Weekend Wrap Up: Powerful Oz Rescues box Office

After nearly two and a half months of lackluster box office, Oz: The Great and Powerful finally arrived to provide moviegoers with the first true blockbuster of the year. And it couldn’t have come at a better time. There wasn’t much else of interest in the box office this week, as all the attention, and the glory, is rightly focused on the strong debut of Oz.

Oz: The Great and Powerful

Yeah, so I’m reusing the same weird Japanese poster I used from my March preview blog. Sue me.

James Franco and company pushed Oz to a very strong $80 million debut. Nobody was expecting this to reach the insane $116 million of Alice in Wonderland or last year’s March blockbuster, The Hunger Games, which opened to almost twice as much (and without 3-D, might I add). But anyway, this is good news for Disney, and the box office as a whole, which had practically been on life support this year. The budget is an absurd $215 million on this one, but with this debut, Oz should more than match that stateside, so with overseas grosses, it will do very well. The reviews have been mixed, but it has a solid B+ Cinemascore. The yellow brick road ahead looks pretty smooth for Oz, as it doesn’t face direct competition for families until The Croods arrives in two weeks.

Crashing 63% is Jack the Giant Slayer, which pulled in $10 million this weekend. I guess that’s to be expected, since Oz pretty much stole away its entire audience. It’s a bit under $44 million now, so coming anywhere close to that $195 million budget is not happening. Identity Thief slid to third, down 35%, lifting its total to $117 million after grossing $6.3 this weekend. Thank you, Identity Thief, for keeping the box office alive for a few weeks, but the reigns have officially been turned over to Oz, which should be by far 2013’s highest grossing film by the end of next weekend.

Dead Man Down debuted in fourth with $5.35 million. That’s….okay? I guess. Nobody was really expecting much here and I can’t imagine the budget was all that high, so maybe it will end up all right. Snitch fell 34% to $5.1 million, bringing its gross to just under $32 million. For a solo outing by the Rock, that’s not bad. Even though Fast and Furious 6 might make more than that in a single day.

21 and Over fell a not-too-bad 42$ to $5.05 million. It has $16.8 million in the bank and the budget was only $13 million, so this should be okay in the end. Down 40%, Safe Haven grossed $3.8 million this weekend. With a bit under $63 million, it’s passed The Lucky One and will very soon surpass The Last Song, so Safe Haven will end up as one of Nicholas Sparks’s highest grossing movies.

Silver Linings Playbook continues holding well, though its 35% drop is quite a bit more than in recent weeks. Nonetheless, it grossed $3.75 million this weekend, lifting its grand total to a very impressive $121 million. For such a late-bloomer, this one has done extremely well. Moving on, Escape From Planet Earth raised its total to $47.8 million via a $3.2 million weekend and was off 52%.

Finally, wrapping up the top ten is The Last Exorcism Part II. I’m almost impressed it managed another weekend in the top ten. Anyway, it was down 60%, grossed $3.1 million and brought its total $12.08 million. That about does it for this weekend, and looking at next weekend’s slate, Oz is all but guaranteed to spend a second weekend on top.

The Call: This awful looking thriller should satiate some horror fans, I suppose, but I can’t see it making much. Halle Berry isn’t a box office draw at all. I predicted $12 million in my March preview, but I’m going to lower that down to $9 million.

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone: I like the Steve Carrell/Jim Carey pairing, but I get the sinking feeling this movie’s jokes are going to be hit and miss. Nonetheless, it should do better than The Call. I’m also going to lower my prediction for this one a bit, but only down to about $14 million. Well, the box office finally got exciting again, and the rest of March should be a whole lot more interesting. Until we meet again, guys.

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