Grosses

'The Equalizer' Impresses with $34.1M Start; 'The Maze Runner' Holds Up Well with $17.4M; 'The Boxtrolls' Debuts in Third with Very Solid $17.3MSeptember 29, 2014 01:07 PM

by Daniel Garris

Sony's The Equalizer debuted in first place this weekend with a strong start of $34.14 million. The action thriller starring Denzel Washington debuted towards the higher end of pre-release expectations, which were lofty, especially for the month of September. Without adjusting for ticket price inflation, The Equalizer delivered the fourth largest opening weekend ever for the month of September (behind only 2012's Hotel Transylvania, 2013's Insidious Chapter 2 and 2002's Sweet Home Alabama). The film's debut represented the third largest opening weekend performance ever for Washington (behind only 2007's American Gangster and 2012's Safe House). The Equalizer opened 4 percent stronger than the $32.79 million start of 2010's The Book of Eli and 15 percent below the $40.17 million start of Safe House.

The Equalizer opened with $12.49 million on Friday (which included an estimated $1.5 million from Thursday night shows), increased 8 percent on Saturday to gross $13.49 million and declined 40 percent on Sunday to take in $8.15 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.73 to 1. The audience breakdown for the film skewed slightly towards male moviegoers (52 percent) and towards moviegoers 30 years and older (65 percent). The Equalizer received an A- rating on CinemaScore, which is an encouraging sign for the film going forward.

The Maze Runner placed in second with $17.44 million. The young adult adaptation from Fox held up relatively well this weekend, as it was down 46 percent from last weekend's strong start. The Maze Runner has grossed $57.96 million in ten days and continues to display strong early holding power for a young adult adaptation. Thanks in part to a significantly stronger second weekend hold, The Maze Runner is now running 32 percent ahead of the $44.01 million ten-day take of last year's Ender's Game and is already on the verge of reaching the $61.74 million final domestic gross of Ender's Game.

The Boxtrolls was off to a very solid third place start this weekend with $17.28 million. The latest 3D stop motion animated film from Focus and Laika debuted a bit above pre-release expectations. Compared to previous films from Focus and Laika, The Boxtrolls opened 23 percent ahead of the $14.09 million start of 2012's ParaNorman and a slim 3 percent ahead of the $16.85 million start of 2009's Coraline. ParaNorman and Coraline both displayed terrific holding power and going forward The Boxtrolls will hope to accomplish the same.

The Boxtrolls opened with $4.93 million on Friday, increased a strong 51 percent on Saturday to gross $7.46 million and declined 34.5 percent on Sunday to gross $4.89 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 3.51 to 1. The audience breakdown for the film skewered towards female moviegoers (57 percent). The Boxtrolls received a solid B+ rating on CinemaScore.

Warner's This Is Where I Leave You placed in fourth with $6.89 million. The modestly budgeted comedy starring Jason Bateman and Tina Fey held up well this weekend, as it was down 40 percent from last weekend's so-so start. This Is Where I Leave You has grossed $22.44 million in ten days. That places the film 13.5 percent behind the $25.94 million ten-day start of 2011's The Change-Up (which fell 53 percent in its second weekend to gross $6.31 million).

Fellow Warner Bros. release Dolphin Tale 2 rounded out the weekend's top five with $4.79 million. The family film sequel was down 46 percent from last weekend, as the film appears to have taken a bit of a hit from The Boxtrolls arriving in the marketplace. Dolphin Tale 2 has grossed $33.62 million in 17 days. The film is currently running 31 percent behind the $49.04 million 17-day take of 2011's Dolphin Tale and is displaying significantly softer holding power.

No Good Deed followed in sixth with $4.51 million. Sony's low-budget thriller starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson was down 54 percent. No Good Deed continues to be very front-loaded, but has still grossed a healthy $46.53 million in 17 days.

Universal's A Walk Among the Tombstones was down five spots and a massive 67 percent from last weekend with a seventh place take of $4.19 million. Lackluster word of mouth and the new direct competition from The Equalizer both had a clear negative effect on the Liam Neeson led action thriller this weekend. A Walk Among the Tombstones is now running below expectations with a ten-day start of $20.83 million.

Guardians of the Galaxy was down just 28 percent to place in eighth with $3.77 million. In the process, the blockbuster sci-fi superhero film from Disney and Marvel surpassed the $318.41 million final unadjusted gross of 2008's Iron Man. Guardians of the Galaxy has grossed a massive $319.17 million through 59 days of release.

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, May. 14 - Sun, May. 16

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Iron Man 2$52,041,005-59%4,39010$11,854$211,200,8762Paramount
2Robin Hood$36,063,000--3,503--$10,295$36,063,0001Universal
3Letters to Juliet$13,540,486--2,968--$4,562$13,540,4861Summit
4Just Wright$8,284,989--1,831--$4,525$8,284,9891Fox Searchlight
5How to Train Your Dragon$5,003,536-25%2,620-1760$1,910$207,647,6968Paramount / DreamWorks
6A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)$4,657,000-49%3,075-257$1,514$56,067,0003Warner Bros. / New Line
7Date Night$3,823,515-30%2,481-253$1,541$86,522,6226Fox
8The Back-up Plan$2,387,480-53%2,497-506$956$34,124,7824CBS Films
9Furry Vengeance$2,242,106-50%2,695-307$832$15,089,0703Summit
10Clash of the Titans (2010)$1,231,000-51%1,300-857$947$160,128,0007Warner Bros.
11Death at a Funeral (2010)$1,138,148-51%1,062-644$1,072$40,495,9645Sony / Screen Gems

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Babies$995,660-54%5439$1,834$3,881,2162Focus
2Oceans$752,018-53%973-259$773$17,669,4504Disneynature
3The Last Song$544,414-54%802-501$679$61,240,3887Disney
4Kick-Ass$539,997-64%609-1150$887$46,616,2325Lionsgate
5The Losers$459,000-75%701-1749$655$22,761,0004Warner Bros.
6City Island$442,158-27%2536$1,748$3,608,5609Anchor Bay
7Alice in Wonderland (2010)$440,202-38%403-179$1,092$331,533,91511Disney
8Diary of a Wimpy Kid$386,876-14%468-157$827$61,978,6949Fox
9The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos)$368,338-4%10399$3,576$2,092,1995Sony Pictures Classics
10Avatar$335,174-21%279-49$1,201$748,468,37322Fox
11The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$327,304-33%178-9$1,839$5,764,3319Music Box
12Hot Tub Time Machine$306,000-42%458-344$668$49,185,0008MGM
13Shutter Island$292,3678%310121$943$127,213,67013Paramount
14She's Out of My League$245,602-6%206-55$1,192$31,584,72210Paramount
15The Bounty Hunter$218,252-45%293-169$745$65,037,8169Sony / Columbia
16Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married Too?$172,303-61%281-123$613$59,681,3857Lionsgate
17Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief$123,170-9%209-12$589$88,354,45014Fox
18The Ghost Writer$116,995-51%150-81$780$15,084,11413Summit
19The Tooth Fairy$82,575-30%132-28$626$59,828,42717Fox
20Our Family Wedding$62,775-20%103-16$609$20,092,23910Fox Searchlight
21The Crazies$57,042-15%111-38$514$39,103,37812Overture

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Hubble 3D$323,00011%480$6,729$5,743,0009Warner Bros. / IMAX
2Please Give$248,1723%4923$5,065$735,4673Sony Pictures Classics
3Exit Through the Gift Shop$215,33412%4514$4,785$1,269,7865Producers Distribution Agency
4Princess Kaiulani$186,980--33--$5,666$186,9801Roadside Attractions
5Harry Brown$135,732-6%6017$2,262$590,8893Samuel Goldwyn
6Mother and Child$60,76941%2420$2,532$119,6162Sony Pictures Classics
7La Mission$56,000-21%36-5$1,556$707,0006Screen Media
8Greenberg$45,814-45%77-37$595$4,155,3109Focus
9Under the Sea 3D$37,000-18%184$2,056$21,979,00066Warner Bros. / IMAX
10Metropolis (1927) (2010 re-issue)$30,79754%42$7,699$65,4662Kino International
11The Joneses$26,543-51%56-12$474$1,400,4865Roadside Attractions
12The Human Centipede (First Sequence)$26,100-30%181$1,450$88,4663IFC
13Letters to God$26,000-56%75-37$347$2,794,0006Vivendi
14Cop Out$24,000-44%53-38$453$44,867,00012Warner Bros.
15The Secret of Kells$23,87942%264$918$460,92611GKIDS
16Mid-August Lunch (Pranzo di Ferragosto)$22,863-45%20-2$1,143$389,1819Zeitgeist
17The Runaways$20,232-41%49-16$413$3,528,4549Apparition
18Crazy Heart$18,882-49%50-25$378$39,436,62322Fox Searchlight
19Chloe$18,774-60%29-24$647$2,965,2898Sony Pictures Classics
20Broken Embraces$18,560-22%20-12$928$4,991,84726Sony Classics
21Casino Jack and the United States of Money$18,317-35%112$1,665$58,3562Magnolia
22Brooklyn's Finest$15,572-50%64-49$243$27,154,42611Overture
23A Prophet (Un proph├Ęte)$15,437-17%3322$468$2,029,66112Sony Classics
24The Good, the Bad, the Weird$14,962-3%155$997$71,0836IFC
25The Square (2010)$14,923-40%14-3$1,066$242,4526Apparition
26Vincere$9,225-52%17-10$543$551,6289IFC
27Ajami$8,67812%133$668$580,45335Kino International
28Daddy Longlegs$8,323--1--$8,323$8,3231Sundance Selects
29The Last Station$8,196-46%18-16$455$6,585,85318Sony Pictures Classics
30Best Worst Movie$8,171--1--$8,171$18,6044Area23a
31The Art of the Steal (2010)$8,010-33%17--$471$529,08312IFC Films
32OSS 117: Lost in Rio$7,984-20%41$1,996$23,46157Music Box
33Deadfall Trail$7,430--3--$2,477$7,4301Nocturnal Features
34No One Knows About Persian Cats$7,03950%6-1$1,173$54,7875IFC
35North Face (Nordwand)$6,974-42%11-13$634$697,20916Music Box Films
36Looking for Eric$6,743--2--$3,372$6,7431IFC
37Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo$6,400--1--$6,400$10,0001Argot Pictures
38Here and There (Tamo i Ovde)$6,352--1--$6,352$6,3521Cinema Purgatorio
39Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$6,2454%60$1,041$23,159,682137National Geographic
40The Little Traitor$5,481-28%3-1$1,827$308,14923Westchester Films
41The Eclipse$5,229-18%71$747$110,2008Magnolia
42When You're Strange$5,032195%3-2$1,677$219,0316Abramorama
43Everyone Else$4,926212%43$1,232$48,34748Cinema Guild
44Madeo (Mother)$4,443-59%13-7$342$506,23951Magnolia
45Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel$3,900-30%15-11$260$219,613,00021Fox
46The Living Wake$3,821--1--$3,821$3,8211Mangusta Productions
47Sweetgrass$3,586-20%4-2$897$148,92434Cinema Guild
48The Yellow Handkerchief$3,229-55%102$323$317,04012Samuel Goldwyn Films
49The Girl on the Train (2010)$3,026-27%50$605$195,28117Strand Releasing
50Killing Kasztner$2,85919%20$1,430$112,31330Sky Island Films
51The Good Heart$2,6914%62$449$16,3253Magnolia
52Happiness Runs$2,6870%21$1,344$6,0512Strand
53Multiple Sarcasms$2,603-84%6-9$434$25,7782New Films International
54The Oath$2,485-57%10$2,485$11,9192Zeitgeist
55The Blind Side$2,400-76%11-14$218$255,950,00026Warner Bros.
56Terribly Happy$2,200-34%3-2$733$160,38215Oscilloscope
57The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus$1,588-47%6-1$265$7,686,81821Sony Pictures Classics
58Breaking Upwards$1,492-50%1--$1,492$76,3827IFC
59In/Significant Others$1,408--1--$1,408$1,4081Fourth Ward Productions
60The White Ribbon$1,389-43%3-4$463$2,219,13920Sony Classics
61U2 3D$1,294--1--$1,294$10,322,763121National Geographic
62Bluebeard (Barbe Bleue)$671-49%2-1$336$32,36332Strand
63A Town Called Panic$548-84%2-1$274$156,43322Zeitgeist Films
6435 Shots of Rum$543--1--$543$176,38435Cinema Guild
65October Country$254-84%1412$18$21,32214International Film Circuit
66The Warlords$196-94%1-5$196$128,9787Magnet Magnolia
67In My Sleep$114--1--$114$24,9304Morning Star