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, Jan. 7 - Sun, Jan. 9

Wide (1000+)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1True Grit (2010)$14,605,135-40%3,12441$4,675$110,035,1573Paramount
2Little Fockers$13,487,245-48%3,675121$3,670$123,687,7603Universal
3Season of the Witch$10,612,375--2,816--$3,769$10,612,3751Relativity Media
4TRON: Legacy$10,090,002-46%3,013-352$3,349$148,212,4204Disney
5Black Swan$8,113,011-9%1,58431$5,122$61,218,5046Fox Searchlight
6Country Strong$7,326,16517551%1,4241422$5,145$7,463,4543Sony / Screen Gems
7The Fighter$7,001,504-30%2,528-6$2,770$57,845,9465Paramount
8Yogi Bear$6,641,250-46%3,288-227$2,020$75,436,7714Warner Bros.
9Tangled$5,111,098-48%2,383-199$2,145$175,779,4967Disney
10The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader$4,601,403-55%2,814-134$1,635$94,532,1965Fox
11Gulliver's Travels (2010)$4,588,731-51%2,964-125$1,548$34,448,3213Fox
12The Tourist$3,766,574-43%2,442-314$1,542$61,157,9445Sony / Columbia
13Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1$2,353,398-49%1,507-225$1,562$287,661,7708Warner Bros.
14How Do You Know$1,876,869-59%1,902-581$987$28,833,6574Sony / Columbia

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1The King's Speech$6,414,407-18%75858$8,462$32,896,6657Weinstein Company
2The Social Network$653,20941%603354$1,083$94,077,47015Sony / Columbia
3Unstoppable (2010)$342,784-35%398-52$861$80,023,2479Fox
4Love and Other Drugs$290,02841%21237$1,368$31,683,1727Fox
5Megamind$274,872-56%375-389$733$144,674,38410Paramount / DreamWorks
6Burlesque$256,319-42%228-102$1,124$38,239,9177Sony / Screen Gems
7Due Date$255,304-40%244-160$1,046$99,652,53210Warner Bros.
8I Love You Phillip Morris$217,27610%10032$2,173$1,435,4806Roadside Attractions
9Red (2010)$199,992-31%261-42$766$89,842,93713Summit
10Life As We Know It$152,285-26%188-60$810$53,133,72714Warner Bros.
11Secretariat$145,743-34%225-22$648$59,291,17714Disney
12Despicable Me$118,355-31%178-19$665$251,384,62027Universal
13Morning Glory (2010)$96,016106%17852$539$30,883,9799Paramount
14Fair Game (2010)$72,887-25%103-6$708$9,241,95210Summit

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleweekendLocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Blue Valentine (2010)$704,339264%4036$17,608$1,144,5842Weinstein Company
2No One Killed Jessica$227,473--48--$4,739$227,4731UTV Communications
3127 Hours$216,964-24%88-15$2,466$10,824,59910Fox Searchlight
4Somewhere (2010)$163,31818%179$9,607$663,9893Focus
5Casino Jack$156,39395%5234$3,008$425,3634IDP/ATO Pictures
6Hubble 3D$137,923-2%547$2,554$20,535,39143Warner Bros. / IMAX
7Rabbit Hole$109,944-23%340$3,234$627,9814Lionsgate
8Another Year$87,261-22%71$12,466$303,7152Sony Pictures Classics
9Made in Dagenham$86,685-9%606$1,445$626,6848Sony Pictures Classics
10Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga'Hoole$56,534-35%95-63$595$55,638,92816Warner Bros.
11Inside Job$55,9492%469$1,216$3,539,37014Sony Pictures Classics
12Faster (2010)$51,630-23%79-40$654$22,941,2317CBS Films
13All Good Things$43,03840%3010$1,435$381,0036Magnolia Pictures
14Jackass 3D$39,030-41%70-67$558$117,190,30013Paramount
15Paranormal Activity 2$34,132-40%90-55$379$84,723,15612Paramount
16The Illusionist (2010)$32,988-29%30$10,996$178,4103Sony Pictures Classics
17The Warrior's Way$29,596120%32-6$925$5,604,9206Relativity Media
18The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest$26,004-35%42-5$619$5,072,74411Music Box
19Tiny Furniture$19,49214%194$1,026$317,0909IFC
20White Material$19,202248%2117$914$268,9148IFC
21Oy Vey! My Son Is Gay!$18,7291056%54$3,746$26,8213Saint Juste International
22Phil Ochs: There But For Fortune$18,211--1--$18,211$26,8461First Run Features
23Tees Maar Khan$14,355-87%38-66$378$1,072,6863UTV Communications
24Summer Wars$13,60467%1412$972$35,9543GKIDS
25My Dog Tulip$13,039144%41$3,260$167,93919New Yorker Films
26Bhutto$12,7841822%43$3,196$48,8346First Run Features
27Hereafter$12,779-66%33-95$387$32,741,59613Warner Bros.
28Four Lions$11,9986%11-7$1,091$260,70710Drafthouse Films
29Kings of Pastry$11,20063%40$2,800$286,29717First Run
30Vision: From the Life of Hildegard von Bingen$9,92138%51$1,984$333,48813Zeitgeist Films
31Tamara Drewe$7,721128%195$406$538,02914Sony Pictures Classics
32Dogtooth (Kynodontas)$6,9661476%21$3,483$81,29329Kino International
33The Time That Remains$6,453--1--$6,453$6,4531IFC
34The Salvation Poem$5,859128%10$5,859$500,06413CanZion Films
35The Strange Case of Angelica$5,594-25%21$2,797$21,6492Cinema Guild
36Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale$5,267-74%12-8$439$231,8356Oscilloscope
37For Colored Girls$5,122-53%21-7$244$37,686,27410Lionsgate
38The Tempest$4,875-55%3-3$1,625$242,1295Disney
39Howl$4,774-29%61$796$602,36016Oscilloscope
40Winter's Bone$4,759131%64$793$6,254,38231Roadside Attractions
41You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger$4,4341%62$739$3,235,09116Sony Pictures Classics
42Feed the Fish$4,41179%43$1,103$90,1868Strand
43Marwencol$3,583--4--$896$68,54114Cinema Guild
44Sea Monsters: A Prehistoric Adventure$3,422-15%20$1,711$23,490,133171National Geographic
45Carlos$3,23949%53$648$140,76013IFC
46Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer$3,18890%62$531$175,46810Magnolia
47If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle$2,999--1--$2,999$5,2281Film Movement
48Night Catches Us$2,808-19%40$702$59,5856Magnolia
49To the Sea$2,610--1--$2,610$58,29326Film Movement
50The Wildest Dream: Conquest of Everest$2,100-55%30$700$697,70623National Geographic
51Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench$1,772--2--$886$21,32910Variance Films
52Animal Kingdom$1,594-3%42$399$1,018,71822Sony Pictures Classics
53Waste Land$1,38548%21$693$103,83911Arthouse Films
54Red Hill$1,361-11%1-1$1,361$20,21910Strand
55Every Man For Himself (2010 re-issue)$830-43%21$415$34,7019Film Desk
56Get Low$674-49%2-1$337$9,112,53824Sony Pictures Classics
57Mesrine: Killer Instinct$545243%21$273$534,72420Music Box
58The Girl Who Played With Fire$41288%1-2$412$7,637,72127Music Box
59The Red Chapel$400-84%21$200$5,0502Lorber Films
60William S. Burroughs: A Man Within$398115%10$398$33,2908Oscilloscope
61The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009)$376-53%1-1$376$10,094,59743Music Box
62Mesrine: Public Enemy #1$365139%20$183$263,23519Music Box