WEEKEND BOX OFFICE
As predicted, director Christopher Nolan's Inception defeated Angelina Jolie's Salt last weekend to take the number one spot at the box office for a second week in a row. But even with the much-talked-about new comedy Dinner for Schmucks and the family film Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore opening this weekend there was still very little doubt that Nolan's buzz-worthy movie, which is already earning Oscar consideration, would be number one for a third week in a row.
Coming in a number one as expected was Inception, the long awaited sci-fi action thriller from director Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight). The film stars an incredible cast of actors including Oscar nominees Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page and Ken Watanabe, Oscar winners Marion Cotillard and Michael Caine, as well as Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Tom Hardy, Cillian Murphy, and Lukas Haas. While the film dropped 35.6% from the previous week and was seen on 247 less screens, it still managed to earn roughly $7,763 in each of its 3,545 theaters for a weekend total of $27.5 million. Now in just three weeks the film has earned $193.3 million, which surpasses its purported $160 million production budget.
Debuting at number two this week was the workplace comedy Dinner for Schmucks starring Steve Carell, Paul Rudd, Ron Livingston, Jemaine Clement, Bruce Greenwood and Zach Galifianakis. The movie opened on 2,911 screens and earned about $8,004 on each for an opening weekend total of $23.3 million. The film will need to still attract audiences for a few more weeks in order to earn back all of its initial $69 million production costs.
Falling one spot back this week and coming in third is Salt, the CIA espionage movie starring Angelina Jolie. In the film, Jolie plays Evelyn Salt, a CIA agent accused of being a Russian sleeper spy who must go on the run in order to clear her name. The film also stars Liev Schreiber (X-Men Origins: Wolverine) and Chiwetel Ejiofor (2012). While the movie fell almost 50% from its debut the previous week it still managed to earn $5,329 on each of its 3,612 screens for a combined total of $19.2 million this weekend. The film has now earned $70 million in just two weeks, which is close to earning back its $110 million production costs.
Falling one place back to forth this week is Universal's new animated film Despicable Me. The film, which centers around the world's greatest villain taking on the new challenge of raising three adorable little orphan girls, boasts an all-star cast of comedic voices including Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Russell Brand, Kristen Wiig, Will Arnett, Julie Andrews, Danny McBride and Ken Jeong. The movie may have dropped 34.4% from last week but it added two new screens earning $4,315 in each of its 3,602 theaters for a total of $15.5 million this weekend. Now in just under a month the movie has earned almost $200 million far surpassing its $69 million budget.
Finally, rounding off the top five this week is the sequel to the extremely successful family film Cats and Dogs, Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore. The film stars Chris O'Donnell (Batman Forever) along with an all-star cast of voice talent, which includes James Marsden (X2: X-Men United), Christina Applegate (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy), Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother), comedian Katt Williams, Oscar nominee Nick Nolte (48 Hours) and the legendary Bette Midler (Ruthless People). The film debuted on 3,705 screens and earned $3,381 per screen for an opening weekend total of around $12.5 million, which is now where near recouping its $85 million production costs.
Failing to find an audience this week was the new brotherhood/afterlife film Charlie St. Cloud starring teen-sensation Zac Efron, Amanda Crew, Kim Basinger, Ray Liotta, Donal Logue and Charlie Tahan. Despite the popular young actor the movie only earned $12.1 million in its debut and failed to crack the top five coming in sixth. It managed to make about $4,465 on each of its 2,718 but will need to earn more in the next few weeks if the studio hopes to make back the film's $44 million production budget.
Doing well in limited release, thanks to great reviews and Oscar worthy performances from it's leads, is the new independent drama Get Low starring Oscar winners Robert Duvall and Sissy Spacek and Oscar nominee Bill Murray. The film was only seen on four screens but earned $22,725 on each for an opening weekend total of around $90,900. If the film continues to have good word-of-mouth as it opens in more cities it could end up earning back its $7 million production cost.
Next week will see the opening of three new films in wide release and two in limited release.
Also opening in wide release next week is Flipped, the new romantic coming-of-age film from Stand By Me and When Harry Met Sally... director Rob Reiner. The movie stars an excellent cast of acting veterans including Aidan Quinn, Rebecca De Mornay, Penelope Ann Miller, Anthony Edwards and John Mahoney.
Opening in limited release next week is the independent film Middle Men, which examines the rise of the porn industry on the Internet in the mid-'1990s and stars Luke Wilson, Giovanni Ribisi, Gabriel Macht, Kevin Pollak, Kelsey Grammer, Christopher McDonald and James Caan.
Finally, in limited release next week is the gritty British import The Disappearance of Alice Creed starring Gemma Arterton (Clash of the Titans), Martin Compston (Doomsday), and Eddie Marsan (Sherlock Holmes). So please check back in seven days to see who comes out on top at the box office next week!