We have our first bona fide blockbuster of 2013 in this weekend's box office, courtesy of Walt Disney and Sam Raimi.
As expected, Oz the Great and Powerful (read our review), comes in at number 1. However, few could have predicted that the film, from Spider-Man director Sam Raimi, would open with a massive $80 million. Disney hoped the film would capture audiences much like their update of Alice and Wonderland, and while it didn't hit that film's high opening weekend tally, it's still the biggest opening of 2013.
Prior to the film's release there had been talk of a sequel, and considering this opening, it's safe to say discussions will heat up considerably. Also, look for the film to take over the #1 spot for 2013 releases by next weekend, overtaking this weekend's number 3 film.
Last week's number 1 film, Jack the Giant Slayer, fell to number 2 this weekend (obviously) with $10 million. Some might look at a $10 million second weekend as a positive – almost all the new releases of 2013 would.
But, considering the film cost almost $200 million to make, Warner Bros. likely expected more than a $43 million domestic take over two weeks. Both Bryan Singer and Sam Raimi's careers have followed a similar trajectory over the past decade, and while Jack didn't fare too well, we still have X-Men: Days of Future Past to look forward to.
The current #1 film of 2013, Identity Thief, comes in at number 3 this weekend with $6 million. As far as comedies go, nothing has really challenged this film, which has helped it achieve a $116 million domestic tally over five weeks. Expect for it to slow down a little bit once Incredible Burt Wonderstone releases next week.
Dead Man Down (read our review), the other new release of the weekend, comes in at number 4 with $5.3 million. A slow-burn thriller featuring Colin Farrell and Noomi Rapace, the film's main draw was the chance to see what The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (the Swedish version) director Niels Arden Oplev could bring to American audiences.
Unfortunately, most were apparently not interested, or they were too busy watching Oz. On a weekend like this, there was really no hope for this film, even if some very talented people were involved, both in front of and behind the camera.
Rounding out the top 5 is Snitch with $5.1 million. $31 million for a film starring Dwayne Johnson is not great, but it's still much better than a lot of the action films released this year.
The R rated comedy 21 and Over comes in at number 6 with $5.05 million. While it's hard to fathom why the film cost a reported $13 million to make, it has grossed $16 million over two weeks.
In at number 8 is old reliable Silver Linings Playbook with $3.74 million. Silver Linings is now at $120 million in domestic revenue after a whopping 17 weeks in the top 20.
In at number 9 is Escape from Planet Earth with $3.2 million. The animated film is now at $47 million.
And finally, The Last Exorcism Part 2 comes in at number 10 with $3.1 million. Yes, the horror film was made for a very low $3 million, but $12 million over two weeks is a far cry from the film's predecessor.
[NOTE: These are only weekend box office estimates - based on Friday and Saturday ticket sales coupled with adjusted expectations for Sunday. Official weekend box office results will be released Monday, March 4th - at which time we'll update this post with any changes.]
Source: Box Office Mojo