×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Digital Tracking: ‘The Boy Next Door’ Flirts With Box Office

How Moviepilot sees this week’s wide releases shaping up on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google

Does digital data offer indicators that can be used to monitor marketing effectiveness and predict box office success even before awareness turns into intent? Moviepilot — which studies social data and box office trends — analyzes this weekend’s new movies across Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Google (the methodology behind the numbers is laid out in the appendix below) over the seven days leading up to their release, when marketing campaigns should be at their peak.

The Boy Next Door,” Universal
Moviepilot Prediction: $22 million

Last summer Jennifer Lopez made a splash upon her return to music with “Booty” alongside Iggy Azalea, and now she’s back on the bigscreen in “The Boy Next Door,” a sexy thriller in which a cheeky affair turns into a dangerous liaison. “American Sniper” will take the top spot again, but “The Boy Next Door” has the social stats to take second place with over $20 million.

The combination of J.Lo and Ryan Guzman (of the “Step Up” franchise) along with a strong hook suggests that “The Boy Next Door” should play well with the influential Hispanic demographic, particularly to females over 25. Lopez has wide appeal, as shown by her enormous 30 million Twitter following, plus another 10 million on Instagram. The movie itself has gathered 20,000 Instagram followers, an impressive showing for an original title. “The Boy Next Door” also has enjoyed endorsements from other celebs with a large following behind them: sisters Kim and Khloe Kardashian.

“The Boy Next Door” is shaping up strongly on Twitter with 105,000 tweets, which will be a key indicator for its weekend performance. It’s just ahead of “No Good Deed,” at 100,000 tweets, which opened to $24.3 million, and around 2.5X ahead of “Addicted,” which bowed with $7.4 million. The J.Lo thriller is in line to clock $22 million.

Mortdecai,” Lionsgate
Moviepilot Prediction: $7 million

What to do with Johnny Depp? Having scaled the “Pirates of the Caribbean” heights and plumbed the “Lone Ranger” depths, it’s hard to say exactly how his movies will fare these days. Depp stars here as the eccentric Charlie Mortdecai, whose choice of facial foliage has permeated the entire campaign, including via a partnership with the Art of Shaving. The titular character has his own playful Twitter account with more than 21,000 followers, as well as a rumor-mill game (apparently I’m a “morally corrupt Lothario” — well, there’s no smoke without fire). When stacked up against Depp’s previous effort, “Transcendence,” “Mortdecai” is tracking at around 30% behind the cyber-thriller, suggesting an opening around $7 million.

Strange Magic,” Disney
Moviepilot Prediction: $4 million

Strange Magic” is from the mind of George Lucas, which alone should make it worth a look for some moviegoers. Influencers Miranda Sings and Zach King both created posts inspired by the movie, encouraging their millions of followers to catch it this weekend. Socially, “Strange Magic” is shaping up closely to “Legends of Oz: Dorothy’s Return,” which opened to about $4 million last year. “Strange Magic” has 12,100 tweets and 26,200 searches compared with 15,000 tweets and 24,000 searches for “Legends of Oz,” hinting at a $4 million opening as well for Lucas’ animated fantasy.

Tobias Bauckhage (@tbauckhage) is co-founder and CEO of moviepilot.com, a social-media-driven movie community reaching over 28 million Facebook fans and 20 million monthly unique users. Based on community data, Moviepilot helps studios to optimize their social-media campaigns, identifying, analyzing and activating the right audiences. The company works with studios including Sony, 20th Century Fox and A24.

————

Appendix

Facebook fan (or like) numbers are a good indicator for fan awareness for a movie, even months before the release. For mainstream movies with younger target audiences, fan counts are particularly important. However, big fan numbers can be bought and movies with older target audiences typically have lower fan counts. Fan engagement measured by PTAT (People Talking About This) is a more precise but also a fickle indicator, heavily driven by content strategy and media spending.  Both numbers are global and public facing numbers from the official Facebook fanpage.

YouTube trailer counts are important for measuring early awareness about a movie. We track all English language original video content about the movie on YouTube, down to videos with 100 views, whether they are officially published by a studio or published unofficially by fans. The Buzz ratio looks at the percentage of unique viewers on YouTube that have “liked” a video and given it a “thumbs up”. Movies with over 40 million views are usually mainstream and set to dominate the box office, while titles drawing around 10 million indicate a more specific audience. If a movie does not have a solid number of trailer views on YouTube four weeks before its release, it is not promising news. But again, it is important to understand whether trailer views have been bought or grew organically. These numbers are global and public facing.

Twitter is a good real-time indicator of excitement and word of mouth, coming closer to release or following bigger PR stunts. Mainstream, comedy and horror titles all perform particularly strongly on Twitter around release. We count all tweets over the period of the last seven days before release (Friday through Thursday), that include the movie’s title plus a number of search words, e.g. “movie” OR a list of movie-specific hashtags. The numbers are global, conducted using a Twitter API partner service.

Search is a solid indicator for intent moving towards release as people actively seek out titles that they are aware of and are thinking about seeing. Search is particularly significant for fan-driven franchises and family titles as parents look for information about films they may take their children to see. We look at the last seven days (Friday  through Thursday) of global Wikipedia traffic as a conclusive proxy for Google Search volume. We have to consider that big simultaneous global releases tend to have higher search results compared to domestic releases.

More Digital

  • Jay Frank

    Jay Frank, UMG Senior VP and Digital Music Veteran, Dies at 47

    Universal Music executive and digital music veteran Jay Frank died Sunday after a battle with cancer. He was 47. UMG chief Lucian Grainge remembered him in a message sent to the company. “Dear Colleagues,” it reads. “I’m deeply saddened to tell you that our colleague and friend Jay Frank has passed after a recurrence of [...]

  • Sam-Colby-The-Graveyard

    YouTube’s Sam and Colby Unveil ‘The Graveyard’ Paranormal Series Set in London

    Sam and Colby, YouTube’s favorite DIY paranormal investigators, headed to the U.K. for their next big ghost-hunting project. The duo today released the trailer for “The Graveyard,” a four-part docu-series shot in The Langham – by legend, London’s most haunted hotel – and an abandoned church graveyard. The project is their first international expedition. The [...]

  • Santos Dumont

    Mipcom: International TV Output Picture Changing for U.S. Majors

    The global import-export strategies of the U.S. majors are in flux as the world’s major content companies gather this week in Cannes for the annual Mipcom market and conference. Disney, WarnerMedia and the other handful of media conglomerates that control the vast majority of the U.S. market are in the midst of a radical transition [...]

  • Babylon Berlin

    ITV-Backed Streamer Cirkus to Launch European Drama Service Kritic (EXCLUSIVE)

    SVOD outfit Cirkus is expanding with Kritic, a new service programmed with premium non-English-language drama. The first launch will be in Sweden in December and feature big-ticket shows such as “Babylon Berlin” from Germany and “Gomorrah” from Italy. Cirkus has established itself in the Nordics and German-speaking territories. Kritic will roll out in Sweden before [...]

  • Mama K's Tesm 4

    Time Travel, Child Hosts, Diversity Build in Kids Shows, Says Glance Study

    CANNES —  More or less the only thing that hasn’t changed in Avril Blondelot’s MipJunior presentation of Kids Audience Successes Around the Globe was Blondelot herself. As well as, which she began by reporting, that “Alvin and the Chipmunks,” “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “Miraculous Ladybug” – in that order – still dominate the rankings for the [...]

  • Activision Blizzard

    Activision Blizzard Stock Recovers From Hong Kong Fallout

    Activision Blizzard saw its stock recover Friday despite continued backlash over its decision to punish a “Hearthstone” player for publicly siding with Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters. The company’s share price was up more than 2% Friday, closing at $54.82. Activision had been in the spotlight ever since Ng Wai Chung, a player of its “Hearthstone” [...]

  • Mixer Co-Founders Leave Microsoft's Twitch Competitor

    Microsoft’s Mixer Streaming Service Loses Its Two Co-Founders

    Microsoft’s Twitch competitor Mixer has lots its two co-founders: Both Matt Salsamendi and James J. Boehm, who co-founded the startup that eventually became Mixer in 2011, have both left the company over the past 2 weeks. The departure comes just a few weeks after Mixer poached famed video game streamer Ninja from Amazon’s Twitch. Salsamendi [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content