Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Madagascar 2 fails to live up to the original (in sales)

Madagascar 2

Madagascar 2 was doing better than Madagascar 1 in its week 5 overall, but it already started dropping faster than Madagascar 1, resulting in lower sales.

Madagascar 2 in Week 5:

Weekend 5 sales: $5,079,120
Overall sales: $165,653,852

Madagascar 1 in Week 5:

Weekend 5 sales: $7,434,917
Overall sales: $160,191,242

The reasons for the sudden drop in sales

(1) There's a chance that people are getting smart this holiday season and recognizing that spending money on gifts leaves them with no money for movies. I think that's a factor, because all the holiday films were down, including solid attempts from blockbuster magnets Will Smith (Seven Pounds) and Jim Carrey (Yes Man).

That said, I'm also a firm believer in capitalism, and a few movies have faired okay in the fall/winter, including Twilight (released Nov. 21; total $167 million), and Christmas films "Marley and Me" (Owen Wilson + Jennifer Aniston + dog family film = gold), and Adam Sandler's "Bedtime Stories" (from Disney). So I don't think it's just the economy.

(2) Therefore I think Madagascar 2's extreme drop in sales also imply the hype was better than the movie.

(3) That said, it seems like we have an influx of holiday films this year that are attempts at blockbuster success, especially family friendly films. So the dollars are divided among...

G & PG:

- Marley and Me: Fox
- Bedtime Stories: Disney
- The Tale of Despereaux: Universal
- Bolt: Disney
- Madagascar 2: DreamWorks

PG-13 & R:

- The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (Brad Pitt)
- Valkyrie (Tom Cruise)
- Yes Man (Jim Carrey)
- Seven Pounds (Will Smith)
- The Day the Earth Stood Still (Keanu Reeves)
- The Spirit (Samuel L Jackson)
- 4 Christmases (Reece Witherspoon; Vince Vaughn)
- Quantum of Solace (James Bond)

I think they still might make another Madagascar movie, but the incentive has gone down quite a bit. I think DreamWorks was hoping to get the sales a little higher than the original, so they are probably thinking more about the Shrek and Kung Fu Panda franchises now and the newer attempts like Monsters VS Aliens, Puss in Boots, and others (Master Mind, How to Train a Dragon, and Crood Awakening, a caveman animation from the Lilo & Stitch director).

Take a look at how Madagascar 2 didn't match up:

Kung Fu Panda


Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa

They moved "it," but they didn't move sales:



  1. Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa is a 2008 animated film written by Etan Cohen, and directed by Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath.

  2. Drop in sales also imply the hype was better than the movie.


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