2006 Summer Movie Pool

9/6/06

Finally updated the Final Standings, as well as the Hall of Boneheads. Congrats to everyone who made that list :)

8/28/06

Awwwwwwwww... $2 million. Thanks to Prada. that was all that prevented me from going 10-for-10 this year. Twice now I've gotten 10 out of the top 11 picks. This thing's finally over, and based on a Deviation Score of 11-29, I've wrapped up 1st Place for the 5th time in 10 years (this ought to buy me some time from Todd's criticisms). Greg was the only other person to get 9 correct picks, and he won $50.00 for 2nd Place in just his first year of playing. Nice job, Greg. And as I've mentioned previously, Dennis won the Bonehead Award. Here's are this year's payouts:

1st Place - $220.00 - Steve Berg
2nd Place - $50.00 - Greg Boshart
Bonehead Award - $20.00 - Dennis Berg


I'll make the final updates this weekend, as we're still counting $$$ until Thursday the 31st. I'll also update the Hall of Boneheads info as well. Not too many entries to the Bonehead List this year. There weren't too many chances taken this summer, and while Jason and Kristen will appear at the top of the List with their awesome pick of Apocalypto, we'll also have entries for Lady In the Water, Garfield 2, Waist Deep, and Prairie Home, as the only films that didn't earn at least $50 million.

Hey, it was a really fun summer, and we actually had some good competition, particularly with Nacho, Vice, and Talladega. I hope to see everyone return next summer, and maybe we can get this thing to grow even bigger. More people = bigger payouts. We might even add a 3rd Place prize. See you all next year!

8/21/06

Nothing really new this weekend, other than Pirates finally eclipsing $400 million and Prada finally passing Break-Up. Talladega keeps making money, and should enter the Top-10 by this Friday.

Big weekend coming up, however... as Beerfest finally comes out. Personally speaking, I hope the 'Super Troopers' guys can bounce back from their recent subpar films.

8/14/06

Well, I was hoping that 20th Century Fox would finally pull Prada from the theaters, but after making another $2 million in 1,100+ theaters this past weekend, I guess that wasn't the case. By this time next week, Prada will have overtaken Break-Up in the standings. But also by that time, Talladega should have passed both of them. A quick guesstimation (yes, I know that's not a real word) of the final standings looks something like this:

7 - Click - $135 million
8 - M:I3 - $133.5
9 - Talladega - $132
10 - Prada - $120
11 - Break-Up - $118.5

This would mean that only Greg and I will finish with 9 correct picks. But unfortunately for Greg (and for the rest of you rooting against me), World Trade Center only pulled in $27 million for the weekend. So no 10-for-10 for any of us. And also assuming that no film this weekend makes $80+ million this upcoming weekend, I'll have Greg edged in the Deviation Score tiebreaker (approx 11 vs. 26). Sorry, Larry. You would have had 2nd if Prada hadn't screwed things up. Instead, that'll go to Greg.

And now that the last picked film has been released, Dennis can enjoy the fact that he will be the 2007 Bonehead Winner. Congrats on making the WORST pick out of any of us. You'll be added to the Bonehead Hall of Shame soon enough. Some people may think that his pick of Prairie Home was intentional, but you know what? More than 20 other films would have qualified for this prize... so you all had your chance. But then again, had he listened to me in the first place and gone with SOMETHING with a more realistic chance than Prairie (such as Talladega), he quite possibly could have finished in 2nd place - due to an even better Deviation Score than Greg (again based on my guesstimation). Lord, I can already imagine the crap I'd hear if my dad and I finished 1-2. But as it is, the $20 belongs to Dennis, and $50 should go to Greg.

Up next... SNAKES ON A PLANE!!!

8/7/06

$47 million opening for Talladega Nights. Sweet! But there's still one more movie to come out, and it's a critical one for Greg. For a while now, Greg's been silently sitting on 8 correct picks. He also picked Talladega, and it should finish higher than the current #9 and #10 movies (Break-Up and Prada), giving him 9 correct picks. Now it comes down to his last pick: this week's World Trade Center. It only has 3 weekends, however, to pull in over $117 million. If it does, then he's a perfect 10-for-10. If not...............

7/31/06

Well, I certainly saw this one coming. An opening of $25 million in the last weekend of July is definitely not going to cut it. So with the failure of Miami Vice, I'm now in the driver's seat. If I can get a solid opening ($40+ million) this weekend for Talladega Nights, then I should win outright. But if it tanks, then we're looking at a 7-way tie with 9 correct picks. I did some calculating, and assuming Talladega finishes with more than $70 million, I should still be able win the tiebreaker. Wouldn't you know that the biggest threat comes from Larry. I've barely mentioned his name this year, but the top of his list is doing exactly as he projected. Good job, Larry. And it pretty much doesn't matter what Prada does, as even if it bumps Break-Up down a spot, I should still have the #10 movie either way, still leaving me with 9 correct picks (unless World Trade Center or Barnyard hit it big). Worst-case scenario for me would be if Talladega bombs so badly that it finishes lower than Poseidon. Here's hoping that all of the rednecks of the United States flock to see their precious Nascar. Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeoooooooooooooooooooooot!!!

7/24/06

Four new threats (Lady In the Water, Monster House, Clerks II, and My Super Ex-Girlfriend), and none of them made more than $23 million. Cross those movies off the list.

No changes with the top 11 films. But the real excitement is with Prada, as it pulled in another $7 million. It's now less than $20 million behind Break-Up for 9th place. GO AWAY, DEVIL!!! But even if it does finish in the top-10, I'll still need Talladega to wrap things up, just like Justin needs Miami Vice. If both bomb, then we're probably looking at a 6-way tie (before the tiebreaker).

But this is it for Justin. It's showtime! He's done a lot of talking, and it's now time to see how his big movie performs. Just remember... same director... same Jamie Foxx... same genre... same R-rating as Collateral, and even WITH Tom Cruise, that film could only do $80 million. I'm not wishing you any luck.

7/17/06

No more Nacho... The Devil Wears Prada took care of that. But it's also doing a little too well. It just jumped into #10 with another $10.5 million last weekend, and I'm praying that it tops out at about $105 million. Click should finish at over $130 million, but it looks like Break-Up is about done. Maybe $118 million, tops. As I've said earlier, only 3 films have made over $110 million and failed to make Top 10. Prada certainly has my attention. Hey Larry, why didn't you pick this one?

No surprise to see Little Man and You, Me and Dupree pull in nearly identical totals of $21 million. Sorry, Bill.

Up next... now this should be interesting. Lady In the Water comes out on Friday, and I have no idea what'll happen. I'm not hearing any sort of buzz about this film. It's already off to a bad start in Rotten Tomatoes. Maybe people are still bitter over The Village. Laura, Kurt and Jerry really need this one to stay alive. Geez, we also have My Super Ex-Girlfriend and Monster House coming out. Oh, and Clerks II. This is definitely a pivotal weekend.

7/10/06

WOW! So many records broken!

Top opening day gross: Top Opening Day Gross Fastest to $100 million: Fastest to $100 million Highest grossing opening weekend: Biggest Opening Weekend
And this was with some pretty poor reviews (53%/43% in Rotten Tomatoes). The #2 through #4 films in this last list made over $380 million, so it'll be interesting to see how far Pirates can go. It'll be a shock if it doesn't finish #1 this summer.

Not including the 2 who picked Apocalypto (which got bumped to December), we've got 7 people who have already made all their picks, and 16 others who have one film remaining. A couple others have 2 films left, while Kevin still has three movies hiding in his back pocket. Still, only Justin and I are 9-for-9 (assuming all of the current Top-10 films over $100 million will hold steady - as only three $110+ million films have ever failed to finish Top-10).

Next up... You, Me and Dupree. Only Bill picked it, and I've got to be honest with you... I don't think I laughed once at those previews. Sorry. Not funny.

7/4/06

So much work to do. Hang the curtains... paint the cabinets... dig out and move the sprinkler heads... hook up my new 60" TV... Ok, that one clearly wasn't a gripe. I just wanted to tell you about my new toy. The Sony Grand Wega SXRD. Consumer Reports and I both highly recommend it.

As for the movies, this was a rather disappointing opening weekend for Superman. Only $85 million? As far as 5-day openings go, it was a pretty weak performance for such a highly anticipated movie: Top 5-day Openings
Most of us had it in the 4-6 range, but there's a couple guys who thought it'd finish #1. Sucks for them. And speaking of disappointing, Click isn't looking as promising as I expected, with a 2nd weekend performance of only $20 million.

No major developments in our pool, as no one missed out on Superman. This upcoming weekend is also uneventful, as only one person didn't pick Pirates of the Caribbean 2. Someone simply thought more highly of Garfield 2 than the sequel to the #3 movie from Summer '03. Sorry, Leslie.

Still waiting for that 'surprise' film that sneaks into the Top-10. This weekend we've got A Scanner Darkly and Strangers With Candy. Guess we'll have to wait a little bit longer. And we're now a month away from the big Miami Vice / Talladega Nights showdown!

Have a fun 4th of July!

7/3/06

I'll be updating the website by tomorrow morning. Still very busy.

Also, I just moved this past week into my new (and first) home, so for those of you who still haven't paid, please send your $10 entry fee to my new address:

Stephen Berg
6699 Chester Park Circle
Jacksonville, FL 32222


I've sent an e-mail reminder to those who haven't yet paid (it looks like Chapman has a bunch of you covered). Thanks.

6/25/06

Well, I've finally moved into my new house, so things are pretty hectic over here. This also means that I'm taking the week off from work, and I won't be able to correctly update the Current Standings until I have access to Frontpage. The basic update has been uploaded, but the vertical text needs to be edited. Not like it's difficult to read, however.

Nice opening for Click, with one of Adam Sandler's best openings ever at $40 million. Based on the results of his top-5 grossing films, we should expect this one to reach $125-130 million total. And if this is the case, then Macke really missed out on it, leaving Justin and me at 7-for-7. Of course, a surprise film could join the party at any time and blow this whole thing up. But it certainly wasn't Waist Deep. Not only did it pull in only $9.5 million, making it a bust pick, but by pulling in that amount, it has been essentially knocked out of the Bonehead Race. Dennis is now sitting pretty with Prairie Home at $12.5 million.

No suspense this upcoming weekend with Superman coming out (pun not intended). Everyone picked it... everywhere from #1 to #9. I really liked the commercials and previews (all 274 of them), so I hope there's more to the film than what I've already seen. As far as we're concerned, things don't really get exciting until mid-July, when we get to selections that only a select few have made.

6/20/06

Poor George. To whoever posted that the photo gallery was boring, Justin decided to take some action... and George is his victim. Feel free to e-mail me any creative images, and they'll get posted.

6/18/06

Say no to Nachoooooooooooooooooooooooo ($27 mil), as well as Fast and Furious 3 ($24 mil), Lake House ($13 mil), and Garfield 2 ($7 mil). What a terrible weekend. Maybe word-of-mouth will help these films. I doubt it. Assuming these numbers are accurate, and assuming Nacho doesn't make Top-10 (not at this pace), and also assuming that The Break-Up DOES make Top-10 (already at $92 million), that now leaves only three people who are 6-for-6 in their selections (Steve, Justin and Macke). Of course, Macke didn't pick next weekend's Click, and boy, are they marketing the hell out of that film. You might not be a fan of Adam Sandler, but his movies make some serious cash. All I can say is that there won't be three perfect picks after next weekend.

There's another film coming out this weekend... maybe you've heard of it... Waist Deep. I hadn't. In fact, I don't think I've seen a commercial for it. But perhaps Renee knows better. Or she's going for the Bonehead. Unfortunately for Dennis, Prairie Home is almost up to $9 mil... bad, but maybe not bad enough. I really don't think there's any other Bonehead competition this summer than Waist, so one of these two should be taking home the $20 prize.

6/11/06

$62 million. Not exactly the opening I was expecting for Cars. The same can be said for the reviews in Rotten Tomatoes (only 78%/78%). It opened in 5th place among the all-time animated openings. But with heavy competition this summer (Over the Hedge is already at $130 million), I'd expect it to finish in the low-to-mid $200's Top Animated Openings
We also had a nice opening for The Omen. Only $15 million for the weekend, but it did pull in another $20 million from last Monday to Thursday. Could be a sleeper - which no one picked. X-Men solidified itself as a top pick, as it became the first film to break $200 million. It's also now locked into a higher positioning than Da Vinci Code. Same thing for Over the Hedge and M:I3. Good thing I'm not the only one who got those backwards.

The race for the Bonehead is on! Dennis stormed out of the gate first, and got what he deserved by picking a Robert Altman film. It couldn't even make Top-10 in its opening weekend this early in the Summer! Was he trying to buy the Bonehead Award? He says no... and points to the previous winners and their equally bad picks.

And how's this for a do-or-die weekend? Nacho Libre, Fast and Furious 3 and Lake House open on Friday. Based on our picks, none of them are expected to do much, and 11 people are praying that this is where they get a leg up on the competition. I'm rooting against all of you :)

6/5/06

Heyyyyyyy... don't rush those results. The actuals came in for this past weekend, and The Break-Up did just a teeny bit better than projected, pulling in $39.2 million. I think that might be enough, considering there won't be any 'date movie' competition until Click comes out June 23rd. But this is where those bad reviews might come in to play. Now we'll see what kind of word-of-mouth it gets (though it seems both Jaime and George loved it on their date last weekend). Here's something else to think of... Break-Up had the 3rd highest opening ever for a romantic comedy. The other movies in the Top-6? None of them grossed less than $120 million. It also has the highest average per theater grossing of any of the listed films: Top Romantic Comedy Openings
Coming this week... The Omen makes a rare opening on a Tuesday (6/6/06), plus Cars and A Prairie Home Companion open on Friday. We also might be getting an early look at a Bonehead candidate with Prairie.

There's also a new poll question. With 46 votes (that's funny... only 29 people playing), the majority wanted the tagboard to remain above my updates. But can we move that 'Reset Tag' button a little lower?

5/30/06

Who saw this coming? I figured X-Men 3 would crack $100 million over the holiday weekend, but I never expected it to be the #1 Memorial Day weekend opening ever with $120 million. The previous record was held by 2004's Shrek 2 with $95 million. It also wound up being the 5th best 4-Day opening of all time: All Time 4-Day None of us picked it lower than 5th, and it's already looking like a Top-2 film.

As for this upcoming weekend... a crucial opening for The Break-Up. 16 of 29 people picked it, so this is a sink-or-swim movie for many of us. Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston were at the Cubs game yesterday (how appropriate), and the Cubs actually won a game! Let the magic begin!!!

5/26/06

I finally made it to work yesterday, so I updated the Current Standings. Not a big fan of the vertical text editing for .php coding :( Many, many, many unnecessary (but evidently necessary) steps.

5/22/06

Uhhhhh... I feel horrible. Sorry for the delay in the update, but you'll have to wait a little longer for the Current Standings page to get updated (I don't have MS Frontpage at home, and evidently it's necessary for the vertical names in .php code). If I show up for work tomorrow, I'll take care of it then. If not, we'll try on Thursday (I'm off on Wed). Anyway, until then, you can view the standings by opening this week's Excel file in Weekly Spreadsheets.

I'm sure everyone's already aware how our movies did this weekend. Da Vinci Code didn't really surprise any of us by opening with $77 million (the 13th highest opening weekend ever). Ok, maybe one of didn't have any faith in it. In fact, it had the 12th best OPENING DAY performance of all time with over $28 million). And looking at the total gross of the other films in the top 16 (http://www.boxofficemojo.com/alltime/days/?page=open&p=.htm), we should expect at least $200 million total... unless the word-of-mouth is brutal.

Personally, I expected a more than $38 million from Over the Hedge. That's a decent start, and we all know that animated films have more longetivity than live acting films. Not to mention that we still have 3 more weeks until Cars comes out. And opening this weekend: X-Men 3. I know David Logan is freaking out with excitement right about now. He'll probably be up all night tonight on his honeymoon, rocking in his chair, "Four more days... four more days." So do they have a movie theater on that cruise ship in Alaska?

5/15/06

Hey, look at that... Poseidon is in 2nd place! I guess I was wrong about that movie ;) What I really want to know is how many of you who picked it actually went out and saw it. Anyone? Let me know what you thought... b/c not many others thought much of it, evidenced by a 31% freshness rating in Rotten Tomatoes (only 27% by the Cream of the Crop). That got me thinking, what was the worst-reviewed film that made Top-10? Well, immediately I found that last year, The Longest Yard got a 29% rating (but Cream of the Crop was 41%). And since we care more about hearing from Roger Ebert with the Chicago Sun-Times than some joker like Rob Blackwelder with 'Splicedwire', I dug deeper... but not for too much longer. Last year's Fantastic Four got a 25% freshness rating from BOTH the regular joes and the Cream of the Crop. Ouch! Yet it still pulled in over $150 million. But then again, it made $56 million in its opening weekend. Surprisingly, FF wasn't the worst movie I found. Tada! That award goes to last year's Monster-In-Law, with a freshness rating of 17% (13% by Cream of the Crop). HOW DID THIS MAKE TOP 10?! And it only made $23 million in its opening weekend. 2004's Van Helsing made a good run at the top spot (22% and 16%), as did 2002's Mr. Deeds (23% and 17%), and 2001's Tomb Raider (18% and 22%). This just tells me how dumb America is. So there's still hope for some of you yet.

5/8/06

After last year's Summer opening debacle with 'Kingdom of Heaven', Hollywood did it right by starting things off with 'M:I3'. While the opening numbers weren't anywhere near the projections ($48.0 million vs. $71 million), they still were good enough to be Top-10 worthy. Leslie, you might want to be a bit concerned, as I don't see it finishing #1. But who knows? I'm sure word of mouth will be positive, as everyone I've talked to who saw it liked it a lot. I loved it. My wife didn't... but what do you expect from a movie like this? Guns, gadgets and explosions (and running)? Exactly! No one missed out on this opening week hit.

Next up, POSeidon (good observation, George).

5/5/06

29 entries. 29! Thanks to numerous requests (and a pot of $290.00), we're going to add a 2nd place prize. Here are this summer's payouts:

1st Place = $220.00
2nd Place = $50.00
Bonehead Award = $20.00


This should keep more people interested throughout the summer. I considered pulling the payout for the Bonehead Award completely, but since a few seemingly-bad picks had already come in, I decided not to change the rules until next summer. Next year we might see just a $10 Bonehead Award , but no cash prize will be awarded; instead, it'll be early payment for the following summer. I'm still mulling it over. Maybe we'll have a 3rd Place prize too.

Anyway, I have already posted the picks (on the 'Picks' page) and the Current standings, as well as the actual Excel spreadsheet of the entire grid (in 'Weekly Spreadsheets'). Some interesting picks out there... particularly Dario's omission of 'Da Vinci Code'. Maybe he knows something we don't. Good luck to everyone.

5/2/06

We've got 22 submissions so far (surpassing last year's total), and I know of a few more that are on the way. Nice job! To those of you who haven't yet paid, get your money in ASAP. I also have a PayPal account if you don't want to mail a check (sberg23@yahoo.com). Just keep in mind that because PayPal charges me a fee for every transaction I receive, you'll need to add $0.60 for every $10.00 that you send me. Some of you have used this payment method in the past. But if you don't like that option, just mail a check. Get it to me soon.

Also, Chapman finally sent me the official Movie Pool poster, and while he acknowledges that it could have used some more tweaking, he's too burned out to continue working on it. So you better like it for what it is. I'm guessing that most of you will. I'll be adding it to the website. Enjoy.

4/17/06

The tagboard and poll questions are operational. I will change the banner some more but I wanted to have an accuarte showing of some of this years movies. Look for changes there as I get some time (and ideas).

-Jaime

4/13/06

Welcome back, everyone! Hopefully you're all currently working on your picks. The invite e-mail has already been sent out to all of the returning players, and I am currently in the process of updating the pages of the website. As of now, the tagboard and poll question are not working properly, and Jaime is in the process of fixing them. He's also creating a new header banner, so stay tuned. Don't forget, your picks are due by May 1st