FLOP, POP, FIZZLE, The Obligatory Weekend B.O. Report: ‘New Moon’ Breaks Records, Sandra Bullock Pic ‘Blind Side’s The Competition
It was a record shattering weekend at the box office as The Twilight Saga: New Moon proved that a shirtless seventeen year old can inspire legions of devoted female fans around the world to flock to the multiplex in record numbers. At this rate, maybe they should get Levi Johnston for Eclipse. The second installment of the series took in a total of $141M. It beat out Pirates of the Carribean: Dead Man’s Chest for the third highest opening of all time, behind Spiderman 3 and The Dark Knight. The unstoppable hit earned $72.2M on Friday alone and dropped only 40% on Saturday, earning $43.3M.
New Moon director Chris Weitz told Variety that working on the sequel re-invigorated him after the disastrous results of his previous stint at directing a high profile blockbuster, The Golden Compass bombed in 2007. He said,
I was treated badly, it was almost like they never read the books. They seemed frightened of offending the right. This was a wonderful experience by comparison. I got to work with terrific young actors at the top of their game, and see Taylor Lautner perform so well.”
Weitz isn’t wasting any time before starting on a follow up film. His next project, The Gardener, the story of a hard working Mexican gardener that is set in Los Angeles is all set to go with Summit’s (which also financed New Moon) financial backing.
The high turnout for the vampire sequel wasn’t the only surprise this weekend. The Sandra Bullock-starring inspirational tearjerker, The Blind Side, landed in second place, far and above any expectations, earning $34.5M. It’s the highest opening of Bullock’s career and even higher than her previous best, The Proposal, which opened at number one with $33M last July.
Roland Emmerich‘s 2012 stayed strong in its third week in release grossing $26.2M for a new cumulative total of $108M and Disney’s A Christmas Carol didn’t. It dropped 45% from last week, earning $12.2M for fourth place. It’s a huge disappointment for Disney, and while the studio is surely hoping business will pick up as it gets closer to Christmas, so far the 3D animated pic 0nly made back $79M of an estimated $200M budget.
Carol‘s lackluster performance isn’t exactly a good sign for the long term viability of the 3D format, can be added to a list of Disney’s under-performing 3D titles that includes Bolt and The Jonas Brothers: The 3D Concert Experience. James Cameron‘s Avatar (which if the New York Times is correct, is the most expensive movie of all time, with a budget approaching $500M) opens December 18 and may be the make or break movie that will determine the format’s future.
1. The Twilight Saga: New Moon (Summit) NEW $141M
2. The Blind Side (Warner Bros.) NEW $34.5M
3. 2012 (Columbia), $26.5M, Cume $108M
4. Planet 51 (Tri Star) NEW $12.6
5. A Christmas Carol (Disney) $12.2M, Cume $79.8M
6. Precious: Based on the Novel by Sapphire (Lionsgate) $11M, Cume $21.4M
7. The Men Who Stare At Goats (Smokehouse) $2.77M, Cume $27.6M
8. Couples Retreat (Universal) $1.95M, Cume $105M
9. The Fourth Kind (Focus) $1.73M, Cume $23.3M
10. Law Abiding Citizen (Overture) $1.61M, Cume $70M