Weekend Box Office: ‘Hero’ Triumphs

Both of this weekend’s new wide releases were produced for the same budget ($165 million) and were expected to close at around the same mark, but audiences made their decisions and one surprisingly edged a bit ahead of the other.

The top movie in America is Disney’s Marvel-inspired animated superhero flick ‘Big Hero 6‘. With great trailers highlighting the loveable Stay Puft Marshmallow Man-like character Baymax, the film slipped ahead of Christopher Nolan’s three-hour space opus by $6.2 million. ‘Big Hero’ pulled in $56.2 million from 3,761 3D and 2D screens and is doing solid business in its staggered release overseas. With many markets to go, it has already earned $23 million internationally.

Nolan’s ‘Interstellar‘ debuted to $50 million from the three-day weekend, which is on the low end of estimates, but did exceptionally well in the director’s preferred IMAX format. Of the $50 million the film earned, $13.4 million came from IMAX showings (which aren’t in 3D). Although this marks the director’s lowest opening since ‘The Prestige’, it’s safe to assume that the 169-minute runtime and lessened amount of showtimes had something to do with that. An additional $2.1 million were grossed from limited celluloid screenings that began at 8PM on Tuesday and continued through the film’s wide debut late Thursday night. Overseas, ‘Interstellar’ opened simultaneously in almost all markets and earned a solid $80 million.

In its sixth week, ‘Gone Girl‘ climbed back up into the #3 spot by only slipping 28% from last weekend. The additional $6.1 million brought its domestic run up to $145.4 million. Including the overseas totals, the film has earned a very impressive $303.2 million.

The PG-13 horror flick ‘Ouija‘ moved down to fourth place. Its drop-off was once again light, as it only slipped 44% with another $6 million. The $5 million movie has now brought in $43.4 million.

Rounding out the Top 5 was Bill Murray’s indie hit ‘St. Vincent‘. A $5.7 million weekend brought its run up to $27.3 million.

Focus Features’ Oscar-buzzed romantic drama ‘The Theory of Everything‘ had a very nice debut with $207,000, for a per-screen average of $41,400. This signals that it ought to do very well as the release expands over the next several weeks.

Weekend estimates have yet to be reported for Lionsgate’s horror flick ‘Jessabelle’.

Top 10:

1. ‘Big Hero 6’ (Buena Vista) – $56,200,000

2. ‘Interstellar’ (Paramount) – $50,000,000

3. ‘Gone Girl’ (Fox) – $6,100,000

4. ‘Ouija’ (Universal) – $6,017,000

5. ‘St. Vincent’ (Weinstein) – $5,707,000

6. ‘Nightcrawler’ (Open Road) – $5,512,000

7. ‘Fury’ (Sony) – $5,500,000

8. ‘John Wick’ (Lionsgate/Summit) – $4,075,000

9. ‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (Buena Vista) – $3,495,000

10. ‘The Book of Life’ (Fox) – $2,800,000


  1. EM

    As I commented Friday, I plan to see Interstellar this week (probably tomorrow); over the weekend I instead attended a screening of Buster Keaton’s silent comedy classic The General, complete with a new-this-year score performed by live orchestra and conducted by the composer. I always enjoy The General, but this was my first theatrical viewing of it. The big screen and the live music sure enhanced the experience, and it was also great seeing it with an audience. Some of my fellow moviegoers were young children, and I enjoyed hearing them giggle and squeal with delight.

    Later Sunday I also attended a screening of a 2014 release, Diplomacy, a talking-heads picture in which a Swedish diplomat attempts to convince German general von Choltitz to disobey Hitler’s order to blow Paris to Kingdom Come as the Allies take back the City of the Light (spoiler: Paris doesn’t get blown up). Although the ending was obvious, the movie managed to be riveting.

      • EM

        The house wasn’t filled, and I didn’t look behind me (I was in row 2), but there was a fair turnout. This was the Midwestern premiere of the score, except that the showing I attended was Midwestern premiere part 2 of 2—less a première and more a deuxième, really. I don’t know how the previous evening’s turnout was.

  2. William Henley

    Do we have a per-screen average for the film-based showings of Interstellar? My first reaction was that those numbers seemed low at $2.1 million, but not entirely sure how many theaters are showing it on film (there like a dozen in my city showing it on film, whereas where my parents live, there is one in the entire state). Also a bit confused – is the $2.1 million just from Tuesday – Thursday showings, or is that all film over five days?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *