Entries in Contagion (3)


‘Creature’ Crowned One of Biggest Movie Box Office Flops

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Nothing wraps up summer quite like your token monster movie, but Creature, which opened last week, not only failed to deliver, it flopped. Big time.

The film about a half-man, half-alligator from the deep who lets out horrible, guttural screeching sounds and picks off a group of young people one-by-one, had one of the worst box office openings ever. Of 1,507 screens for Creature, its total box office revenue was just $331,000.

“You’re looking at $220 per screen, per theater, that’s a terrible, terrible opening,” said Matt Atchity of “That roughly comes to six people per theater and that’s being generous. Laws of averages, you’re seeing 10 to 20 go to one and you’re seeing empty theaters.”

Sid Sheinberg, the producer of Creature, is actually the godfather of blockbuster hits. During his 20 years at the helm of Universal Studios, he “discovered” Steven Spielberg, supervised Jaws and had a heavy hand in Jurassic Park, just to name a few.

“In fact, Sid is one of the guys responsible for the modern strategy for wide-releases,” Atchity said. “Until 1977, movies were released in a different strategy than we see now—what’s called ‘road shows,’ we’d see it in a few markets, and as buzz built up, they’d go nationwide.”

In Creature’s defense, this wasn’t the weekend they expected. A few months ago, no other big movie wanted to open on 9/11 weekend, and there was the NFL strike, so the field looked wide open. But then Contagion—a thriller about a deadly disease outbreak—moved up its release date and the NFL strike was resolved. Creature wasn’t alone—several films opened badly that weekend.

Buzz about Creature zipped around the Internet after its release, but for all the wrong reasons. As we wrapped up our interview with Sid Sheinberg’s son and partner Jonathan Sheinberg, who marketed and distributed the movie, Sid burst into the room to tell us that Creature had suddenly shot up on IMBD’s MOVIEmeter—a ranking system for the most and least popular movies.

People were talking about it because it was a dud, but Jonathan turned that into a positive.

“Now our awareness is higher than a lot of openings that are happening this weekend,” he said.

Unfortunately, the buzz is building right as theater owners are pulling the film for other options.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Contagion Takes Weekend Box Office Top Spot

Warner Bros.(LOS ANGELES) -- Contagion proved contagious this weekend, ousting the hit adaptation The Help from the top spot on the weekend box office.

Contagion grossed $23.1 million in its opening weekend, assisted by favorable reviews and an all-star cast. Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Matt Damon, Kate Winslet and Marion Cotillard were among the actors in the Steven Soderbergh thriller.

The Help took silver in the weekend box office, with $8.7 million, followed by Warrior in third.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


'Contagion,' 'Warrior,' 'Bucky Larson' Open Friday

Comstock Images/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Here's a look at the new movies opening nationwide Friday:

-- Contagion: A devastating virus spreads quickly throughout the world, claiming thousands of lives and leaving health officials scrambling to contain the disease.  Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Gwyneth Paltrow, Laurence Fishburne, Marion Cotillard and Bryan Cranston star in this Steven Soderbergh-directed drama.  Rated PG-13.

-- Warrior: Two estranged brothers are brought together when they are forced to compete against one another in a mixed martial arts event.  Inception's Tom Hardy, plus Joel Edgerton and Nick Nolte, star.  Rated PG-13.

-- Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star: Nick Swardson is the title character, who moves to Los Angeles to become a porn star after he finds out that his parents were once in the adult film industry.  Christina Ricci and Don Johnson also star.  Rated R.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio