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Happy New Year at the Box Office

January 6th, 2009

The first weekend of the year starts well with practically every film in the top five having at least something to cheer about. Overall the box office pulled in $153 million, which is 24% less than last weekend; however, it's a post-holiday weekend, so that decline is understandable. Compared to the first weekend of 2008, 2009 is off to a great start up just shy of 10% over last year. And more importantly, last year got off to a great start, so we are looking at a fantastic start.

As expected, Marley & Me started 2009 the same way as it ended 2008, on top. Over the weekend, the film pulled in $24.26 million, which was a little lower than predicted, but it has still earned more than $100 million with a running total of $106.66 million after 11 days of release. Given the reported production budget, this film may have already shown a profit. It is well on its way to profitability.

Bedtime Stories placed second with $20.50 million over the weekend and $85.54 million in total. At this pace, the film will become the 26th film released in 2008 to reach $100 million by this time next week.

The Curious Case of Benjamin Buttons matched expectations nearly perfectly with $18.69 million over the weekend and now has $79.30 million in total. It too should reach $100 million, but it might take a week longer to get there.

Valkyrie is a bigger hit than expected, and it is still aiming for $100 million in total. This weekend it added $14.09 million for a total of $60.74 million. Will it reach the century mark? I'm not sure, but it has a 50/50 chance at this point.

Yes Man did a little better than expected with $13.91 million over the weekend for a total of $79.51 million after three. This increases the odds or reaching $100 million substantially, which means 2008 could finish within one of the previous record of 29 $100 million films.

Moving onto the sophomore class, The Spirit earned $3.26 million over the weekend, which was down nearly 50% from its opening. Overall the film has made $17.74 million, which is on the very low end of expectations. Not quite a disaster, but close.

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Filed under: Marley & Me, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Bedtime Stories, Yes Man, Valkyrie, The Spirit