Early estimates for Pixar and Disney’s Up box office take for Friday began at $17 million, then moved to $19 million, and finally topped out at $21.4 million.
That strong momentum carried right through the weekend with studio estimates pointing towards a sky high $68.2 million take from Friday-Sunday. Only Disney and Pixar’s The Incredibles and Finding Nemo scored better openings for Disney animated films.
A surprising statistic Disney offered in conjunction with Up’s estimates is the 3D version seated 2.2 times more patrons than the 2D version. Spillover from moviegoers unable to buy a 3D seat either ended up in the 2D version or Night at the Museum 2.
Speaking of Battle for the Smithsonian, it came in second place with a distant but respectable $25.5 million launching its total earnings over $100 million. Combined with Up, the two family-geared pics nearly hit $100 million over this past weekend.
Sam Raimi’s Drag Me to Hell came in third with a modest $16.6 million, around what the studio expected. Positive word of mouth and a 94% rating at Rotten Tomatoes should help propel it into next weekend with a smaller than average drop off.
The complete top 10 box office results for May 29-31, 2009 are as follows:
- 1. Up: $68.2m
- 2. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian: $25.5m
- 3. Drag Me to Hell: $16.628m
- 4. Terminator Salvation: $16.14m
- 5. Star Trek: $12.8m
- 6. Angels & Demons: $11.2m
- 7. Dance Flick: $4.9m
- 8. X-Men Origins: Wolverine: $3.9m
- 9. Ghosts of Girlfriends Past: $1.9m
- 10. Obsessed: $665k
Next week sees the raunchy and well reviewed R-rated The Hangover square off against another family comedy, Land of the Lost with Will Ferrell. The latter has a small edge in screen by around 100. Also opening on 2000 fewer screens is the Fox Searchlight comedy My Life in Ruins.