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Downer ‘Shrek 4’ Opening Craters DreamWorks Stock … Again

Shares down another 10% following the sequel’s disappointing $71.3M opening

DreamWorks Animation stock took a big hit a day after the company’s fourth “Shrek” installment finished a disappointing $70,8 million premiere weekend.

UPDATED: DreamWorks finished the trading day down just under 11 percent to $31.08 a share.

DreamWorks stock also dove 4 percent last week after an analyst predicted that “Shrek Forever After” would debut to less than the previous two installments, which both premiered to well over $100 million.

Released in 3D at more than half of its 4,359 locations, the Paramount-distributed movie – re-christened in late-April by DreamWorks marketing department as “Shrek: The Final Chapter” did well with critics, garnering an “A” grade from word-of-mouth tracker CinemaScore.

But it ended up doing even worse than its poor tracking predictions, which forecast an opening of somewhere between $80 million-$100 million.

By comparison, the second and third “Shrek” installments opened to $108 million and $121.6 million respectively in the U.S. and Canada, and went on to respective worldwide grosses of $919.8 million and $799 million.

Overall, DreamWorks stock has dipped precipitously since mid-March, when it was trading at a 52-week-high of $44.77 per share.

The fall started during the run-up to the March 26 premiere of DreamWorks 3D movie “How to Train Your Dragon,” which also had a disappointing start ($43.7 million opening in North America) before recovering to gross over $210 million in the U.S. and Canada so far.

Released in 3D at more than half of its 4,359 locations, the Paramount-distributed movie – re-christened in late-April by DreamWorks marketing department as “Shrek: The Final Chapter” – was well-received by movie-goers, garnering an “A” grade from word-of-mouth tracker CinemaScore.

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