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Horror Fans Love Valentine's Day

February 17th, 2009

Another record breaking weekend! President's Day long weekend smashed the previous record with a total of $188 million over three days and $220 million over four. To put this into perspective, the previous record was set in 2007 when the box office pulled in $187 million in four days. That's right, this year we earned more in three days than the previous record was over four. It goes without saying that there were huge increases over last weekend (up 22%) and over the same weekend last year (up 37% over three days and 33% over four). Year to date, 2009 has pulled in $1.47 billion, 22% ahead of last year's $1.20 billion pace.

The re-booting of the Friday the 13th franchise beat expectations on Friday by a sizable degree with $19.29 million. And even though it collapsed on Saturday, it still was the top draw on Valentine's Day, which is more than a little strange. But it showed weakness as the weekend worn on and by Monday it had fallen to fourth place, which shows the movie is incredibly front-loaded. This is explained by its genre, the fact that it is part of a long-running franchise, and its reviews. Over three days, the film managed $40.57 million while its total reached $43.59 million with Monday added in. As for where it goes from here, it might not make $43.59 million during the rest of its run. That said, it is already a financial success, while it has made enough to lift Friday the 13th into first place has the highest-grossing horror franchise of all time. (Although you could argue Hannibal Lecter, Jaws, or Aliens are ahead of it. It depends on your definition of "horror" franchise.)

He's Just Not That Into You matched Thursday's prediction nearly perfectly, for the most part. It pulled in $19.52 million over three days, which is just under $20 million, but it was weaker than expected on Monday, ending the weekend with $22.33 million over four days for a total of $57.80 million after eleven days of release.

Taken slipped to third place during its third weekend of release earning $18.99 million over three days and $21.82 million over four. The film has $80.50 million in total, and it could reach $100 million in total as early as this time next week.

Determining which film landed in fourth place in a little more complicated, as both Confessions of a Shopaholic and Coraline can lay claim to fourth place. Confessions of a Shopaholic came out on top of the three-day portion of the weekend with $15.07 million, but it slumped on Monday finishing the weekend with $17.81 million. The film earned weak reviews, even for its genre, and it is unlikely to have long legs. That said, also long as its production budget wasn't out of hand, it should still break even before too long

Coraline earned $14.78 million from Friday to Sunday, which was above expectations, and by Monday it had taken over top spot with $4.07 million, which gives it $18.85 million over the four-day weekend. So far the film has made $39.09 million after two weeks of release and should finish its box office run as a solid midlevel hit. Additionally, this film could do very well on the home market, just like Henry Selick's A Nightmare Before Christmas.

The final wide release of the week was The International, as the film landed in seventh place over the three-day weekend with $9.33 million, but by Monday it had run out of steam earning $10.70 million over four days. Mixed reviews won't help going forward, neither will its per theater average, which is only average. This is not a great start, but I guess it could have been worse.

Moving onto the sophomore class, The Pink Panther 2 fell to eighth place over the 3-day weekend with $8.51 million and now has a total of $24.09 million. There will not be a third film in this revival of the franchise. Push fell even farther down to 10th place with $6.86 million over the weekend and $20.38 million after Monday. However, it close less than half of what the previous film cost to make, and will therefore has a shot at profitability, assuming it does well internationally and on the home market.

One last note for the weekend, Paul Blart: Mall Cop became the first film of the year to reach $100 million at the box office. In fact, it became the first January release to reach that mark. (The 1997 re-release of A New Hope also topped nine digits.) Amazingly, it looks like Taken will join the century club shortly, so there's a great chance 2009 could break the record for most $100 million movies, currently at 29.


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Filed under: Paul Blart: Mall Cop, Taken, He's Just Not That Into You, Coraline, Friday the 13th, Confessions of a Shopaholic, The Pink Panther 2, Push, The International