Evil rules the weekend
By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower
September 16, 2012
The second of two Lionsgate films in the top six is The Expendables 2, the hyper-violent Sylvester Stallone project featuring all the washed-up and semi-current action stars you can reasonably gather together in one kitchen. Now in its fifth weekend, The Expendables 2 earned an additional $3 million and declined only 39%. So far, the sequel has accrued $80.3 million domestically, well behind the $98.5 million the original film had tallied by the same point during its release. Overseas, The Expendables 2 has already crossed the $150 million mark, so it’s very close to approaching the $171 million of its predecessor.
Seventh and eighth place wind up in a photo finish, as estimates have The Words beating out The Bourne Legacy by $5,000. Now in its second weekend, The Words falls 39% to $2.9 million and brings its domestic total to $9.2 million. It will barely be remembered as soon as a month from now. The Bourne Legacy also has $2.9 million (when we round up), and brings its North American total to $107.8 million, and around $80 million from international venues. Although it’s not matching up to the gold standard set by the first three Bourne films, the studio’s attempt at milking more money from the franchise will be a small earner by the time home video is added in.
Rounding out the top ten are late summer staples The Odd Life of Timothy Green and The Campaign. The Disney title starring Jennifer Garner started off modestly, yet the movie is proving that slow and steady can win the race. Another $2.5 million this weekend gives the title a running total of $46.3 million against a $40 million budget. Given its early performance, BOP considers this a small scale victory. Meanwhile, the Will Ferrell/Zach Galifianakis comedy grossed $2.4 million and has snuck up to $82.9 million in domestic earnings against a measured $56 million budget. Both of these are unqualified hits.
The big story outside the top ten this week is Paul Thomas Anderson's latest movie, The Master. The auteur's follow-up to There Will Be Blood received a five-location release. It stunned industry observers by somehow earning $729,745 from these five exhibitions. This a record-setting per-location average of $145,949. It surpasses Moonrise Kingdom's $130,749 mark set earlier this year. The Master is expected to be a strong contender for end of year awards consideration and several BOP staff members giddily announced their satisfaction the moment they had tickets in hand. You are only just beginning to hear about what will be among the most discussed movies of the next six months.
One other box office performance of note is Arbitrage. The Roadside Attractions feature starring Richard Gere earned $2.1 million, which is not noteworthy on its own. However, this title is also available via video on demand. A $2.1 million debut for a day-and-date theatrical/VOD title is the largest thus far in what we expect to become a quickly expanding industry.
Combined revenue for the top 10 this weekend was $65.4 million, which is down 21% from last year but a huge improvement of 40% from last weekend's $46.7 million. Next weekend features the action reboot Dredd, a Jennifer Lawrence horror film called House at the End of the Street and a Clint Eastwood (no chair) movie titled Trouble With the Curve.