Monday, January 14, 2008

Weekend Roundup: Kicking The 'Bucket' To First Place

By Katey Rich

What is normally one of the biggest nights in Hollywood turned into a sorry scene last night, with the truncated press conference that was this year's excuse for the Golden Globes. Elsewhere, though, the movie industry was doing just fine, with a robust if not outstanding weekend at the box office led by-- who else?-- Jack Nicholson. I had kind of forgotten about The Bucket List once it was essentially ruled out of awards season competition, but it finally had its wide opening this weekend and landed at #1, with a $19.5 million take. Variety points out that it's director Rob Reiner's best opening of his career, which is shocking, frankly. Box Office Mojo adds that Nicholson and Morgan Freeman are playing "roles matching their famous personalities," which may mean no end in sight to Nicholson's onscreen eyebrow-wiggling.

Right behind Nicholson & co. was First Sunday, which pulled in $19 million from slightly fewer screens. It just edged out Juno, which was looking so unstoppable that some were wondering if it could make it to #1 this weekend. The teen pregnancy comedy still posted the lowest overall drop for holdovers, and snagged $14 million for the #3 spot. But with an overall gross of $71 million, Juno is well on its way toward becoming Fox Searchlight's highest-grossing movie ever-- there is plenty of joy in Mudville.

Holiday blockbuster leftovers followed in the next three spots, with last week's #1 National Treasure: Book of Secrets settling for #4 ($11 million), Alvin and the Chipmunks overtaking I Am Legend once again to grab #5 ($9 million), and the Will Smith starrer right behind it at #6 ($8 million). P.S. I Love You also stuck around at #8, bringing in $5 million. And somehow, for some reason, people are still seeing One Missed Call, enough people to earn it $6 million and land it at #7.

The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything didn't fare nearly as well as its fellow wide releases, coming in at #9 with a $4.4 million take. It did much better than In The Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale, which seems to have suffered from its dismal reviews in a way One Missed Call managed to avoid; Uwe Boll's videogame-based epic came in at #14 with $3 million. Back in the top 10, Atonement rounded things out for the second week in a row, taking in $4 million after expanding to an extra 300 screens. Now that it's won the Golden Globe for Best Picture--Drama, we may see it climb higher in the top 10 for the first time since its early-December release.

After the jump is Box Office Mojo's full top 20. Notice The Great Debaters and The Orphanage at #15 and #16, respectively, struggling for wide audiences despite accessible stories and major marketing behind them. There Will Be Blood, on the other hand, continues tearing it up in limited release, posting the weekend's best per-theatre average for the third time ($15,000 this weekend). Further up on the list, Charlie Wilson's War and Sweeney Todd are hanging on as they make their way through the awards race. We'll see if Sweeney's win at the Globes last night can bolster its flagging box office; the power of the Globes to boost revenue this year is the big question as we head toward next Friday.

TWLWTitle (click to view)StudioWeekend Gross% ChangeTheater Count / ChangeAverageTotal GrossBudget*Week #
123The Bucket ListWB$19,540,000+5,879.4%2,911+2,895$6,712$20,964,000$453
2NFirst SundaySGem$19,000,000-2,213-$8,585$19,000,000-1
41National Treasure: Book of SecretsBV$11,482,000-42.8%3,377-385$3,400$187,295,000-4
54Alvin and the ChipmunksFox$9,100,000-41.5%3,384-78$2,689$187,740,000$605
63I Am LegendWB$8,130,000-48.3%3,353-295$2,424$240,234,000-5
75One Missed CallWB$6,130,000-51.0%2,240-$2,736$20,642,000-2
87P.S. I Love YouWB$5,005,000-36.1%2,323-148$2,154$47,008,000-4
9NThe Pirates Who Don't Do AnythingUni.$4,419,000-1,337-$3,305$4,419,000-1
116Charlie Wilson's WarUni.$4,274,000-47.3%2,408-186$1,774$59,498,000$754
129Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet StreetP/DW$3,402,000-38.6%1,323+74$2,571$44,070,000$504
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138The Water Horse: Legend of the DeepSonR$3,300,000-47.0%2,506-271$1,316$35,175,000-3
14NIn the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege TaleFree$3,265,000-1,631-$2,001$3,265,000-1
1512The Great DebatersMGM/W$2,411,000-43.3%1,290-$1,868$25,699,000-3
1619The OrphanagePicH$2,044,000+308.3%707+638$2,891$3,187,000-3
1718There Will Be BloodParV$1,940,000+46.8%129+78$15,038$4,358,000-3
1917The Kite RunnerParV$1,671,000+1.5%715+335$2,337$11,005,000-5
2011Aliens Vs. Predator - RequiemFox$1,500,000-66.5%1,378-1,239$1,088$40,081,000-3

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