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NORTH AMERICA: Studio Estimates: 'Ouija' Scares Up $20.0M to Lead Weekend; 'John Wick' Takes Second with Solid $14.15M; 'St. Vincent' #6 with an Encouraging $8.06M on October 25, 2014

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Sunday Update: Universal's Ouija led the way this weekend with a first place estimated debut of $20.0 million. The low-budget PG-13 horror film debuted on the low end of pre-release expectations. While it didn't reach the opening weekend heights of other Platinum Dunes horror films, Ouija still marks another solid performer for the production company. Ouija was no doubt helped out a bit by opening in close proximity to Halloween, but was also likely hurt a bit by arriving so soon in the marketplace after the breakout success of Warner's Annabelle. The film opened 24 percent ahead of the $16.10 million start of last year's Carrie and 33 percent below the $29.82 million debut of The Purge: Anarchy earlier this year.

Ouija debuted with $8.3 million on Friday (which included an estimated $0.91 million from late night Thursday shows), fell a respectable 8 percent on Saturday to take in $7.6 million and is estimated to decline 46 percent on Sunday to gross $4.1 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.41 to 1, which is respectable for a horror film and was likely boosted a bit by the film's appeal with younger moviegoers. The audience breakdown for the film skewed heavily towards moviegoers under the age of 25 (75 percent) and towards female moviegoers (61 percent). The film received a C rating on CinemaScore, which while lackluster, isn't necessarily a troubling score for a horror film.

John Wick debuted in second place with an estimated $14.15 million. The Keanu Reeves led action thriller from Lionsgate opened towards the higher end of expectations, which had risen in recent weeks due in part to surging online activity for the film. John Wick represented just the second wide release for Reeves since 2008's The Day the Earth Stood Still (the other being last year's 47 Ronin) and showcases that Reeves still has some drawing power after being out of the spotlight in recent years. The film debuted 13.5 percent ahead of the $12.47 million start of 2008's Street Kings and will hope to hold up better than that film did, thanks in part to strong critical reviews.

John Wick opened with $5.45 million on Friday (which included an estimated $0.87 million from late night Thursday shows), fell a slim 1.5 percent on Saturday to gross $5.37 million and is estimated to fall 38 percent on Sunday to take in $3.33 million. That places the film's estimated opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.60 to 1. The audience breakdown for John Wick skewed towards male moviegoers (60 percent) and heavily towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (77 percent). The film received a respectable B rating on CinemaScore.

John Wick grossed $2.5 million from 347 IMAX locations this weekend. That represented 17.7 percent of the film's overall gross this weekend.

Sony's Fury was down two spots and a sizable 45 percent from last weekend's first place debut to claim third with an estimated $13.0 million. The David Ayer directed World War II film starring Brad Pitt had held up nicely during the midweek, but likely took a bit of a hit over the weekend from the added presence of John Wick in the marketplace. Fury may also be relatively weekday heavy in general based on its performance thus far. The film has grossed a solid $46.05 million in ten days. That is on the lower end of expectations and is 4 percent ahead of the $44.14 million ten-day start of Sony's The Monuments Men earlier this year (which fell 30 percent in its second weekend to gross $15.48 million).

Fox's Gone Girl continued its impressive run with an estimated fourth place take of $11.1 million. The critically acclaimed David Fincher directed film starring Ben Affleck was down a solid 37 percent from last weekend. Gone Girl continues to distance itself from pre-release expectations with a 24-day take of $124.09 million. The film is now on the verge of surpassing the $127.51 million final domestic gross of 2008's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button to become the highest grossing film of Fincher's career (without adjusting for ticket price inflation).

Fellow Fox release The Book of Life rounded out the weekend's top five with an estimated $9.8 million. The modestly budgeted 3D computer animated film was down a noteworthy 42 percent from last weekend's debut. The Book of Life may have taken a bit of a hit from the PG-13 rated Ouija this weekend and producer Guillermo del Toro's involvement may have also led to some additional front-loading. The Book of Life has grossed a solid $29.91 million in ten days. That is towards the lower end of expectations and is 7 percent below the recent $32.09 million ten-day take of The Boxtrolls.

In its first weekend of wide release, The Weinstein Company's St. Vincent was off to a promising sixth place performance with an estimated $8.06 million. The low-budget comedy starring Bill Murray and Melissa McCarthy received a larger expansion this weekend than was initially expected. The move paid off, as St. Vincent opened on the high end of expectations and took in a respectable per-location average of $3,531 for the frame. St. Vincent grossed $2.55 million on Friday, increased a healthy 31 percent on Saturday to take in $3.34 million and is estimated to decline 35 percent on Sunday to gross $2.17 million. That places the film's weekend to Friday ratio at an encouraging 3.16 to 1. The film's A- rating on CinemaScore is also a promising early sign going forward.

Saturday Update: Ouija is off to a respectable start. The horror flick is headed for a $20 million debut after snagging $8.3 million on Friday. Unlike most horror entries, Ouija should hold up reasonably well considering that it has opened before Halloween.

John Wick is on pace for $14 million after tallying $5.5 million on Friday. 

St. Vincent is on pace for $8.2 million after grossing $2.6 million on Friday.

Check back tomorrow for official studio weekend estimates.

Friday Update #2: Sources tell BoxOffice that Ouija is headed for $19 million-$20 million during its debut frame. Of course, horror films tend to pop late on Friday night, so we're not ruling out a surge that could put the fright flick above that range.

John Wick is off to a solid start with what's look like a $14 million debut frame. If word of mouth is strong among action aficionados, then Keanu Reeves' latest could post an even higher debut. This definitely marks a comeback for Reeves.

St. Vincent is set for as much as $10 million during its expansion weekend.

Check back tomorrow morning for updated projections and official Friday estimates. 

Friday Update #1: Universal's Ouija bowed to $911,000 last night. That's noticeably behind the $2.1 million start for Annabelle earlier this month, although that pic had some benefit in marketing with the aid of being a prequel to last year's horror blockbuster The Conjuring. Ouija's Thursday take is more in line with Carrie's $730,000 last October, which ultimately earned $16.1 million over opening weekend. Ouija's own native brand awareness could feasibly give it a boost as the weekend progresses.

Lionsgate reports that John Wick grabbed a healthy $870,000 from Thursday night shows in over 2,000 locations. That more than double A Walk Among the Tombstones' $430,000 Thursday night start in September, which went on to earn $12.8 million over opening weekend, as well as Brick Mansions' $400,000 ($9.5 million opening weekend). Strong buzz and critical reviews for the sleeper hit had been building in recent weeks, which could be a factor in last night's strong turnout, but the chances of a weekend close to $20 million now look even better.

Meanwhile, The Weinstein Company is sending St. Vincent into wide release today following its healthy start in limited play over the past couple of weeks.

More as it comes.

NORTH AMERICA: 'Fury' Collects $33.05M During Its First Week of Release on October 24, 2014

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By Daniel Garris

Sony's Fury took in $2.04 million on Thursday to lead the daily box office for a seventh consecutive day. The David Ayer directed World War II film starring Brad Pitt was down a solid 5 percent from Wednesday's performance. After being a bit front-loaded over the weekend, Fury held up nicely throughout the midweek. Fury was the week's top film with a seven-day start of $33.05 million. That was towards the lower end of expectations and places the film 15 percent ahead of the $28.67 million seven-day start of Sony's The Monuments Men earlier this year.

Fox's Gone Girl held steady in second place with $1.47 million. The critically acclaimed David Fincher directed film starring Ben Affleck was down a slim 2 percent from Wednesday and down 35 percent from last Thursday. Gone Girl placed in second for the week with $23.72 million. That was down 37 percent from the previous frame and brings the film's three-week total to a very impressive $112.99 million.

Warner's The Judge grossed $0.74 million to remain in third. In the process, the Robert Downey Jr. led drama surpassed the $30 million mark on Thursday. The Judge was down 6 percent from Wednesday and down 34.5 percent from last Thursday. The film placed in seventh for the week with $11.13 million. That represented a 41 percent decline from last week and places the film's 14-day total at $30.03 million.

Relativity's The Best of Me was up 2 percent and one spot from Wednesday to claim fourth on Thursday with $0.68 million. The Nicholas Sparks adaptation starring Michelle Monaghan and James Marsden placed in sixth for the week with a seven-day start of $12.93 million. The Best of Me continues to perform on the low end of its modest expectations (and softly for a Sparks adaptation).

The Book of Life was up one spot from Wednesday to round out Thursday's top five with $0.66 million. Fox's modestly budgeted 3D computer animated film was essentially unchanged from Wednesday's performance. The Book of Life placed in third for the week with a seven-day start of $20.11 million. That was in line with expectations and was on par with the recent $20.11 million seven-day take of The Boxtrolls.

On the platform front, Fox Searchlight's Birdman continued to impress with $46,874 from 4 locations. That represented a 12 percent decline from Wednesday and gave the critically acclaimed Alejandro González Iñárritu directed film starring Michael Keaton a massive per-location average of $11,719 for the day. Birdman has grossed $630,441 through seven days of platform release. The film will be playing in 50 locations this weekend.

NORTH AMERICA: 'Fury' Tops $30M In Six Days; 'The Book of Life' Approaches $20M on October 23, 2014

oct17.pngSony reports that Fury added $2.13 million on Wednesday, off 25 percent from Tuesday's gross. The war drama from David Ayer has earned $31.0 million in its first six days, 9 percent off the pace of Captain Phillips.

Gone Girl continues to hold up well with a 36 percent decline from last Wednesday to $1.5 million yesterday. David Fincher's adaptation has taken in a stellar $111.5 million through 20 days of release.

The Judge posted $0.79 million on Wednesday for a 36 percent week-to-week drop. Its 13-day total stands at $29.3 million.

Dracula Untold was down 48 percent from last Wednesday to $0.74 million yesterday. Universal's reimagining has grossed $43.4 million in its first 13 days.

The Best of Me claimed $0.665 million on Wednesday, giving it $12.25 million its first six days. That's 21 percent behind the pace of this year's Endless Love remake.

The Book of Life slipped out of the top five yesterday with $0.66 million. Its six-day start is a healthy $19.45 million, putting it less than 1 percent behind the pace of The Boxtrolls.

Meanwhile, Birdman tacked on $53,162 from four locations, giving it a $13,291 per-theater average and $0.584 million in the bank through just six days.

 

NORTH AMERICA: 'Fury' Continues to Hold Up Well on Tuesday with $2.84M; 'Gone Girl' Remains Strong in Second with $1.79M on October 22, 2014

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By Daniel Garris

Sony's Fury grossed $2.84 million on Tuesday to lead the daily box office for a fifth consecutive day. The David Ayer directed World War II film starring Brad Pitt was up a healthy 20 percent over Monday. After being a bit front-loaded over the weekend, Fury has been holding up nicely so far during the midweek. Fury has grossed $28.89 million in five days. That is towards the lower end of expectations and places the film 12.5 percent ahead of the $25.67 million five-day start of Sony's The Monuments Men earlier this year.

Fox's Gone Girl held steady in second place with $1.79 million. The critically acclaimed David Fincher directed film starring Ben Affleck increased 23 percent over Monday and was down a very solid 36 percent from last Tuesday. Gone Girl has grossed a very impressive $110.02 million in 19 days. That places the film 75 percent ahead of the $62.89 million 19-day take of 2012's Argo.

Warner's The Judge was up two spots and a very strong 45 percent over Monday to take third on Tuesday with $0.995 million. It was a very tight race for places third through sixth on Tuesday, as only $93,996 separated third place from sixth place. The Judge was down 38 percent from last Tuesday and has grossed $28.50 million in twelve days, which is towards the lower end of expectations.

Dracula Untold followed closely behind in fourth with $0.985 million. Universal's action horror film starring Luke Evans was up 19 percent over Monday and down 50 percent from last Tuesday. Dracula Untold has grossed a stronger than expected $42.65 million in twelve days, but continues to display signs of being significantly front-loaded.

Fox's The Book of Life was down two spots from Monday to round out Tuesday's top five with $0.948 million. The modestly budgeted 3D computer animated film was up 13 percent over Monday, as family films in general didn't hold up as well as films aimed at adults on Tuesday. The Book of Life has grossed $18.79 million in five days. The film continues to perform in line with expectations and very similarly to The Boxtrolls out of the gate, which grossed $18.87 million during its first five days.

Relativity's The Best of Me took in $0.900 million to remain in sixth. The Nicholas Sparks adaptation starring Michelle Monaghan and James Marsden increased 33 percent over Monday's performance. The Best of Me continues to perform on the low end of its modest expectations (and softly for a Sparks adaptation) with a five-day start of $11.58 million.

On the platform front, Fox Searchlight's Birdman continued to impress with $51,664 from 4 locations. That represented a 5 percent decline from Monday and gave the critically acclaimed Alejandro González Iñárritu directed film starring Michael Keaton a massive per-location average of $12,916 for the day. Birdman has grossed $530,405 through five days of platform release and is set to open in additional locations on Friday.


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