'American Sniper' Continues to Dominate with $31.85M; 'Project Almanac' Starts Softly with $8.50M; 'Black or White' Lands in Fourth with $6.46M; 'Game of Thrones' Claims a Solid $1.50M in Limited ReleaseFebruary 01, 2015 08:47 AM

by Daniel Garris

Warner's American Sniper dominated the box office for a third consecutive weekend with an estimated $31.85 million. That represented the largest unadjusted Super Bowl weekend gross ever (the previous record being the $31.12 million debut of 2008's Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus: Best of Both Worlds Concert Tour). The blockbuster Clint Eastwood directed film starring Bradley Cooper was down a sizable 51 percent from last weekend, as the film clearly took a hit this weekend from its target audience being focused on Super Bowl XLIX. American Sniper will likely re-stabilize next weekend with the Super Bowl out of the way. The film has grossed a massive $248.94 million after 17 days of wide release. That places American Sniper a very impressive 47 percent ahead of the $169.56 million 17-day take of 2013's Gravity.

With moviegoers not interested by the weekend's three new wide releases, Paddington moved into second place with an estimated $8.505 million. The well received family film from The Weinstein Company was up one spot from last weekend and down a slim 31 percent. In addition to being aided by good word of mouth, Paddington also likely received an added boost this weekend from family audiences who wanted to catch the film before Paramount's The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water arrives in the marketplace next weekend. Paddington surpassed the $50 million mark this weekend and has grossed a very solid $50.54 million in 17 days.

Paramount's Project Almanac was the weekend's top opener with an estimated third place start of $8.50 million (with Paddington and Project Almanac currently only separated by $5,000, the race for second place is obviously too close to call). However, the low-budget sci-fi thriller opened significantly below pre-release expectations, as it failed to spark much interest among moviegoers. Project Almanac opened a very disappointing 57 percent below the $19.88 million start of fellow Platinum Dunes film Ouija this past October. Project Almanac was likely hurt at least somewhat by having been delayed by nearly a year. On a positive note, Project Almanac did receive a B rating on CinemaScore, which is very solid given the film's genre.

Relativity's Black or White debuted in fourth with an estimated $6.46 million. The drama starring Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer opened on the high end of its modest expectations, as the film was able to find a bit of audience this weekend despite poor critical reviews. Black or White performed very similarly to the $6.20 million start of Relativity's Beyond the Lights this past November. Black or White received an encouraging A- rating on CinemaScore, which suggests that the film is going over significantly better with moviegoers than it has with critics.

The Boy Next Door rounded out the weekend's top five with an estimated $6.1 million. Universal's low-budget thriller starring Jennifer Lopez was down 3 spots and a very sharp 59 percent from last weekend. The Boy Next Door has grossed a solid $24.69 million in ten days, but is likely to continue to fall off quickly going forward, especially with the upcoming release of Universal's highly anticipated Fifty Shades of Grey now in the near horizon.

Sony's The Wedding Ringer followed in sixth place with an estimated $5.7 million. The modestly budgeted comedy starring Kevin Hart and Josh Gad fell 50 percent from last weekend. The Wedding Ringer is on the verge of reaching the $50 million mark with a 17-day gross of $48.14 million.

Further down on this weekend's chart nether Open Road's The Loft nor A24's A Most Violent Year were able to pack much punch. The Loft debuted in tenth place with an estimated $2.88 million. Meanwhile, A Most Violent Year landed in thirteenth place with an estimated $1.70 million from 818 locations. The Loft suffered from being given a last minute wide release (after being long delayed), while A Most Violent Year has seen its early momentum come to a halt after not receiving a Best Picture nomination. A Most Violent Year has grossed $3.17 million to date.

Warner's Game of Thrones The IMAX Experience had a far more respectable performance this weekend with an estimated $1.50 million from 205 IMAX locations. That gave the theatrical release consisting of the final two episodes of Season 4 of the popular HBO series a healthy per-location average of $7,322 for the frame. Game of Thrones The IMAX Experience is scheduled to play in IMAX locations through February 5th.

Weekend Actuals (Domestic) Fri, Nov. 25 - Sun, Nov. 27

Wide (1000+)

1The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 1$41,683,574-70%4,0665$10,252$220,832,0092Lionsgate / Summit
2The Muppets$29,239,026--3,440--$8,500$41,516,6911Disney
3Happy Feet Two$13,397,346-37%3,6115$3,710$43,755,3572Warner Bros.
4Arthur Christmas$12,068,931--3,376--$3,575$16,301,1311Sony / Columbia
6Jack and Jill$10,000,142-15%3,029-409$3,301$57,120,1123Sony / Columbia
7Immortals$8,875,905-28%2,677-443$3,316$68,706,9813Relativity Media
8Puss in Boots (2011)$7,511,036-30%3,005-410$2,500$135,430,0925Paramount / DreamWorks
9Tower Heist$7,174,6151%2,474-468$2,900$65,198,7804Universal
10J. Edgar$4,975,172-16%1,910-37$2,605$28,837,8433Warner Bros.

Limited (100 — 999)

1The Descendants$7,345,720517%433404$16,965$10,886,9522Fox Searchlight
2My Week with Marilyn$1,750,507--244--$7,174$2,062,1501Weinstein Company
3A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas$1,594,054-45%875-933$1,822$31,559,3894Warner Bros. / New Line
4In Time$775,107-55%457-910$1,696$35,050,9345Fox
5Desi Boyz$702,325--103--$6,819$702,3251Eros International
6Like Crazy$425,116-19%15041$2,834$2,478,4345Paramount Vantage
7Real Steel$330,377-40%262-440$1,261$83,181,0498Disney / DreamWorks
8The Help$311,0764%283-74$1,099$168,753,48016Disney / DreamWorks
9Margin Call$293,728-31%139-34$2,113$4,367,6856Roadside Attractions
10Footloose (2011)$288,787-66%384-834$752$50,833,8677Paramount
11Moneyball$285,687-44%187-222$1,528$73,155,24810Sony / Columbia
12Paranormal Activity 3$275,373-72%355-1047$776$103,245,7706Paramount
13The Ides of March$254,648-45%159-139$1,602$39,543,2468Sony / Columbia
14The Smurfs$239,51112%248-4$966$142,324,12018Sony / Columbia
15The Three Musketeers (2011)$229,8306%22454$1,026$19,908,9286Summit
16Courageous$209,123-51%211-306$991$32,759,7589Sony / TriStar
17The Way$205,441-25%101-36$2,034$3,374,4938Producers Distribution Agency
19Dolphin Tale$185,854-29%216-172$860$70,363,25510Warner Bros.
20Martha Marcy May Marlene$176,158-54%113-67$1,559$2,575,7716Fox Searchlight
21Contagion$155,298-22%218-83$712$75,450,54912Warner Bros.
23Rise of the Planet of the Apes$77,065-11%103-28$748$176,585,29717Fox
24Rockstar$35,787-82%1120$320$972,2543Eros International
25RA. One$2,303-93%1890$12$2,509,1505Eros International

Platform (1 — 99)

1Melancholia$329,622-2%9538$3,470$1,200,5993Magnolia Pictures
2The Artist$204,878--4--$51,220$204,8781Weinstein Company
3The Skin I Live In$184,737-34%91-22$2,030$2,420,4027Sony Pictures Classics
4A Dangerous Method$167,953--4--$41,988$226,6851Sony Pictures Classics
5The Lion King 3D$105,747-19%68-14$1,555$94,067,82911Disney
6Drive (2011)$93,34451%9347$1,004$34,500,25411FilmDistrict
7Born to Be Wild 3D$89,02212%490$1,817$14,451,65334Warner Bros. / IMAX
8Hubble 3D$71,20158%211$3,391$29,860,88789Warner Bros. / IMAX
9Anonymous$69,211-61%72-107$961$4,301,0185Sony / Columbia
10Midnight in Paris$58,95570%415$1,438$55,684,54128Sony Pictures Classics
11The Polar Express (2011 re-issue)$55,299--19--$2,910$74,4701Warner Bros.
12The Rum Diary$54,243-63%54-98$1,005$12,957,0155FilmDistrict
13Take Shelter$50,282-45%49-25$1,026$1,444,3959Sony Pictures Classics
14Cars 2$28,394-20%63-23$451$191,434,78423Disney
15Spy Kids: All The Time in the World$26,764-28%48-22$558$38,516,83215Weinstein Company
16Le Havre$26,738-10%12-1$2,228$238,2656Janus Films
17Under the Sea 3D$25,08014%8-3$3,135$30,140,387146Warner Bros. / IMAX
18The Big Year$25,014-11%53-6$472$7,160,6497Fox
19The Guard$19,930-24%231$867$5,257,69318Sony Pictures Classics
20Into the Abyss$19,002-55%19-8$1,000$148,9373IFC Films
21Eames: The Architect and the Painter$18,335-25%93$2,037$53,0062First Run Features
22Tomboy (2011)$17,947154%65$2,991$31,7982Dada Films
23Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey$17,514-45%11-4$1,592$162,5146Submarine Deluxe
24The Women on the 6th Floor$17,242-27%161$1,078$336,4958Strand Releasing
25Sea Rex: Journey To A Prehistoric World$12,60964%90$1,401$4,399,140813D Entertainment
26The Mighty Macs$11,897-39%11-17$1,082$1,889,5226Quaker Media
27Mozart's Sister$10,974-34%13-9$844$619,14215Music Box Films
28Crazy Wisdom$10,304--1--$10,304$10,3041Alive Mind Cinema
29Sarah's Key$10,061-68%27-25$373$7,685,37419Weinstein Company
30Weekend$9,212-1%8-3$1,152$469,94710IFC Films
31Elite Squad: The Enemy Within$9,118-19%52$1,824$37,2513Variance Films
32Inni$7,00213%5-1$1,400$99,4235Cinema Purgatorio
33El Bulli: Cooking in Progress$6,667293%31$2,222$178,91818Alive Mind Cinema
34The Whale$6,604-9%2-3$3,302$53,99112Paladin
35Love Crime$6,4392%8-3$805$538,35613IFC Films
36Another Happy Day$5,537-35%64$923$17,3102Phase 4 Films
37Young Goethe In Love$5,173-41%30$1,724$57,9534Music Box Films
38Garbo: The Spy$5,000-11%21$2,500$12,6772First Run Features
39House of Tolerance$4,766--1--$4,766$4,7661IFC Films
40Revenge of the Electric Car$4,727-14%30$1,576$119,2616Area23a
41Machine Gun Preacher$4,24721%9-10$472$537,58010Relativity Media
42The Other F Word$3,887-43%4-2$972$43,3014Oscilloscope
43The Mill and the Cross$3,762-19%4-5$941$247,17411Kino Lorber
44Sholem Aleichem: Laughing in the Darkness$2,986-69%7-6$427$825,16421International Film Circuit
45Passione: A Musical Adventure$2,867--1--$2,867$258,22223Abramorama
47Four Adventures of Reinette and Mirabelle (2011 re-issue)$2,498--1--$2,498$15,86419The Film Desk
48London Boulevard$2,2056%21$1,103$10,4843IFC Films
49Blackthorn$2,201-49%3-3$734$162,7488Magnolia Pictures
50My Reincarnation$2,17110%20$1,086$28,0665Long Shot Factory
51Laugh at My Pain$2,167-66%4-7$542$7,701,97412CodeBlack Entertainment
52Senna$1,959-16%20$980$1,612,43016Producers Distribution Agency
53Granito: How to Nail a Dictator$1,5241781%32$508$34,86011International Film Circuit
54The Heir Apparent: Largo Winch$1,360-52%3-1$453$29,5892Music Box Films
55Tucker & Dale vs. Evil$1,269-38%5-2$254$223,6159Magnolia / Magnet
56The Conquest$1,246-87%3-5$415$159,4663Music Box Films
57Amigo$1,193-51%2-2$597$172,09915Variance Films
58Bill Cunningham New York$1,172--1--$1,172$1,510,02637Zeitgeist Films
59Higher Ground$99251%60$165$829,98214Sony Pictures Classics
60Restless (2011)$835252%31$278$161,29911Sony Pictures Classics
61Tyrannosaur$804-89%3-2$268$11,5682Strand Releasing
62Rid of Me$715-65%21$358$3,3492Submarine Entertainment
63The Names of Love$654-45%10$654$513,83623Music Box Films
643 (2010)$599-76%2-3$300$58,91111Strand Releasing
65The Man Nobody Knew$529-90%1-2$529$140,09710First Run Features
66Rapt$495--1--$495$44,45621Lorber Films
67The Interrupters$404--3--$135$254,63118Cinema Guild
68Back Door Channels$346--2--$173$11,99711Fisher Klingenstein Films
69Project Nim$231--1--$231$407,21121Roadside Attractions
70OKA!$168-40%10$168$12,9377Dada Films
71I'm Glad My Mother is Alive$147--1--$147$8,70513Strand Releasing
72Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame$143-90%2-6$72$489,95513Indomina Media