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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Audience Numbers for AUJ - a "Natural" Limit?
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Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 12:01pm

Post #1 of 30 (619 views)
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Audience Numbers for AUJ - a "Natural" Limit? Can't Post

Since we have crossed the most important $ milestones and had a lot of discussions whether AUJ was a outright success or a small disappointment at the BO, I started thinking again.

I already thought like this before the movie started and found some "predictions" to be hilariously hyped and way too optimistic and see some of it confirmed now.

Might these numbers simply be the natural limit for the franchise ten years after LotR?

Of course, the reviews had a certain effect on the BO... but a really high one? I doubt it. People who really liked LotR would have tried it out anyway, I guess.

In my environment I rather had the impression that there were more people saying either "No, not again Hobbits and Tolkien... it was fine back then, but not again." or "Wasn't crazy about LotR, will not try again".

In the last ten years most people who are remotely interested will have probably seen the trilogy and decided on whether they like it or not - and accordingly made their decidion on whether to go see the Hobbit. While LotR was something new and that got a lot of attention because of its success story, people now are pretty sure whether it is their cuppa tea or not.

Of course, from time to time you get a BO phenomenon (Avengers, Avatar - and even Skyfall). High numbers that were hard to foresee (same goes to some extent for the original trilogy). But that cannot really be the measure of success or disappointment - although it is the logic that several blogs and certainly the forums of boxoffice.com and BO Mojo follow.


I was wondering whether one should not look at it from another perspective... how great (and rare) it is that a franchise has this kind of consistency over time - both for the books and the movies. Because, after all, it still confirms that this material seems to STILL touch, move and excites a lot of people beyond your average Tolkien-geek.

Even if the material is not the average crowd-pleasing flick, but one that includes some challenges for both book-lovers and average-movie-goers, especially when you do the "little brother" after the epic.


Just a few thoughts on a Sunday morning, being once more happy to actually be part of the times these books become alive. So much more fun than looking back at classics purely in hindsight :)


BoromirOfWinterfell
Rohan


Mar 10 2013, 12:18pm

Post #2 of 30 (364 views)
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I spoke to someone who didn't want to watch AUJ because of the reviews. [In reply to] Can't Post

But that's only one person, so I don't think that many were affected by them. Everyone else who I know watched AUJ enjoyed it immensely and said that it was magical. The effect that LotR had here was amazing, back in the day. It is someone that transcends normal film series and will be remembered by everyone.

"Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards because a refusal often offends." - Terry Pratchett



QuackingTroll
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 12:36pm

Post #3 of 30 (340 views)
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A friend at college refused to watch because she hated boring LotR and Armitage looks like a klingon [In reply to] Can't Post

She ranted about it everyday for weeks! Then her boyfriend forced her to watch it and now her facebook header is all the dwarves.

She is now living proof to me that people need to stop listening to the internet and make up their own minds about things. She would've missed out on what is now her favourite film...


(This post was edited by QuackingTroll on Mar 10 2013, 12:38pm)


BoromirOfWinterfell
Rohan


Mar 10 2013, 12:45pm

Post #4 of 30 (320 views)
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RA looks like a Klingon? [In reply to] Can't Post

Anything but....

I've always tried to be open-minded about movies and books. Sometimes, of course, I fail.
For example, I refuse to ever watch Twilight.

"Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards because a refusal often offends." - Terry Pratchett



QuackingTroll
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 12:50pm

Post #5 of 30 (342 views)
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Her entire judgement of the movie was from one picture... [In reply to] Can't Post

http://i94.photobucket.com/...gon-DwarfCompare.jpg

"I love Richard Armitage, but I'm not watching that"


(This post was edited by QuackingTroll on Mar 10 2013, 12:51pm)


DanielLB
Immortal


Mar 10 2013, 12:51pm

Post #6 of 30 (322 views)
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To be fair ... [In reply to] Can't Post

It is an awful picture. Not as bad as creepy Bilbo. But still bad.


BoromirOfWinterfell
Rohan


Mar 10 2013, 12:57pm

Post #7 of 30 (308 views)
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That is a bit eerie.... [In reply to] Can't Post

Hehe...
But it's only that one picture, and by far not the best. Wink

"Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards because a refusal often offends." - Terry Pratchett

"You think you world is safe? It is an illusion. A comforting lie told to protect you. Enjoy these final moments of peace. For I have returned to have my vengeance. So, shall we begin? " - John Harrison/Khan/Sherlock/Smaug (Star Trek: Into Darkness)


QuackingTroll
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 12:57pm

Post #8 of 30 (296 views)
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Can't believe they chose such a bad pic as the first reveal // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


imin
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 12:57pm

Post #9 of 30 (311 views)
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I don't feel there really is a natural limit [In reply to] Can't Post

had the film been better i am sure it would have got better reviews off some critics and also made more money at the box office.

I think considering the film, the BO is very flattering and just shows you how many fans there are out there of M-e.

The books are of course classics - been around for 75 years, 50+ years. To me that is a long enough time span to call them classics.

I would also call the lord of the rings movies classics - box office success, critical success and audience success. Gets shown on TV every year - mostly Christmas so i think all those things make it a classic to most people.

i only knew of a few people who weren't keen on watching the hobbit but that was based on the reviews when it came out. Other people who knew about it before then were super excited - most of those went on to really enjoy the film - personally i don't think there has been a decrease in interest.

People forget that the hobbit and lotr have sold nearly 250 million copies. This is incredible and for many have first been introduced to it as a young child, maybe read to them by a parent or teacher - to me this gives the books lasting energy. For the films 'all they need to do' is not mess it up - lotr did that which means people were excited for AUJ. Since then younger people will have read the books/watched the films and will have been eager to watch M-e in the cinema for the first time.

I think if anything all of this gave the film a higher BO than it might have done, even despite the disappointing critical reception as some people would want to see it no matter what they say.

Saying that i think had the critical reception been better then i think it would have made a bit more - or would have got to 1 billion dollars sooner than it did.

I think if the next film is given more critical praise then i can see it doing better by maybe 200 million dollars. I think DOS will make more even if reviews are about the same as sequels in a series seem to make more worldwide.

So yeah, natural limit - i don't think so as i feel had the film totally sucked it would have made less and conversely had the film been awesome then it would have made more - more bums on seats.


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 12:59pm

Post #10 of 30 (301 views)
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Really weird... especially since he does not look like that in the movie at all. [In reply to] Can't Post

Thank God.


Maciliel
Tol Eressea

Mar 10 2013, 1:02pm

Post #11 of 30 (313 views)
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she might have been thinking of this picture... [In reply to] Can't Post

 
this was my first viewing of thorin / any of the dwarves. at the time, he reminded me of a klingon. still does.

(huh... the thorin/klingon pic i tried to upload is not showing inline -- haven't learned that trick yet.)

i've seen it a lot. and, even in its last throes at the single theater in my state that was playing it (a multiplex, with great digital and great sound), every time i viewed it, there were still people who hadn't seen it before, and they found it wonderful (i could hear their them talk; in the very last showing before it was pulled, i had a conversation with one lady who hadn't seen it -- she said it was magical).

from the stats at boxofficemojo, it seems that even when, from week to week, the number of theaters in which it was shown was halved, it still performed about just as well. meaning, that the repeat viewers were still coming (and some of them travelling longer to see it), and it was still drawing in first-time viewers (probably fewer in proportion than the repeats).

i think the film took a big negative buzz hit from the 48 fps issue. that actually got it more ink, and perhaps it got more notice in some quarters, but i think the hfr issue hurt it at the oscars. i find it hard to believe that it didn't win for hair/makeup. it was well deserving.


(This post was edited by Maciliel on Mar 10 2013, 1:03pm)


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 1:06pm

Post #12 of 30 (280 views)
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Yeah... [In reply to] Can't Post

... I agree with mostly everything you say.

With natural limit I meant more that "this kind of movies" simply has a certain limit (that might only occasionally be crossed because of some special hype) and that a WW #1 like Avengers is unlikely, even with stellar reviews.

But maybe I misjudge that coming from a background where many people have an issue with this genre per se... plus from a country in which TH stays completely in the shadow of LotR (for example, I have the feeling that here in Germany, most Tolkien fans read TH only after the LotR... with not many people getting introduced to the universe as a child - that is maybe also the reason why I am so much more tolerant with AUJ compared to how I was with LotR - because I read TH for the first time as a teenager purely because I wanted more LotR, but a little bit too old to get really sucked into it).

Oh... just realizing Germany was one of the countries AUJ did best - and Avengers relatively "bad". I guess, I have some issues right now to get my argument across :D


I guess, I will settle with - BO numbers can be really, really weird :D


(This post was edited by Arannir on Mar 10 2013, 1:12pm)


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 1:20pm

Post #13 of 30 (267 views)
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Plus - and that was the most important thing for me in my OP... [In reply to] Can't Post

... that I was happy to see that the franchise proved to be rather stable with AUJ, even though WW #1 may not have been possible.

And I always believe that these numbers and movies will have a positive fallout on the books. Opening up this world for even more people. And that is always great, as - although an individual joy - sharing the appreciation for the Professor is somehow a big part of all the hype surrounding him. And that is a very nice and special thing, isn't it?


imin
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 1:32pm

Post #14 of 30 (255 views)
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Oh sorry i must have not quite understood what you meant by natural limit. [In reply to] Can't Post

I am not sure fantasy is really that well received in any country - certainly has to fight its way in Hollywood and awards ceremonies.

I am not sure how much the hobbit is in the shadow of LOTR in the UK. For me i got introduced to TH before the LOTR and i know many who get into it the same way - this was before the films though so maybe they changed when the lotr movies came out and now might go back to reading the hobbit first more.

If i had to guess i think more people prefer the lord of the rings over the hobbit just going on people throughout life and then on message boards.

Oh and Avengers sucked so Germans have the right idea i think! Tongue


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 1:40pm

Post #15 of 30 (251 views)
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No need to apologize.,. [In reply to] Can't Post

... I was very unclear and I guess not even certain what I wanted to say :D

About Avengers: I was surprised to see that it did relatively weaker in several European countries. Imagine its numbers, if it had the same phenomenon character here as well...

The extraordinary performance of this movie is something I will never understand, to be honest.


Estel78
Tol Eressea

Mar 10 2013, 2:00pm

Post #16 of 30 (261 views)
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This pretty much sums it up [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
i feel had the film totally sucked it would have made less and conversely had the film been awesome then it would have made more - more bums on seats.


What surprised me the most was the lack of pre-release hype. Sure, there was some but i expected a lot more, resulting in a bigger opening, it coming off LOTR. I guess the trailers turned some people off. I think the effect of reviews gets overstated sometimes, there are many examples of movies with mixed to poor reviews that go gangbusters.


Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 2:55pm

Post #17 of 30 (236 views)
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Germany [In reply to] Can't Post

Since you are German as well, you had the same feeling?

I was really surprised how little attention it got (long before the reviews came out).

I am also with you regarding the impact of reviews...

What I heard from some German fans was "This looks too fantasy-like to me..." I had the feeling some people thought that LotR had the right (low) amount of fantasy, while TH was one step further.


Elessar
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 3:41pm

Post #18 of 30 (232 views)
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Some thoughts [In reply to] Can't Post

I think as a whole The Hobbit: AUJ was a success. It's been pretty well received and made a good amount of money. I think it set up the rest of the trilogy for more success as each film comes out. I think some of the reasons it wasn't a hit for some was they expected more The Lord of the Rings, let reviews that didn't actually talk about the movie taint their thoughts, super high expectations, some were just never going to give it a fair chance and wanted to hate, etc.

In the end I don't think we've seen the roof of the amount of money Tolkien can make. We've got a bit more room. So far for me I'm enjoying the ride of seeing more of a universe I love with all my heart on the big screen.

*Pretty sure I just rambled and didn't make any sense. lol



BoromirOfWinterfell
Rohan


Mar 10 2013, 5:56pm

Post #19 of 30 (179 views)
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Well stated. [In reply to] Can't Post

It was successful. It did really well, and like LotR it is going to get and do better as it goes on; money and greatness.
More Tolkien is always good.


Quote
*Pretty sure I just rambled and didn't make any sense. lol

Made perfect sense. Sometimes rambling in what you think is nonsensical jumbo makes the most sense.
Then again, I'm just gnomic. Crazy
Or Dwarvish.
Whichever's more appropriate.

"Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards because a refusal often offends." - Terry Pratchett

"You think you world is safe? It is an illusion. A comforting lie told to protect you. Enjoy these final moments of peace. For I have returned to have my vengeance. So, shall we begin? " - John Harrison/Khan/Sherlock/Smaug (Star Trek: Into Darkness)

(This post was edited by BoromirOfWinterfell on Mar 10 2013, 5:58pm)


Elessar
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 6:54pm

Post #20 of 30 (157 views)
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Thank you :) [In reply to] Can't Post

More Tolkien is always a good thing I agree.

This is probably true. I'm glad it made sense to someone so I feel like my point can come through. lol

You are appreciated for the kind words. Cool



Arannir
Valinor

Mar 10 2013, 6:59pm

Post #21 of 30 (164 views)
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Totally signed. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I think as a whole The Hobbit: AUJ was a success. It's been pretty well received and made a good amount of money.



Elessar
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 7:09pm

Post #22 of 30 (160 views)
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A virtual high five for you as well. :-) [In reply to] Can't Post

 



Ham_Sammy
Tol Eressea

Mar 10 2013, 8:37pm

Post #23 of 30 (131 views)
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Indeed [In reply to] Can't Post

More Tolkien makes me happy. I'm glad it did so well as the B.O. but just as glad that it's out there no matter what. I am looking forward to the next two films. I will be sad when it's over but we will have our DVD's and BR discs to remember.

Thank you for your questions, now go sod off and do something useful - Martin Freeman Twitter chat 3/1/13


Elessar
Valinor


Mar 10 2013, 8:40pm

Post #24 of 30 (132 views)
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Home Viewings [In reply to] Can't Post

Like you said thanks to being able to watch it at home the trek through Middle-earth in motion picture format never has to end and then adding reading on top of that just makes for some awesomesauce. Cool



Estel78
Tol Eressea

Mar 10 2013, 8:51pm

Post #25 of 30 (121 views)
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Yeah, pretty much. [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Since you are German as well, you had the same feeling?


Not just Germany, in general. It's pretty much the vibe i got from reading forums and following box office tracking. I've heard "is it just me or does the buzz seem rather low?" a lot during the weeks before release.


(This post was edited by Estel78 on Mar 10 2013, 8:53pm)

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