And This Final Destination is… #1!

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The ComingSoon.net Box Office Report has been updated with studio estimates for the weekend. Click here for the full box office estimates of the top 12 films and then check back on Monday for the final figures based on actual box office.

Going into the weekend, it looked like there was going to be a tight race between two R-rated horror movies, but with Friday estimates it became evidently clear that The Final Destination was going to come out the victor. The fourth installment of the gory horror series opened in 3,121 theaters with nearly half of them screening the movie in 3D, and the higher ticket prices helped it gross an estimated $28.3 million over the weekend, an impressive per-theater average of $9 thousand per venue. That amount is nearly 50% of the total gross that the previous installment made domestically in its entire theatrical run. According to Real D, 3D accounted for 70% of the opening weekend box office with Real D accounting for 90% of that amount or roughly $18 million. In past years, the last weekend in August before Labor Day weekend was a dumping ground where few movies ever grossed more than $18 million, so topping that amount by over $28 million is a huge coup for The Final Destination.

After opening with $38 million last week, Quentin Tarantino’s WWII thriller Inglourious Basterds (The Weinstein Company/Universal) dropped 47% to second place with roughly $20 million and a ten-day total of $73 million domestically. The well-reviewed film cost roughly $70 million to produce, which its well on its way to recouping with the inclusion of international grosses.

Rob Zombie’s horror sequel Halloween II didn’t stand a chance against such heavy R-rated competition, as it grossed $17.4 million in just over 3,000 theaters or roughly $5,700 per venue, settling for third place. The previous movie opened with $31 million over the four-day Labor Day weekend two years ago then went on to gross $58 million, an amount that might be difficult to match for its sequel.

The Neill Blomkamp-directed sci-fi thriller District 9 (Sony) brought in another $10.7 million in fourth place, bringing its total to $90.8 million after three weekends.

Dropping to fifth place, Stephen Sommers’ G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (Paramount) took in another $8 million to bring its own gross to $132.4 million.

Sony’s cooking comedy Julie & Julia, starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams, brought in another $7.4 million for sixth place as it crossed the $70 million mark in its fourth weekend. Its 16% drop from last week is the best hold from last weekend’s returning movies.

The romantic drama The Time Traveler’s Wife (New Line/WB) with Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams dropped to seventh place with $6.7 million and a total gross of $48 million.

Robert Rodriguez’s family adventure Shorts (Warner Bros.) held up well in its second weekend, taking eighth place with $4.9 million, off just 24% from its opening weekend. It has grossed $13.5 million so far.

After an exclusive release in New York and L.A. on Wednesday, Ang Lee’s Taking Woodstock (Focus Features) opened nationwide in over 1,300 theaters where it brought in $3.7 million.

The Top 10 grossed $110 million, which was not only up 33% from the same weekend last year, but it also might be one of the best pre-Labor Day weekends at box office.

R. J. Cutler’s doc The September Issue, which followed Anna Wintour and the staff of Vogue as they create their phonebook-sized annual Fall preview, opened in 6 theaters in New York, raking in $240 thousand, roughly $40k per site.

Click here for the full box office results of the top 12 films.

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