Paramount Pictures lucked out this weekend as audiences flooded theaters to see its expensive Biblical epic. At the same time, moviegoers spoke loudly and clearly that they don’t want to watch Arnold Schwarzenegger anymore.
Predicted to open around $35 million, Darren Aronofsky’s ‘Noah‘ closed out its opening weekend much higher with $44 million. The controversial interpretation of the well-known Bible story also cleaned up overseas, where it opened ahead of its domestic release and also offered 3D showings. (Domestically, ‘Noah’ is only playing in 2D.) All in all, the film has already earned $95.1 million worldwide. With audiences skewing older, hopefully the movie’s second weekend holdover will be strong enough to stop it from getting pummeled by the ‘Captain America’ sequel.
Last weekend’s front-loaded debut of ‘Divergent‘ signaled a huge drop-off for weekend number two, but that wasn’t at all the case. The YA adaptation’s 52% decline in attendance allowed for a $26.5 million second weekend, giving it a ten-day total of $95 million. The $85 million-budgeted picture will cross the $100 million milestone by the end of the week.
‘Muppets Most Wanted‘, which had a sad debut last weekend, also held over better than expected. Its 33% drop in attendance gave it another $11.3 million. Unfortunately, the $50 million movie has only earned $33.2 million over its first ten days, which is just barely higher than what 2011’s ‘The Muppets‘ earned during its first weekend. For some incomprehensible reason, ‘Mr. Peabody & Sherman‘ is still going strong. This weekend’s 19% decline gave DreamWorks another $9.5 million, pushing the animated comedy’s domestic total up to $94.9 million. However, the film had a $145 million production budget, so here’s hoping we don’t get a sequel.
Last weekend’s surprise hit ‘God’s Not Dead‘ expanded to wide status. From 1,178 locations, its second weekend gross dropped only 1.5% to $9 million, giving the faith-based drama a ten-day total of $22 million.
Meanwhile, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s new action flick ‘Sabotage‘ opened in the #7 spot, making this one of the star’s worst premieres to date. From nearly 2,500 locations, the movie only pulled $5.3 million. Perhaps the action star won’t be back after all.
Considering that Monday is Cesar Chavez Day, you may have expected Lionsgate’s ‘Cesar Chavez‘ bio-pic to have a stronger debut. From 664 locations, it only grossed a mild $3 million.
From just seven locations, Malaysian crime thriller ‘The Raid 2‘ scored $177,000, for a $25,286 per-screen average. Sony Pictures Classics will expand its release over the next few weekends. Some reports say that it will play on more than 800 screens, but I highly doubt that.
Of note, ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ opened in 32 overseas markets this weekend. Disney announced that the sequel has already grossed $75.2 million and is performing well ahead of ‘The First Avenger‘.
That’s not the only notable Disney news. In the first three weeks of its release in Japan, ‘Frozen‘ has earned $50 million in that market, which has pushed the film’s worldwide total to $1.07 billion. This makes it the tenth-highest grossing movie of all time, dethroning Pixar’s ‘Toy Story 3‘ as the highest-grossing animated feature of all time. While I thoroughly enjoyed ‘Frozen’, people who won’t stop raving about it should let it go already. It’s not that great.
1. ‘Noah’ (Paramount) – $44,000,000
2. ‘Divergent’ (Summit) – $26,500,000
3. ‘Muppets Most Wanted’ (Buena Vista) – $11,373,000
4. ‘Mr. Peabody & Sherman’ (Fox) – $9,500,000
5. ‘God’s Not Dead’ (Freestyle) – $9,075,000
6. ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ (Fox Searchlight) – $8,825,000
7. ‘Sabotage’ (Open Road) – $5,330,000
8. ‘Need for Speed’ (Buena Vista) – $4,335,000
9. ‘300: Rise of an Empire’ (Warner Bros.) – $4,300,000
10. ‘Non-Stop’ (Universal) – $4,087,000