Weekend Wrap-Up for August 20-22, 2010

Five Openers No Match For Holdovers

By John Hamann

August 22, 2010

Someone got the wrong hat memo.

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Weird fact #6 about this weekend's box office: Despite Nanny McPhee Returns being pegged to win the weekend with about $15 million, it ends up with a little better than half of that. Some analysts had Nanny McPhee Returns at number two overall (or even possibly number one), but the Emma Thompson sequel ended up seventh. First, the numbers: Nanny McPhee 2 (or Returns, or and the Big Bang) earned only $8.3 million, well off the $14.5 million of the original. What happened? It's been four years since the original Nanny opened in 2006, and I have the feeling that this Nanny might have been a little less accessible for the little ones than the first one's easy-to-tell fairy-tale story. Also, the original opened in January, a cold month that didn't have a lot of fun kid's movies opening behind it (The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe was NOT fun in my opinion), so with Despicable Me and Toy Story 3 having just left cinemas and back to school shopping in full swing, this might not have been the best weekend for this release. Regardless, Nanny McPhee Returns cost Universal only $35 million to make, and before opening in the US, it had already brought in $62 million in overseas admissions. Any tickets sold in the US are gravy for the studio, so this won't disappoint too much.

The Switch finishes eighth, and Jennifer Aniston is certainly having her ups and downs at the box office. The Switch earned a quiet $8.1 million, very similar to the $8 million that Love Happens opened to last September. Prior to that, she was one of the hotter actresses, appearing in a string of hits that included The Break Up ($39 million opening), Marley and Me ($36.4 million opening, $143 million domestic finish) and He's Just Not That Into You ($27.8 million opening). Since then, though, she's had one film go receive a token limited release (Management), appeared in Love Happens, and then did the awful Bounty Hunter. At least that last film opened well, with a $20.7 million debut. The Switch wasn't an attention getter – it was 52% fresh at RottenTomatoes, and simply didn't draw people.


Ninth spot goes to Inception. The now six-weekend-old thriller earned another $7.7 million and was off only 32%. The $160 million Chris Nolan flick has now earned $261.8 million domestically, and over $300 million overseas.

Scott Pilgrim vs the World manages to hold on to a top ten spot, but only for a weekend. The instant cult classic earned $5 million in its second weekend, and was off 53% from its disappointing debut last weekend. The $60 million price tag on this one is going to hurt Universal, as the gross so far equals only $20.7 million.

Weird fact #7 about this weekend's box office: Despite not having a $20 million plus picture, the top 12 films still did some fairly serious business. The top 12 films earned a palpable $108.9 million but, as mentioned above, last year's totals were just a bit higher, coming in at $111 million. Next weekend looks like a softie. Openers include The Last Exorcism, which looks like The Blair Witch Rip-Off, and Takers, which has my two favorite actors, Paul Walker and Hayden Christensen. On top of that, Avatar is back to take a little bit more of your hard-earned money.

Top Weekend Box Office for 8/20/10-8/22/10 (Actuals)
Rank Film Distributor Estimated Gross Actual Gross Weekly Change Running Total
1 The Expendables Lionsgate $16,500,000 $16,968,032 + 2.8% $16,968,032
2 Vampires Suck Fox $12,200,000 $12,202,831 New $18,566,733
3 Eat Pray Love Sony/Columbia $12,000,000 $12,111,162 + 0.9% $47,214,078
4 Lottery Ticket Warner Bros. Pictures $11,125,000 $10,652,297 - 4.2% $10,652,297
5 The Other Guys Columbia Pictures (Sony) $10,100,000 $10,163,337 + 0.6% $88,253,482
6 Piranha 3D Dimension Films $10,035,000 $10,106,872 + 0.7% $10,106,872
7 The Switch Miramax $8,100,000 $8,436,773 + 4.2% $8,436,773
8 Nanny McPhee Returns Universal Pictures $8,310,240 $8,407,685 + 1.2% $8,407,685
9 Inception Warner Bros. Pictures $7,655,000 $7,838,179 + 2.4% $262,031,594
10 Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Universal $5,033,700 $5,201,970 + 3.3% $20,898,255
11 Despicable Me Universal Pictures $4,337,840 $4,662,065 + 7.5% $231,056,990
12 Dinner for Schmucks Paramount Pictures $3,505,000 $3,520,805 + 0.5% $65,800,919
  Also Opening/Notables
  Mao's Last Dancer Samuel Goldwyn/ato $192,200 $199,657 New $777,657
  The Tillman Story Weinstein Co. $52,400 $52,185 New $52,185
  What If… Five & Two Pictures/pure Flix N/A $49,770 New $49,770
  A Film Unfinished Oscilloscope $37,500 $34,060 New $47,780
  Soul Kitchen IFC Films N/A $20,916 New $20,916
  Army of Crime Lorber Films N/A $8,102 New $8,102
  Antiplano First Run Features N/A $1,269 New $1,269
  Animal Kingdom Sony Classics $106,470 $106,470 New $203,512
  Flipped Warner Bros. $50,000 $49,709 - 0.6% $570,577
  Step Up 3D Touchstone Pictures $2,939,000 $3,150,401 + 7.2% $36,868,951
  Get Low $759,212 $759,212 0.0% $1,743,295
  Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore Warner Bros. Pictures $1,545,000 $1,701,134 + 10.1% $39,660,611
  Salt Columbia Pictures (Sony) $3,400,000 $3,410,012 + 0.3% $109,895,105
  Toy Story 3 Walt Disney Pictures $1,447,000 $1,523,124 + 5.3% $403,803,642
Click here for all weekend data
Box office data supplied by Exhibitor Relations
Continued:       1       2       3



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