In a surprise: One angry cat hoisted itself over a newbie challenger to claim the top box-office spot for the second week in row. Paramount/ DreamWorks’ family pleaser, Puss In Boots, took in an estimated $33 million, a scant 3% drop from last week’s $34 million—a rarity—proving that Halloween and unseasonal snow in the North East dented its opening weekend.
Universal’s 99%-friendly Tower Heist, about a group of hotel employees who get swindled out of their pensions by a 1-percenter and then try to steal back their due, snagged second place with $25.1 million, lower than early estimates, which had the Brett Ratner comedy easily winning the weekend.
Heist (69% on the Tomatometer) added levity to a sobering October, which was 12% off of record-setting September. Despite a B CinemaScore, the Eddie Murphy-Ben Stiller comedy connected well enough to open strong with its humor-deprived audience.
Another new comedic entry this weekend was Warner Brothers’ off-color, and off-season, A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas 3D (Tomatometer 72%), starring John Cho and Kal Penn. With a low budget of $20 million (about a forth of Heist’s), the Harold & Kumar sequel laughed up a slightly-lower-than-expected $13 million. The 2004 original, Harold & Kumar Go to the White Castle, about two marijuana-loving goofballs, grossed $23.9 million.
Disney’s Real Steel quietly took in another $3.4 million, but overseas it muscled $10.7 million from 38 territories, bringing it to a bulky estimated global cume of $206 million. Paranormal Activity 3, in its third weekend, scared up $8.5 million, bringing its cume to $95.3 million. Paramount’s Footloose stepped just 16% off last weekend’s numbers, with $4.5 for the frame, bringing the low-budgeted teen remake a $44.8 millon cume. That’s healthier than FilmDistrict’s The Rum Diary, starring Johnny Depp, which drank in just $2.9 million, for an unspectacular $10.4 million two week total.
Top Ten Weekend Box Office Chart
1. Puss in Boots (Paramount/ DreamWorks) $33 million down 3% in its second weekend at 3,963 theaters, $8,327 theater average. Domestic total: $75.5 million.
2. Tower Heist (Universal) $25.1 million at 3,367 theaters, $7,450 theater average. Domestic total: $25.1 million.
3. A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas (Warner Bros./ New Line) $13 million, at 2,875 theaters, $4,521 theater average. Domestic total: $13 million.
4. Paranormal Activity 3 (Paramount) $8.5 million down 54% in its third weekend at 3,286 theaters, $2,586 theater average. Domestic total: $95.3 million.
5. In Time (Fox) 7.7 million in its second weekend at 3127 theaters, $2462 theater average. Domestic total: $24.2 million.
6. Footloose (Paramount) $4.5 million down 16% in its fourth weekend at 2,811 theaters, $1,600 theater average. Domestic total: $44.8 million.
7. Real Steel (Disney/DreamWorks) $3.4 million down 29% in its fifth weekend at 2,438 theaters, $1,397 theater average. Domestic total: $78,750 million.
8. The Rum Diary (FilmDistrict) $2.9 million down 42% in its second weekend at 2,292 theaters, $1,265 theater average. Domestic total: $10.4 million.
9. The Ides of March (Sony) $2 million down 25% in its fifth weekend at 1,391 theaters, $1,437 theater average. Domestic total: $36.8 million.
10. Moneyball (Sony) $1.9 million down 20% in its seventh weekend at 1,278 theaters. $1,486 theater average. Domestic total: $70.3 million.