“Thor” nearly edged out by “Best Man”

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This week featured a battle of the sequels with an Avenger nearly needing help from Captain America.

“Thor: The Dark World” held on to the top spot at the box office, fending off Malcolm D. Lee’s “The Best Man Holiday” grossing $38.5 million in domestic receipts.

It took 14 years for “The Best Man’ Holiday” to hit theaters, but audiences were lined up to see it.  “The Best Man Holiday” outperformed all predictions pulling in $30.6 million in it’s opening debut. Film execs were even happier considering the film was projected to open at about $20 million. The film features Morris Chestnut, Taye Diggs, Regina Hall, Sanaa Lathan, Nia Long, Monica Calhoun, Melissa De Sousa and Terrence Howard as a group of college friends who reunite after 15 years to realize some things haven’t changed.

Rounding out the top five was “Last Vegas” with $8.9 million. The Hangover for seniors has shown it has some legs…old, creaky legs. With turkey day around the corner, it’s no surprise that “Free Birds” is still in the box office mix with $8.3 million to gobble up fourth place. The Jackass spinoff “Bad Grandpa” showed there’s still life in those false dentures with $7.7 million to hold on to fifth place.

  

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‘Thor’ hammers down the box office

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Where there’s a hammer, there’s a way.

“Thor: The Dark World” racked up over $86 million and beat down all comers to grab the number one spot at the box office this week, according to studio estimates. The Disney sequel debuted internationally last week and had already earned $108.4 million overseas.  It’s total global box office is already $327 million. The Marvel Comics superhero sequel stars Chris Hemsworth in the title role as he battles a mysterious threat to the universe, while reuniting with human love interest Jane Foster (Natalie Portman).

While one man was saving the world, another was making a jackass of himself to claim the number 2 spot on the list. “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa” starring Johnny Knoxville proved an oldie is a goody in it’s second weekend earning $11.3 million for a three week tally of $78 million.

Thanksgiving is still weeks away, but that didn’t stop a couple turkeys from gobbling up big box office as “Free Birds” captured third place for $11.2 million in it’s second weekend. Rounding out the top 5 was the senior driven “Last Vegas” starring Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, and Michael Douglas and the sci-fi blockbuster “Ender’s Game” with $10.3 million

  

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“Gravity” remains high above the competition

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Even a classic horror remake couldn’t take down a couple of middle-aged astronauts.

It seems the only thing scaring up the box office this week was “Gravity” starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock. The story of the duo lost in space held on to the top box office spot for the third straight week, a feat accomplished on twice this year. Gravity managed to earn $31 million this weekend blowing away the competition.

Tom Hanks got a step closer to another Oscar nod with the pirates drama “Captain Phillips” which continued to connect with audiences to the briny tune of $17.3 million earning the No. 2 spot.

The horror remake “Carrie” starring Chloe Grace Moretz scared up a tidy $17 million for the third spot in its opening week. Analysts had expected it to open closer to $25 million, but audiences were more excited about going to space than to the prom.

Rounding out the top 5 was the animated sequel “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2” with 10.1 million for fourth place. “Escape Plan” starring Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzennegger proved that 80s action stars still have some juice as it opened with $9.8 million for fifth place.

  

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“Gravity” takes off to Number 1 at the box office

GravityPoster2NASA 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.

 

  

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“Cloudy 2” serves up recipe for #1 spot

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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.

  

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