Box Office Results: Elysium Wins Busy Weekend Over Three Others


The 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.

Neill Blomkamp’s sci-fi action flick Elysium (Sony), the director’s follow-up to the acclaimed District 9, this one starring Matt Damon and Jodie Foster, opened on Friday in 3,284 theaters. After grossing $11 million on Friday including Thursday previews, it won the weekend with an estimated $30.5 million or roughly $9,500 per theater with $4.9 million of its domestic opening coming from 328 IMAX screens. That was less than the breakout opening for District 9, which opened in early August 2009 with $37.3 million on its way to a $215 million global box office total.

Elysium also opened in 17 markets overseas including Russia, where it opened at #1 with $6.8 million, and in Taiwan, also #1 with $1.7 million, to add another $10.9 million to its domestic take. Sony Pictures International will be expanding Blomkamp’s film to more markets over the coming weeks.

New Line and Warner Bros.’ R-rated road comedy We’re the Millers, starring Jason Sudeikis, Jennifer Aniston, Emma Roberts, Will Poulter and more, did far better than most expectations, opening strong on Wednesday with $6.8 million in 3,260 theaters. It ended up taking a strong second place for the weekend with about $26.5 million or $8,100 per location and scoring an impressive $38 million take in its first five days.

Although Walt Disney Pictures did their best to tie their DisneyToon spin-off movie Disney’s Planes into “the world of Cars,” moviegoers figured out that it wasn’t a new Pixar movie, so it didn’t fare nearly as well as those movies normally do, taking third place with $22.5 million in 3,702 theaters. That still isn’t bad for a movie that cost $50 million to produce and was originally intended as a DVD-only release.

It fared better over the weekend than the adventure sequel Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (20th Century Fox), based on the books by Rick Riordan and once again starring Logan Lerman, Brandon T. Jackson and Alexandra Daddario, this time joined by Stanley Tucci and Nathan Fillion. After opening on Wednesday in 2,907 theaters and bringing in $5.4 million its opening day, it tailed off on Thursday and by Friday it had settled into fourth place behind the other three movies with $14.6 million for the weekend. Its $23.4 gross in its first five days is less than the original movie made in three, again showing signs that moviegoers were getting burnt out on sequels.

With four new movies in theaters, the Denzel Washington-Mark Wahlberg crime-comedy team-up 2 Guns (Universal) had nowhere to go but down, so it dropped to fifth place with $11.1 million, down 59% from its opening weekend. It has grossed $48.4 million in its first ten days.

Last week’s other new movie, The Smurfs 2 (Sony) took sixth place with $9.5 million, a slightly better drop of 46%, as it brought its own total to $46.6 million. Internationally, it added another $34.6 million bringing its overseas total to $110 million and overall worldwide cume to $156.6 million, which should more than justify Sony’s already-scheduled third “Smurfs” movie.

For whatever reason, The Wolverine (20th Century Fox) was dropped from over 1,000 theaters on Friday, which was largely responsible for its 63% drop in its third weekend. It also went from second place last weekend all the way down to #7, taking in just $8 million and bringing its domestic total to $112 million.

Eighth place went to James Wan’s horror-thriller The Conjuring (New Line/Warner Bros.) with $6.7 million with a total gross of $120.7 million… and again, this is a movie that reportedly cost roughly $20 million to make so it’s already one of the more profitable releases of the summer.

Already the second-highest grossing movie of the year, the animated blockbuster Despicable Me 2 (Universal) added another $5.7 million as it dropped lower in the Top 10, having grossed $338 million to date.

Adam Sandler’s Grown Ups 2 (Sony) closed off the Top 10 with $3.7 million and a total gross of $123.8 million.

The Top 10 movies grossed approximately $139 million which was up about $10 million from the same weekend last year when Jeremy Renner took over the “Bourne” franchise with The Bourne Legacy, which was #1 with $38.1 million, followed by the political comedy The Campaign, starring Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis, with $26.6 million.

Back in the present day, Woody Allen’s latest, Blue Jasmine (Sony Pictures Classics), continues to do well as it expands after a record-setting platform release. This weekend, it scored $2.5 million in just 116 theaters, allowing it to move up to 11th place, with plans for a nationwide expansion some time in the coming weeks.

Although it opened outside the Top 12, the Bollywood release Chennai Express (UTV) scored a new record for the best opening weekend for a Bollywood film in North America as it grossed $2.2 million in just 196 theaters.

The Amanda Seyfried starring vehicle Lovelace (TWC-Radius), a biodrama based on the life and career of Deep Throat star Linda Lovelace, opened in 118 theaters on Friday where it brought in $184 thousand with a weak per-theater average of just $1,559 per site. Meanwhile, Lake Bell’s directorial debut In a World… (Roadside Attractions), in which the “Children’s Hospital” star plays a woman who uses her mouth for the far less prurient career choice of doing voice-overs, scored the best per-theater average of the weekend as it made $71 thousand in just 3 theaters.

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

Box Office

Weekend: Feb. 20, 2020, Feb. 23, 2020

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