There are still no runaway hits at the box office this fall, but Ben Affleck managed to uncook the books for a solid debut.
In first this weekend is The Accountant (read our review), which brought in $24.7 million during its first three days. Those figures greatly surpassed the projections heading into Friday, which had the film in the mid-teens. Though the critical reaction was generally mixed, audiences seemed to enjoy it, finding it an entertaining and different vehicle for its star. The Accountant actually made more than Affleck's own The Town ($23.8 million) and Argo ($19.4 million) did in their opening weekends, so it's safe to say this film got off to a good start.
Many will be curious to see how The Accountant holds up over the next few weeks. There's still some time before Doctor Strange becomes the film of choice for audiences, so the latest from director Gavin O'Connor could have a fruitful run in store. However, there are upcoming movies like Jack Reacher: Never Go Back and Inferno on the horizon, both of which could steal business from The Accountant. The strength of its legs will depend greatly on the word-of-mouth. Moviegoers weren't deterred by the reviews this weekend, but can that continue for the remainder of the month?
Coming in second is Kevin Hart: What Now?, which is the new comedy concert film featuring Kevin Hart. It made $11.9 million in its opening weekend, the highest debut in the unofficial trilogy of Hart standup movies. What Now? obviously appealed to a niche audience, but it's still an illustration of Hart's overall box office prowess. He remains a viewer favorite, and chances are What Now? turns a nice profit for Universal. The production budget was a minuscule $9.9 million, so it's set up to be moderately successful.
The #3 film is The Girl on the Train. Last week's champ fell 51.2 percent to bring in $11.9 million in its second weekend. To date, the thriller has grossed $46.5 million domestically.
In fourth is Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. Tim Burton's latest made $8.9 million to raise its Stateside total to $65.8 million.
Rounding out the top five is Deepwater Horizon with $6.3 million. The disaster drama now stands at $49.3 million in the U.S.
Coming in sixth is Storks, which brought in $5.6 million in its fourth weekend. Warner Animation's newest film has grossed $59.1 million domestically so far. Internationally, it's received a bit of a boost with $130.7 million globally, but in all likelihood the studio was hoping for something much more.
The Magnificent Seven fittingly comes in seventh with $5.2 million. Antoine Fuqua's Western remake increased its domestic total to $84.8 million. Its worldwide total currently stands at $142.6 million, meaning that the movie has proven to be a solid, yet unremarkable, investment. The production budget (which doesn't include marketing) was $90 million, so Sony probably isn't celebrating these numbers.
In eighth is Middle School: Worst Years of My Life with $4.2 million. The film is now up to $13.7 million domestically.
Sully comes in ninth place, grossing $2.9 million in its sixth weekend. Clint Eastwood's biopic has made $118.3 million in the States to date.
Capping off the top ten is The Birth of a Nation. The slavery drama grossed $2.7 million in its second weekend and is now at $12.2 million in the U.S.
[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 on Monday, October 17 -- at which time we'll update this post with any changes.]
Source: Box Office Mojo