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, Jul. 2 - Sun, Jul. 4

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1The Twilight Saga: Eclipse$64,832,191--4,468--$14,510$157,577,1691Summit
2The Last Airbender$40,325,019--3,169--$12,725$57,836,1161Paramount
3Toy Story 3$30,280,024-49%4,0280$7,517$289,106,1933Disney
4Grown Ups$19,049,602-53%3,5340$5,390$77,631,1172Sony / Columbia
5Knight and Day$10,443,233-48%3,1046$3,364$45,751,8472Fox
6The Karate Kid (2010)$8,000,259-49%3,109-631$2,573$151,523,5174Sony / Columbia
7The A-Team$3,190,024-49%2,153-1089$1,482$69,280,9744Fox

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Get Him to the Greek$1,233,220-61%884-1305$1,395$17,474,8155Universal
2Shrek Forever After$890,166-71%957-1383$930$232,278,6417Paramount / DreamWorks
3Letters to Juliet$822,969102%340-169$2,420$50,945,2748Summit
4Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time$690,501-76%600-1251$1,151$88,144,6716Disney
5Iron Man 2$638,314-56%522-647$1,223$308,292,7779Paramount
6Solitary Man$498,4845%176-1$2,832$2,757,6637Anchor Bay
7Killers$475,307-75%727-1544$654$45,170,6365Lionsgate
8Sex and the City 2$382,173-69%355-546$1,077$94,076,9426Warner Bros. / New Line
9Marmaduke$359,085-63%475-635$756$30,815,1265Fox
10How to Train Your Dragon$341,760-28%303-30$1,128$216,156,99415Paramount / DreamWorks
11Robin Hood$328,860-49%378-291$870$103,913,9358Universal
12Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work$328,745-9%11125$2,962$1,478,1824IFC
13The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$193,144-13%109-25$1,772$9,009,87816Music Box
14Date Night$187,220-22%242-44$774$97,634,50813Fox
15The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos)$175,225-19%127-16$1,380$5,597,09712Sony Pictures Classics
16Please Give$172,141-38%145-74$1,187$3,436,80810Sony Pictures Classics
17Splice$168,032-30%140-200$1,200$16,539,2425Warner Bros
18Jonah Hex$123,597-92%350-2475$353$9,937,4233Warner Bros.
19Clash of the Titans (2010)$115,116-30%175-51$658$162,916,18914Warner Bros.
20Death at a Funeral (2010)$114,498-19%136-20$842$42,708,95112Sony / Screen Gems
21Furry Vengeance$95,897-22%107-50$896$17,466,37210Summit
22A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)$40,476-49%110-62$368$62,992,95010Warner Bros. / New Line

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Cyrus$774,472157%7760$10,058$1,492,3463Fox Searchlight
2I Am Love$528,877113%8053$6,611$1,096,8133Magnolia
3Winter's Bone$430,329-2%8313$5,185$1,712,2204Roadside Attractions
4Hubble 3D$247,9067%522$4,767$9,678,30516Warner Bros. / IMAX
5Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky$128,56064%4-16$32,140$536,3414Sony Pictures Classics
6City Island$104,852-20%81-24$1,294$6,320,62816Anchor Bay
7Exit Through the Gift Shop$62,382-17%31-5$2,012$2,772,13712Producers Distribution Agency
8Micmacs$60,895-23%50-2$1,218$829,5266Sony Classics
9Mother and Child$60,019-37%77-42$779$912,1639Sony Pictures Classics
10Restrepo$58,58765%108$5,859$119,2102National Geographic
11Harry Brown$56,351-14%45-11$1,252$1,685,83110Samuel Goldwyn
12The Bounty Hunter$55,925-44%67-37$835$67,050,02416Sony / Columbia
13Just Wright$53,924-27%95-16$568$21,310,3948Fox Searchlight
14The Back-up Plan$51,721-58%97-50$533$37,358,50511CBS Films
15Ondine$48,202-24%38-1$1,268$341,66318Magnolia
16Under the Sea 3D$44,99933%130$3,461$22,684,01873Warner Bros. / IMAX
17Love Ranch$44,220--11--$4,020$58,6431E1 Entertainment
18The Killer Inside Me$43,413126%1713$2,554$93,9703IFC Films
19Oceans$42,718-45%79-48$541$19,345,90311Disneynature
20Diary of a Wimpy Kid$42,375-31%70-35$605$63,789,16216Fox
21Babies$38,332-15%42-22$913$7,279,5239Focus
22South of the Border$34,75761%65$5,793$64,9652Cinema Libre
23The Last Song$33,082-61%79-44$419$62,871,80414Disney
24Wild Grass (Les Herbes Folles)$31,763-19%61$5,294$98,4432Sony Pictures Classics
25Avatar$28,729-36%9-6$3,192$749,596,88729Fox
26The City of Your Final Destination$16,212-20%14-1$1,158$434,99412Screen Media Films
27Let It Rain$12,072-23%50$2,414$61,9353IFC
28Raavan$11,986-87%28-87$428$690,4423Reliance Big Pictures
29Holy Rollers$11,133-14%130$856$279,33823First Independent Pictures
30The Secret of Kells$10,9525%14-1$782$669,39018GKIDS
31God of Vampires$10,395--10--$1,040$10,3951Nocturnal Features
32Mid-August Lunch (Pranzo di Ferragosto)$7,253-51%9-4$806$590,50216Zeitgeist
33The Nature of Existence$5,918--3--$1,973$9,9273Walking Shadows
34La Mission$5,608-38%5-6$1,122$1,008,45813Screen Media
35Princess Kaiulani$5,542-11%5-3$1,108$836,4718Roadside Attractions
36Agora$5,483-56%2-1$2,742$204,2166Newmarket
37The Square (2010)$5,181-71%5-3$1,036$392,46413Apparition
38Only the Brave (2010)$4,684-25%1-1$4,684$140,0816Indican Pictures
39Alice in Wonderland (2010)$4,684-83%23-42$204$334,183,25018Disney
40Stonewall Uprising$4,305-73%4-2$1,076$66,5143First Run Features
41Breathless (2010 re-issue)$4,045-49%2-1$2,023$167,7006Rialto
42Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$3,920-11%30$1,307$23,239,650144National Geographic
43Best Worst Movie$3,42431%10$3,424$62,67511Area23a
44Everyone Else$3,286514%32$1,095$72,47855Cinema Guild
45The Lottery$3,227-68%2-1$1,614$41,7444Variance Films
46Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Undead$2,706139%10$2,706$39,2215Indican Pictures
47The Joneses$2,644-30%1-2$2,644$1,469,63212Roadside Attractions
48Kings of the Evening$2,595-71%1-3$2,595$78,74221Indican Pictures
49OSS 117: Lost in Rio$2,336-49%30$779$80,94764Music Box
50Racing Dreams$2,31294%30$771$49,1627Hanover House
51Only When I Dance$2,183--1--$2,183$2,1831Film Movement
52Sweetgrass$2,073--4--$518$193,92241Cinema Guild
53Casino Jack and the United States of Money$1,602-15%73$229$174,9199Magnolia
54Le Amiche (2010 re-issue)$1,597--1--$1,597$25,2693The Film Desk
55Survival of the Dead$1,223-69%4-6$306$96,5576Magnolia / Magnet
56Chloe$1,066-35%30$355$3,073,64515Sony Pictures Classics
57Cropsey$998-41%1-1$998$27,3795Cinema Purgatorio
58John Rabe$994-67%2-1$497$45,9567Strand
59A Town Called Panic$958--1--$958$162,58229Zeitgeist Films
60Behind the Burly Q$541--1--$541$16,65711First Run Features
61U2 3D$250--1--$250$10,335,198128National Geographic
62Small Change (2009 re-issue)$237--1--$237$29,28132The Film Desk