This weekend's Halloween box office should have been filled with its fair share of treats, but instead most of the new films were met with a trick.
Ben Affleck's Argo claimed the top spot this weekend (resoundingly) with $12 million. While Argo couldn't take the number 1 spot last weekend, its strong holdover attendance week-to-week has kept it in contention for three weeks running. The film, based on a real life CIA rescue operation during the Iran hostage crisis, is now at $60 million in domestic grosses.
Following along in a similar fashion is Sony's animated film Hotel Transylvania, which jumped back up to the number 2 spot in its fifth weekend with $9.5 million. The mash-up monster movie has been doing extremely well, and it once again used a relatively slow weekend to jump back up a few spots. To-date the film has grossed $130 million.
Nipping right at Hotel Transylvania's heels is the first new movie of the weekend, Cloud Atlas (read our review), with $9.4 million. The bold adaptation of David Mitchell's novel was going to be a tough sell for Warner Bros. regardless – what with its six distinct storylines and genres – but an opening weekend under $10 million is not good.
Directors Lana and Andy Wachowski and Tom Tykwer crafted something that many critics (including our own Kofi Outlaw) believe is worth experiencing, but audiences nonetheless weren't all that interested. There's no listed budget for the film, but considering the ambitious nature of the project and the star power involved it's hard to imagine Warner Bros. will recoup their entire investment.
Paranormal Activity 4 drops to the number 4 spot this weekend with $8.6 million – a far cry from its $30 million opening weekend. While each entry in the franchise (save for the first one) has experienced a major drop-off between its first and second weekend, those other films opened considerably larger than PA 4. By no means is the series dead – this fourth film has accrued $42 million in total grosses off a $5 million budget – but it has presumably begun a trend downward.
Coming in at number 5 is Silent Hill: Revelation 3D (read our review) with $8 million. Though very few moviegoers expected a sequel to the 2006 film would be made, Open Road Films moved on undeterred and hoped that, at the very least, this film could duplicate the first's $20 million opening weekend. Unfortunately, $8 million (off a budget of $20 million) isn't going to cut it, especially when the added boost of 3D tickets is there as well.
Taken 2, Liam Neeson's return to the role that reinvigorated his action career, is this weekend's number 6 film – although that could change considering early estimates put it at $8 million as well. Now at $117 million to-date, a compelling case continues to be made for Taken 3, even though the series has already stretched credulity a bit too far.
Kevin James' Here Comes the Boom is this weekend's number 7 film with $5.5 million. Though several new movies have opened around it, the MMA comedy continues to hold its spot in the top 10, and has now raked in $30 million in domestic grosses.
The horror film Sinister comes in at number 8 this weekend with $5.07 million, which brings its total grosses up to $39 million. Like Paranormal and Silent Hill, Sinister had its best chance at grabbing a large portion of the box office during this Halloween weekend. Nonetheless the film should be counted as a success considering it only cost $3 million to make.
Coming in at number 9 is Alex Cross with $5.05 million, which brings the movie's total to just under $20 million in domestic grosses. Tyler Perry's films – those he produced, wrote, directed, and starred in – typically don't do well in their second weekend, but considering Alex Cross debuted last weekend to less-than-stellar numbers this should nix any chances of a sequel.
Paramount's oddball comedy Fun Size rounds out the top 10 with $4 million. The film, which was tailor-made for this weekend's Halloween audience, barely had any marketing and came seemingly out of nowhere. Working off a reported $14 million budget, the film will be lucky to make back even half that.
Though it didn't crack the top 10, the film Chasing Mavericks also debuted this weekend, and pulled in $2.2 million. Starring Gerard Butler and newcomer Jonny Weston, the film is based on the true story of Jay Moriarty, a Southern California surfer who dreamed of taming mammoth waves called mavericks. Unfortunately, the rocky seas of the box office were too much for the film.
In international news, the 23rd James Bond film, Skyfall, opened huge in the UK, smashing opening weekend records previously held by Quantum of Solace – the 22nd James Bond adventure. The film, which opens in North America in two weeks, opened to $32.4 million in UK theaters, which is the largest opening for a 2D film and is second only to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 overall.
Including Britain, the film raked in $77 million this weekend across 25 different markets. Does this mean Skyfall will open huge in the States and deliver James Bond's biggest opening weekend debut? We'll just have to see.
Source: Box Office Mojo
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