Comcast CEO Calls ‘Battleship’ Sales ‘Unfortunate Miss’

Universal Pictures’ “Battleship” film was “an unfortunate miss” that will contribute to a negative second-quarter at NBC Universal, said Brian Roberts, chief executive officer of parent Comcast Corp. (CMCSA)

“The Five-Year Engagement,” also released in the current quarter, was another big miss for the studio, Roberts said today at a Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. investor conference in New York.

NBC Universal benefited a year ago from movie hits including “Fast Five” and “Bridesmaids,” which were released in April and May 2011, Roberts said. The unit, which is Comcast’s second-largest division by annual sales behind its cable arm, reported revenue of $5.18 billion and operating income of $747 million in last year’s second quarter.

“Battleship,” released on May 18, cost $209 million to make and has generated $282 million in worldwide ticket sales, according to Box Office Mojo. “The Five-Year Engagement,” released on April 27, cost $30 million and has taken in $32.7 million.

“Fast Five,” with $125 million in production costs, generated $626.1 million in sales. “Bridesmaids,” a $32.5 million film, took in $288.4 million, according to Mojo.

Comcast, based in Philadelphia, fell 1 percent to $28.63 at the close in New York trading. The shares have gained 21 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Michael White in Los Angeles at mwhite8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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