On 4 December, Alison Boshoff's preview carried the headline Avatar cost £300m to make... but is 'Dancing With Smurfs' going to be the most expensive flop ever?
Some believe a movie about an alien culture of giant blue humanoids can never make a profit
Someone, rather unkindly, has dubbed this long, po-faced epic Dances With Smurfs
although as she hadn't seen it at that point, she couldn't really call it 'po-faced'.
Two days later, with enviable consistency, Rob Waugh's puff piece on the film asked Is James Cameron's $500m 3D blockbuster Avatar set to revolutionise cinema?
So the Mail was shamelessly hedging its bets - it was either the 'most expensive flop ever' or 'set to revolutionise cinema'.
Five days after that, another Mail hack was on the case. Nicole Lampert's article had the headline Has James Cameron, Hollywood's scariest man, blown £200 million on the biggest movie flop ever?
Ah. Back to that. So the Mail was backing it to fail, although it was now a £200m flop rather than a £300m one.
Avatar was released on 17 December. And how accurate were the Mail's claims it was going to be a box-office disaster?
As the Mail itself reported three days ago:
Avatar takes $1bn to become the fourth biggest movie of all time... in less than three weeks.