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, Dec. 17 - Sun, Dec. 19

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1TRON: Legacy$44,026,211--3,451--$12,758$44,026,2111Disney
2Yogi Bear$16,411,322--3,515--$4,669$16,411,3221Warner Bros.
3The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader$12,388,662-48%3,5550$3,485$42,752,2372Fox
4The Fighter$12,135,4683945%2,5032499$4,848$12,569,4032Paramount
5Tangled$8,775,344-39%3,201-364$2,741$127,918,2764Disney
6The Tourist$8,522,287-48%2,7560$3,092$30,613,5202Sony / Columbia
7How Do You Know$7,484,696--2,483--$3,014$7,484,6961Sony / Columbia
8Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1$5,022,361-41%2,860-717$1,756$265,723,6185Warner Bros.
9Unstoppable (2010)$1,843,696-50%1,874-1093$984$77,386,3046Fox
10Burlesque$1,425,855-55%1,510-1366$944$35,537,7654Sony / Screen Gems
11Due Date$1,262,257-51%1,157-833$1,091$97,327,1797Warner Bros.
12Love and Other Drugs$1,111,878-63%1,093-1147$1,017$30,201,1414Fox
13Megamind$690,573-73%1,025-1400$674$141,641,5357Paramount / DreamWorks

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Black Swan$8,383,479154%959869$8,742$15,791,7533Fox Searchlight
2127 Hours$556,044-45%307-109$1,811$9,321,5717Fox Searchlight
3Faster (2010)$433,950-75%660-1446$658$22,500,4984CBS Films
4Red (2010)$336,572-22%439-125$767$88,429,99310Summit
5The Social Network$282,025-1%2281$1,237$91,840,92612Sony / Columbia
6Fair Game (2010)$219,973-60%268-168$821$8,650,3887Summit
7The Next Three Days$183,486-82%361-1065$508$20,946,5365Lionsgate
8Despicable Me$171,325-10%233-25$735$250,493,64024Universal
9Morning Glory (2010)$117,651-77%263-741$447$30,568,9896Paramount
10Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole$107,164-32%210-78$510$55,194,66613Warner Bros.
11The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest$92,964-40%114-55$815$4,855,6298Music Box
12The Warrior's Way$84,571-91%217-1405$390$5,504,3883Relativity Media
13Paranormal Activity 2$82,53882%17449$474$84,436,9789Paramount
14Secretariat$76,032-41%155-108$491$58,325,41011Disney
15Easy A$73,468-27%161-42$456$58,401,46414Sony / Screen Gems
16Hereafter$71,078126%232145$306$32,576,84110Warner Bros.
17The Town$57,591-56%144-111$400$92,074,85714Warner Bros.
18Skyline$55,965-63%123-154$455$21,371,4256Universal / Rogue

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1The King's Speech$1,097,13185%4324$25,515$2,936,9594Weinstein Company
2I Love You Phillip Morris$148,301-3%4914$3,027$522,8123Roadside Attractions
3Hubble 3D$101,1664%56-1$1,807$19,351,72340Warner Bros. / IMAX
4The Polar Express (2010 re-issue)$96,049-18%150$6,403$478,6467Warner Bros.
5Inside Job$70,055-44%75-41$934$3,266,35711Sony Pictures Classics
6The Tempest$58,13637%2116$2,768$121,5262Disney
7Rabbit Hole$53,778--5--$10,756$53,7781Lionsgate
8All Good Things$51,365-18%3515$1,468$194,2083Magnolia Pictures
9Made in Dagenham$41,53495%3116$1,340$268,6095Sony Pictures Classics
10Life As We Know It$40,499-31%75-45$540$52,275,97311Warner Bros.
11For Colored Girls$37,322-75%79-164$472$37,626,0457Lionsgate
12Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale$35,68044%169$2,230$87,9113Oscilloscope
13Casino Jack$34,528--7--$4,933$34,5281IDP/ATO Pictures
14Under the Sea 3D$28,76413%110$2,615$25,084,93297Warner Bros. / IMAX
15Inception$25,929-48%62-46$418$292,511,47323Warner Bros.
16Tiny Furniture$20,385-48%20-1$1,019$228,8116IFC
17Jackass 3D$17,885-60%50-58$358$116,875,62110Paramount
18White Material$16,072-2%141$1,148$220,0465IFC
19Tamara Drewe$14,952-59%29-30$516$509,22111Sony Pictures Classics
20Stone$13,93763%6445$218$1,796,02411Relativity / Overture
21Conviction$11,968-65%33-42$363$6,768,06310Fox Searchlight
22Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen$9,960-34%6-4$1,660$290,87610Zeitgeist Films
23Bhutto$9,919228%42$2,480$26,1353First Run Features
24You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger$9,297-53%18-46$517$3,208,29613Sony Pictures Classics
25Waiting for 'Superman'$8,083-61%33-22$245$6,410,25713Paramount Vantage
26Howl$6,461-34%102$646$570,41113Oscilloscope
27Night Catches Us$6,147-45%5-4$1,229$41,3293Magnolia
28Enter the Void$5,59816%4-6$1,400$332,01913IFC Films
29Kings of Pastry$5,379-49%7-3$768$249,10014First Run
30Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps$5,096-64%14-24$364$52,474,61613Fox
31Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer$5,094-39%9-5$566$162,8787Magnolia
32Budrus$4,61688%30$1,539$65,53311Balcony Releasing
33And Everything is Going Fine$4,131-41%10$4,131$16,8362IFC
34Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$3,725-27%30$1,242$23,468,520168National Geographic
35Monsters (2010)$3,688-19%6-5$615$235,1998Magnolia
36Winter's Bone$3,54231%41$886$6,237,37128Roadside Attractions
37The Salvation Poem$3,464-46%1-9$3,464$487,00410CanZion Films
38Inspector Bellamy$3,458-50%2-2$1,729$105,8938IFC Films
39Carlos$2,601118%52$520$126,55110IFC
40Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench$2,495100%20$1,248$17,6847Variance Films
41Breathless (2010 re-issue)$2,42055%31$807$363,03030Rialto
42Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould$2,3081090%21$1,154$159,76315Lorber
43Mademoiselle Chambon$2,255123%42$564$529,51130Lorber
44Marwencol$2,190-61%3-3$730$63,29211Cinema Guild
45Leaving$2,185-61%3-8$728$174,69412IFC
46Shoah$1,740-39%10$1,740$6,9962IFC
47Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child$1,710--1--$1,710$256,24222Arthouse Films
48The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest$1,677-75%2-2$839$681,23020National Geographic
49Undertow (2009)$1,639-5%32$546$53,77514Wolfe Releasing
50Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields$1,550-53%2-3$775$53,5798Variance Films
51The Legend of Pale Male$1,444-73%3-1$481$30,5734Balcony
52Hemingway's Garden of Eden$1,404-89%5-9$281$20,9522Roadside Attractions
53Last Train Home$1,348-80%3-3$449$285,84816Zeitgeist Films
54William S. Burroughs: A Man Within$1,229158%21$615$30,2485Oscilloscope
55My Dog Tulip$1,081-66%2-1$541$142,53816New Yorker Films
56Get Low$1,031-62%4-6$258$9,106,80221Sony Pictures Classics
57Waste Land$865-74%1-2$865$99,8478Arthouse Films
58Henri-Georges Clouzot's Inferno$786--2--$393$23,95523Flicker Alley
59Mesrine: Killer Instinct$746-20%30$249$533,05617Music Box
60Feed the Fish$684-62%1-3$684$80,7725Strand
61Lebanon$577122%10$577$367,79862Sony Pictures Classics
62A Woman, a Gun, and a Noodle Shop$487-63%2-1$244$190,66616Sony Pictures Classics
63Animal Kingdom$389--1--$389$1,011,75619Sony Pictures Classics
64Hideaway (2009)$207--1--$207$34,42215Strand
65What If...$203-81%1-3$203$767,54518Five & Two Pictures
66Cool It$146-86%2-8$73$62,5666Roadside Attractions
67Metropolis (1927) (2010 re-issue)$135--1--$135$529,60333Kino International
68Mesrine: Public Enemy #1$40-98%1-2$40$262,17616Music Box
69To the Sea$26--1--$26$55,70923Film Movement
70The Girl Who Played With Fire$20-98%1-2$20$7,634,78024Music Box
71The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$20-96%10$20$10,091,30840Music Box