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.

Daily Domestic Gross Mon, Apr. 18 2011

Wide (1000+)

#TitleMon, Apr. 18 2011LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Rio (2011)$3,270,783-71%3,827--$855$42,496,7451Fox
2Scream 4$1,349,658-64%3,305--$408$20,041,7481Weinstein Company
3HOP$1,100,440-66%3,608-8$305$83,258,0453Universal
4Hanna$702,885-64%2,54510$276$23,985,7432Focus
5Soul Surfer$618,368-67%2,2140$279$20,483,4972Sony / TriStar
6Arthur (2011)$616,318-62%3,2760$188$22,780,0752Warner Bros.
7Insidious$613,820-59%2,233-186$275$36,484,7113FilmDistrict
8Source Code$566,355-62%2,557-414$221$37,464,9353Summit
9Your Highness$443,520-60%2,7723$160$16,520,9952Universal
10Limitless$360,648-60%1,885-770$191$69,949,9705Relativity Media
11The Lincoln Lawyer$235,107-65%1,702-718$138$50,689,7475Lionsgate
12Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules$227,132-59%1,849-1032$123$48,349,9054Fox

Limited (100 — 999)

#TitleMon, Apr. 18 2011LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1The Conspirator$288,941-65%707--$409$3,795,5431Roadside Attractions
2Jane Eyre (2011)$110,927-60%27427$405$6,715,9626Focus
3Born to Be Wild 3D$104,956-50%2071$507$1,952,6822Warner Bros. / IMAX
4Win Win$99,923-67%384158$260$5,133,4905Fox Searchlight
5Rango$75,392-64%976-1031$77$118,851,1237Paramount
6Sucker Punch$69,804-58%555-1200$126$35,362,0904Warner Bros.
7Battle: Los Angeles$56,374-58%554-854$102$82,249,6406Sony / Columbia
8Paul$45,560-63%536-1131$85$36,150,0605Universal
9The Adjustment Bureau$33,060-58%348-435$95$60,768,2057Universal
10The King's Speech$27,621-54%315-360$88$138,020,82821Weinstein Company
11Just Go With It$26,337-60%3266$81$102,297,66810Sony / Columbia
12No Eres Tu, Soy Yo$25,901-75%189-37$137$1,014,0312Lionsgate / Pantelion
13Hall Pass$23,702-58%333-33$71$44,654,4208Warner Bros. / New Line
14Unknown (2011)$17,715-57%275-90$64$63,397,6009Warner Bros.
15Red Riding Hood$12,503-56%248-529$50$36,954,9356Warner Bros.
16True Grit (2010)$9,276-58%177-86$52$170,947,85117Paramount
17Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son$9,171-61%128-56$72$37,624,3229Fox
18Beastly$5,856-66%110-229$53$27,479,1917CBS Films

Platform (1 — 99)

#TitleMon, Apr. 18 2011LocationsAvg.TotalWks.Dist.
1Hubble 3D$48,06742%321$1,502$23,889,71657Warner Bros. / IMAX
2Kill the Irishman$6,970-57%39-13$179$947,3386Anchor Bay Films
3Thank You$5,845-78%71-21$82$398,0392UTV Communications
4Miral$3,864-62%26-2$149$308,8014Weinstein Company
5Cedar Rapids$3,491-60%47-71$74$6,735,62710Fox Searchlight
6Biutiful$3,021-58%32-6$94$5,015,60416Roadside Attractions
7Black Swan$3,016-35%49-54$62$106,932,01420Fox Searchlight
8Drive Angry$2,960-58%71-55$42$10,709,7468Summit
9Justin Bieber: Never Say Never$1,835-53%35-34$52$72,773,94110Paramount
10The Company Men$1,478-59%20-12$74$4,385,54313Weinstein Company
11Take Me Home Tonight$905-49%42-60$22$6,924,7967Relativity Media
12Blue Valentine (2010)$802-47%15-4$53$9,702,36116Weinstein Company
13The Music Never Stopped$581-67%13-1$45$228,4915Roadside Attractions
14Meet Monica Velour$517-63%42$129$15,1262Anchor Bay Films
15happythankyoumoreplease$197-73%4-5$49$212,2147Anchor Bay Films
16The Last Godfather$62-81%1-19$62$163,6533Roadside Attractions
17Winter's Bone$6-75%20$3$6,531,49745Roadside Attractions