Lionsgate Dispirited By Spirit Results
Shares in Lionsgate Entertainment took a pounding Tuesday as analysts at investment bank Caris & Co. downgraded the shares to "above average" from "buy" on word of the poor theatrical opening of The Spirit , based on the Will Eisner comic superhero. "Explanation for the weakness came primarily from a smattering of negative reviews, coupled with heavy competition from Marley & Me , which opened with a stellar $37.0 million in gross receipts," Caris analyst David Miller said in a message to clients. He implied that the future health of the studio might well be tied to its January 16, 2009 release of My Bloody Valentine. Spirit was the second flop of the month for Lionsgate, which yanked Punisher War Zone after the movie earned just $7 million during its first two weeks of release.