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January 08 2007

"Happily N'Ever After" opens with an estimated 6.8 million according to BoxOfficeMojo.com in sixth place for the weekend. The tally will likely go down further when all the figures come in. Fits in line with people being tired of animation movies I would guess.

It's not that people are tired of animation movies -- I'm sure Shrek 3 will be massive, for instance.
Shrek 3 will also have an established fanbase. I don't think that's fair comparison.
Weren't animation movies at least half of the top ten grossers from 2006? I think Disney would seriously disagree with the notion that people are tied of animation as they check their receipts from 2006.

1 Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
2 Cars
3 X-Men: The Last Stand
4 The Da Vinci Code
5 Superman Returns
6 Ice Age: The Meltdown
7 Happy Feet
8 Night at the Museum
9 Casino Royale
10 Over the Hedge

Ok, so 4 out of the top ten were total animation and most of the other 6 were CGI. I think we are a long way aways from tired of animation.

I think the movie in question just possibly does not have that wide of an appeal and will do well as a cult classic DVD.

[ edited by TamaraC on 2007-01-07 23:34 ]
Agree to Tamara here. Personally, I've never even heard of Happy N'Ever After.
From what I have read from the reviews, people are not impressed with the quality of the animation..compared to other movies like "Cars" or "Happy Feet". People may be interested to see how SMG and her hubby do as animation voices.
It doesn't help that the movie's getting terrible reviews and bad word of mouth, either. Only 5% of critics on Rotten Tomatoes had positive things to say, and I don't know that I've seen a score that low since Battlefield: Earth.

[ edited by JesterInACast on 2007-01-08 01:47 ]
I went and saw it yesterday actually. I don't think the script was that well written. The animation was fine. SMG uses her baby-voice the whole time though. Like, the way she talks when she's whining to Giles. Not that that's bad, but it wasn't what I expected. I still think she did a pretty good job, and her hubby did a good job as Rick too. The rest of the plot was a little dullsville though. And the humor wasn't that great. I laughed, but I didn't laugh the way I did in Shrek OR Madagascar.
I think it was the poor publicity. I only knew about the movie because I come here. I also happen to watch a lot of TV and didn't notice a single TV Spot or mention of it until I saw the Friday Night News that had a little feature on movies coming out that weekend. That was it. And I wasn't really impressed with what I saw.
I definitely don't think people are tired of animation, as HAPPY FEET (which had no established fan base) is HUGE, as are five or six animated movies last year. I'd say animation has never been MORE popular actually. HAPPY N'EVER AFTER just looks kinda bad.
As regards to the comment I made above about people getting tired of animation movies, I was talking more about the over saturation of animation movies coming out in 2006 and the box office reciepts falling because of it. "Doogal" made only 7 million, "Everybody's Hero" made 14, and "The Ant Bully" made 28 million. Considering the latters budget of $50 million, it was a considerable loss for the studio who were obviously expecting the total to at least be around the $100 mark domestically. Simarly "Flushed Away" had a budget of $149 million and only just got above the 60 million mark in the USA. "Barnyard" and "Open Season" also didnt perform particuarly well, only just making even. Considering this a few years ago when animation movies were making back their budgets over and over again, to me it seems like the popularity of CGI movies in general are waning. Critically as well there has been a lot of talk about over saturation of animation movies.

To completely contrast my own point though (yes I am the balancer! All other Balancers shall bow before me) 2006 had the biggest release of animation movies thus far (13 in total I believe) which of course in the competitive world of Hollywood means that there is going to be more competition, meaning that there are going to be more losers.

Gossi however made a good point, that films like "Shrek 3", will continue to do well, however again echoing syd, these films are part of a franchise or have an established names behind them e.g. Pixar which the audience knows in most cases e.g. "Cars". "Cars" although grossing over $240,000,000 could be seen as a relative dissapointment for Pixar. In terms of its gross, "Cars" ranked 5th out of 7 for Pixar movies beating "Toy Story" and "A Bugs Life", the former of which would probably have equalled or outgrossed "Cars" if we take into account inflation.

Obviously of course (yet again balancing) animation has had some success stories this year. "Happy Feet" came from nowhere and was critically acclaimed, and although "Ice Age: The Meltdown" was part of a franchise, it ourgrossed the original. So Im in no way saying that animation is over, or dying out; I'm simply saying that I think perhaps the audiences are beginning to get over the initial marvel of what people can do with computers and perhaps attention is beginning to wane.
I saw Happily and it was ok but the little kids in the audience loved it. There were a few laughs for adults and the voice work was good but the animation wasn't great.

Brisco, I agree. The publicity was really poor. It was rare that I saw commericals for it and none of the stars promoted it on talk shows. Besides the poor reviews, the lack of promotion had to hurt it, imo.
On another note Marc Blucas film came in at 21st place for it's first week.

Chart # - Title - Box Office - Screens - Budget
21 - Thr3e - $740,000 - 458 - $2.40 Million

As for SMG's film it has been sitting on a shelf since late 2004. I think the studio just put it out in theatre's to recoup the cost on it and to get kids begging for the DVD which will more than likely be out in a few months.

SMG had been involved with the film for a few years according to an interview she did back in Oct 2004.

The Oct 2004 article.

[ edited by RavenU on 2007-01-08 05:24 ]
Yeah I gotta agree with other posters who say that animation is very popular right now, but I think the reason this one failed was because it wasnt geared to both adults and children, it was distinctly geared towards kids alone. Look at all those animated films that are successful and they have a universal appeal that this movie doesnt.

And though I havent seen it, it apparently is a horrible movie. LOL, could just be that too I guess...
I think you guys are sorta talking past each other: Animation is grossing as much or more than it ever has, in actual and inflation-adjusted dollars. However, it's now faddish. There are a TON of animated features coming out, each expecting (or perhaps "hoping" would be more accurate...) to be the next Shrek, and each ending up splitting the pie into smaller pieces--it's not the Shrek 3's or the next Pixar releases that will suffer, it's the second- and third- tier releases, like the one we're discussing, which are fighting for the remainder of the pie.
Re: "people are tired of animation" -- I think it's like when people say "sitcoms are dead," then a really good one like HIMYM comes along, and people watch it. I think the story here is that people will go see a good movie or TV show (a) IF they hear about it, and (b) IF they know it is good, no matter what the style or genre. Slither and Serenity were both good, but no one heard about them or knew what they were, or that they were good (unless they read reviews, but I suspect more people will tend to go see things they see advertised or hear about through word-of-mouth from friends faster, and not as many people rely on reviews; this is the only way I can explain bad films getting high box office returns and good films bombing). So, if this movie had been advertised more and had been good, I bet people would have gone to see it, animated or not, IMO.

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