Rounding out the weekend of October 11-13, 2013, Gravity dominated over the competition again, leaving the box office battlefield victorious. Box Office Aftermath is an ongoing column dedicated to recapping the weekend’s total ticket sales. Each week, combatants enter the cinematic war zone, bloodthirsty for your cash. But there can only be one true winner. In Box Office Aftermath, we will take a look at the numbers, how previous contenders fared, and provide a brief analysis of the results.
It’s not too often we see movies retain a high volume of tickets sales in their second weekend at the box office. Typically bad reviews, word of mouth persuasion, time of year, or non-repeat visits cause films to lose almost half of its audience from opening weekend. Good films, with a strong cast, fun story, and rewatchability, stand to lose about 40 percent of their audience on the second weekend. But if there is a flick with a hook and a lot of buzz, every once in awhile you’ll see a movie lose only 25 percent or less. Some of these movie marvels include Jurassic Park (18.2 percent drop), Argo (15 percent drop), Twister (9.7 percent drop), and The Sixth Sense (3.4 percent drop) – via Pajiba. Gravity has now joined the ranks of these top retaining films.
In its second weekend, Gravity lost only 22.6 percent of its audience from last weekend, earning a whopping $43.18 million. The total gross of Alfonso Cuarón’s space thriller has now exceeded over $120 million domestically. Needless to say, the positive reviews (see ours here) and the fact that most have been telling others to see it on the largest screen possible and in 3D have helped Gravity tremendously.
Nowhere near the top spot, but coming in a respectable second is Captain Phillips. Here’s a film that has a strong lead, based on a true story, and has solid tension, but there is some bad press – real crew members claim the events to be highly fictitious and overly Hollywood – that may hurt the movie in its second weekend. Regardless of the facts, Captain Phillips sailed away with $25.71 million. Not too shabby. It will be interesting to see how much Phillips retains after all of these reports have come out.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 stuck it out for the third weekend in a row. Grabbing hold of third place and grossing $13.77 million, the animated food comedy has just about made back its production budget. Count in the overseas ticket sales and we can bet there will be a sequel in the works.
Also opening this weekend was Machete Kills. On the opposite end of the spectrum, no one wanted to see Danny Trejo fight for the good of Mexico. The film barely earned a third of what the original Machete had grossed in its first weekend out. Bombing with $3.83 million, Machete Kills doesn’t look like it will gain a sequel regardless what the “coming attractions” teaser told us at the beginning of the movie.
Closing out the top five is Runner Runner. In its second weekend the Batfleck and JT joint fell 51 percent, earning just under Machete Kills with $3.77 million, bringing its total domestic gross to $14.15 million. Not looking good for the next Dark Knight.
Prisoners held its own in its fourth weekend taking sixth place. Dropping only 36 percent, the procerdural thriller came out with $3.63 million.
Rush and Don Jon in their third weekend out in wide release came in eighth and ninth respectively. Both movies seem to fail at grabbing hold of mainstream audiences. Rush earned $2.38 million while Don Jon walked away with $2.36 million. It’s most likely that their stories are too niche for mass audiences to find appealing.
Unlike its Spanish counter part Instructions Not Included, which is still in the top 15 and earned $1.04 million this weekend, Pulling Strings does not seem to have the same appeal as the aforementioned movie. Falling from ninth to twelfth in only its second weekend, Strings only brought in an additional $1.27 million this weekend, with a total domestic gross of $4.24 million. Instructions Not Included has now earned, in its seventh weekend at the movies, $42.71 million.
Still hanging in on their tenth and ninth weekends out are, respectively, We’re the Millers and The Butler. Millers pulled through with $1.1 million and The Butler, rounding out the top 15 took $623 thousand.
The debut of the latest adaptation of Romeo and Juliet proved to be exactly what I had expected, completely unnecessary and a waste of time. Landing in 18th, Shakespeare must be rolling in his grave. Drawing from 461 theaters this weekend, the adaptation that won’t seem to go away received $520 thousand in its first weekend.
Four big films are entering the arena this coming weekend, 12 Years a Slave, The Fifth Estate, Carrie, and The Escape Plan. One has Oscar potential while the others all have specific niches. It will be an interesting battlefield to say the least.
(Click the image below to enlarge the chart. All figures are domestic box office.)
Until the next weekend bout, this has been your Box Office Aftermath.
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Source: Box Office Mojo