 7 flicks ranked correctly and he'll end up with 37-38 points (yeah, while his ranking skills are super, actually getting close the right gross is still hurting him).

Duane/Melissa need Chuck/Larry to end up #13 and then it'll come down the final numbers on Rush Hour 3.  If they can get within 10 on RH3 they've got 41 points in their sights, any changes though and they can drop to 31 and miss out on the money completely.
 
Speaking of RH3, that's the flick that's going to determine this whole thing as Russ should have it ranked correctly and he'll for sure be within $5 million, if it stays within a million of him though that'll push him up to 41 points.
 
Duane/Melissa have RH3 at 119, and Russ at 117 so if it finishes at 118 (like I'd imagine it will) then they both get 10 points..and possibly tie.
 
Russ can break it by having Ratatouille hit $202 (still possible) and that'll give him an additional 4 points, bring him up to 45..and make him the winner.  Also, if it were to do that much money it MIGHT even hold off Bourne and finish at #6..which, ironically enough, is where Sean, Duane and Russ all have it ranked giving everyone 5 more points, and yet 5 MORE to russ who would get the bonus points for ranking and being within 5 million.
 
Whew!
To sum it all up, Russ needs to take busloads of kids to see Ratatouille this week and while at the theatres start up a boycot of Rush Hour 3...
 
Congrats to everyone in the running this season and I'll be back next week to see how this all ends up.
 
Hope this made some sense to y'all and thanks for reading!!
 
smokey
 
 
PS  Search of "The King of Kong", you can thank me later!!!

7/12/07

Insert Clever Greeting Here! I wanted to let everyone know that www.summermoviecontest.com has been updated (although in a few hours when the final grosses for the weekend come out, it will be out of date again). I know it’s been quite a while since I’ve done one of these, but that just makes them all the more special, right? If KB would just work harder, I’d have more time to goof around at work and write more of these. So if you all could just send some emails to her asking her to do more of my job for me, that would benefit everyone. Well, maybe not KB, but that’s a sacrifice that she should be willing to make for the betterment of all. Hopefully Smokey’s Scratches has kept you satisfied thus far.

Speaking of Smokey’s Scratches, his approach is more of a “glass is half empty” kind of thing. I’m going to give you a “glass is half full” kind of thing, or more appropriately, here are the movies I think you’re going to get points on. I call it Don’s Dynamic Doling of Da’ Points. I know that title needs work, but there are only so many appropriate words that start with the letter “D”. So here goes:

Spiderman 3 is up to $334 million and has starting making less than a million a week. I’m looking for it to quit around $337 million for the Summer and probably hold the number one spot.. That means that absolutely none of us have a chance of getting any points from the gross of this one. This glass half full thing isn’t working very well so far. Alright, if somehow it managed to (wall) crawl its way to $340 million, Nicole would get one point. I doubt it, but you never know. On the other hand, Corey, Jamie, Duane, Melissa & Jessica (from now on, instead of writing out “Duane, Melissa & Jessica”, I’m just going to call them “DMJ”), Keeley, KB, Russell and Kernan should get 5 points for having it ranked correctly.

Shrek the Third will most likely find itself in the #2 position for the Summer with about $325 million. That would score Jamie 5 points, DMJ 10 points and KB 5 points. Jaime, Mike C., and Keeley should also get 5 ranking points for it giving Jamie a bonus of 5 points for having both ranking and gross within 5 million.

Pirates 3 just crossed the $300 million mark this past weekend and will probably find itself with $312 to $315 for the Summer giving Corey an almost certain 1 point (maybe 5 if he’s lucky), Keeley a chance at a point, and Kernan a shot at a point. That will probably also give Smokey 5 points for the ranking.

On the other hand, Transformers, at $223 million after two weeks could be a ranking spoiler on the above three films. I’m guessing it stops a little short and just barely crosses the $300 million mark, ending up ranked 4th or 5th depending on how Harry Potter does. That gives Jaime and Fran a shot at gross points and Jamie, DMJ, Christian, Corey, Keeley, Fran, Russell, Troy, Kernan, and Me a chance at some ranking points.

After a Wednesday opening, Harry Potter 5 has already raked in $140 million and should also flirt with $300 million. Believe it or not, KB’s got it at $307 and probably has the best guess. Roy has it at $278 and Jamie and Nicole have it at $320 which could end up being good guesses. Jaime, Christian, Corey, DMJ, Mike C. Nicole, Keeley, KB, Fran, Russell, Troy, Kernan, Smokey and Me, all have a shot at ranking points from it.

Of the movies that have come out, I’m guessing that Ratatouille in next in line with $200 - $220 million final for the summer. That gives DMJ, Mike C, Roy, Nicole, Russell, Smokey, and Me a chance at gross points and Corey, DMJ, Russell, and Me a good shot at ranking points.

That leaves Knocked Up next with a summer finish in the high $140’s or low $150s which is good news for no one in terms of gross, and I think that Smokey is the only one with any chance at ranking points on this one.

Fantastic Four comes next with a summer finish estimate just short of $135 million. The should mean some gross points for Christian, and Smokey and maybe a point for Roy, Nicole, Keeley, and Me. Ranking points are still a possibility for Christian, DMJ, Corey, Jaime, Mike C., Roy, Keeley, Nicole, and Smokey to get ranking points.
 

I’m running out of time, and this is getting extremely long, so I’m going to cut it short. You’ll have to figure you’re your own chances at gross and ranking points, but I’m thinking Ocean’s 13 should finish around $118, Die Hard around $140, Evan Almighty around $100, Surf’s Up around $59, and 1408 around $75.

Keep in mind that we still have Hairspray, Chuck and Larry, I Know Who Killed Me, the Simpsons Movie, No Reservations, Skinwalkers, Who’s your Caddy, Bourne Ultimatum, Bratz, Underdog, Daddy Day Camp, Rush Hour 3, Stardust, The Invasion, Superbad, Mr. Beans Holiday and a bunch of others still to come this summer, so almost everything I say above could be and probably is crap.
 

Until I have time to do this again, Good Luck!

6/4/07

another FYI for y'alls
(and per www.boxofficeguru.com)
 
Spidey will finish $330-340
Shrek $320-330   (although I think this could be a little higher)
Pirates $310-320  (and this one will be lower, imo)
 
Also, the Final $$$ Breakdown will be:
$360 to first place
&   $90 to second
 
Good Luck!!!
 
-smokey

 

5/29/07

Hello fellow movie gross guessers; it’s time for my first Summer Movie Contest update of the year! Hooray! Hazah! Hashbrowns! I’m going to try to do these weekly from now on and they’ll also be posted in the News section of SummerMovieContest.com.

Speaking of www.summermoviecontest.com, I’ve got the website up and running for This Year’s Contest and I’ve added a Rules page in case you’re not sure how the points are calculated. Just because I’m narcissistic, I’ve also included some tips from myself on how to pick your top twenty films for the summer (at the bottom of the Rules page). It may not be of any help to anyone and probably should have been written by Smokey, but he doesn’t know how to update the web site, so you’re all stuck with what I decide to put up there. Of course if he wants to write something up, I’ll seriously consider adding it.


I also posted the long overdue final scores and rankings for last summer officially crowning Corey as last year’s winner and reining champion. Sorry it took so long, but it’s now up there for the world to see.

Later in the summer we’ll hopefully get Smokey’s Scratches (I’ve already made a page for it on the web site), which is his clever system of predicting the winner of the contest by eliminating all of the picks that can’t score any points. Further speaking of Smokey, those of you who haven’t paid for this contest should send a $30 check to:

Mike Ling
4055 Michael Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90066

Or send $31.50 with Paypal to smokeyling@yahoo.com.

One last piece of business before I get onto the actual update, even though Geoff submitted a pick for Spider-Man, Shrek and Pirates and promised he’d play, he has never cam through with a real list and is out of the contest. WTF Geoff? WTF?

That still gives us 15 players this year which is only two shy of the record and means a roughly $425 payout to the winner and $100 for second place (Smokey can correct me if that’s not right) which ain’t too shabby.

Now, on to the update:

Knocked Up debuted this weekend and brought in an estimated $29 million from Friday to Sunday. That’s roughly $8 million more than 40 Year Old Virgin made in its opening weekend before it went on to bring in $109 million domestically. If Knocked Up manages to hold on to the same kind of audience that Virgin did, it would end up right around $140 million for the summer. It’s difficult to tell yet if it will hold on, but it should at least make $80 million and pretty comfortably cross the $100 million mark. Next weekend will be a good indicator. If I had to guess, I’d say Mike C., Roy, Nicole, Russell, Pony Boy and Smokey are all in the right neighborhood. The rest of us are probably too low or too high, but you never know.

Mr. Brooks took in a little over $10 million this past weekend which isn’t a great sign for Christian or Mike C. who both have it making over $60 million for the summer. It could be surprising and end up in the $40’s and still make the top 20, but I wouldn’t count on it.

Bug has made $6 million in two weekends and won’t make the final summer top 20; this is bad news for Jamie and Roy in terms of the contest and possibly bad news for Christian who worked on it and has a vested interest in it. I’m guessing that $6 million isn’t a terrible return on it, but I’m not sure what it cost. I got to see it at the end of last year at AFI Fest and really enjoyed it; if you get a chance, go check it out.

Now, on to the big guns; Pirates 3, Shrek 3 and Spider-Man 3 all had fantastic opening weekends followed by huge drops in their second outings. After 5 weeks, Spider-Man is up to $318 million after bringing in another $7.5 million this past weekend. It keeps dropping sharply and I’d say it’ll end the summer in the friendly neighborhood of $350 million. I’d say that only Nicole and Me have any chance at getting gross points from it at this point.

Shrek 3 dropped nearly 50% again this past weekend to pull in $26 million bringing its total after 3 weeks to $254 million. I hate to narrow it down too much, especially since it’s a kids movie, but a final summer tally of around $330 (give or take) seems likely. That could be good news for Jamie, the Harbaugh Family, and KB who all have it in the $320s. If any movie could make $330 million and be called “disappointing”, this would be the one. It’ll most likely make $100 million less than Shrek 2 did. On the other hand, it was also way cheaper than either Pirates 3 or Spidey 3, so don’t go crying for DreamWorks just yet.

Pirates 3 fell a pretty massive 62% in its second weekend to bring in $43 million and raise its total to $216 after two weeks. Although that’s a steeper decline than either Spider-Man 3 or Shrek 3, Pirates was still faster than Shrek to get to $215 million. It’s going to be a really close call, but I’m betting at this point well see a Spidey, Pirates, Shrek, 1, 2, 3 for the summer (unless Transformers or Ratatouille or who knows what gets in there and screws it up). I don’t think that any of us have them in that order.

Well, I’m sure that this is way too long already, so I’ll wrap I up now. This weekend we have summer top 20 potential films Ocean’s 13, Surf’s up, and Hostel II. Have a good week everyone.

-Don
 

5/17/07

HOLA,
Me again, you're now down to just about 27 hours left to get your lists in.
That's all, I've gotta run and finish up mine too!!

Good luck,

Smokey

5/14/07

Hey party people,

Remember, I need your top 20 lists by THIS FRIDAY, 5:00pm!!!!
 
In the weekend boxoffice, Spidey dropped 60% and should end up between 340-400 for the summer....but ya never know what could happen, so don't take that as a fact, just a guess.
 
That is all I got for ya this week....get back to your lists now, you've only got a few days left!
 
-smokey

PS Those of ya with your lists already done, just sit back and relax....your work here is done (though you still gotta pay me!!!)

5/8/07

Okay,

Looks like we're gonna end up at either 15 or 16 peeps this year
(Shimmer, not sure if that was your weekend prediction or the total for the summer..lemmee know!!)
 
Please take a sec and make sure I've got your guess right and also that this is the best email to contact you at since it'll go up on the fancy www.summermoviecontest.com page once don gets around to it  (and for you smart arses out there I still have all the emails so don't try and change your crappy guess...I just hurriedly wrote em down to get this email out to the masses).
 
Anyway, here's who in this year :
 
Shimmer 167
Skinner 320
Fran 320
Nicole 350
Don 353
Roy 378
Troy 386
Corey 386
Mike C. 387
Smokey 391
Kernan 401
Froude 402
Keeley 407
Duane/Melissa  426
KB  433
Jamie 625
 
REMEMBER, I'll need your completed top 20 list by Friday May 18 5:00 pst!!
Props to those few that have already given me your finished lists!
 
Also, HUGE props to those that have already paid me (Roy,Nicole, Duane, Don, and Fran)...money is due by the 4th of July!!!!
 
For those that want to use pay pal please send $31.50 to the email above.
 
Checks (for $30) can be sent to me at
Mike Ling
4055 Michael Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90066
 
And for those of ya I see all the time, cash is fine!!
 
Hopefully these updates will come every week or so to keep y'all up to speed on the grosses to date, predictions of how things will end up, etc.
Right now all I got for ya is that Spidey set a record making $151 over the weekend...based on my predictions I'd say it'll end up around 390-392 (wait a sec!!!  : )
 
Thanx for playing &
Good Luck to everyone,
 
smokey
 
PS  (fyi) All grosses get rounded DOWN so no need to put decimals in there.
 
PPS  For those of ya that have already paid me via paypal, no worries...consider it an early bird savings  : )
 

5/4/07

Okay Folks

This is it....the final countdown (cue the Europe track...egads that's an old reference)
Anyway, you've still got a few hours to join us in the contest.  All I need now is your prediction for Spidey 3.
 
For a few of you veterans out there, I expect NO EXCUSES (and y'all know who you are!!)
 
If, for some crazy reason, you need a little bit more time, let me know...exceptions can be made for a select few.
 
Hope to hear from ya soon,
 
smokey

5/2/07

Yep,

There's still time to get your Spidey pick into me.  You've got until 3:00 friday (5/4).
Good luck
 
-me
 
4/27/07

Reminder:

You now have only ONE WEEK to get me your Spidey 3 prediction.
 
The good news is that you still have 3 weeks to get the entire list to me.
Also, the Entertainment Weekly Summer Preview is out now for those that might need some help with what's coming out when...and what the flicks are actually about.
 
Lastly, for those that can't get a Spidey 3 pick in on time (but really, who can't just email me a random number in the seven days?!) the DEFAULT PREDICTION will be
Spider-man 3   at  $275 million.
So, if you still want in the contest and forget to send me a pick, you're stuck using $275 in your list.
 
Good luck to y'all and hope to have you in the contest!!
Have a swell weekend,
 
me

4/20/07

Just wanted to remind everyone that while your top twenty list ain't due til 5/18, your SPIDEY 3 prediction is due in TWO WEEKS!!    

 
Make sure I get that by 3:00 (LA time) on May 4th!!!
 
Also, wanted to give some peeps a shout out.
First, to Sean Kernan for getting his COMPLETE LIST into me...very impressive.
Second, and also pretty damn keen, is the fact that Don and Duane have ALERADY PAID for this year's contest...nice work gents!!
 
Ok, that's it for the update, I'll let everyone get back to their Friday and start to think about how much Spidey 3 is gonna make.
One tip for the newbies....it'll make more than $100 million .... trust me   : )
 
Have a good weekend,
 
smokey
 
PS Please don't forget to tell the world about this too...the more, the merrier!!

4/5/07

Greetings movie peeps,
 
Okay, most of you know how this works, but this year there's gonna be a slight change in the rules as we have to include Spider-man 3 in the contest (and not just cuz I worked on the damn thing).
The only thing different for the veterans here, is that I'll need your guess for Spidey 3's final gross by 3:00pst on 5/4
The completed contest entries are due in to me by 3:00 pst on friday May 18, and must include that same amount for Spidey on your list.
 
{Example, you guess Spidey to make $750 million between opening day and Labor day, then on your list it's gotta have that same amount and it's ranking in the 20 has to reflect that...even if it bombs and makes $2 million opening weekend, you're stuck with it.  Though you could have everything making more than $750 million to get the ranking correct...but that'd be kinda dumb.}
 
Anyway, that's it...get me your spidey guess before next month (5/4) and the rest is business as usual.
 
For you rookies, here's the basic breakdown of the contest-
mini rules-
*pick the top 20 summer films (including their box office gross) for ALL flicks released between Shrek 3 (as of now 5/18/07) and labor day Monday (9/3/07) AND obviously including Spidey 3.
*get me your list via email (or normal mail) BEFORE 3 pm on 5/18
*pay $30 before 7/4/07
*Winner gets roughly 80% of the pot and the rest goes to 2nd place (unless we get less than 11 people entering, then it all goes to the winner)
 
Feel free to email me with any questions you might have!!!
 
Also, here's the website don runs for the contest if you want to look at past years' top 20 lists and how peeps did...Corey is the defending champ.
http://www.summermoviecontest.com/
 
 
and of course tell friends, tell family, tell co-workers.
thanx and i hope to see ya this summer in the contest!!!!
 
your humble host,
-smokey

9/7/06

here's the final points total (we just got drug testing results back from the lab, thanx jerry)
 
Corey 72
Duane (and Melissa) 51   (you can always enter separately next year and really see who reigns supreme  : )
Mike C. 35
Kernan 32
Papa john 30 (an even better showing!!!)
lil donny  26
smokey 22
Jerry 20
KB 17 (i guess don knew something after all  : )
Troy 16
Nicole 15 (anyone have a current email on her??)
Keeley 11
Tyrone 10
Roy,Yvonne  6
 
thanks one last time for everyone playing this year, hope to have you all back in '07 and feel free to tell some friends as well!!!
 
-smokey

9/6/06

Looks Like We Have a Winner...

but first, these commercials...
speaking of, don't y'all hate those annoying movie ads?
cept for that fash kid, he's dreamy. but, i digress...you came here for one thing and one thing only...that's to see if smokey (myself) won this thing yet again.
sadly, i didnt.
 
now here's the points for this year's summer contest
(is it just me, or did that above bit of rambling sound like crappy award show banter...anyhoo..)
 
in a tie for the spot farthest from first (aka last place)
one time champion Yvonne and bikkit-eer Roy with 6 pts (still way above the 0 record!)
 
rookie Tyrone had 10 pts (not too shabby for a first year'er..plus he beat 2 vets)
 
ex-bikkit-eer Sean Keeley and another rookie,Troy each had 11
 
KB (yet another newbie) had 12
 
Nicole tallied up 15 pts, goes to show what some experience can do for ya
 
while long time player, Papa John tied the freshman points leader, Jerry, with 20 of em
 
some schlub named Smokey had 22 (one of his poorer showings among the last few years)
 
another schlub beat that with 26, his name?  lil don
 
the last bikkit-err Kernan had his best score ever with 32, good enough for bragging rights in the swanky bikkit towers
 
Mike C. had another solid showing, landing just out of the $$ with 35 points this year
and now to the money spots,
taking some cash home for the first time in the summer contest we've got Duane&Melissa with 51 points!!  very nice work this year!
 
and after years of being close, this lucky bastard gets to take home his first red jacket (get it, like an usher)
please join me in congratulating COREY as summer movie contest 2006 champ!!
btw, he had a butt kicking 67 points this year!!
 
thanx to everyone for making this one of the biggest years we've had, and i apologize for the lack of updates.  Hopefully i won't be getting married next year and can spend a little more time sending out updates and helping don with the website.
 
**as always people, please double check your scores for me and make sure you're not due any prize money...mistakes can happen, bus usually don't**
{I'll get the prize money out to you guys as soon don confirms the scoring}
 
Also, for the 2007 Summer Contest there's going to be a slight rule change...it's a throwback to some years ago.
the contest will officially start on May 25 with Pirates 3 (god help us all) but since Spider-man 3 (yay!!) and shrek 3 (egads!) open earlier then that, and WILL be part of the '07 list, you're going to have to get me your picks for those films (and those films only) by the day they open in theatres (5/4 & 5/18 respectively).
dont worry, it'll all make sense 8 months from now  : )
 
LASTLY, keeley and pops are the folks that still need to pay me (and yes, i know your 'check is in the mail' john).
 
thanx again folks,
 
smokey
 
PS and for those with conest withdrawals, you're always welcome to enter our "Oscar Contest for Smart People"....we'll have details on that one around Halloween time (as entries will be due in before xmas season!!!!)
 
PPS and for the weekly thrill of gross guessing, hit the new improved bikkit.com at
http://www.guessthegross.com
 

8/20/06

Hey Summer Movie Contesters,

It’s finally me with and update and it’s about damn time considering that this contest is over in two weeks.  Sorry I haven’t kept up with this to my usual standards; I can’t begin to explain how busy work and weddings have kept me this summer.  Alright, enough of that and on to the business at hand.

With two weeks to go until Labor Day and the end of the contest, here’s how I predict the top 20 movies of the summer will look:

1

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

$408-410

2

Cars

$240-241

3

X-Men: The Last Stand

$234

4

The Da Vinci Code

$217-218

5

Superman Returns

$194-195

6

Over the Hedge

$155

7

Click

$135-136

8

Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

$130-135

9

The Devil Wears Prada

$122-124

10

The Break-Up

$118

11

Nacho Libre

$79

12

You, Me and Dupree

$74-76

13

Monster House

$71-74

14

Miami Vice

$64-66

15

World Trade Center

$63-67

16

The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift

$62

17

Barnyard: The Original Party Animals

$58-62

18

Little Man

$58-60

19

Step Up

$53-59

20

The Omen (2006)

$54

So if I’m right, here’s how the total points will look:

Tyrone 5 - 10

Roy 6

Troy 6 - 16

KB 6 - 17

Yvonne 6 - 21

Sean Keeley 7 – 11

Nicole 11 - 16

Jerry 15 – 16         

Sean Kernan 20 - 25

Don 21 – 30

Smokey 26 - 31

John 30 – 35

Mike C. 35 – 45

Corey 49 - 77

Duane, Melissa & Jessica 51 - 65

 

So, unless I’m wacky crazy off in my predictions, we have a two person race (well, I guess Duane, Melissa and Jessica count as 3 people, but you know what I mean). 

 

Here’s what the Duane, Melissa and Jessica team need to get the full 65 points:

Click has to stay in 7th place and not be passed by Talladega Nights (It’s going to be close, but probably will go Duane’s way) – add 10 points

Monster House has to make at least $72 million (it should just barely make it) – add 4 points

A lot of things to go wrong for Corey

 

Here’s what Corey needs:

X-Men 3 needs to make it to $235 million (probably won’t) – add 4 points

Da Vinci Code needs to not pass $217 million (it’s going to be damn close – especially if it goes wider for Labor Day weekend) – add 4 points

Monster House needs to make less than You, Me, and Dupree (Corey will probably get this one) – add 5 points

Fast and the Furious 3 needs to get passed by World Trade Center and either Barnyard or Little Man, but not both (should go Corey’s way) – add 5 points

World trade center needs to make more than Fast the Furious 3, but less than $64 million (probably will pass $64 mil).   – add 4 points

Nothing that opens between August 18th and Labor Day can make more than The Omen ($54 million).  Unless American is dying to see Invincible or Beerfest (I’m actually dying to see Beerfest), This shouldn’t be a problem as Snakes on a Plane had a fairly poor showing. 

 

It’s definitely too close to call at this point. Hopefully next weekend I’ll have time to do another one of these and things will be a little clearer. 

 

Good Luck!

 

-Don

 

PS Don’t forget you can check everything out at www.summermoviecontest.com.   

 

PPS One last congrats to Smokey for getting married a couple of weeks ago. 

 

 

6/20/06

Hello fellow film geeks and geekettes,

it's tuesday so that means you're about to enjoy another contest update.
 
as far as my predictions from last week, they all seem pretty solid except for the Omen....damn, that thing dropped like a rock last weekend and will be lucky to cross $60 million this summer. that's still good news for about 10 of us who are sure to get at least a point out of it.
 
Cars also took a shocking drop last weekend, not nearly as much as the Omen, but for a pixar flick one of the biggest drops i can remember. therefore, i really have no idea where this one will end up...i'd imagine between 170-310, though probably towards the lower end of that small range   : )
 
this weekend had 'Nacho' and 'Fast/Furious' open solidly, and the Lake House do mediocre numbers. i'll have forecasts for those next week, but i'd see FF dropping very quickly while the other 2 might hang around a little longer due to their audiences.
 
also, this week saw me cross Garfield 2 off of five unlucky people's lists as it bombed and won't be heard from again....ditto that for KB's faith in 'Prarie Home', not enough of our grandparents are hitting the theatre for that one.
lastly, bad news for Mike C and Tyrone as Pulse got bumped til the fall...serves em right for trying to re-make a truly scary Japanese flick!!
 
the upcoming weekend brings us (slightly) grown-up adam sandler in Click...this should open in the 40's and do in the usual sandler # range (110-175), depending on how bad it sucks or not.
 
have a good week, and i'll cya in seven,
 
smokey
 
 
PS of course, as always, the site is-
http://www.summermoviecontest.com/
 
hopefully this will inspire don to update the grosses   : )
 
PPS  if you want to see an actual good flick this weekend, check out "An Inconvient Truth"....you won't be sorry!
 

 

6/14/2006

Hey All,

First off, sorry for the delay's in getting some updates out to everyone (both don and I have been unusually busy this summer)
anyway, foremost is the launch of the new website-
http://www.summermoviecontest.com
 
don's really outdone himself ths year (and yes, we'll be adding to it thruout the summer too!!)
 
here's what i'm thinking in terms of the early stuff to open-
 
DaVinci should peter out around 210-220 which is great news for don, corey, kernan and KB
 
X3 seems to be on pace for about 240 when all is said and done helping out corey (again),roy, and nicole
 
Over the Hedge has lost it's legs and only duane should get any points from it
 
although The Break-up is a little too early to call, since you've had to wait this long for an update i'm gonna do it anyway-figure it ending up around 110-120. once again corey's looking strong, as are roy, troy, jerry and yours truly (finally!!)
 
i still feel like typing so here's an early Omen ...err, omen.  drop it between 60-70 making don, sean and myself pretty happy
 
the only thing i know about cars is that KB has already missed out on it  : )
 
well, that's it for this week's update, these should be coming roughly every wed from now on (at least til the wedding hits, then it'll be all up to don).
 
as of now, everyone is obviously still in it...and corey's the man to beat
 
have a good summer (even though it don't officially start for a week),
 
smokey
and don