Weekend Wrap-Up

Box Office Drops Off a Cliff – Must Be Labor Day

By John Hamann

September 2, 2012

The horror. The horror.

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Third is The Expendables 2, as the box office is too strong (ha!) to give Stallone and company a third crack at number one. This weekend, The Expendables 2 earned $8.8 million, which means it was off 34% from its $13.4 million performance last weekend. This score remains behind that of the original Expendables, which took in $9.5 million over Labor Day weekend in 2010. The Expendables 2 looks like it will finish with a little more than $80 million, well back of the $100 million the original earned. Foreign grosses may prop it up, as this one has earned over $65 million already from foreign shores. The domestic total currently sits at $66.2 million after 17 days.

Fourth is The Bourne Legacy, as the Jeremy Renner version of Bourne continues to fail to live up to the Matt Damon version. In its fourth weekend, The Bourne Legacy picked up another $7.2, dropping only 22%. The Bourne Legacy is going to earn $100 million, but it will fail to match the $125 million budget stateside. The foreign gross may make up for part of the marketing tab, but this still has to be considered a miss for the franchise. Universal will never let on, though. Give this Bourne $96.2 million so far. It should’ve been called The Bourne Letdown.

Fifth is ParaNorman, another film that has failed to live up to expectations when compared to its predecessor, Coraline. ParaNorman earned $6.6 million in its third weekend, off 24% compared to the previous weekend. While not terrible, Coraline opened stronger ($16.8 million compared to ParaNorman’s $14.1 million), and held better (12% first weekend drop, 23% second weekend drop, compared to 39% and 24% for ParaNorman). Production company Laika and distributor Focus are going to eat it on this one, as the production cost is assumed at around $50 million, and that’s prior to marketing. The gross so far for ParaNorman is $38 million, with likely only $20 million more to come.


The Odd Life of Timothy Green finds itself in sixth this weekend. After grossing $7.1 million last weekend, this trifle picked up a little steam on Saturday and Sunday, taking in $6.1 million and dropping 15%. While it will earn more than its $40 million production budget, it has a little bit of work to do to pay back some of the extensive marketing costs put out by Disney. So far, the Jennifer Garner film has earned $35.9 million.

Seventh goes to The Dark Knight Rises, which is enjoying its seventh weekend in the top ten. The Chris Nolan superhero epic pulled in another $5.9 million, giving it a drop of 19%. The $250 million blockbuster has now earned $431.2 million stateside and another $535 million from overseas cinemas. It should wind up the seventh most successful domestic release ever by the time it leaves theaters. There was an indication this week that Batman will be rebooted in 2015 when Justice League hits screens. Bat-fans, mark your calendars.

Eighth is The Campaign, which is now four weekends old. The Will Ferrell/Zach Galifianakis mashup earned another $5.4 million this weekend and dropped 27%. We knew big grosses for The Campaign wouldn’t go on forever, and I think Warner Bros. will be quite happy with the $73 million this one has taken in so far. The Campaign cost $56 million to make, and will likely top out with about $80 million.

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