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Company Town | BOX-OFFICE ANALYSIS

So-So Debut for Harrison Ford in 'Six Days, Seven Nights'

June 16, 1998|RICHARD NATALE | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Unless it holds significantly better than its opening weekend numbers indicate, Harrison Ford's "Six Days, Seven Nights" will be at best a marginal moneymaker for Disney.

The $16-million debut was not much better than the same studio's "The Horse Whisperer" or such other recent films as "A Perfect Murder" that appeal largely to an older audience. None of these are likely to hit any higher than $75 million in domestic box office.

With a price tag around $65 million to $70 million, "Six Days" may do slightly better than "The Horse Whisperer" (which cost $75 million), mainly because Ford is a bigger name overseas.

Worldwide theatrical receipts should be enough to cover the budget. Other related costs such as marketing will be absorbed by the film's video, television and other ancillary sales.

Disney's profit potential on the film is low in any case because $20-million player Ford and director Ivan Reitman both get a cut of the gross box office. Should the film do substantially better than expected (more than $80 million domestically), the gravy will largely wind up on their plates, not Disney's.

Can't Wait

Without any gross participants and a modest $13-million budget, Sony's teen comedy "Can't Hardly Wait" looks to be modestly profitable based on its $8-million opening weekend.

While it won't clock up numbers comparable to Sony's "I Know What You Did Last Summer," "Can't Hardly Wait" should end up in the mid-$20-million range and clean up in ancillary revenue.

Small wonder every studio in town is rushing to make teen films again.

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