300 follow-up rises, Tracks opens OK

10 March, 2014 by Don Groves

The 300 prequel/sequel easily conquered the Australian box-office last weekend while in its debut Tracks posted decent figures.

It was a generally listless trading session with only two titles surpassing $1 million despite post-Oscars bounces for 12 Years a Slave and Dallas Buyers Club.

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Sullivan Stapleton, Callan Mulvey, Lena Headey, Rodrigo Santoro and Eva Green star in 300: Rise of an Empire, which raked in $3.17 million, and $3.2 million with sneaks.

That’s impressive but not as muscular, pro-rata, as the US where the saga of Greek general Themistokles (Stapleton) leading the charge against invading Persian forces racked up an estimated $US45 million. The Australian opening is well below that of the original 300, which took $5.2 million in 2007.

John Curran’s Tracks fetched $556,000 on 201 screens after making $292,400 from previews and festival screenings, for a total of $855,000. Mia Wasikowska stars as Robyn Davidson in the drama based on the true story of Davidson’s 2,700 km trek across the outback with four camels.

Tracks skews primarily to older audiences and particularly to females who do not rush out to see a film on its opening weekend. “We’re actually pretty happy,” said Transmission Films’ Andrew Mackie. “Unlike the other new wide openers which are franchise-based, we always knew the success of Tracks will come down to longevity and word of mouth.

“What's heartening to us is the strong hold from Saturday to Sunday, always a good sign of positive WOM. Also, we're ranking well in a broad cross-section of cinemas, from urban quality screens to suburban and regional areas. It's tough to say at this point how far it can go, however for Tracks the journey has only just begun.”

The Liam Neeson action vehicle Non-Stop fell by a typical 43% to $1.06 million, bringing its 11-day tally to nearly $3.5 million.

After bombing in the US, Vampire Academy, the Twilight-meets-Mean Girls fantasy based on the young-adult paranormal romance novels by Rachelle Mead, bowed with a predictably ho-hum $722,000.

Best film Oscar winner 12 Years a Slave jumped by 25% to $617,000 in its sixth outing, elevating its total to $6 million. Dallas Buyers Club shot up by 24% to $346,000 in its fourth weekend after its best lead actor win for Matthew McConaughey, scoring $1.8 million to date.

Greg Mclean’s Wolf Creek 2 dropped by 50% to $508,000, grossing $4 million after its third round.

Critics adore All is Lost, writer/director J.C. Chandor’s adventure drama about a man (Robert Redford) who fights for survival after being lost at sea, but getting audiences to see it is the problem: The nine-screen launch yielded just $52,000 after the Universal pic collected $170,000 from previews and festivals.

Overall, takings improved by 8% to $10.46 million.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE March 6-9

 

 

 

Title

 

Week/ Screens

 

Box Office

 

% +-

 

Total

 

1

300: Rise of an Empire

1/467

$3,170,506

NA

$3,201,823

2

Non-Stop

2/253

1,068,406

-43

3,478,014

3

Vampire Academy

1/162

721,976

NA

721,976

4

12 Years a Slave

6/224

617,273

+25

6,047,058

5

The Wolf of Wall Street

7/167

581,624

-37

21,998,538

6

Tracks

1/201

 555,600

NA

855,286

7

Wolf Creek 2

3/208

508,839

-50

4,025,247

8

Lone Survivor   

3/221

415,163

-54

3,610,044

9

Dallas Buyers Club 

4/85

345,934

+24

1,834,261

10

Last Vegas

5/178

291,970

-51

6,379,407

Source: Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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