hobbit3.pngThe Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies took home #1 openings in all of its 17 new markets. The film finished Thursday with $13.7 million from 28 overseas markets and is currently reporting a $26.6 million cume outside of North America.

The film scored the biggest opening of all time for a Warner Bros. release in Russia, hauling in $2.5 million from 2,285 screens. The Brazilian debut accounted for $1.3 million from 1,037 -a figure that goes up to $1.8 million after including previews. Mexico brought in $1.1 million from approximately 2,775 screens -not a bad figure considering the first leg of the country's soccer league final was broadcast on Wednesday night. Five Armies is already tracking 39% higher than Desolation of Smaug in Mexico. The film recorded the biggest opening day of the year in New Zealand with $529k. Eastern Europe rounds out new openings with a collective $1.5 million haul from 9 markets.

Second day results continue to bring good news as well. Germany added another $2.1 million from 1,442 screens to reach a $5.3 million two-day total. France brought in $1.5 million from 914 screens to reach a two-day total of $4.2 million.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies opens in the United Kingdom on Friday and expands to Japan on Saturday.


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movio.pngShowcase Cinemas Becomes First UK cinema Exhibitor To Sign Up for Movio Cinema, Movio's Analytics and Targeted Marketing Software-as-a-Service Solution Integrated with NCR's Cnema Point-of-Sale

London, UK - December 12th, 2014 - Movio, the global leader in marketing data, analysis, insights, and campaign creation and management for theatrical exhibitors and distributors, is proud to announce the signature of Showcase Cinemas UK.

Global exhibitor National Amusements was an early adopter of the Movio Cinema platform in the US, resulting from Movio's agreement with NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) earlier this year.

The extension of this partnership, from the United States to the United Kingdom, demonstrates National Amusements' confidence in the Movio Cinema solution, and its abilities to better understand consumer behaviour and deliver personalised offers to moviegoers through their preferred communication channels.

"We are thrilled to be the first exhibitor in the UK to leverage the extensive capabilities of the Movio platform," says Amber Stepper - Global VP, Marketing & Advertising of National Amusements. "We have seen great insights and optimisations from utilising Movio Cinema for our US circuit, and we are very much looking forward to delivering our UK customers the most timely and relevant offers and communications, based on a data and analytics-centred approach."

As a long-standing leader in exhibition, National Amusements understands what it means to build and maintain customer loyalty over time. Long before CRM and loyalty became popular marketing tools, National Amusements made customer service the primary focus, believing that an extraordinary experience in the theatre is fundamental to success. Technology is now a critical piece of their strategic approach to the entire customer journey.

Sarah Lewthwaite, Strategic Partnerships Director, EMEA at Movio, observes: "As moviegoers are faced with a growing number of choices for how, where and when they watch films, the cinema industry's use of consumer data is becoming increasingly more important. National Amusements UK is on the forefront of using such data and we are thrilled to be working with them to help advance their business."

Companies interested in learning more about Movio's Software-as-a-Service solution can visit www.movio.co .

About National Amusements

Showcase and Showcase Cinema de Lux are owned and operated by National Amusements, Inc., a world leader in the motion picture exhibition industry operating more than 940 screens in the US, UK, Brazil and Argentina. National Amusements delivers a superior entertainment experience under its Showcase, Showcase Cinema de Lux, Multiplex and UCI brands. Based in Massachusetts, National Amusements is a closely held company operating under the third generation of leadership by the Redstone family. National Amusements is also an equal partner in the online ticketing service, MovieTickets.com, and is the parent company of both Viacom and CBS Corporation.
Website: www.showcasecinemas.com

About Movio

Movio is the global leader in marketing data analysis and campaign management for cinema exhibitors and distributors. A company of Vista Group International Ltd (NZX:VGL), Movio's mission is to revolutionise the way the film industry interacts with moviegoers. Movio maintains real-time, authoritative data on the loyalty activity and transactions of over 26 million customers.
Website: www.movio.co
Twitter: @MovioHQ
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/movio


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exodus-gods-and-kings.jpgby Daniel Loria

Whatever pressure there was on Ridley Scott to follow up the success of his debut feature, The Duellists, a period piece that won the Best Debut Film at the 1977 Cannes Film Festival, was only multiplied by the release of his second film. Alien hit screens in 1979, only two years after Star Wars reignited the blockbuster potential of science-fiction films. Alien was a different kind of beast, however, a film many universes away from George Lucas's nascent family-friendly action-adventure saga. Rather than joining the string of derivative space operas immediately following Star Wars, Alien ushered in the renaissance of American science-fiction films in the 1980s by introducing more serious and adult elements. When Blade Runner followed Alien three years later, audiences around the world began to recognize Ridley Scott as a singular talent.

Scott is perhaps best known for making the sort of films that feature a fully realized diegetic world. His settings are often painstakingly detailed, giving locales otherwise limited to our imagination a grounded reality that makes them so engrossing on screen. He is a favorite among science-fiction aficionados for that very reason, but it's impossible to overlook how his talent has shaped the historical epics he's taken on in his career. The director's latest film, Exodus: Gods and Kings, brings his vision to ancient Egypt through the story of Moses. Exodus promises to provide audiences with another immersive-experience world best suited for the big screen.

Ridley Scott spoke to BOXOFFICE about his career and the making of Exodus just a day before he began shooting his next project, The Martian.

What was it about Exodus: Gods and Kings that drew you to making the film?

The character of Moses is so enormous, and I sat down to read Peter Chernin's screenplay with great curiosity. I didn't know anything about Moses's extraordinary life, other than the more obvious elements that are associated with him. I had no idea he was a military man, a commander of the Egyptian army, that he was important in the Egyptian hierarchy. I really got into it and found that it could be an amazing film and a great challenge to bring it to audiences today. So I climbed onto the project, and we went into the typical readjustment and rewriting from the original.

What made you go after Christian Bale for the role of Moses?

I met Christian years ago, and I've known him for a while now, and I've watched his bigger films, Batman and all his other roles that are better known. But there's another side to him that you can see in films like Out of the Furnace, where you can see who he is other than Batman. I really liked him in that western, 3:10 to Yuma, and watching him change over the years into a very powerful actor. What really blew me away was American Hustle, watching him really going for the character. By then I was already tracking him, and when I approached him with the idea of Exodus he just said, "Oh my God, really?" I had no idea if he would go for it, but he was challenged by it; it's a role that he really had to stretch himself to get his head around it, so he said, "Yeah, let's do it." It turned into one of my best relationships in making a film, I think.

You have a number of big historical epics on your résumé, all of them featuring a fully realized and detailed diegetic world- 1492: Conquest of Paradise, Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven. What lessons from those projects did you take into your approach to Exodus?

It's all relative. In fact, Kingdom of Heaven is not a million miles from Exodus. Gladiator touched on ethnic environments and a time that we can only associate with history books, and I loved doing 1492 with Gerard Depardieu. I love doing these period pieces; I love to create the universes. This project has the additional strong attraction that the Egyptians are architecturally just spectacular. It's the sort of stuff that baffles you and makes you say, "Where the hell did that come from?" The Greeks didn't influence them even though Greek architecture has influenced almost all forms of Western architecture over the centuries. The exotic architecture of the Egyptians, I think, is tied to their obsession with life and afterlife. So how that idealism is expressed through the pyramids is magnificent. One wonders about the science-fiction elements of that.

Women in your films aren't eye candy or trophies; throughout your career you've included some great female characters in strong and central roles. Alien is probably the best example; you subverted the classic horror model, the monster movie that basically built Universal during the studio era, by having the unstoppable monster meet its match in a woman who fights back instead of shrieking for help. But it doesn't end there; strong women show up in a number of other films: Thelma and Louise, G.I. Jane, Hannibal ...

I think it goes back to my mum, actually. She was a very powerful mother, even if she was only five feet tall. I have great respect for my mother for raising three boys, but I think she was the kind of benchmark for these roles; she could kick our ass, you know! She was a very strong person, and thereafter I've never found women challenging, because women have always been equal in my estimation. I have an office in London, an office in L.A., and an office in New York, and they are all run by women.

You begin shooting your next film tomorrow. What can you tell us about The Martian?

The Martian is the definitive maroon story, set in the near future and based on the notion of just going up to Mars since we already know so much about it. To put it very simply, it's about a man who travels up there and gets left behind. Matt Damon plays the main character, who is the botanist in the expedition that gets left behind, and we'll be able to see how he survives with the elements in Mars. It's a great story about using ingenuity and science to reconnect with Earth.

It's nice to hear you're still connected with science fiction.

[Laughing] This one is more like science fact.

My fanboy side won't let me finish this interview without asking you about where you are with developing the next installment of the Prometheus storyline from the Alien saga and the long-awaited Blade Runner sequel.

They're both developed and written; the only question is which project I'll decide to do next.

Do you stop by the concession stand whenever you go to the movies?

I have to admit I like popcorn with salt, the largest bag I can get!

How about an early movie memory of yours, do you remember going to the cinema as a child?

The first film I can remember seeing is watching a black-and-white film named Gilda with Rita Hayworth. I don't know how my mother got me into that matinee, but we were sitting in the balcony so I could get a good view. When Rita Hayworth starts to sing and sway "Put the Blame on Mame," I must have been around six years old, but I got a funny feeling down below. It was the first time I got the funny feeling. My mother got up to leave, and I asked her if we could please stay and finish watching it. She just said "No!" Rita Hayworth was a spectacularly beautiful woman, even to impress a six-year-old child.


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By Alex Edghill

Friday Morning Update: For the second week in a row the impressive Star Wars The Force Awakens led all upcoming films on Twitter in terms of overall buzz. Now two weeks removed from its first trailer the film is still going very strong online and its fervent fanbase are eating up any and all morsels of information about the production.

While this is a very positive sign for Star Wars I can't help but feeling worried about the rest of the December slate and why they aren't generating more interest. Yes the new Hobbit installment and Into The Woods are in the top five but I would have thought they would have been out front, especially The Hobbit: The Battle Of Five Armies which has had a hugely success beginning Internationally with a $115 million+ start. By comparison, The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug had over 85k tweets the same distance from release. Other high profile December releases such as Night At The Museum: Secret Of The Tomb, Unbroken, Annie and The Interview are all no where to be found. Looks like the down box office year is going to continue through December.

If I had to pick a winner for the season it would be Into The Woods without a doubt. For it to be doing so well despite having a large family appeal is a promising sign which I'm willing to bet will translate into a $150 million+ domestic run.

San Andreas debuted its first trailer last week which saw it nab the fourth spot. The disaster movie drummed up 11,579 tweets on this past Thursday which was a little underwhelming when you consider that the much lower budgeted film Into The Storm had over 7,500 tweets for its first trailer. Still, I'm not betting against The Rock as he has proven his worth time and time again in recent years and is as about as a-list as you can get for blockbusters today.

Twitter Top 5 Movies for the week of December 5th to December 11th

Date Movie Tweets Rank Peak Change
12/18/15 Star Wars: The Force Awakens 86,316 1 (-) 1 -75.95%
12/25/14 Into The Woods 45,285 2 (+4) 2 47.93%
12/17/14 The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies 44,802 3 (+1) 3 10.85%
5/29/15 San Andreas 43,694 4 (+1) 4 22.89%
7/01/15 Terminator Genisys 29,966 5 (-2) 5 -33.34%

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Please check the methodology page for information about our Twitter project or here for historic data.

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hobbit3.pngThe Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies scored the biggest opening day of the year across 8 of its first 11 markets on Wednesday. The final part in the Hobbit trilogy capped of its overseas premiere with $11.3 million.

IMAX contributed $289k from 21 runs for a per-screen average of $14,185. Top performing IMAX sites include the Pathe Spuimarkt in The Hague (Netherlands) with $27,268; Cineplexx IMAX Donauplex 13 in Vienna (Austria) with $22,388; and the Potsdamer Platz in Berlin (Germany) with $20,019.

Germany has always been a loyal market for the franchise and its opening days numbers did not disappoint this time around after securing the biggest opening day of the year. The latest Hobbit film grossed $2.6 million with 245k admissions across 1,442 screens, including €550k in Tuesday midnight showings. The premiere figures outgross the latest Transformers film by 47% and the most recent Hunger Games title by 86% in the market. Five Armies captured 81% of the top 5 market share and is already outperforming An Unexpected Journey by 66% and is 4% ahead of Desolation of Smaug. The previous two installments of the franchise opened on a Thursday.

France reported a $2.7 million opening haul with 277.5k admissions across 914 screens, capturing 63% of the top 5 market share. Preview screenings put the film up to $2.8 million with 282k tickets sold.

Five Armies also fared well as it opened in Sweden ($1.5M on 443 screens), Norway ($1.03M on 311 screens), the Netherlands ($638k on approximately 220 screens), and Finland ($499k on 195 screens). Thursday previews in New Zealand sold out across 105 screens over 55 locations, taking in $141k.

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies will roll out on more than 14,000 screens in 37 territories this weekend. The film opens in 17 territories on Thursday, including Russia, Brazil, Mexico and New Zealand. Friday sees an expansion to 8 more territories, including the United Kingdom. The film will be released in Japan on Saturday.

South Korea, Italy, and Spain will debut on December 17. China is slated to premiere the film on January 23, 2015.


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