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Weekend Box Office: 'The Vow' And 'Safe House' Lead Four $20 Million+ Debuts

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • February 12, 2012 1:44 PM
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  • 10 Comments
It’s a crowded non-holiday weekend in February. Clearly, all these new releases should do somewhere in the vicinity of $10-$15 million, cannibalizing their own audiences, right? It’s early, but in a year of box office surprises, consider this weekend the most unlikely. With the final tallies to be announced on Monday, this will be the first non-holiday weekend to feature four $20 million+ debuts. And, surprisingly, none of them are costly flops.

Weekend Box Office: 'Chronicle' And 'The Woman In Black' Slug It Out For Number One

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • February 5, 2012 1:12 PM
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  • 2 Comments
The numbers don't lie – 2012 movie attendance is far above what we saw in 2011. And while there have been no real breakout hits, a number of films – some very modestly budgeted – have broken out to solid, eye-opening numbers. That trend looks to continue on Super Bowl weekend, with a race to the finish between two low-budgeted genre entries. Early signs say "Chronicle" will hang on to defeat "The Woman in Black" for the number one spot. But 'Black''s audience is heavily female, which suggests it could surpass "Chronicle" while the Super Bowl airs tonight because anybody who knows women knows that they're all like, WHAT IS FOOTBALL WHY DO THEY NOT USE THEIR FEET MEN ARE GROSS SPORTS YUCK.

Weekend Box Office: 'The Grey' Sees Green, While Audiences Stay Away From The 'Ledge'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 29, 2012 12:14 PM
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  • 3 Comments
Good ole’ dependable Liam Neeson. This is the third straight early-year period where the character actor turned badass leading man has scored a number one hit. While “The Grey” couldn’t pull in the same numbers as “Taken” or “Unknown,” it did top $20 million. Not a bad figure considering this was a much less commercial beast, with an R-rating, and it’s arguable that few leading men could have gotten a man-vs.-wilderness drama into an eight figure debut. This is distributor Open Road’s second ever release. Their first, last year’s “Killer Elite,” seemed like a surefire commercial proposition, but it pulled in half of what “The Grey” is looking to make on this opening weekend. You could argue this was a bait and switch, as the ads centered around spoiling, and misinterpreting, the film’s ending -- Cinemascore was a not-entirely-kind B-. But everyone got the opening they wanted -- this puts Open Road on the map, it gets Joe Carnahan out of Director Jail following “The A-Team” and it continues Neeson’s winning streak. Also worth noting: throughout each week in 2012 so far, the number one slot at the box office has been filled by R-rated fare.

Weekend Box Office: Audiences Smuggle 'Contraband' Into The Number One Spot Over 'Beauty & The Beast 3D'

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 15, 2012 1:43 PM
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  • 2 Comments
After a year which sported the lowest attendance numbers in sixteen years, studios are looking for all the bright sides they can find. Thus far, 2012 has provided them, with big number one debuts for a cheap horror acquisition and, now, a solidly mid-budgeted star vehicle. "Contraband" nailed the top spot this weekend, of the four day holiday weekend, that was slightly down from last year. However, this is a solid win for Universal, who spent $40 million on the Mark Wahlberg project, gambling that the film would open uncharacteristically big for an R-rated January offering.

Weekend Box Office: Audiences Hate 'The Devil Inside' All The Way To The Top Of The Box Office

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 8, 2012 12:04 PM
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  • 20 Comments
The smash-and-grab -- who needs a fourth or fifth weekend, when you can nail down a profit after your first day? Paramount dipped into the kitty and spent a million producing “The Devil Inside” (through their low budget shingle Insurge) and a little bit of marketing later, we have our first big winner of the new year. Final estimates have the studio looking at a big $30 million+ weekend for the latest in a wave of cheap found-footage horror films.

Weekend Box Office: Strong Rebound Numbers For Entire Marketplace, With 'Mission: Impossible' On Top Again

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • January 1, 2012 1:55 PM
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  • 4 Comments
Yes, it was a down year at the box office in 2011, but sometimes it’s all about scheduling. While the family’s all together for Christmas, they might not exactly spend a holiday at the multiplex, particularly with many theaters closing early. The weekend after, when everyone’s glad to see their friends again, however, is just enough motivation to plunk down that $10-$12-$20 on an overpriced box office ticket and a mammoth, bladder-clogging, sugary fountain drink that can’t be good for you.

Justin Timberlake, R-Rated Rom-Coms, Bradley Cooper, Marvel & Some Of The Big Winners At The Box Office 2011

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 30, 2011 2:10 PM
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  • 6 Comments
There was no pattern of box office success for 2011. One could point to the audience rejecting obvious pandering nerd bait like "Cowboys And Aliens," but then how does that explain "Transformers"? People can celebrate R-rated comedies, but what does that mean for "The Change-Up"? Few leading men and women appeared often in 2011, as it was a year dependent on concepts (mostly pre-established) as opposed to marquee names. And a lot of those new names are wise, lining up smaller projects in the coming year to diversify their portfolio rather than boost their paychecks.

The Most Profitable Movies Of 2011 & More Poor Expenditures

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 30, 2011 10:27 AM
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  • 6 Comments
Being a Hollywood executive is like being a gambler. Coming home with $2000 in your pocket is pretty impressive, and some execs would happily brag about such a thing. But few like to openly discuss the fact they left the house with $4000.

Weekend Box Office: 'Ghost Protocol' On Top Of Weak Holiday Weekend

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 25, 2011 7:22 PM
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  • 12 Comments
Twas the night before and/or the night of Christmas, and all through the theaters, it was empty and chilly, no maintenance, no heaters. Most moviegoers selected the 'Ghost Protocol,' with the legend from "Legend" and that guy from "Paul." "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" couldn't beat the Tom Cruise sequel. Not even the Steven Spielberg-Peter Jackson collaboration could be its equal.

Weekend Box Office: 'Sherlock' And 'Alvin' Underperform, 'Mission: Impossible' Scores In Limited Release

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • December 18, 2011 1:58 PM
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  • 23 Comments
And the hits keep coming for this mediocre year at the box office. Or not coming, that is. After December began with the two lowest grossing weekends of the year, many predicted salvation from “Sherlock Holmes” and “Alvin And The Chipmunks.” Previous entries in their series’ grossed $524 and $443 million worldwide, respectively, so there’s no reason to think they wouldn’t bust that block. Particularly notable was how both the original 'Sherlock' and “The Squeakquel” opened within two days of each other, both grossing over $200 million in the States while “Avatar” was in theaters. Being upgraded from everyone’s second choice to the top attraction was meant to flatter everyone.

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