Based on Friday estimates, this is shaping up to be a banner weekend for R-rated flicks in January.
After a very successful limited run in 60 theaters, the decision to send Zero Dark Thirty into wide release the day after Oscar nominations were announced certainly paid off. Kathryn Bigelow's film about the hunt for bin Laden pulled in $9 million on Friday and could hit $26 million for the weekend--not far behind the $28.6 million wide opening of Black Hawk Down in January 2002.
Warner Bros. reports that Gangster Squad grabbed an estimated $6.665 million on Friday from 3,103 locations. That puts the film on track for an $18.7 million opening weekend, right in between director Ruben Fleischer's $13.3 million opening for 30 Minutes or Less in 2011 and his 2009 debut of $24.7 million for Zombieland.
A Haunted House opened to an estimated $6.7 million on Friday and is on target for a $17.5 million debut frame.
Django Unchained grossed another $3.46 million on Friday, increasing the domestic total to $117.8 million after 18 days. Boxoffice is projecting an $11.7 million weekend for the Tarantino flick, meaning that it will surpass the domestic tally of Inglourious Basterds ($120.5 million) sometime on Saturday.
Texas Chainsaw 3D declined an estimated 82.4 percent from its opening day to $1.8 million on Friday. We're projecting a $4.95 million second weekend.
With Oscar nominations releasing this past week, a number of films saw notable bumps in activity on Thursday and continued that trend into the weekend. Argo posted one of the best Friday-to-Friday increases with a 49 percent bump up to $335k yesterday, sending its domestic total to $110.7 million. Silver Linings Playbook continues to benefit well, also partly due to its expansion into 810 theaters on Friday, with a 35.9 percent week-to-week increase for $1.495 million on Friday. Playbook could take in $5.05 million for the weekend.
Meanwhile, Lincoln ticked up 6.5 percent from last Friday to $1.84 million and a $148.1 million cume, on target for a $6.5 million weekend. Life of Pi slipped only 20 percent Friday-to-Friday with $670k yesterday and a new total of $92.8 million. Les Miserables was down nearly 44 percent from last Friday to $2.8 million yesterday and should take in $9.5 million for the weekend.
Additional reporting by Daniel Garris.