Los Angeles, Paris, April 17, 2015 - Webedia, the world's second-largest publisher of web and mobile movie platforms, announced today it is expanding its global presence into the US with the closing of the acquisition of Cote Cine Group (CCG), the parent company of BoxOffice Media.
Webedia is already the market leader for movie-related websites in France (allocine.fr), Germany (moviepilot.de and filmstarts.de), Brazil (adorocinema.com.br), Turkey (Beyazperde.com), Spain and Latin America (sensacine.es). With more than 60 million monthly unique users, Webedia is second only to imdb.com in global movie traffic.
With the acquisition, Webedia also becomes a leading provider of web and mobile platforms for cinemas, including online ticketing.
In the US, BoxOffice Media publishes pro.boxoffice.com, a leading business information website for the US cinema industry, and BoxOffice® Pro, the official magazine of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO).
All movie-related assets of Webedia will form a new group called BoxOffice Global Entertainment.
Julien Marcel, the Los Angeles-based CEO of BoxOffice Media, stated: "With the operational and financial support of Webedia and its unique footprint in the cinema sector, we will now be able to provide innovative digital media solutions to US exhibitors and to the industry as a whole."
Webedia co-CEO Cédric Siré added: "After building leadership positions in key markets in Europe, Latin America and the Middle East, we are very excited to welcome Julien Marcel and the highly respected team at BoxOffice Media to our network. Our combined expertise puts us in a great position to provide new digital thinking for the cinema industry, and we couldn't find a better brand than BoxOffice® to make that happen."
By Daniel Garris
Universal's Furious 7 grossed $2.92 million on Thursday to lead the daily box office for a 14th straight day. The well-received seventh installment of the blockbuster franchise featuring Vin Diesel, Dwayne Johnson and the late Paul Walker was essentially unchanged from Wednesday's performance and down a sharp 65 percent from last Thursday. Furious 7 easily led the week with a weekly take $73.42 million. That represented a 62 percent decline from the film's opening week performance and brings the film's two-week total to a massive $265.35 million. Furious 7 is running an extremely impressive 45 percent ahead of the $183.19 million 14-day take of 2013's Fast & Furious 6.
Fox's The Longest Ride rounded out its first week of release with a second place take of $0.822 million. The Nicholas Sparks adaptation starring Britt Robertson and Scott Eastwood was up 2 percent over Wednesday, which represented one of the day's better daily percentage holds among wide releases. The Longest Ride placed in third for the week with a seven-day start of $16.66 million. That was on the low end of pre-release expectations. The film is running 29 percent ahead of the $12.93 million seven-day take of last year's The Best of Me and 42 percent behind the $28.60 million seven-day gross of 2012's The Lucky One.
Fellow Fox release Home held steady in third place with $0.712 million. The successful 3D computer animated film from DreamWorks Animation was down 1 percent from Wednesday and down a sharp 77 percent from last Thursday. Home placed in second for the week with $21.76 million. The film was down 49 percent from the previous frame and has grossed a significantly stronger than expected $132.31 million through three weeks of release.
Woman In Gold was up one spot and 2 percent over Wednesday to move into fourth place on Thursday with $0.583 million. The drama from The Weinstein Company starring Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds placed in seventh for the week with $7.90 million. Woman In Gold has grossed a solid $11.36 million in 16 days and will be playing in 2,011 locations this weekend.
Warner's Get Hard was down one spot and 5 percent from Wednesday to round out Thursday's top five with $0.576 million. The R-rated comedy starring Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart placed in fourth for the week with $10.88 million. That was down 41 percent from the previous frame and brings the film's three-week total to $73.45 million.
It only took 17 days for Furious 7 to become the first $1 billion worldwide hit of the year, the fastest any film has ever taken to reach that mark.
2015 is truly shaping up to be the big box office year many industry analysts expected, but the sheer speed the latest Fast & Furious film reached the vaunted benchmark remains to be surprising. This marks the first time a Universal release reaches the $1 billion global mark in studio history, considering Jurassic Park only reached its $1.044 billion tally following a 3D re-release in 2013.
The power of the overseas box office contributed $735.2 million from 17 days in release as of Friday. The film has grossed $273.7 million in North America in just 15 days. This puts Furious 7 at a global $1.009 million with Saturday and Sunday numbers still to come. As a whole, the Fast & Furious franchise has grossed a total of $3.392 billion through all seven installments.
"We're incredibly proud to watch Fast & Furious take its place as the only original live-action franchise to reach these kinds of results at the box office. Our cast, filmmakers and all of our Universal and Fast family deserve credit for working so hard to make Furious 7 a huge success and we look forward to continuing to watch the film grow over the next few weeks," commented Nick Carpou, President of Domestic Distribution at Universal, on the film's success.
"What started as a small film about the street racing sub-culture of East Los Angeles has become a global phenomenon with Furious 7 shattering records in so many territories around the globe. We're thrilled to celebrate this accomplishment with our colleagues and distribution partners throughout the world, who have made these extraordinary results possible," added Duncan Clark, President of International Distribution for Universal.
Furious 7 also holds record for the second-biggest worldwide debut of all time with $397.2 million (behind Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2); highest-grossing domestic and overseas openings in studio history ($147.2M and $250M respectively); biggest April and Easter opening; the highest domestic opening since November 2013; the all-time highest opening weekend of all time in 29 territories; the highest grossing Universal film of all time in 26 territories; and the biggest opening day of all time in China with $63.5 million, beating the previous record holder, Transformers 4's $36 million, by a wide margin.
"I am incredibly proud of the motion picture team at Universal, the cast and filmmakers of the FAST & FURIOUS for all they have done to take our original idea and evolve it into a huge, global, blockbuster franchise." said Ron Meyer, Vice Chairman of NBCUniversal, in an official blogpost.
The record-breaking success begs a follow-up question...
Can any other 2015 beat this record and reach the $1 billion global mark in less than 17 days?
By Alex Edghill
Friday Morning Update: First let's start with The Avengers: Age Of Ultron which finally took over top spot this past weekend. Hardly a surprise since its release is now just two weeks away and the marketing for the film has kicked into high gear, but still nice to see. It had just over 260,000 tweets on the week which was mighty impressive, and a number which we could see rise to over 400,000 this time next week given the increase in buzz it has been seeing. The record on the year for weekly tweets of a film in pre-release is actually owned by the same Age Of Ultron which had 418k tweets back in the beginning of March after its last big trailer reveal. I'm thinking that number might be in trouble this time next week.
Spectre waned as expected over the past week as it fell by over 65%, almost making way for the latest hot ticket - Star Wars: The Force Returns. With its second trailer, Star Wars had over 68,000 tweets yesterday, and so far today it is at over 90k tweets and should end up well north of six figures. Its first trailer had 142k back in December so its very impressive to see it so very close to that number with its second. Fitting to have this and Avengers duking it out over the next week because no other film should come close to their box office totals on the year.
Ant-Man also had a strong showing for its second trailer this past week as it generated over 44,000 tweets, very close to the 55,356 tweets its first trailer generated back in January of the year. A far cry from Avengers and even Deadpool's first picture reveal but considering that it comes after Age Of Ultron and exists in the same cinematic universe it has a lot going for it. Captain America and Thor debuted their franchises with ~$65 million a few years ago prior to Avengers. Considering that Ant-Man is a fringe character and not nearly as well known means that anything in the range of $50 million should be very favorable for a first film in the franchise.
Twitter Top 10 Movies for the week of April 10th to April 16th
|5/01/15||Avengers: Age of Ultron||261,116||1 (+1)||44.30%|
|12/18/15||Star Wars: The Force Awakens||87,985||(+12)||340.87%|
Subscribe to BoxOffice for more social media insights/coverage.
Interview with Mitch Neuhauser, Managing Director, CinemaCon
CinemaCon is once again starting with International Day; tell us what's in store from day one.
Our industry is truly global in nature and there are many issues and topics of importance and concern that are common to distributors in the domestic and international markets. There is still a need for the international community to gather as a group. There are matters that are specific to the international market, hence the reason we've continued with our International Day programming as a way to single out some of the executives and filmmakers in the international markets, hear updates on what's going on, specific to exhibition and distribution. We've put together what we think is pretty good International Day programming. We traditionally start off with two keynotes, one from exhibition and another from distribution, on what's going on in the industry: the good, the bad, the ugly, the past, the present, the future. From distribution we have Dave Hollis, executive vice president of distribution at Disney, and from exhibition we have Jerry Ye, vice president of Wanda. We have morning seminars, digital and social media programming; we're putting together a session in the afternoon on exhibition and distribution. We're delighted to be singling out Valmir Fernandes, the president of Cinemark International, with our Global Achievement in Exhibition award. We present something called the CinemaCon Passepartout award, which is being presented to Erlina Suharjono, the SVP Asia distribution for Warner Bros. Pictures International-she's someone who has been working tirelessly behind the scenes, very well respected by her peers throughout distribution and exhibition. We're honoring the filmmaker Baltasar Kormakur, the director of the upcoming film Everest, and Rentrak is presenting an award to 20th Century Fox International, last year's leader at the international box office. It's a jam-packed agenda, and we expect around 850 fully registered delegates for International Day.
Are there any specific trends or topics you'd like to highlight at this year's event?
First and foremost, the driving force behind our industry is product, and that's what studios bring to the table. We have six major studios on board with presentations on their upcoming slates: Sony, Disney, Fox, Universal, Paramount, and Warner Bros. Three of the studios will be screening feature films in their entirety: Disney will screen Pixar's Inside Out, Universal will screen Pitch Perfect 2, and Fox will screen Spy. We have a great cornerstone of programming from the studio standpoint. The next major piece to our puzzle is the trade show, which is once again a sellout. We need to keep on top of what's going on in equipment, concessions-what keeps our industry going.
Lunches are a great opportunity to hear industry leaders give talks and network with colleagues. What's on hand this year?
We're very excited about our lunches this year. Our Wednesday lunch has traditionally been filmmaker driven; in the past we've had Christopher Nolan, Ang Lee, Martin Scorsese, Oliver Stone, Sam Raimi, Guillermo del Toro, James Cameron, George Lucas. This year our lunch will be focused on Clint Eastwood. We're going to honor him and include a one-on-one panel with him. In early March, American Sniper became the top-grossing film released in 2015, and it's really a phenomenon. What he's done is incredible; this 84-year-old icon has unified the country with one film. We couldn't be more thrilled to have the support of Warner Bros. in bringing him so people attending can hear what he has to say about our industry, the theater-going experience, and for us to thank him for an unparalleled career.
You're also planning to bring in more discussion about independent film.
Many people ask us why we don't do anything on independent film. We've tried to do it on a number of occasions and hadn't gotten the traction we really needed to pull it off, but this year we have. We're calling our Thursday lunch "The Independent Game: Based on a True Story." There's such an important role that independent film plays; the major studios are continuing to fill the pipeline with incredible product for the masses, but they're cutting back on the number of annual releases, which puts an added importance on independent distributors. They fill screens, and our screens want to be filled 52 weeks a year and offer as diverse a range of product as possible. We're really thrilled to put together a very potent program on independent film.
Can you tell us about some other panels you have planned?
We have other panels scheduled throughout the convention. We have one on the importance of the Hispanic and Latino marketplace. Menu labeling is very important to members of NATO, and our friends at NAC, the National Association of Concessionaires, are hosting a panel called "The How-To Guide for Compliance with the FDA Menu-Labeling Regulations." ICTA is putting together a program on Thursday morning: "The Unintended Consequences of Digital Cinema." Everyone is digital, everything is going great, but it's still a learning curve and there are some things we still need to get a handle on. We're also putting together a program on showmanship and marketing. There's so much going on in social media, and the print ad has gone by the wayside, but theater managers still need to be on top of their game from a marketing and showmanship standpoint. When you're running a theater and there are guidelines and regulations pertaining to the consumer that change so often, you need to be on top of so many topics. One of them is payment security. There's a whole new force in the world of credit cards, called EMV, that theaters need to comply with to protect their customers, and we have a panel on that on Wednesday morning.
Anything new this year that we should look forward to?
Something new and exciting this year is going to be the Monday-night opening that is going to take place at a brand-new club called Omnia-a fantastic state-of-the-art club. In Vegas if you're not with the times, you're behind the times, and we're really excited to introduce CinemaCon and its delegates to Omnia. It's going to follow our gala opening-night event and screening, which will be the first industry screening of Pitch Perfect 2. Elizabeth Banks will be on hand with some special surprises, and we're looking to get out of the gate in a very exciting way.
CinemaCon returns to Caesars Palace in Las Vegas April 20-23.