While there were plenty of new releases reaching the top 30 on the sales chart this week, a holdover, Law Abiding Citizen, remained in top spot. During its second week of release it sold an additional 353,000 units, lifting its total to 1.18 million units sold and $11.97 million in total sales.
We're still in that no-man's land for the home market: it's way too late to take advantage of the Christmas shopping season and it's still too early for most Awards Season releases to be on shelves.
There are a few wide releases coming out this week, but only one of them, The Informant!, is worth buying on either DVD or Blu-ray. The best release of the week, and the winner of our Pick of the Week honor, is The Damned United, which is worth picking up on DVD or Blu-ray. Meanwhile, Trailer Park Boys: Countdown to Liquor Day - Blu-ray earns the coveted and rarely-awarded Puck of the Week.
As expected, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs finished in first place over the weekend, and it beat industry expectations by earning more than $30 million.
This helped the overall box office grow by 9.9% from last weekend.
The total weekend haul of $101 million was also 14.9% higher than the same weekend last year.
Year to date, 2009 has made $7.70 billion at the box office, which is 7.9% higher than last year's pace.
This isn't as large a lead as the box office has had this year, but it's still fantastic.
Ice Age - Dawn of the Dinosaurs fell out of the top five this past weekend earning $7.08 million on 3521 screens in 35 markets for a total of $670.44 million internationally and $865.11 million worldwide. It is now the third highest grossing film internationally of all time, while it is 18th place worldwide. That's quite a gap. The film remained in first place in Italy earning $3.14 million on 690 screens over the weekend for a total of $33.63 million after three. So far the film has earned more than 77% of its worldwide box office internationally, which is a very high percentage, and it will keep creeping higher as its international run comes to a close.
The first official weekend of Autumn was not great at the box office, as every single new release missed expectations, some by small margins, others quite dramatically.
This was enough to push the total box office down to $92 million, off 6.7% from last weekend and 8.7% lower than the same weekend last year.
Year-to-date, 2009 is still up on 2008 by a significant margin, leading $7.53 billion to $7.00 billion.
Tyler Perry topped the charts once again this weekend as I Can Do Bad All By Myself scored a solid $24 million opening, according to Lionsgate's Sunday estimate.
While that's not a record for Perry, it is the best he's managed with a Fall release so far.
His strategy of releasing two movies a year in what are generally down periods at the box office -- February/March and September/October -- has paid off again with his fifth number one opening.
Focus Features' 9 came in second with an estimated $10.9 million over the weekend for a total of $15.3 million after five days.
Fall officially begins with the weekend after Labor Day, which in many years is the worst weekend of the year.
That probably won't be the case now thanks to Tyler Perry's propensity for wearing dresses.
This time last year wasn't the first weekend after Labor Day (it's a strange year this year and the weekends don't line up perfectly) and this will mean 2009 might have a little more trouble keeping up with last year than it normally would.
2009 should still come out ahead, but it will be close compared to the first weekend of Fall from last year.
Summer ended on a strong note with three films from August that have the potential to cross $100 million at the box office. But I don't think there's a single film coming out this month that has the potential to do the same.
Then again, we're not concerned with keeping up with August, we are concerned with keeping up with September last year, and that will be an easier task most weeks.
This week's round of new casting information contains updates for Paper Man, Sherlock Holmes, Kung Fu Panda 2, and more!
This week another number of upcoming movies, new stars and directors have been added to our archive!