“Gravity” takes off to Number 1 at the box office
NASA may be shut down, but the country’s minds and wallets were surely in space as “Gravity” ruled the box office.
The Sandra Bullock and George Clooney lost in space 3D epic “Gravity”epic opened to $55.6 million in domestic receipts. That total proved to be out of this world setting a record for the biggest October ever. Driven by older moviegoers, the highly rated film got most of it’s crowd from the over 35 set, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The space race wasn’t limited to the US as the film opened in over 2 dozen other markets grossing $27.4 million.
Adults may have ruled this weekend, but last weekend’s kidfest still showed some legs as another 3D film “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2″ held on to the No. 2 spot grossing $21.5 in it’s second week. The other big studio debut was “Runner Runner” which stumble stumbled at the box office with a mediocre $7.6 million. Despite starring Justin Timberlake and future Batman, Ben Affleck, the drama about online gambling came up short with critics and moviegoers.
Speaking of superheroes, Hugh Jackman’s drama “Prisoners” held on to the No. 4 spot this week with $5.7 million. The former X-Man stars as a father who takes the law into his own hands when police fail to find his missing daughter.
Rounding out the top 5 is the Formula 1 racing film “Rush” with $4.4 million. Directed by Ron Howard, the drama is proving that although F1 racing isn’t big in the US that this vehicle still has a few laps left at the box office.
Already getting Oscar buzz, “Captain Phillips” got an early, but quiet release on 800 theaters. Box office numbers haven’t been revealed, but it’s rumored to have gotten decent numbers ahead of it’s high profile debut this weekend.
“Cloudy 2″ serves up recipe for #1 spot
Audiences had a taste for meatballs this weekend.
Sony’s animated kid flick “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs” led the box office grossing $35 million in a crowded box office filled with debuts for almost all cinematic tastes. It had been nearly four years since the original “Cloudy” opened and went on to rake in over $245 million worldwide. The 3D animated blockbuster performed slightly below expectations, but was a good shot in the arm for a summer flop heavy Sony.
The race for second was won by “Prisoners” with $11.3 million. The thriller starring Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Viola Davis had plenty of life in it’s second week. Ron Howard hasn’t done an indie since 1977′s Grand Theft Auto, but you wouldn’t know it by his showing at the box office finish line. The Formula 1 drama “Rush” not only got raves by critics, but finished a tight third for the week grossing $10.3 million despite being in 1000 less theaters.
Rush expanded in theaters following a limited showing in a few theaters in New York and Los Angeles. The story of the rivalry between Formula 1 racers Niki Lauda and James Hunt was projected to struggle in the U.S but is already providing box office gold overseas having grosed $14 million across the pond.
Fox’s Paula Patton vehicle “Baggage Claim” pulled in a decent $9.3 million in its debut to nab the fourth spot. Written and directed by David E. Talbert, the rom-com features Patton as a woman who is determined to get married in thirty days by revisiting her exes. The film also stars Taye Diggs, Derek Luke, and Boris Kodjoe.
Rounding out the top five was Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s “Don Jon.” The raunchy comedy and Sundance favorite only cost under $6 mil to produce, but debuted to $9 million for Gordon-Levitt’s directorial debut.
‘Prisoners’ Escape with Box Office Crown
Hugh Jackman proved once again that he can slice his way to box office gold with or without claws.
The “Wolverine” star took the thriller “Prisoners” to the number one spot this weekend with a gross of $21.4 million, according to THR.com. Jackman portrays a Pennyslvania father looking for his kidnapped daughter. Co-star Jake Gyllenhaal is the leader of the police investigation. When Jackman gets frustrated with the investigation, he takes the law into his own claws…uh hands. The Warner Bros. film only cost $30 million to produce, so the film is already being hailed as an early fall hit.
Last week’s top movie ‘Insidious: Chapter 2″ dipped to second place, pulling in $14.5 million in it’s second week. The horror film debuted to over $41 million, surprising critics who panned the sequel. So far, “Insidious 2″ has grossed $60.9 million Fans are delighted to know that “Insidious 3″ is already on the drawing board.
“The Family” directed by Luc Besson, continues to make a made man out of direcotr Luc Besson. The mob laugher starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert DeNiro as a mob family in witness protection brought in $7 million in it’s second week, which was good enough for the third spot. The Spanish language “Instructions Not Included” was muy bueno at the box office earning $5.7 million to come in at No. 4. Rounding out the top 5 was the disappointing “Battle of the Year.” Neither 3D nor Chris Brown could save the dance flick from bombing with only $5 million in it’s debut. Directed by Benson Lee, the film cost $20 million to make.
Anna Camp can’t save “True Blood”
HBO’s “True Blood” started out as a great show, as the vampire stories and cable TV sex scenes made it one of the hottest shows on television. But the show has slipped over the years, even if it still commands a decent audience. HBO has announced that next year’s seventh season will be its last, and frankly the show lost it long ago. It used to be a regular on Bullz-Eye.com’s TV Power Rankings but this year was left off again.
TV critic Laura DeMarco explains how the show has suffered in recent years.
Yes, there are bad guys, but most of them are so cliched and cardboard as to be laughable. Case in point is good ol’ boy Louisiana Governor Burrell, the main force behind getting the hungry, marauding vampires off the street and into the camps.
He’s a jokey, hokey cliche. The only true villain, former preacher’s wife/governor’s girlfriend Sarah Newlin (Anna Camp), is truly bad. But she’s so bad, so campy, so over-the-top cliched, she’s entertaining. But she’s not too scary. She’s no Russell Edgington, though she’s quite fun to watch.
We love Anna Camp and were thrilled to see her character come back, but she’s just not enough to carry the show.
Molly Lambert also chimed in about how the fairies were the last straw. She appreciated the eye candy and all the sex scenes but the idiotic stories got to her.
So we’ll see what happens in the final season. We know there will be plenty of sensual sex scenes to keep many viewers interested, but we can’t expect much more than that.
Photo by John P. Johnson courtesy of HBO
‘The Butler’ ends summer as #1
As far as the box office, “The Butler” proved that the only direction it knew…was up.
“Lee Daniels’ The Butler” held off one of the hottest boy bands in music by grossing an estimated $20 million to stay atop the box office for it’s third consecutive week. It narrowly beat out the concert film “One Direction: This is Us,” which made a strong bid for the Labor Day crown, which pulled in $18 million over the holiday weekend.
Critics destroyed the Ford Shelby driven vehicle “The Getaway,” starring Ethan Hawke and another teen idol, Selena Gomez. The action film about a former racer who steals a car in order to save his wife only had enough gas to open at tenth for the week grossing $5.5 million.
The comedy “We’re the Millers” continued it’s family lovefest with $15.9 million to come in third place. The animated “Cars” spinoff “Planes” held on to fourth place with $10.7 million.
The biggest winner of the week may have been “Instructions Not Included,” which can boast the largest opening for a Spanish language film in North America. The film starring Eugenio Derbez grossed $10 million for the weekend despite being on a mere 347 theaters, in contrast to “The Butler” and “We’re the Millers” which are on 3,300 and 3,445 films respectively.
‘The Butler’ stays on top for 2nd week
Even the end of the world couldn’t stop “The Butler” at the box office.
“Lee Daniels’ The Butler” ruled the box office for a second consecutive week, despite a few well-publicized films targeting teens and tweens making their debut. The Forest Whitaker starrer took the box office crown with $17 million this weekend, according to studio estimates.
Surprisingly, the civil rights film which also stars Oprah Winfrey, Terrence Howard, and Cuba Gooding, Jr skewed to a different audience thanks to positive word-of-mouth. According to the Hollywood Reporter, white moviegoers made up 55 percent of the film’s audience, a 7% increase from it’s opening week.
“We’re the Millers” showed it’s dysfunctional family has box office staying power. In it’s third week, the Jason Sudeikis/Jennifer Aniston vehicle grossed $13.5 million to come in second for the week. Hoping to become the next “Twilight” franchise, “Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” pulled in a disappointing $9.3 million for the weekend and $14 million for the week (it opened on Wednesday) to come in third. The film is based on a popular series of young adult novels. That popularity didn’t seem to make it to the big screen.
The low budget action comedy about a possible end of the world “The World’s End” surprising grabbed fourth place with $8.9 million. Starring Simon Pegg, the film outperformed much of it’s competition despite being on only 1,549 theaters. By comparison, Mortal Instruments were on 3,118 theaters.
The other big opening was the horror film “Youre Next’ which finished just outside the top 5 grossing $7.1 million to grab sixth place. Disney’s animated feature “Planes” rounded out the top 5 with $8.6 million.
‘The Butler’ serves its way to #1
Suffice it to say, ‘The Butler’ kicked ass.
Thanks to a media blitz by the queen of all media, Oprah Winfrey, “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” took in an estimated $25 million to open in the top spot at the box office, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The civil rights film starred Winfrey and Forest Whitaker as they easily dominated this week’s new releases.
The long-awaited superhero sequel “Kick-Ass 2″ was projected to take the top spot, but instead mustered a disappointing $13.6 million which was good enough for a hold on third place. Critics skewered the story about would-be superheroes starring Chloe Grace Moretz and Aaron Taylor-Johnson. Another star-studded film came up short as “Paranoia” opened to a pathetic $3.5 million, which couldn’t even get it into the top ten. The thriller starring Liam Hemsworth and Harrison Ford came in at thirteenth place.
Having the star of a hit show and rumors of a new idevice couldn’t create enough buzz to get crowds to see “Jobs.” The Ashton Kutcher attempt based on Steve Jobs came in 7th with $6.7 million. The only saving graces for these underperforming films is that both “Kick-Ass 2″, “Jobs”, and “Paranoia” cost so little that there’s still chance they’ll turn a profit due to foreign markets.
Besides “The Butler,” the only ones cheering at the box office were holdovers such as last week’s number one, Elysium which brought in $13.6 million and “We’re the Millers” starring Jason Sudeikis and Jennifer Aniston which grossed $17.8 million to hold on to second place for the week.
“Elysium” edges “The Millers” for top spot
Audiences decided to spread the wealth this weekend, but Matt Damon and Jodie Foster came out on top.
“Elysium” starring Matt Damon captured the top of a crowded box office this week with a slightly underwhelming take of $30.5 million. Analysts had expected something in the neighborhood of $35 million from director Neill Blomkamp whose 2009 surprise hit “District 9″ struck box office gold. It wasn’t all bad news for the sci-fi film starring Damon as a terminally ill rebel who has to invade a private space community in the 21st century. “Elysium” brought in $10.9 million overseas with Russia leading the charge with $6.8 million. There are still plenty of foreign markets left, so Elysium’s story is far from over.
Opening in second place was dysfunctional road trip comedy “Meet the Millers” starring Jason Sudeikis as a pot dealer who recruits a family to sneak a cannibis filled RV into the US from Mexico. Co-starring Jennifer Aniston, the laugher brought in $26.6 million for the weekend and a hefty $38 million for it’s Wednesday-Sunday opening.
Despite originally being meant as a direct to video release, “Planes” earned an encouraging $22.5 milion in its debut for Disney. It wasn’t a Pixar release, but the “Cars” spinoff starring Dane Cook helped tighten the box office race and is easily on the way to making back its $50 million budget.
Another family film with a less than stellar thriller was “Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters.” The myth and magic crowd only brought the sequel $14.6 million over the weekend, but its global total was boosted by a $9.8 injection from overseas. Rounding out the top 5 was “2 Guns”s starring Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg which cashed in $11.1 million in its second week.
How to end a TV series
“Breaking Bad” is back tonight, and we’ll see how creator Vince Gilligan decides to wrap things up. Here’s an in-depth look at the issue of how to conclude a great television series.
“The Wolverine” Slices its Way Past Competition
Fox let the claws come out this weekend.
The X-Men spin-off “The Wolverine” brought in $55 million for the weekend, easily cutting its rivals down to size. The superhero film starring Hugh Jackman paled into comparison; however, to the 2009 “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” which brought in $85 million in its debut. In fact, “The Wolverine” may end up being the weakest opening of the X-Men films. The 2000 “X-Men” opened to only $54.4 million. Nevertheless, Fox was happy just to have a legit hit on his hands following rivals recent big budget flops such as “White House Down” and “The Lone Ranger” and the recent “R.I.P.D.” Everyone’s favorite mutton-chopped mutant was definitely super in foreign markets where it pulled in $86 million in box office receipts.
Last week’s top film “The Conjuring” fell 47%, but managed to hold on to second place bringing in $22.1 million for the week. Universal’s “Despicable Me 2″ proved that bad guys can make big bucks with $16 million in gross receipts to capture the #3 spot for he week. So far, the animated sequel has brought in $306 million.
Another animated film is doing far less, but still bringing in the kids is Dreamworks “Turbo”. It’s managed to eke out $13.3 million in it’s second week. Adam Sandler’s “Grown Ups 2″ rounds out the top 5 with $11.5 million.