FLOP, POP, FIZZLE: The Obligatory Weekend B.O. Report, 10/9 – 10/11
Chalk it up to good timing. Couples Retreat certainly benefited from being the only major new release this weekend, grossing an estimated $35M to take the top spot at the box office. At the LA premiere, actor/director/writer Jon Favreau, who penned the screenplay with fellow costar Vince Vaughn, described his inspiration for the movie, saying,
How many mornings have I awoken in a wet bed next to my 3-year-old and thought, ‘Why hasn’t anybody made a movie about this part of the relationship?’ ” And producer Scott Stuber, described it as being “a comedy about the absurdity of life that at the same time celebrates friendship.”
Most, if not all, critics, however, described the movie with words like, “exhausting”, “poorly written” and “depressing.” But it was a hit with audiences anyway, making more than double the earnings of the horror-comedy Zombieland, which fell to second place, taking in $15M. The real surprise success this week is Paranormal Activity.
Paramount expanded the horror pic to 159 theaters and were rewarded by their decision to the tune of $7M. Reportedly filmed two years ago for only $15,000 and shot with a camcorder, the movie, which features shaky handheld camerawork, has been compared to The Blair Witch Project. So far Paramount has had good luck following the business model that movie used over 10 years ago, with a well-executed viral marketing campaign and a gradual theatrical roll out.
1. Couples Retreat (Universal) $35.3M
2. Zombieland (Sony) $15M, Cume $47.8M
3. Meatballs (Sony) $12M, Cume $96.2M
4. Toy Story 3D (Disney) $7.6M, Cume $22.6M
5. Paranormal Activity (Paramount) $7M, Cume $8.2M
6. Surrogates (Disney) Wkd $4.1M, Cume $32.5M
7. Invention Of Lying (Warner Bros) $3.3M, Cume 12.3M
8. Whip It (Fox Searchlight) $2.8M, Cume $8.7M
9. Capitalism: A Love Story (Overture) $2.7M, Cume $9M
10. Fame (MGM) $2.5M, Cume 20M