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By Daniel Garris

Guardians of the Galaxy arrived with a bang this weekend with a stronger than expected start of $94.32 million. The 3D sci-fi superhero film from Disney and Marvel soared past pre-release expectations which had tended to range anywhere from $65 million to $80 million. Without adjusting for ticket price inflation, Guardians of the Galaxy easily set a new opening record for the month of August. The previous high-mark was the $69.28 million debut of The Bourne Ultimatum back in 2007. It should be noted that when adjusting for ticket price inflation, Guardians of the Galaxy does rank slightly behind the $97.2 million adjusted debut of Rush Hour 2 (which opened with an actual gross of $67.41 million in 2001).

Guardians of the Galaxy delivered the third largest opening weekend performance of 2014 to date (behind only Transformers: Age of Extinction and Captain America: The Winter Solider). That Guardians of the Galaxy was able to open nearly on par with the $95.02 million debut of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, despite being a non-sequel based on a far less known pre-established property is quite the achievement and is a very strong sign for future Disney and Marvel projects heading into the future.

Guardians of the Galaxy opened with $37.85 million on Friday (which included a strong $11.2 million from Thursday evening shows), fell 18 percent on Saturday to take in $30.99 million and declined 18 percent on Sunday to gross $25.49 million. That gave the film an opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.49 to 1. Guardians of the Galaxy will hope to hold up well going forward thanks to very strong critical reviews and strong early word of mouth (the film received an A rating on CinemaScore). However, it is still very possible that the film could be front-loaded given the nature of comic book adaptations in general and a number of new films that will provide direct competition in the weeks ahead (including Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Let's Be Cops and The Expendables 3).

The audience breakdown for Guardians of the Galaxy skewed towards male moviegoers (56 percent) and towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (55 percent). Family audiences represented 26 percent of the film's overall audience. 3D grosses represented 45 percent of the film's overall gross this weekend.

Universal's Lucy placed in a distant second this weekend with $18.25 million. The modestly budgeted sci-fi action film starring Scarlett Johansson was down a sharp 58 percent from last weekend. Lucy was obviously hurt in a big way by the break-out performance of Guardians of the Galaxy and the film's lukewarm word of mouth didn't help matters either this weekend. With that said, Lucy continues to exceed expectations nicely with a strong ten-day start of $79.54 million. That places the film 12 percent ahead of the $71.03 million ten-day take of 2010's Salt (which fell 46 percent in its second weekend to gross $19.47 million).

Fellow Universal release Get on Up opened in third with $13.59 million. The James Brown biopic starring Chadwick Boseman opened below expectations, as it too was likely hurt a bit by the breakout start of Guardians of the Galaxy. Get on Up was unable to excite moviegoers anywhere near to the same extent as last year's 42 (which also starred Boseman). Get on Up debuted 51 percent softer than the $27.49 million debut of 42.

Get on Up started up with $4.89 million on Friday, increased 5 percent to gross $5.15 million on Saturday and declined 31 percent on Sunday to gross $3.55 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.78 to 1. The audience breakdown for Get on Up skewed towards female moviegoers (63 percent) and heavily towards moviegoers 25 years and older (90 percent). The film will hope that largely positive reviews and a strong A rating on CinemaScore will help lead to strong holding power going forward.

On the heels of last weekend's stronger than expected start, Hercules tumbled in its second weekend with a fourth place take of $11.01 million. The Dwayne Johnson led 3D action-adventure film from Paramount and MGM was down a very sharp 63 percent from last weekend. While Hercules was always extremely likely to be front-loaded to begin with, the competition from Guardians of the Galaxy obviously took an extra toll on the film. Hercules does continue to perform ahead of its relatively modest expectations with a ten-day start of $52.66 million. But this weekend's hold is a troubling sign going forward, especially with the already mentioned upcoming direct competition on the horizon.

Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes rounded out the weekend's top five with $8.69 million. The critically acclaimed 3D sci-fi action sequel was down 48 percent. Despite strong word of mouth, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes has taken a hit from all of the new direct competition the past two weeks. In the bigger picture, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes continues to perform well with a 24-day take of $189.32 million. That leaves the film $10.68 million away from reaching the $200 million domestic milestone and places the film an impressive 27 percent ahead of the $148.67 million 24-day take of 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes.

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image.jpgGuardians of the Galaxy takes off with a $160.4 million global haul from 42 overseas territories in its day-and-date debut. The Marvel film brought in $66.4 million of that figure from the overseas box office with Russia leading the foreign markets after a $13 million bow.

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes grossed $47.5 million from 70 markets and reached a $260.1 million overseas cume. The film has made a total of $349.4 million globally.

How to Train Your Dragon 2 caught another $20 million from 36 markets. The film has grossed a total of $296.7 million outside of North America and $475.2 million globally.

Transformers: Age of Extinction crossed the $1 billion mark globally after taking $19.1 million in its sixth weekend overseas. The film has now grossed a total of $763.8 million outside of North America and $1.004 billion globally.

Hercules claimed $14.2 million from 35 territories to reach a $56.5 million cume overseas. The film has grossed $108.8 million worldwide.

The Purge: Anarchy took $8.1 million from 35 overseas territories to reach a cume of $19.3 million outside of North America. The film has grossed $82.2 million worldwide.

22 Jump Street brought in $7.1 million from 45 territories and hit $101.4 million overseas. The comedy has grossed $289.5 million worldwide.

Step Up: All In is still on its feet overseas as it continues to drive in box office dollars ahead of its North American premiere. The dance film brought in $5.8 million from 25 markets in its latest frame. It has grossed $26.2 million overseas and worldwide.

Lucy rolled out overseas with a $5.1 million haul from 4 territories. The action film has grossed $84.6 million worldwide.

Sex Tape uncovered $4.2 million from 26 markets and reached an overseas total of $17.8 million. The raunchy comedy has struggled at the box office and is currently reporting a $51.7 million global haul.

Planes: Fire and Rescue landed another $3.5 million from 30 markets. The Disney animated sequel has grossed a total of $30 million overseas and $77.6 million worldwide.

The Fault in Our Stars added $2 million from 23 markets. The film has grossed $140 million overseas and $263.3 million worldwide.

 

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By Daniel Garris

Universal's Lucy took in $3.23 million on Thursday to lead the daily box office for a seventh consecutive and final day. The modestly budgeted sci-fi action film starring Scarlett Johansson did fall a significant 14 percent from Wednesday, as the film clearly took a hit from the strong Thursday evening launch of Disney's Guardians of the Galaxy. Lucy was the week's top film with a stronger than expected seven-day start of $61.29 million. While Lucy is showing early signs of front-loading thus far, the film's holding power won't be as important given the strength of its opening week performance.

Hercules held steady in second place with $2.12 million. The Dwayne Johnson led 3D action-adventure film from Paramount and MGM was down a sharp 19 percent from Wednesday. Clearly Hercules also took a big hit on Thursday from the arrival of Guardians of the Galaxy in the marketplace. While it didn't light the box office on fire this week, Hercules did exceed its relatively modest expectations with a seven-day start of $41.65 million. That placed the film in second for the week.

Fox's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes took in $1.61 million to remain in third. The 3D sci-fi action sequel fell 13 percent from Wednesday and 51 percent from last Thursday. Despite strong word of mouth, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes clearly took a hit this week from the stronger than expected performances of Lucy and Hercules. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes placed in third for the week with $24.94 million. That was down 53 percent from the previous frame and brings the film's three-week total to a strong $180.63 million.

Planes: Fire and Rescue claimed fourth place with $1.31 milllion. The modestly budgeted computer animated sequel from Disney was down only 4 percent from Wednesday, which represented the day's strongest daily percentage hold among wide releases. The film was down 35 percent from last Thursday. Planes: Fire and Rescue placed in fifth for the week with $15.35 million. That was down 40.5 percent from last week and brings the film's two-week total to $41.17 million.

Universal's The Purge: Anarchy rounded out the day's unchanged top five with $1.13 million. The low budget horror sequel fell 9 percent from Wednesday and a respectable 47 percent from last Thursday. The Purge: Anarchy claimed fourth place this week with $16.03 million. That was down 61 percent from the film's opening week performance and brings the film's two-week total to a very solid $57.41 million.

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christie.pngBRISBANE, Australia - (August 1, 2014) - Christie®, the global leader in visual displays and audio technologies, today announced that its complete cinema solutions comprising the Christie SolariaTM Series projectors and Christie Vive AudioTM cinema systems have been installed in a newly opened cineplex located in New Farm, a trendy inner-city suburb of Brisbane.

Known as New Farm Cinemas, the complex houses six state-of-the-art auditoriums that are color-themed with each theater catered for different purposes and clientele. Meticulously rebuilt over a period of 18 months on the site of a former two-screen cinema known as the Village Twin, the 205-seat Purple Room and the premium Bronze Room with 70 seats are to open to the public on August 1. In particular, the Purple Room is the first theater in Australia to be furnished with Christie Vive Audio solution, which provides an impressive cinematic experience for movie-goers. The installation of this extensive range of cinema solutions was undertaken by Christie and its Australian partner EDGE Digital Technology.

"We applaud New Farm Cinemas for their decision to install Christie's projection technologies and Christie Vive Audio solution in their refurbished auditoriums situated at this historically and culturally iconic location in Brisbane," said Lin Yu, vice president, Christie Asia Pacific. "We believe that the performance of our projection and line array speaker technologies provides a great visual and audio experience to every movie-goer and makes New Farm Cinemas one of the hottest destinations in the city."

The innovative Christie Vive Audio, which offers truly rich, dynamic and detailed sound, unlocks the full potential of the DCI digital cinema audio format and supports leading formats such as Dolby® AtmosTM, 7.1 and 5.1 surround sound. Combining the superior audio qualities of ribbon driver technology with the proven high quality performance of a line array speaker design - matched with powerful Class D amplification - Christie Vive Audio is the complete solution that envelopes audiences with dynamic, detailed and captivating sound.

The installation in the Purple Room comprises Christie Vive Audio speakers of varying combinations, including LA1 screen channel speakers, S215 subwoofers (for full range frequency response), S218 for Low Frequency Effects (subwoofers) channels, as well as LA1 and S115 for corner surrounds. Unlike most global Vive Audio installs to date, where surround speakers are mounted on the wall of the auditorium, a corner surround system is specially-designed for the Purple Room as its ceiling has been accorded local and state heritage protection due to its significance as an ongoing cinema since the 1920s.

"We are committed in providing our patrons with the best movie-viewing experience by investing in the finest technologies such as Christie's cinema technologies and equipping our theatres with the most modern facilities at this landmark cinema complex on Brunswick Street," said Peter Sourris, owner of New Farm Cinemas. "On top of that, we want to extend the experience beyond just watching a film. It's actually going to be a pretty trendy place to visit, even if you're not watching a movie. People will come here just for a cocktail. It'll be like a slice of Hollywood, in Brisbane."

Besides the immersive aural experience brought about by Christie Vive Audio, audiences can expect nothing but the best visuals from the Christie Solaria CP2215 (equipped with Christie Integrated Media Block solution for seamless conversion and delivery of feature-film and alternative content) and the Christie Solaria One+ installed in the Purple Room and Bronze Room respectively, which utilize the latest generation DLP® Cinema electronics platform. The Solaria Series offers precise vivid color with superior contrast ratios and the light output necessary to light up even the largest auditoriums. The clear choice for any cinema exhibition environment, it is fully capable of providing the world's most brilliant images, the highest level of content security, the easiest adaptability, operation and maintenance.

Boasting retro carpets, bean bags at the front of each auditorium for couples, arcade games and vintage film memorabilia, New Farm Cinemas is a unique, boutique-style theatre complex that pays homage to the golden age of cinema. Originally constructed in 1921 as the open-air Merthyr Picture Palace, the cinema was remodeled in the 1930s to become the Astor, before transforming into the Village Twin in 1970. The site, bought over by the Sourris brothers in 2013 and rebuilt into a modern 535-seat cineplex, is poised to revitalize this landmark site and turn it into an epicenter of social activity and pop culture. The cinema's second phase, comprising four extra screens including two Gold Rooms offering top-of-the-range amenities, is currently under construction and is expected to be opened later this year.


About Christie®
Christie Digital Systems USA, Inc. is a global visual technologies company and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ushio, Inc., Japan, (JP:6925). Consistently setting the standards by being the first to market some of the world's most advanced projectors and complete system displays, Christie is recognized as one of the most innovative visual technology companies in the world. From retail displays to Hollywood, mission critical command centers to classrooms and training simulators, Christie display solutions and projectors capture the attention of audiences around the world with dynamic and stunning images. Visit www.christiedigital.com.

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