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Weekend Wrap-Up: New Releases Can't Give Puss the Boot

November 7th, 2011

November began like most of 2011 has gone, on a losing note. We are running out of time to turn things around and this weekend it wasn't even close. Neither Tower Heist nor A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas put up much of a fight at the box office and, if it weren't for Puss in Boots's incredible hold, the numbers would have been nothing short of tragic. Granted, the box office rose by 9% from last weekend to $114 million, but that was 24% lower than the same weekend last year. Year-to-date, 2011 is behind 2010 by 4% at $8.66 billion to $9.02 billion and, at this point, I'd settle for that situation not getting any worse from now till the New Year.

Puss in Boots was the lone bright spot in the top five, but wow it was bright. The film dropped just 3% to $33.05 million over the weekend for a total of $75.53 million. With excellent reviews and a strong per theater average, the film should stick around till at least the Thanksgiving long weekend, while by this time next week, it will be over $100 million domestically.

Tower Heist opened in second place with $24.03 million, which was lower than expected. It finished the weekend with 69% positive reviews and that's better than most were expecting, so maybe its legs will be strong enough that it can get a boost from Thanksgiving. Even so, it won't match original expectations and it was an expensive film to make, so it will have to rely on good international / home market numbers to break even.

A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas wasn't able to become the biggest hit in the franchise with an opening of $12.95 million. On the other hand, this is more than half of what it cost to make and, with the best reviews in the franchise, it should do very well on the home market easily breaking even. I don't know if they will be able to top this performance if they extend the franchise some more, but the studio might want to risk it.

Paranormal Activity 3 is a week away from the century mark after adding $8.33 million over the weekend for a total of $95.12 million after two. It will become the 24th or 25th film released in 2011 to get to $100 million, depending on if Puss in Boots beats it there.

In Time held on better than expected with $7.48 million over the weekend, for a total of $23.99 million after two. It should top its production budget domestically, so if it can do well on the international stage, it should break even during its initial push onto the home market.

Finally we get to the sophomore class and The Rum Diary. It fell to eighth place with $2.92 million over the past three days for a total of $10.36 million after ten. Normally a 43% drop-off would be quite good, but it was actually one of the worst week-to-week drop-offs in the top ten.


Filed under: Weekend Box Office, The Rum Diary, Puss in Boots, A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, Tower Heist, In Time, Paranormal Activity 3