Weekend Wrap-Up: Gravity Earns Tons of Money
Gravity crushed expectations, and records, over the weekend with more than $55 million. This topped the previous biggest October weekend by more than $3 million. On the other hand, Runner Runner went nowhere opening well below the lower end of predictions. Overall, the box office rose 16% from last year reaching $127 million. Unfortunately, last year had much better depth and 2013 was 11% lower in the year-over-year comparison. 2013 is still ahead of 2012, but the lead has been cut to just 0.9% at $8.05 billion to $7.98 billion.
Gravity opened with $55.79 million over the weekend, which was the biggest October weekend on record topping Paranormal Activity 3 by more than $3 million. Additionally, thanks to its genre and its nearly perfect reviews, the movie should have stunning legs and it could cruise past $200 million. In order to get to that milestone, the film will need help in the form of Awards Season buzz. That shouldn't be an issue. This is great news for the studio, as the film cost over $100 million to make. If it can get to $200 million, it will have covered its production budget domestically, so it will only need to cover its worldwide P&A budget internationally to break even before the home market.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 remained on pace to reach $100 million with $20.95 million over the weekend for a total of $60.01 million after two. A 38% sophomore stint drop-off isn't bad for a family film, but it isn't great either. It is on par with expectations given its reviews, so the studio should be happy. If the film can do well internationally, it will be a financial success.
Runner Runner won't be a financial success, not based on what we've seen so far. The film opened in third place, but with a mere $7.71 million during its opening weekend. Its reviews fell below the 10% level putting it on par with the worst films of the year, so its word-of-mouth will kill its legs. Add in a low per theater average, and theater owners will be looking to drop this film as soon as they are contractually able to.
Prisoners grabbed fourth place with $5.75 million over the weekend for a total of $47.93 million after three weeks of release. This is more than it cost to make, so assuming it can find a similar level of success internationally, it will break even early in its home market run.
The other sophomore films were right behind with Don Jon in sixth place with $4.16 million over the weekend for a two-week total of $16.07 million. It fell 52%, which is rather high given its reviews. Meanwhile, Baggage Claim fell 55% to $4.08 million over the weekend for a ten-day total of $15.14 million. Its reviews were terrible, so this decline is not surprising.
One last note, Pulling Strings was a surprise entry in the top ten earning ninth place with $2.47 million. It managed ninth place despite playing in just 387 theaters. Granted, No Instructions Included earned three times as much during its opening weekend, but this is an unfair comparison and the studio should be very happy. So if it can turn good reviews into good legs, we could have the beginning of a trend of Spanish-language movies reaching the top ten at the box office.
Date posted: 2013-10-08