Box Office Column
by Brandon Gray
December 25, 1998
Wow! Despite Christmas falling on a Friday and a terribly crowded marketplace, the top 60 broke records, taking in $147.7 million, besting last year's December 26-28 period by $2.3 million. What's more incredible is how last year's same weekend only saw a 46% increase over the previous, whereas this year saw an 85% increase. And this was managed with the top three movies seeming to have almost identical demographics.
Patch Adams broke the record for a movie opening on Christmas weekend and broke Universal's losing streak. Given the relative weak showing of more straightforward family fare, Robin Williams in his trademark Robin Williams role must have drawn quite a few families, giving it the edge over Stepmom and You've Got Mail.
The Faculty failed to capitalize on the teen market. After all, it had this demographic all to itself and only managed $11.6 million. Let's hope that this and I Still Have a Ridiculously Long Title's soft box office is a sign of the slasher flick's demise.
The Thin Red Line scored a whopping $44,710 average ($223,548 from five screens). However, word is so decidedly mixed that chances of further box office glory seem unlikely.