Market Overview

US Box Office Hits 16-Year Lows As Weak Film Slate, Heavy Storms, Mayweather Fight Create Lack Of Interest

US Box Office Hits 16-Year Lows As Weak Film Slate, Heavy Storms, Mayweather Fight Create Lack Of Interest
Related DIS
Tesla Changes Up Its General Counsel After Tough Year In Legal
Netflix To 'Friends' Fans: We'll Be There For You (For Another Year)
'Wreck-It Ralph' sequel No. 1 for third week, before holiday push (Seeking Alpha)
Related FOXA
Facebook Acquires Rights To 'Buffy The Vampire Slayer,' Other Classic Shows
JPMorgan Sees 20% Upside For WWE, Multiple 2019 Catalysts
Snap hires away Fox's communications chief (Seeking Alpha)

The film industry is looking more and more like a Coen brothers' flick: bleak with no catharsis.

Producers are entering an annual slow point, and even by August standards, this weekend was bad.

By Box Office Mojo’s preliminary estimates, the top 12 domestic films brought in $48.9 million in U.S. screenings, representing a 50.5-percent annual decline and a 4.7-percent estimate miss. Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. (USA) (NYSE: LGF)’s “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” brought in just $10.1 million and Time Warner Inc (NYSE: TWX)’s "Annabelle: Creation" made just $7.4 billion, coming in short of FBR Capital Markets estimates by 10.6 percent and 14.9 percent, respectively.

Related Link: Forbes Fab 5 Among Actors And Actresses: Did They Earn Their Keep?

Hollywood studios can blame Hurricane Harvey and the pay-per-view fight between Floyd "Money" Mayweather and Conon McGregor for this weekend’s 16-year low, but FBR blames content.

“The main problem was a dearth of interesting releases this weekend,” analysts Barton Crockett and Zack Silver wrote in a Monday note. “Next weekend, we go from thin to vacuous, with no new wide releases.”

They anticipate a 30-year low for the four-day Labor Day weekend representing a 59-percent annual box office decline. Last year’s $19.7 million for “Don’t Breathe” and $12.7 million for “Suicide Squad” are beyond compare with this year’s expected first. In its third weekend, “The Hitman’s Bodyguard” is slated to bring in about $7.1 million.

The poor turnout will contribute to an estimated 25-percent year-over-year decline in quarter-to-date sales.

However, FBR sees potential catalysts in the Sept. 8 release of Warner Bros’ “It” and Sept. 22 release of “Kingsman: The Golden Circle.” With positive reports, these films might just propel the industry to meet quarterly estimates: an underwhelming annual drop of 20.5 percent.

FBR maintains a Buy on Time Warner and Lions Gate with Neutral ratings on Walt Disney Co (NYSE: DIS), Viacom, Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB) and Twenty-First Century Fox Inc (NASDAQ: FOXA), primarily justified by non-film-related analyses.

Latest Ratings for DIS

Nov 2018Imperial CapitalUpgradesIn-LineOutperform
Nov 2018ArgusMaintainsBuyBuy
Oct 2018BarclaysUpgradesEqual-WeightOverweight

View More Analyst Ratings for DIS
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Analyst Color Long Ideas News Reiteration Events Econ #s Analyst Ratings Media Best of Benzinga


Related Articles (DIS + FOXA)

View Comments and Join the Discussion!

Latest Ratings

CMAB. Riley FBRDowngrades84.0
View the Latest Analytics Ratings
Don't Miss Out!
Join Our Newsletter
Subscribe to:
Market in 5 Minutes
Everything you need to know about the market - quick & easy.
Daily Analyst Rating
A summary of each day’s top rating changes from sell-side analysts on the street.
Fintech Focus
Your weekly roundup of hot topics in the exciting world of fintech.
Thank You
for registering for Benzinga’s newsletters and alerts.
• The Daily Analysts Ratings email will be received daily between 7am and 10am.
• The Market in 5 Minutes email will be received daily between 7am and 8am.
• The Fintech Focus email will be received every Friday between 2pm and 5pm.

On The Brink Of Best Buy's Q2, Barclays Stays Bullish

Best Buy Opens The Books For Fiscal Q2 Before Tuesday's Market Open