'The Martian' Sets October Record with $18 Million Opening Day; 'Hotel Transylvania 2' Still Rolling at $7.5 Million; 'Sicario' Expands Well to $4.3 MillionOctober 03, 2015 04:40 AM

by BoxOffice Staff

Fox reports that The Martian landed with a fantastic opening day of $18 million on Friday, including the adaptation's $2.5 million Thursday night haul. That gives it the best opening day of all-time for an October release, edging out Gravity's $17.5 million two years ago this weekend. That figure also tops Interstellar's $16.9 million first Friday (although it earned $2.15 million in limited release over the previous two days), while giving Matt Damon his best career opening day outside the Bourne franchise (The Bourne Ultimatum debuted to $24.7 million; Supremacy to $18.44 million. Last but not least, this is also director Ridley Scott's third best opening day after Prometheus ($21.5 million) and 2001's Hannibal ($19.3 million) -- in other words, making it his best first day gross among non-sequels and non-franchises.

Even better news for the adaptation of Andy Weir's best-selling novel is the fact that early word of mouth is lining up with critical reviews. Flixster users and Rotten Tomatoes critics each give it a high 94 percent score as of Saturday morning, both of which rank among the best scores by any wide release this year. Worth noting is that the film did earn a bit less on Friday "proper" ($15.5 million without Thursday grosses) than Gravity did ($16.1 million), and for that reason we're not quite pulling the trigger on calling an October opening weekend record (Gravity holds it at $55.8 million). Still, it should be pretty close even if it does fall short, and all of the aforementioned good signs point to a leggy run. BoxOffice's official projection as of Saturday morning is for a stellar $54 million debut frame.

Moving down to second place yesterday, Hotel Transylvania 2 eased 44 percent from its first day last Friday to $7.5 million. That gives the hit animated sequel an eight-day domestic take of $65.04 million -- putting it 16 percent ahead of its 2012 predecessor at the same point. BoxOffice projects a $31 million sophomore frame.

Expanding into wide release after two weeks of strong limited play, Denis Villeneuve's Sicario pulled an encouraging $4.28 million from 2,620 theaters on Friday in third place. That gives the strongly reviewed film a $7.28 million domestic total now, and early buzz is very positive with a 90 percent Flixster score alongside the well-documented 92 percent critical vote. BoxOffice is projecting a $13 million weekend.

In fourth place, The Intern eased 43 percent from opening day last week to $3.57 million yesterday. Writer/director Nancy Meyers' latest success has pulled $28.47 million through eight days of release, putting it 45 percent ahead of the pace of her 2006 film, The Holiday. BoxOffice is projecting a second weekend of $11.5 million.

In fifth, Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials posted $2.1 million for a 49 percent week-to-week drop. With a sum of $57.7 million domestically so far, BoxOffice projects a $7.3 million weekend.

Meanwhile, The Walk is unfortunately not off to the kind of start in IMAX theaters that was hoped for. The strongly reviewed (86 percent on Rotten Tomatoes) film based on tight-rope walker Philippe Petit (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) earned just $390,000 from its 448 locations yesterday, giving it a three-day total of $0.81 million. That falls well short of the benchmark achieved by Everest's early IMAX release just a couple of weeks ago, however audience reception is trending upward as its Flixster score has increased from 77 percent to 84 percent since Wednesday evening. Given the amount of competition in the marketplace right now, the film's nationwide expansion could benefit from that positive word of mouth in the weeks ahead. For now, BoxOffice is projecting a $1.25 million three-day weekend.

Studio Weekend Estimates (Domestic) Fri, Nov. 8 - Sun, Nov. 10

Wide (1000+)

1Thor: The Dark World$86,109,000--3,841--$22,418$86,109,0001Disney
2Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa$11,300,000-44%3,187-158$3,546$78,746,6263Paramount
3Free Birds$11,180,000-29%3,7360$2,993$30,196,4512Relativity Media
4Last Vegas$11,100,000-32%3,08217$3,602$33,530,7362CBS Films
5Ender's Game$10,250,000-62%3,4070$3,009$44,001,3002Lionsgate / Summit
6Gravity$8,405,000-34%2,720-304$3,090$231,119,4926Warner Bros.
712 Years a Slave$6,600,00038%1,144734$5,769$17,345,5814Fox Searchlight
8Captain Phillips$5,800,000-31%2,646-375$2,192$90,982,0165Sony / Columbia
9About Time$5,172,000381%1,2001025$4,310$6,689,6732Universal
10Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2$2,800,000-33%1,836-594$1,525$109,976,1807Sony / Columbia
11Carrie (2013)$1,275,000-61%1,512-740$843$34,040,6174Sony / Screen Gems
12Escape Plan$810,000-64%1,049-917$772$23,172,8354Lionsgate / Summit
13The Counselor$785,000-77%1,022-2022$768$15,830,0373Fox

Limited (100 — 999)

1All Is Lost$1,203,130111%401271$3,000$2,870,7314Roadside Attractions
2Enough Said$625,000-42%429-233$1,457$15,830,6768Fox Searchlight
3Despicable Me 2$456,0008%3101$1,471$365,335,30519Universal
5Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters$170,000-19%216-35$787$67,710,06514Fox
6Lee Daniels' The Butler$141,000-27%214-98$659$115,300,77413Weinstein Company
7Insidious: Chapter 2$137,000-66%229-324$598$83,046,1099FilmDistrict
8Rush (2013)$126,000-63%164-139$768$26,754,2698Universal
9Baggage Claim$104,000-57%135-159$770$21,389,3887Fox Searchlight
10Diana$85,27826%10062$853$188,3812eOne Films US

Platform (1 — 99)

1Dallas Buyers Club$629,038141%3526$17,973$983,4222Focus
2Blue Is the Warmest Color$254,00013%7134$3,577$750,6513IFC Films
3The Book Thief$108,000--4--$27,000$108,0001Fox
4Don Jon$89,000-48%92-89$967$24,063,9047Relativity Media
5Kill Your Darlings$87,00730%3213$2,719$335,8604Sony Pictures Classics
6Blue Jasmine$78,390-30%60-34$1,307$32,515,62616Sony Pictures Classics
7I'm in Love with a Church Girl$56,000-71%74-169$757$2,165,8434High Top Releasing
8Wadjda$52,975-44%59-25$898$1,231,3099Sony Pictures Classics
9Pulling Strings$44,000-37%76-33$579$5,776,6016Lionsgate / Pantelion
10Instructions Not Included$38,000-65%52-84$731$44,196,31711Lionsgate / Pantelion
11The Armstrong Lie$30,904--5--$6,181$30,9041Sony Pictures Classics
12Inequality for All$23,797-54%37-30$643$1,124,0007RADiUS-TWC
13Grace Unplugged$18,650-58%37-44$504$2,480,2606Roadside Attractions
14Spinning Plates$12,79811%60$2,133$57,6963The Film Arcade
15American Promise$9,325--3--$3,108$78,1144Rada Film Group
16Go for Sisters$8,000--2--$4,000$8,0001Variance Films
17The World's End$6,645-23%9-7$738$25,982,74612Focus
18The Square (2013)$6,644--2--$3,322$47,0543Netflix Originals
19At Berkeley$6,075--2--$3,038$6,0751Zipporah Films
20The Spectacular Now$5,413104%12-6$451$6,846,24115A24
2120 Feet from Stardom$5,079-52%4-5$1,270$4,752,53722RADiUS-TWC
22The Broken Circle Breakdown$5,047--2--$2,524$13,5692Tribeca Film
23Seasons of Gray$4,740-37%6-2$790$70,5944EchoLight Studios
24Approved for Adoption$3,776--1--$3,776$3,7761GKIDS
25After Tiller$3,20026%51$640$66,2758Oscilloscope
26Mother of George$2,40097%40$600$145,4429Oscilloscope
27Caucus$2,300--1--$2,300$8,7483Bonfire Films of America
28These Birds Walk$2,000-63%21$1,000$10,8482Oscilloscope