The big-budget remake Clash of the Titans ruled a very busy box office this weekend, holding off dragons, Janet Jackson and Miley Cyrus en route to a record opening for an Easter weekend release.
Debuting on 3,777 screens (over 1,800 of which were of the 3D variety), the $125 million CG extravaganza commanded $61.4 million ($64 million since last Thursday night) over the Easter holiday weekend. While not quite in the same ballpark as recent 3D live action features Avatar ($77 million) and the recent Alice in Wonderland ($116 million), Titans still made quite the remarkable debut, passed only by last year Fast & Furious ($71 million) for biggest April opening of all time.
Critics may not have been too kind to the remake of the 1981 MGM fantasy feature, but viewers eager for a new 3D visual effects blockbuster (even if the technology wasn’t added to the film until two months ago) could care less what they had to say. The film did drop on each successive weekend day, which could be a sign that word-of-mouth isn’t exactly the strongest. Next weekend will be the true test for the film to see if everyone who wanted to see Oskar Schindler release the Kracken went in the first three days or not.
Tyler Perry struck box office gold yet again with the release of his latest film, Why Did I Get Married Too, with a big $30.1 million from 2,155 screens. As is the case with practically all of Perry’s films, the film had a low budget and a big opening weekend turnout by his very loyal fan base. Perry’s films tend to make most of its money in the first ten days, followed by very fast fades in theaters. If this feature follows the normal Perry pattern, it might reach a total domestic gross of $65-70 million (or three to three and a half times its $20 million budget).
After a so-so opening last weekend, Dreamworks’ pricey 3D animated feature How to Train Your Dragon benefited from the holiday weekend and strong word-of-mouth to drop a mere 33% to an estimated weekend take of $29.2 million and a ten-day take of $92.3 million. With no real competition to speak of in the upcoming weeks, Dragon should hold up well enough to bring the critically-praised feature up near the $195 million mark that was achieved by Dreamworks’ 3D feature from the spring of 2009, Monsters vs. Aliens.
Even though her alter-ego Hannah Montana was nowhere to be found (Thank God for small favors), Miley Cyrus fans turned out for The Last Song to the tune of $16.2 million for the weekend and $25.5 million since last Wednesday. The film, based on a novel by the John Grisham of sap, Nicholas Sparks, was roundly lambasted by critics. Whether the movie shows the legs that the Hannah Montana films did over the past couple of years is anyone’s guess.
In fifth spot was Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, which fell 53% from last weekend to an $8.2 million weekend and a new total of $309.7 million. Watch the film to finish near the $330-340 mark before it hits home video in a couple of months (my money is on late June). In sixth place was MGM’s Hot Tub Time Machine with an estimated $8 million take for a ten-day total of $29 million. Off only 42%, the movie might wind up with a $40-45 million theatrical take when all is said and done.
Seventh place went to the Jennifer Aniston and Gerard Butler action comedy The Bounty Hunter, which was off 49% to $6.2 million and a new overall take of $49 million to date. Eighth spot went to Fox’s Diary of a Wimpy Kid, which fell another 45% to $5.5 million and $46 million overall. Ninth and tenth spot went to a pair of Paramount films. In spot number nine was the sex comedy She’s Out of My League with $1.55 million and a new estimated take of $29 million. Tenth place went to Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island with $1.43 million to bring its seven week total to $124 million.
Next weekend, Titans should easily hold off the weekend’s sole debut for the top spot at the box office in the form of the Tina Fey and Steve Carrell comedy Date Night. You will be able to predict what Clash of the Titans, Date Night and three other films will make in the return of our Weekend Box Office Prophet Game this upcoming Tuesday, April 6.
– Shawn Fitzgerald