Summer 2011 -- expected to be the highest-grossing ever for movies -- will be remembered for a parade of soggy sequels interrupted by a string of sleeper successes, from Disney's "The Help" to Paramount's "Super 8" to Universal's explosive "Bridesmaids," second only to "Pretty Woman" as the highest-grossing female-targeted movie of all time. Even Woody Allen scored the biggest hit of his career with Sony Pictures Classics' "Midnight In Paris," a film that crossed the $50 million mark in mid-August and was rereleased in 600 theaters just before Labor Day for one last cinematic tour.
All the business brought some much-needed good news to Hollywood, which started the year with box-office receipts down 16.76% year-over-year and attendance down a worrisome 18% from January to April 24. But money-making franchise films coupled with profitable originals perked summer box office since May 1 up .69% (to $4.38 billion) vs. 2010, while attendance was down just 1.43% during the same time period, according to Hollywood.com.
Here, in our second annual Summer Movie Marketing Report Card, we grade the movie marketers that broke through, those that coasted on their coattails and those that tanked.
WARNER BROS.: GRADE: A-