Sci-Fi, teen juggernaut, The Hunger Games wins it’s second weekend, scoring an estimated three day total of $63.5 million against big new releases Wrath of the Titans and Mirror, Mirror which managed to pick up $35.6 million and $19.3 million, respectively. Rounding out the top five were 21 Jump Street ($14.m) and Dr. Seus’ The Lorax ($8.3m). The Hunger Games is expected to pass the $250 million mark in the week ahead.
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Rise of the Apes is on track to take $50 million in its opening weekend. Earnings which will easily grant it the number one spot at the box office, well ahead of The Smurfs ($18 million) and Cowboys and Aliens ($15 million). Has a new Planet of the Apes franchise been born? We give that question an affirmative ape howl! The coming decade shall be full of talking, CGI apes.
J. J. Abrams Sci-fi flick Super 8 looks to easily with this weekend’s box office race with an estimated haul of $35 million. Although the competition was weak with no other major theatrical feature opening this weekend; the fact that a film that’s not a sequel or a remake or from licensed property, and has no stars, could win a summer weekend remains marginally impressive. However, massive attempts to brand it as a Spielberg film with unofficial connections to his eighties films, undoubtedly helped greatly. So don’t pop any champagne corks about the age of the sequel and remake being over. Many more sequences, remakes and licensed properties hit this year. And will likely have grosses that make Super 8‘s look tiny.
The first of the summer superhero blockbusters, Thor had a leg-up by opening several weeks ago in other territories, allowing the film to rack up a cool $176 million foreign already. This weekend they’ve added $66 million to that domestic, giving them a global cum of $242 million. Even a God won’t sneeze at a number like that.
Any doubt that there’s been a baby boom in the last decade? If you had one it will be destroyed by this weekend’s box office, when some kiddy original IP (with birds?!?) beats a beloved horror franchise. No, not merely beat … crushes!
Rio, the aforementioned original IP, is estimated to fly away with $40 million in its brightly colored CGI beak on its opening weekend. While Scream 4 only manages a rather anemic $19.5 million. Granted that isn’t a terrible showing for the fourth film in a series. Especially one that’s remained dormant for a decade. But it’s beneath even the low end of studio estimates. Poor Ghostface.
This could also be more evidence of audiences declining interest in the horror genre in the last year or so. Remember the weak performance of most of horror releases last fall? A trend only broken by Paranormal Activity 2.
The fall saw quite a few horror releases failing to find an audience. But the first major horror release of 2011 seems to be faring better. The satanic possession movie The Rite, starring Anthony Hopkins, won the number one spot at the box office this weekend with an estimated take of $15.9 million. Is it religious-themed horror, combined with Hopkins star-power, that’s attracting fans? Or is this beginning of another upswing for horror? We don’t know. But we’ll definitely be paying attention as more horror releases hit the multiplexes throughout the year.
With its release two weeks off, sites all over the web are rushing to declare Tron: Legacy a bomb.
Slash Film says it could be …
a box office catastrophe that would consign Legacy to the same category of flops such as Ishtar, The Postman or the more recent Speed Racer
While iO9 says …
Tron Legacy is on track to be another disappointment
And THR says …
… first-weekend prospects for Disney’s Tron: Legacy are significantly below where the studio needs to be with its pricey tentpole.
Those who follow films know this a normal rant every Christmas season. With the competition even fiercer than Summer, the knives come out in an attempt to lend the taint of failure to big releases. Just remember, early tracking is notoriously inaccurate. And Tron: Legacy has an awareness level no other December release can match. Bomb? We think not.
And are we the only ones who are tired of the glee some writers take in becoming among the first to declare this, or any film, a bomb?
Share your thoughts in the comments.
Five horror films were released this weekend, several in limited release. But none managed to make an impact at the box office. Let Me In, the remake of the Swedish film Let the Right One In, did the best. It scored an estimated weekend haul of $5.2 million. Just enough to land it in 7th place. Case 39 did about the same, pulling in about $5.1 million.
What does this mean? Hard to tell. Is this just a reaction to these specific films? Or has the audience gone bearish on horror? We’ll know more in the weeks ahead. Next week (10/8/10) Wes Craven‘s My Soul to Take opens. And later in month we have releases of and 2Saw 3D. If all these films fail to ignite interest, the genre may be facing a dark future.