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2019 Summer Movie Pool
Who's ready for a little analysis of our 2019 Summer Movie Pool picks??
27 different movies were selected (3 more than last year), and amazingly none of them were Limited-release. We did just have a movie (Artemis Fowl) shift out of this year and into summer 2020... and completely handcuff one of our players. Awwwww I've been there. It sucks. And zero chance at the Bonehead Award too since it must earn at least $1 this summer.
Before the summer started I counted 12 legit contenders for Top 10 status, but as we learned a few years back (Straight Outta Compton anyone?) anything can happen. And remember, nobody really knows anything :D
Here are the numbers that we should keep an eye on for each 'major' movie (10+ selections this year):
Pokemon: Detective Pikachu - May 10
47 people / Avg placement = 6.1 / Highest placement = 2
A heavy favorite for making the list, as the product is a worldwide phenomenon. It does feel like a 2019 movie is a bit late in the game, but hearing Ryan Reynold's voice as Pikachu was all I needed to be sold on it.
John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum - May 17
21 people / Avg placement = 8.0 / Highest placement = 3
I'll admit, the trailer for this third film looks better than all of the second film. I'm in. But not enough to actually select it. $43M and $92M for the predecessors don't exactly inspire confidence in the third's success, even if this one is its first summer release. And then there is that whole 'rule of 50%' thing for sequels.
Aladdin - May 24
54 people / Avg placement = 6.1 / Highest placement = 2
I'm really surprised this wasn't a unanimous selection, as it appeared to be a super-lock. Surely this will fare better than Disney's last live-action flick, Christopher Robin, right?
Godzilla: King of the Monsters - May 31
47 people / Avg placement = 6.8 / Highest placement = 2
I don't care what people think, Godzilla was one of the best movies of 2014, and I have a feeling I'll enjoy this one even more. Another heavy favorite, with multiple players even having it as high as #2. Bold. Very bold.
Rocketman - May 31
14 people / Avg placement = 8.2 / Highest placement = 6
This movie will inevitably be compared to Bohemian Rhapsody, which played more as a "greatest hits" documentary. Rocketman is being described more as a fantasy musical, not a biopic. Sounds groovy, and 14 players are on board.
Dark Phoenix - June 7
43 people / Avg placement = 7.4 / Highest placement = 2
And another heavy favorite, but moreso toward the bottom of the list. Now that Disney has gobbled up Fox is there still interest in a fading franchise that is already being considered for a Marvel reboot? I personally didn't pick it, but I'll still go see it.
The Secret Life of Pets 2 - June 7
52 people / Avg placement = 5.2 / Highest placement = 1
The 2016 original came absolutely out of nowhere to earn $368M. As the first major animated film of the summer you can bet it will finish in the top half of the list. Lockety-lock-lock.
Men In Black: International - June 14
42 people / Avg placement = 7.4 / Highest placement = 3
This movie seemed like an easy selection, but I don't know if I ever laughed once when watching the trailers. A new cast in a new locale sounds so... dull. Over half the pool believes, however.
Toy Story 4 - June 21
59 people / Avg placement = 2.3 / Highest placement = 1
The first unanimous selection as a total no-brainer. Congrats everyone. I never expected TS3 to earn more than $400M back in 2010, so who knows how high this one will go. And this one has Key and Peele!
Spider-Man: Far From Home - July 5
59 people / Avg placement = 3.0 / Highest placement = 1
The other unanimous selection. Everyone loves Marvel. Everyone wants to see the first story after Endgame. Everyone loves Spider-Man. Spider-Man loves July 4th weekend ($334M in 2017). Too easy.
The Lion King - July 14
58 people / Avg placement = 2.2 / Highest placement = 1
NOT a unanimous selection. Wow someone really missed out. It's almost unfair that Disney has FOUR tentpole films in one summer. Could it be one too many? Boy, I hope not.
Once Upon a Time In Hollywood - July 26
17 people / Avg placement = 8.4 / Highest placement = 6
The ballsy pick of the summer. And my dad and I both selected it. Berg rules!!! Ok, I know Tarantino movies don't exactly make bank, but both recent flicks Inglorious Basterds and Django Unchained did cross $120M. This one reunites Leonardo DiCaprio and Margot Robbie. Ummm what else I got?? It has the late Luke Perry, yeah, so go see it for him. And did I mention Margot Robbie?
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw - August 2
51 people / Avg placement = 6.6 / Highest placement = 2
Don't be scared of that August date, as it has 5 weekends to make $$$. The majority are definitely not scared, as this dumb action spinoff's got The Rock and his best bro from the F&F series, Mr. Meg. Sorry Vin, Rock says you're not invited in on the fun.
Whew that was a lot. Ok I may not have picked all of them, but these are the movies I REALLY want to see the most in theaters: John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, Brightburn, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Rocketman, Spider-Man: Far From Home, Once Upon a Time In Hollywood, and Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw.
I hope everyone enjoys this summer as much as I will. Now it's my dad who has nearly perfectly identical picks as me. Ugh. I'm doomed :(
4 movies go Wide this weekend, with 47 players banking on Pokemon: Detective Pikachu to become the first hit of the summer. Projections are in the mid-50's, which would be a fine start with several months ahead of it. Reviews have not been kind to any of the other releases, particularly The Hustle, which has 1 player listing it as their #3 film. Good luck!
Boxoffice.com's predictions for this weekend:
2) Pokemon: Detective Pikachu - 56M (56M)
3) The Hustle - 15M (15M)
4) Poms - 8.4M (8.4M)
5) Long Shot - 6.6M (20M)
6) The Intruder - 6M (20M)
7) Tolkien - 5.5M (5.5M)
8) Uglydolls - 4.2M (14.7M)
Rotten Tomatoes freshness ratings (Critics / Audience Score):
Pokemon: Detective Pikachu = 66% / n/a
The Hustle = 16% / n/a
Poms = 26% / n/a
Tolkien = 47% / n/a
Pokemon: Detective Pikachu = 4,202
The Hustle = 3,007
Poms = 2,750
Tolkien = 1,495
Pokemon: Detective Pikachu = n/a
The Hustle = n/a
Poms = n/a
Tolkien = n/a
Current Top 10:
It's only our first weekend of the summer, and it looks like 7 players have had their dreams crushed already. The Intruder ($11M), Long Shot ($10M), and Uglydolls ($8.5M) all performed about as expected against the juggernaut second weekend of Endgame ($145M). All look like future additions to the Hall of Boneheads :)
While it wasn't a summer movie, it will still be fun to track Endgame's progress against the All-Time Domestic Gross list. After just 10 days Endgame has pulled in $619M. Sitting at #1? Star Wars: The Force Awakens with $936M. But this time next week I'd expected it to already be at #2 or #3. Crazy.
19 players with no selections were removed from this year's SMP, leaving us with 59 completed entries in 2019. A great turnout despite the slight dip from the last couple years (it had to stop peaking at some point). Only improves our chances at winning! :D Payments have been identified, so if you're still listed on the site you've made the cut.
All Limited-release movies were removed, as for the first time in well, ever, no participant selected one. Wow, folks are getting wiser here ;) All Wide releases remained so that they don't have to be re-added manually once they make bank ($1M is our standard cutoff). The 2019 Original Picks can now be viewed in Excel format in the Weekly Spreadsheets page. Enjoy!
Looks like the first weekend's movies are all going to get swallowed up by a second helping of Avengers: Endgame (projected at an additional $152M). Mmmmmmm yum. At least both critics and audiences enjoy Long Shot. The other two? Not so much.
Boxoffice.com's predictions for this weekend:
2) Uglydolls - 11M (11M)
3) The Intruder - 10.8M (10.8M)
4) Long Shot - 10M (10M)
Rotten Tomatoes freshness ratings (Critics / Audience Score):
Uglydolls = 27% / n/a
The Intruder = 28% / 20%
Long Shot = 83% / 82%
Uglydolls = 3,652
The Intruder = 2,222
Long Shot = 3,230
Uglydolls = B+
The Intruder = B-
Long Shot = B
Game on!! Registration is now closed, and the Startup Links including the Make Picks page have been disabled and removed. There are presently 78 listings in the Scoreboard, but 19 of those are 2018 players who did not return this year. Those players will be removed soon to clean up the list. Limited release movies that were not selected will also be removed from the Standings to help tidy things up.
Best of luck to those who selected movies this weekend. They are not Avengers: Endgame, so their box office will certainly be lacking.
Less than 2 days remain! And we've upped the ante in 2019 with a couple bonus prizes for our big winners. Thanks to our good buddy Chapman we introduce: the Idol (goes to our First Place winner), and the Bonehead (goes to our... Bonehead winner). Something to cherish forever!!
Hope everyone is as excited for the start of the SMP as we are! 28 entries are in at this time, and as always there will be a flood of them in the final week. Reminder that the deadline for submitting your picks will be Thursday 5/2 at 11:59pm PST, with payments due on Friday 5/3. No payment means entry removal, so be sure to get that in as well.
Just like last year, a mega-ultra-blockbuster has been released in the final week of April. And as per our rules Avengers: Endgame is NOT a selectable film (April movies do not count in the SMP). What resulted is the elimination of a movie that EVERYONE would have picked, thus creating a more challenging pool. And isn't that more fun??
See you all soon!
You've been anxiously waiting for this moment, and SMP XXII (the standard for movie pools) is finally here!! The site is ready and rockin' for a new year of excitement... and misery. Game on!!!
After Hollywood's major letdown in 2017 ($3.7B - the worst summer in 11 years), 2018 rebounded nicely with $4.4B - the fifth biggest summer box office ever. And to think that if Avengers: Infinity War had released in May as originally scheduled, the summer would have threatened the all-time record of $4.75B. Disney was again the big winner with $1.5B from their four movies. Our Top 10 spanned movies from all four months, with June as the big winner thanks to The Incredibles 2 ($598M) and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom ($413M). May's highlight was Deadpool 2 ($318M), and the July winner was Ant-Man and the Wasp ($212M). This summer the mega-surprise was August's The Meg ($112M). Only 14 people trusted it, and two players specifically benefitted from its success. Even more surprising was that it was released in the SECOND weekend of August. Ballsy selections.
As everyone here knows, the white whale of the Summer Movie Pool is the "Perfect 10". Of the 608 entries submitted over the prior 20 years we'd seen a total of just three Perfect 10s, two of which came in the same summer (sorry Kate). And of those three entries, their Deviation Scores were 14, 24, and 18. Even with 10 correct picks deviation can still come into play. With Year #21 wrapped up we've now had a total of 676 entries submitted, and amazingly we have another Perfect 10 tie. Whoa. So again we need to look at Deviation... but this isn't going to bode well for anyone not named Kelly Perone. In the most incredible performance we've ever seen in the SMP, Kelly had a PERFECT DEVIATION to go along with her Perfect 10. That's right, a Deviation Score of 0. ZERO. Incredible!! Back in 2011 Kelly became just our second member to win the SMP in their very first year, and now she sets the standard for perfection. The $500.00 First Place prize is deservedly hers. Congrats!
With all this talk of perfection let's not forget that Jen Ballard also scored a Perfect 10 this summer, and the rest of us didn't. Jen also had a Deviation Score of 12, which in either other 10-for-10 summer would have won. Sadly just not this year. To be able to look at both Disney's Christopher Robin and Skyscraper and say, no I don't think so, and then look at both Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again! and The Meg and say, yep they're definitely the ones... well major kudos to you as well for being smarter than us! Congrats on winning $100.00 for Second Place.
Third Place was a battle among those with 9 correct picks. 19 players to be exact. Thankfully we have a Scoreboard page that auto-calculates so we don't have to figure it all out ourselves. And lookie here... another tie. Dennis Berg's pursuit of his first SMP championship was well documented this summer, and it was his lack of faith in his very favorite actor in the world that did him in (the term "actor" used loosely). Kate Choomack, however, wouldn't let him have it all to himself, as her top selections were jaw-dropping. They get to split the $30.00 Third Place prize.
And then we have our Bonehead Award. It was a tight race this summer as both Ed Acayan and Ted Venable made highly questionable selections within the first two weeks of the pool. Not quite sure of their motivation, but unfortunately for Ted The Guardians (no, not THAT Guardians) continued to earn $$$ throughout the entire summer. A whole $174K to be specific. The big winner (loser) was Ed with his pick of Revenge that earned a whopping $102K. Enjoy your $10.00 prize.
The rules of the game are simple:
1) Go to www.summermoviepool.com
2) Select your Top Ten list of summer movies
3) Rank them in the order that you believe they will finish
The pool runs from May 1 to Aug 31, so the only eligible movies are those that release within that date range. Your picks AND entry fee must be submitted before the site locks for the summer.
The Rules page of this site covers everything in detail.
Feel free to invite whomever you like... as long as they also pay on time. Be sure to send them this email so that they are able to sign up follow the payment instructions.
The cutoff for entries is the first Friday of May, so the time to confirm entries and track payments will be limited. As such, the deadline for submitting your picks will be the first Thursday of May at 11:59pm PST. At that point the site will lock and no further entries will be accepted. The entire month of April is more than enough time to assemble your picks and submit them.
On May 3rd all picks will be revealed on the Current Standings page.
Any questions? E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Final prep of the SMP website is underway, and we're close to the start of the 2019 Summer Movie Pool! Now is the perfect time to research this summer's movies and start building your lists. The email invite to last year's participants will go out soon, but all are welcome to join once we go live.
For now, feel free to check out the Previous Years, Official Posters, Photo Gallery, and Hall of Boneheads links to reminisce. Stay tuned!