Weekend Box Office: Denzel + Action = Hit

With his twelfth straight movie in a leading role to open north of $20 million, Denzel Washington has secured his position as one of Hollywood’s most consistently bankable stars.

The Equalizer‘ performed so well this weekend that it’s now the fourth highest-opening September release of all time. From 3,236 locations, the action-packed crime thriller pulled in $35 million, which is pretty impressive for a gritty R-rated flick. With strong word of mouth, good critical reviews and older adults showing up in masses to see it this weekend, ‘The Equalizer’ is expected to have a very healthy theatrical run.

In its second weekend, ‘The Maze Runner‘ slipped 46% in attendance – which is actually pretty light for the Young Adult genre. $17.5 million sophomore weekend brings the film’s ten-day total up to $58 million, signaling that it could very well cross the $100 million mark by the time it leaves theaters.

Laika Animation continued its upward momentum with ‘The BoxTrolls‘, which opened higher than the studio’s last two releases (‘Coraline‘ with $16.8 million and ‘ParaNorman‘ with $14 million). From 3,464 locations, the stop-motion family flick earned $17.2 million. That’s actually the highest-grossing stop-motion title since ‘The Corpse Bride‘ ($19.1 million).

Last weekend, ‘This Is Where I Leave You‘ debuted in third place behind ‘A Walk Among the Tombstones‘, but it fared much better than the Liam Neeson vehicle this weekend. ‘This Is Where’ slipped a mild 39% in attendance, finishing in fourth place with another $7 million, while ‘Tombstones’ fell a harsh 67% and slid from second to seventh place with only $4.2 million.

Dolphin Tale 2‘ rounded out the Top 5 in its third weekend. The family flick earned another $4.8 million and has now made $33.6 million.

The weekend box office numbers have yet to be released for indie titles ‘The Two Faces of January’ or ‘Jimi: All Is By My Side’.

Top 10:

1. ‘The Equalizer’ (Sony) – $35,000,000

2. ‘The Maze Runner’ (Fox) – $17,500,000

3. ‘The BoxTrolls’ (Focus) – $17,250,000

4. ‘This Is Where I Leave You’ (Warner Bros.) – $7,010,000

5. ‘Dolphin Tale 2’ (Warner Bros.) – $4,835,000

6. ‘No Good Deed’ (Screen Gems) – $4,600,000

7. ‘A Walk Among the Tombstones’ (Universal) – $4,234,000

8. ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ (Buena Vista) – $3,789,000

9. ‘Let’s Be Cops’ (Fox) – $1,515,000

10. ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ (Paramount) – $1,450,000


    • Well, I can see why he signed up for this one…but you’re essentially right – he’s one of the best actors in the business, but he continues to take roles that don’t really challenge him as an actor. FLIGHT was really good, but he’s been better than the screenplays of most of the work he’s done in the past decade.

      • Chapz Kilud

        You can say the same about Liam Neeson. By some coincidence Neeson was “on the flight” for Non-Stop. In fairness he did try to take on different role such as a million ways to die in the west. But I didn’t like him in that role. It’s looking more and more like Liam Neeson is stuck in Taken-like films. Even a Walk Among the Tombstones is another Taken-like movie. There is still hope for Denzel Washington. You’re right I like Flight a lot. But I can’t really think of a good movie I saw recently that would be perfect for Denzel Washington. He just needs to stop typecasting himself. Let’s hope it doesn’t happen because he’s too old. He’s turning 60 this year.

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