Local Productions Finish Strong in February
February has been an excellent month for local productions the world over, including France, South Korea, and Latin territories. Spain saw its best numbers since November and Mexico released a documentary with extraordinary success.
During the February 4-6 weekend Warner released Primos (Cousins) a high-profile comedy directed by Daniel Sánchez-Arévalo (Fat people and DarkBlueAlmostBlack) with excellent critical reviews. The film grossed $1.28M at 250 theaters, with $5,140 per screen average. The film obtained strong word-of-mouth among adult audiences from 25 to 50 years-old. Primos continued with a soft decreasing to gross to Cume $4.18M by the fourth weekend. The movie looks to surpass the $5M mark soon.
The other big numbers came from Spanish Academy Awards Winner (Goya Award) Pa negre (Black Bread). Distributed by Emon three months ago, the movie returned to theaters thanks to winning nine Goya awards including all the main categories: best picture, director, actress and adapted screenplay. Before the awards, Black Bread cumed $1.62M at 50 sites. The weekend after the awards, gross increased 997% to $525K at 103 sites. In its 20th weekend, the movie is still playing well with a total gross of $2.81M and looking to end near the $3.3-3.4M mark.
During the February 25-27 weekend, three Spanish local productions were released, none of them with success. The releases were: 23-F, based on the ‘coup d'état‘ in Spain 30 years ago, adult animation fantasy Chico & Rita, and horror movie Secuestrados (Kidnapped).
Disney released Chico & Rita with a strong promotion muscle at 143 theaters but only grossed $312K. There was a lot of publicity and promotion to expose the film among adult audiences as a movie-event, but the strong competition of Oscar-winning movies was fatal.
The same happened with 23-F, also an adult movie about an historic event. Warner released the film at 225 sites grossing only $245K. Promoters of Kidnapped tried to create strong interest with young and middle-adult audiences by advertising the film on television, but the film only grossed $227K at 158 sites. The word-of-mouth is very good but it will be hard to keep the prints in the cinemas.
In Mexico, the big success came from the documentary Presunto culpable (Presumed Guilty). The film was released by Cinépolis Distribution at 130 sites grossing $537K during the February 18-20 weekend. During the second weekend, the movie climbed 25% adding 72 sites and grossing $672K. Its gross in the first 10 days is $1,54M$ and is pushing higher. The film has been released in several film festivals during 2010 and 2011.
Other success in Mexico has been the released of Guillermo del Toro’s horror production Julia’s Eyes. The movie released in Mexico at February 4th at 371 sites grossing $928K. During three next weeks the film cumed $3,12M in this territory. Released in other countries, Julia’s Eyes has grossed more than $12M worldwide since its release in Spain.
Pau Brunet is editor of Boxoffice.es, a website about movie industry and box office information from Spain, United States and Spanish-languages territories of Argentina and Mexico. Brunet is a development adviser in his own agency, Boxoffice Consulting, where he analyzed more than 35 movies. Now Brunet lives in Los Angeles where he is a freelance reporter and analyst.