FLOP POP FIZZLE, The Obligatory Weekend B.O. Report: ‘The Blind Side’ Sacks ‘New Moon’; All New Releases Stall
The Blind Side continues to strike a chord with audiences, beating out the rest of the competition at the box office this weekend. It would have been impossible to predict the movie’s success when it was released the same week as Twilight over a busy holiday weekend and much of its appeal is being attributed to Sandra Bullock.
Dan Fellman, an executive at Warner Bros. told E! Online:
There’s no question about it. Her performance is outstanding, and all the reviewers have pointed that out, but it’s our customers who are really touting that, and supporting her.
Despite the fact that Bullock’s character, a conservative Republican, is portrayed in a positive light, several conservative members of the media have laughably attempted to start a backlash against the movie, because of a single scene in which one of the characters makes a snide comment about George Bush.
Director John Lee Hancock told the LA Times:
This wasn’t in the book. It was something I witnessed several years ago in a post office. It was not intended to represent Leigh Anne Tuohy’s feelings about Bush (she’s a conservative Republican) but rather the civil servant’s. Given Leigh Anne’s dress and demeanor I figured the civil servant would be knocking down Leigh Anne a notch by taking a slap at Bush. I always thought of it as a smile, not a laugh. After completing the movie and playing it for an audience I realized it was, for some, more of a laugh, and a cheap one to boot. I do regret not coming up with something more clever. But it wouldn’t be a movie of mine if I didn’t somehow figure out a way to piss off both conservatives and liberals.
Even though the subject matter, relating to the war in Afghanistan, couldn’t be more timely, Brothers starring Tobey Maquire, Jake Gyllenhall and Natalie Portman failed to take off, debuting in third place with $9.7M. Maquire told Reuters before the movie opened last week:
I don’t want to necessarily get into a political conversation. I have my views about that stuff, but what is important is…to have a dialogue going.
Despite its noble intentions, attracting audiences to war themed movies has proven difficult. In the Valley of Ellah, Rendition and Stop-Loss each stalled at the box office, and Brothers is no exception.
Everybody’s Fine had the lowest debut of any of the new releases, barely making the top ten with $4.03 M. Not even the ensemble cast that included Robert Deniro, Kate Beckinsale and Drew Barrymore, could save it. Director Kirk Jones (Nanny Mchphee, Waking Ned Devine) adapted the screenplay himself, which is based on the Italian movie, Stanno tutti bene. He told Variety:
This is a story with enormous heart that will translate perfectly to modern-day America with the humor and emotion of the original picture still intact.
The New York Time‘s Stephen Holden summed the general critical reaction, writing that the movie was, “False to the core.”
1. The Blind Side (Warner Bros.) $20M, Cume $129M
2. The Twilight Saga: New Moon (Summit) $15.4M, Cume $255M
3. Brothers (Lionsgate) NEW $9.53M
4.A Christmas Carol (Disney) $7.76M, Cume $115M
5. Old Dogs (Disney) $6.89m, Cume $33.9M
6. 2012 (Columbia) $6.77, Cume $149M
7. Armored (Buckaroo Entertainment) NEW $6.51M
8. Ninja Assassin (Warner Bros.) $5.06M, Cume $29.8M
9. Planet 51 (Tri Star) $4.39M, Cume $34.1M
10. Everybody’s FIne (Miramax) NEW $3.85M