Weekend Box Office: ‘Jackass 3D’ Punches the Box Office in the Crotch

Huh. Maybe this is America’s anti-intellectual tendency rearing its head. After two weekends of David Fincher’s rapid-fire, whip-smart ‘Social Network’ reigning over the box office, the jackasses have now made their mark. ‘Jackass 3D,’ the third entry in the venerable franchise in which Johnny Knoxville and a bunch of other human crash test dummies degrade themselves to varying degrees of potential danger, won this week. And it won big. B-I-G. To learn just how big (and to see how other movies fared this weekend), read on!

So ‘Jackass 3D‘ pulled in a mind-boggling amount of money this weekend. $49.6 million to be exact. This is shocking for a number of reasons: 1) Those wanting to get that “3-D” part of ‘Jackass 3D’ had to pay an extra five dollars (or whatever it is) surcharge for the glasses. That’s five extra dollars for a movie called ‘Jackass 3D,’ a movie whose poster is Johnny Knoxville getting gored by a bull. 2) It’s the third ‘Jackass’ movie. Haven’t we done this enough before? Keep in mind that it’s also the highest-grossing debut for a ‘Jackass’ movie. Has there been a long-simmering build-up of anticipation for this thing? 3) It’s an R-rated movie. I know that some of the folks who read my posts are sometimes troubled about my focus on movie ratings, but it’s fascinating. And it does matter. A lot. (There’s a reason that there’s a poorly dubbed “frickin'” in ‘The Social Network’ – to secure a PG-13 rating.) For an R-rated movie with such seemingly limited appeal (men 18-35) to do this well says a lot. Maybe studios will get a little more fearless and actually release some movies for adults.

I mean, this is incredible, and I guess somewhat inevitable. I know the promotional blitz has been kicking along, that there were a pair of specials on MTV (where the films originated as the ‘Jackass’ TV series), blah blah blah. But this still a terrifically huge box office haul. Of course, it will probably take just as terrific a dive next weekend, but the movie was made for peanuts ($20 million). Amazing. (And no, I still haven’t seen the damn thing yet.)

The other big release this week was ‘RED,’ the deadly retiree movie starring Bruce Willis, Helen Mirren, and John Malkovich. It earned a respectable $22 million, enough to secure the second place spot. I wasn’t sure how this was going to do, since the movie is such an odd mishmash of old folks comedy (think ‘Grumpy Old Men‘) and frantic, fiercely choreographed mayhem. Maybe it was “different” enough to attract folks. It’s certainly an above-average potboiler that deserves some positive attention.

Besides that, the box office looks pretty much like you’d expect it to: ‘The Social Network‘ hung on to the #3 position with another $11 million. Keep it going! Masterpieces that make money are always the best!

While ‘Secretariat‘ was expected to make more money last weekend, it at least has managed to dig itself in for fourth place with another $9.7 million, which is only a 24% drop from last weekend. (Not too shabby!)

The most shocking drop, at least from my perspective, is ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.’ It’s already down at the #10 slot. This was a hugely expensive movie, and one that the studio thought would make all sorts of money. Yet it will escape from the top ten with less than ‘Jackass 3D’ made this weekend alone. Whew.

The Top 10:

01 ‘Jackass 3D’ (Paramount) – $49.5 million

02 ‘RED’ (Summit) – $22 million

03 ‘The Social Network’ (Sony) – $11 million

04 ‘Secretariat’ (Disney) – $9.7 million

05 ‘Life As We Know It’ (Warner Bros) – $9.5 million

06 ‘The Town’ (Warner Bros) – $4.1 million

07 ‘Legend of the Guardians’ (Warner Bros) – $4 million

08 ‘My Soul to Take’ (Universal) – $3.3 million

09 ‘Easy A’ (Sony) – $2.7 million

10 ‘Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps’ (Fox) – $2.4 million

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