A Game of Numbers

So, that uptick in box-office I was predicting last week? It kinda happened, with “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” enjoying a $40 million opening¬†and “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked” earning $23.5 million, but it wasn’t what the industry had hoped for.

The first of Guy Ritchie and Robert Downey Jr.’s “Sherlock Holmes” ventures grossed $62.3 million when it opened on Christmas Day, 2009. Since the sequel only did two-thirds of that business, we’re back to the hand-wringing over Hollywood’s meltdown — and no one’s taking the time to note that the third-place opener, “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol”, did an impressive $13 million exclusively in IMAX theatres, suggesting it’ll do quite well when it goes into conventional release on Friday.

Look, I just refuse to buy into the whole movies-are-dying thing. They’re changing, absolutely — or rather, the way people choose to see them is changing — but in a year when the “Transformers”, “Pirates” and “Harry Potter” sequels all grossed a billion dollars¬†apiece, you can’t say the industry’s on its last legs.

It’s just breeding monsters.

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