Weekend Box Office: Since U Been Gone

Not only did this weekend’s two widest releases score big, so did last week’s holdovers. The two new movies debuted on just about as many screens as one another and earned just about as much as one another. Neither of the titles was expected to hit the ground running this strongly.

Taking the top spot was David Fincher’s heavily-buzzed drama ‘Gone Girl‘. Based on Gillian Flynn’s wildly popular novel, the film tells the story of a troubled married couple, the secrets they keep and a missing person’s report. The $61 million, R-rated movie opened with an estimated $38 million and, due to strong reviews and word-of-mouth, is expected to hold over very well. This great opening marks a career-best for Fincher.

The R-rated ‘Conjuring’ spin-off ‘Annabelle‘ finished its first weekend less than $1 million behind the leader. The horror movie’s $37.2 million opening solidifies the franchisability that New Line hoped for. Last summer, ‘The Conjuring’ opened to $41.8 million. It went on to close with a domestic theatrical total of $137.4 million and an overseas total of $180 million – which was huge for a $20 million horror flick. ‘Annabelle’ keeps that success streak moving forward much stronger than most spin-offs.

Success was also in the cards for the returning titles that made up the rest of the Top 5. Denzel Washington’s ‘The Equalizer‘ slipped 44%, landing in the #3 spot with another $19 million, for a ten-day total of $64.5 million. Stop-motion ‘The BoxTrolls‘ fell only 28% (which is amazing) and stepped down to fourth place with another $12.4 million. Its ten-day total now sits at $32.5 million. Three-week-old ‘The Maze Runner‘ fell only 31%, earned another $12 million and carries a 17-day total of $73.9 million.

Nicholas Cage’s faith-based apocalypse thriller ‘Left Behind‘ had a not-too-shabby sixth place opening. From 1,825 locations, the $16 million picture pulled in $6.8 million.

Two films opened in limited release this weekend with plans of near-future nationwide expansions, yet neither did much in the way of business and their bankability isn’t looking too great.

Warner Bros. released the first of Reese Witherspoon’s two fall dramas on 461 screens, but it opened with a per-screen average even lower than ‘Left Behind’. ‘The Good Lie‘ earned $935,000 this weekend, only enough for a per-screen average of $2,028.

Jason Reitman’s second theatrical outing of the year (the first being January’s flop ‘Labor Day‘, which only grossed $13.3 million domestically) isn’t off to a very good start. ‘Men, Women & Children‘ debuted on 17 screens with just $48,000, equivalent to a per-screen average of $2,824.

Numbers have yet to be released for Lars von Trier’s ‘Nymphomaniac: Director’s Cut’.

Top 10:

1. ‘Gone Girl’ (Fox) – $38,000,000

2. ‘Annabelle’ (Warner Bros.) – $ 37,200,000

3. ‘The Equalizer’ (Sony) – $19,000,000

4. ‘The BoxTrolls’ (Focus) – $12,425,000

5. ‘The Maze Runner’ (Fox) – $12,000,000

6. ‘Left Behind’ (Freestyle) – $6,850,000

7. ‘This Is Where I Leave You’ (Warner Bros.) – $4,000,000

8. ‘Dolphin Tale 2’ (Warner Bros.) – $3,530,000

9. ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ (Buena Vista) – $3,034,000

10. ‘No Good Deed’ (Screen Gems) – $2,500,000


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