Box Office Results: Wreck-It Ralph & Flight Both Open Big

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.

After a very slow weekend at the box office and a week marred by a hurricane and power outtages, the box office picked up in the first weekend of November and the official launch of the holiday movie season with two movies that brought in huge business and got things back on track for the last two months of 2012.

Walt Disney Animation Studios may have their biggest hit since Pixar Animation’s John Lasseter joined as Chief Creative Officer as the video game-inspired comedy Wreck-It Ralph, featuring the voices of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jane Lynch and more, opened with an estimated $49.1 million in 3,732 2D and 3D theaters. Averaging over $13,000 per site, that number would make it the animation division’s biggest opening for a movie produced in-house (rather than with Pixar), putting it just ahead of Tangled, which opened with just under $49 million over Thanksgiving weekend in 2010. Wreck-It Ralph is the third movie of the normally slow fall movie season to bring in more than $40 million following Fox’s Taken 2 and Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania. Disney is reporting that the movie added another $12 million from the 6 international territories in which it opened this weekend.

Director Robert Zemeckis returned with his first live-action film in 12 years with the drama Flight (Paramount), starring Denzel Washington, whose unquestionable star power helped bring audiences out to the tune of $25 million this weekend in just 1,884 theaters. That’s roughly half what Wreck-It Ralph made in half as many theaters, which may not sound too impressive, but that also means it brought in over $13,000 per site. These two new movies alone grossed nearly $75 million between them.

After taking the top spot last weekend, Ben Affleck’s acclaimed thriller Argo (Warner Bros.) dropped down to third place with $10.2 million, off just 15% from last weekend and bringing its total to nearly $76 million, surpassing the gross of Affleck’s 2010 movie The Town in its same weekend.

Rapper RZA teamed with producer Eli Roth and presenter Quentin Tarantino for the martial arts action flick The Man with the Iron Fists, co-starring Russell Crowe, Lucy Liu and Jamie Chung, and it debuted in fourth place with $8.2 million in 1,868 theaters, a respectable $4,390 per site.

Internationally, the 23rd James Bond movie Skyfall (Sony/MGM) continued to do well, bringing in an additional $156 million this weekend in dozens of countries outside North America, taking its global total to $287 million after ten days. The biggest opening was in Germany, where the movie grossed $23.9 million, the biggest opening of the year for that country, doing significantly better than the previous two Bond movies. Italy took in $7.9 million, the biggest opening for a Hollywood film in that country this year. Switzerland had the biggest opening of all time with $5.3 million, surpassing Quantum of Solace‘s previous record–which is somewhat funny since the previous Bond was directed by Swiss filmmaker Marc Forster–while Holland and Austria also set opening records for the year with $4.4 and $3.4 million, respectively. Daniel Craig’s third outing as Bond opens in North American IMAX theaters on Thursday, November 8 and in conventional theaters on November 9.

Back here at home, Liam Neeson’s action sequel Taken 2 (Twentieth Century Fox Film) took fifth place with $5.8 million, actually up a spot from last week, bringing its total gross to $125 million after five weeks.

Wachowski Starship and Tom Tykwer’s Cloud Atlas (Warner Bros.), starring Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Jim Broadbent and others, dropped 45% in its second weekend to take sixth place with roughly $5 million and a ten-day gross of $18 million.

With Halloween past and another family-friendly animated movie getting attention, Hotel Transylvania (Sony) took a massive plunge from third to seventh place with $4.5 million, down 52% from last weekend.

So far, it’s grossed $137.6 million, making it the highest-grossing film of the fall.

Paranormal Activity 4 (Paramount) took a similar post-Halloween drop, down 49% to eighth place with $4.3 million and $49.6 million, well on its way to becoming the lowest-grossing movie in the franchise.

The Kevin James comedy Here Comes the Boom (Sony) took ninth place with $3.6 million and $35.6 million grossed so far, while last week’s horror debut Silent Hill: Revelation 3D (Open Road Films) dropped 59% to settle into 10th place with $3.3 million and $13.9 million total.

The Top 10 grossed an estimated $119 million, up 18% from last year when DreamWorks Animation’s Puss In Boots remained in first place for a second week in a row with $33 million, followed by the Ben Stiller-Eddie Murphy comedy Tower Heist with $24 million and A Very Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas with $13 million.

In limited release, the Sean Penn starrer This Must Be the Place (The Weinstein Company) tanked with just $7,000 in two theaters, while Yaron Zilberman’s A Late Quartet (Entertainment One), starring Philip Seymour Hoffman, Catherine Keener and Christopher Walken, brought in $76 thousand in nine theaters.

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


Marvel and DC