Game over for Adam Sandler comedy Pixels at US box office

27 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Ant-Man’ Holds On to No. 1 Spot at Box Office.

DIS 0.09 % film collecting an estimated $24.8 million in its second week, falling 57% from its debut and bringing its two-week total to $106 million. “Pixels,” from Sony Corp. SNE 0.24 % ’s Sony Pictures Entertainment, came closest to unseating the diminutive Marvel Studios star, landing in second place with $24 million in the U.S. and Canada—a weak opening given the film’s hefty cost. Vintage videogame characters like Pac-Man and Donkey Kong star alongside Adam Sandler and Kevin James in “Pixels,” about aliens who attack Earth using the 1980s-era arcade regulars.

Emails released last year as part of a massive cyberattack on Sony show the movie being approved by executives at a budget of $110 million, though a Sony spokeswoman said the final budget came in at $89 million. The movie has opened in about 40% of international markets and grossed about $25 million, with a release in China scheduled for September. “Pixels” was one of two movies released this weekend that arrived with backing from China as the country tries to find ways to work with Hollywood and learn its trade.

About 10% of “Pixels” was financed by China Film Group, and the $30 million production budget of “Southpaw” was financed by Dalian Wanda Group (with Weinstein Co. handling marketing costs). “Southpaw,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal as a middleweight boxing champion trying to make a comeback, collected a healthy $16.5 million in fifth place. It was an opening that showed having an adult drama in the summer season can pay off, said Erik Lomis, president of distribution at Weinstein Co. “If you’re not a superhero, a kid’s film or a dumb comedy, why do you have to go into the fall?” he said. “Paper Towns,” based on a book by young-adult novelist John Green, folded under lofty expectations—it grossed only $12.5 million when many analysts expected an opening of more than $20 million. A twist on the teen-romance movie, “Paper Towns” stars Nat Wolff as a reserved high-school senior whose adoration for a missing neighbor, played by Cara Delevingne, sends him on a quest to find her. (“Paper Towns” is distributed by Twentieth Century Fox, whose parent company, 21st Century Fox Inc., was until mid-2013 part of the same company as The Wall Street Journal.) Mr. Green’s last adaptation, “The Fault in Our Stars,” opened to $48 million last summer and eventually grossed $124.8 million. “Paper Towns” isn’t as popular a book as “Fault,” but Mr.

Earlier this month, Fox announced it had signed the author to a production deal, and an adaptation of his novel “Looking for Alaska” is under way at Viacom Inc. VIA -2.90 % ’s Paramount Pictures. “I’m not worried about profitability on the film,” said Chris Aronson, Fox’s president of domestic distribution. “I’m hopeful that more people will come.” Of the new releases, audiences liked “Southpaw” best and gave it an “A” grade, according to the CinemaScore market research firm. “Paper Towns” received a “B+” and “Pixels” received a “B.”

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