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, Sep. 17 - Sun, Sep. 19

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1The Town$23,808,032--2,861--$8,322$23,808,0321Warner Bros.
2Easy A$17,734,040--2,856--$6,209$17,734,0401Sony / Screen Gems
3Devil$12,289,375--2,809--$4,375$12,289,3751Universal
4Resident Evil: Afterlife$10,002,592-62%3,2096$3,117$43,893,9582Sony / Screen Gems
5Alpha and Omega$9,106,906--2,625--$3,469$9,106,9061Lionsgate
6Takers$3,026,285-47%2,139-52$1,415$52,372,3494Sony / Screen Gems
7The American$2,672,521-53%2,457-376$1,088$32,772,4753Focus
8The Other Guys$1,972,046-41%1,827-419$1,079$115,403,4407Sony / Columbia
9Inception$1,967,137-30%1,305-278$1,507$285,129,85510Warner Bros.
10Machete$1,755,550-59%1,704-974$1,030$24,391,3543Fox
11Eat Pray Love$1,614,431-45%1,668-671$968$77,600,2356Sony / Columbia
12The Expendables$1,373,298-57%1,854-1204$741$101,020,5336Lionsgate
13Going the Distance (2010)$1,355,246-64%2,007-1023$675$16,771,3053Warner Bros. / New Line
14The Last Exorcism$1,211,349-64%2,013-718$602$40,113,3704Lionsgate
15Nanny McPhee Returns$969,345-53%1,578-786$614$27,617,9405Universal
16The Switch (2010)$930,037-54%1,158-437$803$26,600,1525Miramax

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Despicable Me$910,965-45%939-436$970$244,739,01511Universal
2Lottery Ticket$625,812-48%677-228$924$23,505,3605Warner Bros.
3Vampires Suck$568,012-62%964-706$589$35,865,4455Fox
4Get Low$551,494-36%467-62$1,181$7,785,0908Sony Pictures Classics
5Toy Story 3$469,638-38%475-237$989$410,640,66514Disney
6Scott Pilgrim vs. the World$355,225-57%383-236$927$31,075,1256Universal
7Salt$310,966-51%335-149$928$116,974,4269Sony / Columbia
8Grown Ups$303,582-20%304-35$999$161,094,62513Sony / Columbia
9Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore$272,219-33%360-65$756$43,019,6338Warner Bros.
10The Sorcerer's Apprentice$238,786-22%275-37$868$62,492,81810Disney
11Avatar$238,180-67%129-307$1,846$760,083,04140Fox
12Dinner for Schmucks$220,019-54%313-223$703$72,204,5398Paramount / DreamWorks
13The Twilight Saga: Eclipse$208,477-72%339-848$615$300,103,07212Summit
14Flipped$179,172-63%375-67$478$1,575,0837Warner Bros.
15Ramona and Beezus$165,613-10%260-15$637$25,717,9739Fox
16The Kids Are All Right$159,353-39%169-49$943$20,507,87611Focus
17Piranha 3D$150,466-79%264-561$570$24,730,7205Weinstein Company
18Step Up 3D$149,096-57%134-126$1,113$42,054,0367Disney
19The Girl Who Played With Fire$133,941-27%137-11$978$7,142,08011Music Box
20The Last Airbender$118,105-35%174-46$679$131,564,73112Paramount
21I'm Still Here$113,33317%120101$944$259,2902Magnolia
22The Karate Kid (2010)$95,819-24%147-21$652$176,591,61815Sony / Columbia
23Winter's Bone$90,052-34%101-9$892$5,954,17315Roadside Attractions
24Legendary$29,306-77%103-74$285$191,8752IDP/Samuel Goldwyn

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Dabangg$297,229-53%686$4,371$1,068,5892Eros
2Catfish$257,285--12--$21,440$257,2851Universal / Rogue
3Mao's Last Dancer$238,007-30%98-4$2,429$2,617,2905Samuel Goldwyn
4Hubble 3D$153,705-15%633$2,440$15,642,57027Warner Bros. / IMAX
5Never Let Me Go$111,734--4--$27,934$156,7331Fox Searchlight
6Cairo Time$107,873-31%758$1,438$1,277,8157IFC
7The Tillman Story$60,680-28%283$2,167$519,3715Weinstein Company
8Animal Kingdom$53,720-51%57-4$942$817,1346Sony Pictures Classics
9What If...$48,428-43%50-32$969$517,5535Five & Two Pictures
10Heartbreaker$44,512-15%85$5,564$118,3672IFC
11I Am Love$42,633-24%35-5$1,218$4,838,30114Magnolia
12Under the Sea 3D$41,54741%161$2,597$24,219,10684Warner Bros. / IMAX
13We Are Family$39,950-65%780$512$597,9723UTV Communications
14Knight and Day$36,742-33%64-29$574$76,364,87113Fox
15Predators$33,561-35%55-31$610$51,908,58011Fox
16Mademoiselle Chambon$32,62720%110$2,966$385,11817Lorber
17Jack Goes Boating$28,916--4--$7,229$28,9161Relativity / Overture
18The Romantics$26,155-43%1412$1,868$81,5032Four of a Kind
19A Woman, a Gun, and a Noodle Shop$24,624-14%2310$1,071$105,7393Sony Pictures Classics
20Soul Kitchen$24,596-5%225$1,118$196,5015IFC
21Mesrine: Killer Instinct$24,310-51%22-7$1,105$461,7304Music Box
22Last Train Home$23,78373%86$2,973$71,8433Zeitgeist Films
23The Concert$23,440-40%201$1,172$542,1769Weinstein Company
24Fool for Love (2010)$22,840-54%80$2,855$87,1692Variance Films
25The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest$21,344-8%13-6$1,642$487,1617National Geographic
26Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky$21,34421%282$762$1,679,98615Sony Pictures Classics
27Leaves of Grass$20,987--3--$6,996$20,9871First Look
28Lovely, Still$20,538348%119$1,867$39,9212Monterey Media
29Lebanon$18,923-52%232$823$286,57349Sony Pictures Classics
30Restrepo$18,296-38%370$494$1,254,30613National Geographic
31Bran Nue Dae$18,062-23%171$1,062$51,1082Freestyle Releasing
32Mesrine: Public Enemy #1$17,679-55%20-8$884$207,9673Music Box
33Kings of Pastry$15,162--2--$7,581$22,4281First Run
34Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould$13,686-20%41$3,422$39,1982Lorber
35The Extra Man$12,333-15%13-4$949$416,2098Magnolia
36Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time$12,197-47%28-17$436$90,755,64317Disney
37The Other City$10,396--2--$5,198$10,3961Cabin Films
38Cyrus$9,740-38%19-7$513$7,419,05914Fox Searchlight
39Queen of the Sun: What are the Bees Telling Us?$9,069--1--$9,069$9,0691Collective Eye
40The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$8,012-42%19-9$422$10,056,67527Music Box
41Who Is Harry Nilsson (And Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?$7,56324%21$3,782$17,1382Lorber
42Winnebago Man$7,05111%112$641$156,79411Kino International
43Undertow (2009)$7,051--1--$7,051$7,0511Wolfe Releasing
44Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child$6,772-8%50$1,354$221,7599Arthouse Films
45Picture Me$6,718--1--$6,718$6,7181Strand
46La Soga$6,446-77%4-3$1,612$206,72767-57 Releasing
47The Secret in Their Eyes (El Secreto de Sus Ojos)$6,279-13%11-7$571$6,374,78923Sony Pictures Classics
48My Dog Tulip$6,276-50%10$6,276$49,4303New Yorker Films
49The Sicilian Girl$6,245-32%52$1,249$43,4757Music Box
50Exit Through the Gift Shop$6,101-56%5-1$1,220$3,250,66423Producers Distribution Agency
51Agora$6,088-17%4-2$1,522$599,90317Newmarket
52Hideaway (2009)$5,550-50%40$1,388$20,7032Strand
53Life During Wartime$5,419-37%14-2$387$278,8219IFC
54Micmacs$4,937-56%15-1$329$1,237,26917Sony Classics
55Breathless (2010 re-issue)$4,585-58%40$1,146$309,21017Rialto
56A Film Unfinished$4,483-37%30$1,494$147,2555Oscilloscope
57Ahead of Time$4,464-65%21$2,232$22,7742Vitagraph
58The Freebie$4,309--1--$4,309$4,3091Phase 4 Films
59John Rabe$3,774--1--$3,774$61,06818Strand
60Please Give$2,84239%40$711$4,028,33921Sony Pictures Classics
61Solitary Man$2,641-39%7-2$377$4,353,41018Anchor Bay
62GasLand$2,641--1--$2,641$9,1691International WOW
63The Trial$2,491-72%10$2,491$14,1422Whitlow Films
64Metropolis (1927) (2010 re-issue)$2,45040%31$817$386,53220Kino International
65Wild Grass (Les Herbes Folles)$2,390-64%11-9$217$377,55613Sony Pictures Classics
66El Superstar: The Unlikely Rise of Juan Frances$2,330--1--$2,330$2,3301Cinema Libre
67Sweethearts of the Prison Rodeo$2,198--2--$1,099$2,1981Cinema Purgatorio
68Ondine$1,87955%21$940$547,21829Magnolia
69Centurion$1,871-61%3-3$624$119,6214Magnolia
70Spoken Word$1,811-20%20$906$32,7289Variance
71The Nature of Existence$1,714--1--$1,714$49,76714Walking Shadows
72Princess Kaiulani$1,210-49%2-1$605$883,45419Roadside Attractions
73Everyone Else$1,128-46%20$564$98,19766Cinema Guild
74Enemies of the People$1,092--2--$546$13,8228International Film Circuit
75Le Amiche (2010 re-issue)$1,07271%10$1,072$48,83014The Film Desk
76Mother and Child$1,048-58%5-1$210$1,105,26620Sony Pictures Classics
77The Milk of Sorrow$986-31%10$986$9,8494Olive Films
78Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$985-14%10$985$23,298,251155National Geographic
79The Cremaster Cycle (2010 re-issue)$949--2--$475$108,97924International Film Circuit
80Circle$87635%10$876$9,7304Indican Pictures
81Around a Small Mountain$86743%20$434$27,20111Cinema Guild
82Neshoba: The Price of Freedom$847-75%21$424$17,4296First Run Features
83Henri-Georges Clouzot's Inferno$843--1--$843$15,20810Flicker Alley
84The Disappearance of Alice Creed$800-82%3-1$267$156,4727Anchor Bay
85The Temptation of St. Tony$747--1--$747$7471Olive Films
86Countdown to Zero$716-89%60$119$264,4159Magnolia
87The Girl (2009)$712--1--$712$7121
88The Little Traitor$514-65%10$514$377,20141Westchester Films
89Orlando (2010 re-issue)$358--1--$358$56,3729Sony Pictures Classics
90Sweetgrass$1457%10$145$204,25952Cinema Guild