Weekend Wrap Up: Audiences Don’t Feel the “Need for Speed”

I’m sure a lot of box office websites/blogs are going to go with some reference to moviegoers not feeling the need for speed in their weekend wrap ups, and I wish I could’ve come up with something more clever, but simplicity works fine in this case. Anyway, this weekend pitted two new flicks against the big two holdovers from last weekend. In the end, Mr. Peabody and Sherman rose to the top spot.

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After a decent opening last weekend, Mr. Peabody and Sherman held well, dipping 34% to $21.2 million and taking the top spot. That gives it a total of just under $63.2 million. At its current pace, MP&S should end up surpassing $100 million, which is pretty good for a couple of older animated characters that kids today (and even people my age) aren’t familiar with. However, Muppets Most Wanted arrives next weekend, so MP&S could be in for a hard fall. We’ll see.

300: Rise of an Empire fell 58%. That’s a big drop, though not one that’s unexpected. Honestly, the fact that the drop is under 60% is actually fairly encouraging. ROAE pulled in $19.1 million and lifted its total to $78.3 million. It has a decent shot at $100 million and I think it should inch its way over that barrier.

Debuting in third, Need for Speed opened to $17.8 million. The general sentiment on the internet seems to be that this debut is rather disappointing, or that the movie’s an outright bomb. I don’t understand that. Were expectations ever even that high? Aaron Paul is extremely unproven as a draw, it looked like a Fast and Furious ripoff and video game adaptations rarely succeed. Given all that, I think $18 million is actually pretty solid. Yeah, it’ll have to do pretty well overseas to turn a profit, but this is by no means a huge failure.

Sliding 33%, Non-Stop grossed $10.6 million. Its legs certainly haven’t approached the level of Taken, but they haven’t been too bad. The Liam Neeson flick has now amassed $68.8 million. Flopping in fifth place, The Single Mom’s Club made just $8.3 million, way off usual Tyler Perry  movies. Maybe moviegoers are finally growing tired of him. Or maybe he just needs to churn out more Madea movies.

The Lego Movie eased 29% down to $7.7 million. $236.9 million in the bank; it’ll probably end up around $255-260 million. Continuing its fast descent from the top ten, Son of God fell 48% and pulled in $5.4 million. It has made just under $51 million. Debuting to an extremely impressive $3.6 million from just 62 theatres, The Grand Budapest Hotel made a surprise appearance in the top ten. I have no idea what this movie is about, but its sizzling per-theatre average of over $53,000 is more than the rest of the top ten combined. That’s damn impressive.

At the same time, I’m upset at The Grand Budapest Hotel because it pushed Frozen down a spot, meaning this will likely be the phenomenon’s last weekend in the top ten. Unless it holds extremely well and Son of God falls very hard, or The Single Moms Club crashes unfathomably hard, this is the weekend we bid adieu to Frozen. It was truly a magical run while it lasted. But with the Oscars behind us now, and the DVD/Blu-Ray release coming up in just a few days, I think we’re ready to give Frozen a fond farewell. Anna and Elsa slipped just 28% and grossed $2.1 million, bringing the total to $396.4 million. It will probably take a few more weeks, but Frozen should inch its way to the $400 million milestone. Well done, Disney.

It’s interesting that the bottom three in the top are all very interesting stories. The final spot goes to the Veronica Mars movie, which is a triumph in the very fact it even exists. I own the first season on DVD. I watched the first five or so episodes years ago….and then just never continued it. I liked it. But I’m weird. Anyway, VM made $2 million this weekend, which considering it was only in 291 theatres, and those who helped the project through Kickstarter, have pretty much all watched it already, is rather impressive. Good for Kristen Bell. Between this and Frozen, she’s done very well for herself lately.

This was a down weekend, with barely one film breaking $20 million. The box office should pick up in a big way next week. Muppets Most Wanted should post solid numbers, but the real story (and wildcard) is Divergent. Expectations and predictions are all over the place on this one. Color me intrigued. I could see this opening anywhere from $35 million to $75 million. Should be very interesting. Until we meet again.

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