Box Office: ‘Transformers 4,’ ‘Tammy’ Top Dreadful July 4th Weekend

Transformers Age of Extinction

Transformers: Age of Extinction” topped a Fourth of July holiday that let out a whimper at the box office instead of a bang.

Overall, this holiday weekend topped out at approximately $130 million, a 43.4% drop from last year’s Independence Day, which brought in $230 million overall. If these numbers hold, this could be weakest Fourth of July in at least a decade.

“There wasn’t another big tentpole movie to compete with ‘Transformers,'” said Phil Contrino, vice president and chief analyst of “There was a hesitancy on the part of studios to open against it, but what the market is saying is that there was room for another tentpole to compete with it.”

The fourth “Transformers” film netted $36.4 million in its second week of release from 4,233 locations, pushing the $210 million production to $174.7 million domestically, according to studio estimates.

Internationally, the film continued to be a juggernaut, particularly in China, where it is outpacing its domestic run, adding another $50.9 million to its bottom line and putting its total from the Asian nation at $212.8 million. The film topped the foreign box office with $95.8 million from 37 territories, lifting its international total to $400.9 million.

Among the crop of new releases, New Line’s “Tammy” fared the best, wrangling $32.9 million across 3,400 screens over its first five days, $21.2 million of it coming from the weekend. That’s a lower figure than pre-release tracking had suggested it would attract, with most analysts predicting a debut of $40 million over its first five days in theaters.

The Melissa McCarthy comedy cost a modest $20 million to produce, so its opening figure still puts it on the path to profitability.

Warner Bros. distribution chief Dan Fellman said credit goes to McCarthy for bringing in crowds.

“Her fans love her and they support her and we’re happy to be in business with her,” he said.

“We’re a strong number two this weekend,” Fellman added, predicting the film would end up with between $80 million to $100 million over its stateside run.

Word-of-mouth for “Tammy” could be problematic. The picture earned poor reviews (27% on Rotten Tomatoes) and received a lackluster C+ CinemaScore rating.

None of the grab bag of new releases could come close to the $143 million launch of “Despicable Me 2″ over the last 4th of July, although none of them flopped in the vein of “The Lone Ranger,” which bowed to an anemic $48 million en route to a $100 million-plus write-down for Disney.

Timing also worked against this year’s box office. Last year, the holiday fell on a Thursday, an accident of the calendar that encouraged more mid-week moviegoing. This year it fell on a Friday, putting a ceiling on ticket sales and contributing to the lowest Independence Day box office in at least a decade.

Further compounding the box office, fallout from Hurricane Arthur helped goose Friday numbers on the East Coast as crowds tried to wait out the rain in theaters, but nice weather on Saturday may have discouraged moviegoers from hitting the multiplexes, studio executives said.

Among other new releases, Screen Gems’ “Deliver Us From Evil” earned $15 million across 3,049 locations for the first five days of its release and $9.5 million for the weekend, good enough for a third place finish. The story of a policeman investigating paranormal activities cost $30 million to make, and like nearly everything else fell short of its pre-release tracking, which had it bowing to $20 million or more over the first five days in theaters.

Rory Bruer, president of worldwide distribution at Screen Gems’ parent company Sony Pictures, said the low-cost of the film will make it profitable.

“Looking at the box office overall, folks had a lot of other things going on,” he said. “It does seem to change the dynamics of this holiday when the Fourth falls on a Friday.”

Also new to theaters, Relativity’s “Earth to Echo” grossed $13.5 million over its first five days in 3,230 locations, with $8.2 million of that total coming from the weekend. The story of a group of teenage friends who discover an alien was picked up from Disney and cost $13 million to produce.

Tracking projected a debut in the range of $16 million to $19 million for the five days, but Relativity is betting that the film will play well in the coming weeks and will benefit from a lack of family films. This summer marks the one with the least amount of films pitched at younger children opening in June and July since 2007.

In holdover news, “22 Jump Street” snagged fourth place in the rankings with an estimated $9.4 million, giving it a domestic total to date of $158.8 million. “How to Train Your Dragon 2” grabbed the fifth spot with an estimated $8.7 million take, pumping its stateside haul to $140 million.

The Weinstein Company’s “Begin Again” benefited from good buzz and a lack of options for older moviegoers, expanding from a handful of theaters to 175 locations and earning $1.8 million over the five-day period.

Also expanding, Dinesh D’Souza’s politically charged “America” enhanced its footprint from three theaters to 1,105 locations, earning $4 million over the five-day frame.

Despite a few bright spots, Hollywood won’t be setting off sparklers to commemorate this particular holiday.

“Everything conspired to make this a very tough weekend at the box office on what is normally one of the bigger holidays,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak.

“The box office will rebound, but the celebration of the Fourth wasn’t much of one,” he added.

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  1. Mily says:

    The Best movie has to be How To Train Your Dragon 2. It gears to both adult and kids. This movie was out in Imax 3d only 2 weeks then to be completely taken over by Transformers. So people who wanted to see How To train Your Dragon 2 in Imax 3d were ousted. Also after Transfomers came out it was dropped from a lot of Theaters. Disappointed with this. If you really want to see a good movie with an actual storyline that will make you cry and laugh and awesome graphics go see How To Train Your Dragon 2

  2. Transformed into a fan says:

    One thing is for sure, those that criticize TRANSFORMERS: AGE OF EXTINCTION for lack of a story are absolutely telling boldface lies. They either have not seen the film or they are complete morons. I don’t know anything about the cartoon series but I was able to watch the movie and learn about the legacy of the dinobots, the war between the auto bots and the decepticons, and the search for their Creator. This tale is masterfully woven together from a clever opening sequence that can be easily followed all the way through the powerful ending. TRANSFORMERS followers will go crazy over this amazing story. People new to series of film such as me will love it as well. The only people turning their brains off to this movie are people who were and want to remain stupid. It’s much easier to attack something you know nothing about than to engage your mind in some critical thinking. TRANSFORMERS will blow away anyone with a desire to see a masterpiece of story design, and development. And of course the film is as visually stunning as the trailers suggest. The trailers are merely a tease to some of the extraordinary action sequences in the film. Out of four stars give it five!

  3. S..W. Lingenfelter says:

    Really disappointed in Tammy……her movie “The Heat” with Sandra Bullock was fantastic…..this one was just a little “too stupid”….which was not really funny. DONT WASTE YOUR MONEY. Rent “The Heat” instead….you will love it.

  4. Bill says:

    People aren’t going to see just whatever crud is thrown on the screen. Of people I know, the only movies of interest were Transformers 4 and America.

    Nothing against McCarthy but the movie didn’t look good and it would be nice for her to play a different character for a change.

    • James says:

      Stating that a ultra-conservative film and a “made for ten-year old boys and people who just want ‘mindless’ entertainment” are your picks for great films really just says it all…

    • JoelR says:

      If people weren’t willing (and eager) to see cinematic crud, then T4 would die the overdue death it deserves.

  5. R.l. Procter says:

    And AMC has raised ticket prices again.

  6. Evangeline Morphos says:

    Don’t forget that the East Coast suffered a hurricane this past weekend–that had a lot to do with people staying home. 4th of July celebrations were postponed to Saturday–so that knocked out 2 days of the weekend.

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