Box Office Guru Wrapup: Expendables Tops Slow Weekend

Plus, Premium Rush and Hit & Run have disappointing debuts.

This weekend, the end-of-summer blues kicked in as the North American box office slumped to its worst performance of the year. Three new films failed to make any significant dent into the marketplace while the political documentary 2016 Obama's America enjoyed a strong national expansion jumping into the top ten. Sylvester Stallone's action sequel The Expendables 2 topped the charts for the second straight weekend as holdovers took up the top six chart positions. It's been ten years since the weekend before the Labor Day frame saw such poor grosses from new releases and the first time all year that no film opened in the top five. With people salvaging the last days of their summer vacations, football back for pre-season action, and very few must-see films in theaters, audiences stayed away as the total weekend box office failed to crack $100M for the first time in 2012.

The macho heroes of The Expendables 2 did what they did two years ago -- control the number one spot for two weekends in a row. The R-rated actioner grossed an estimated $13.5M and was the only movie to break double digit millions. Lionsgate saw a 53% decline which was good for an action sequel and boosted its ten-day gross to $52.3M. The first Expendables had a bigger debut and then dropped by 51% in its sophomore session for a ten-day tally of $65.4M. Produced for $90M, Expendables 2 seems on course to finish its domestic run in the vicinity of $80M.

Holding steady in second place was Universal's own action sequel ParaNorman which held up very well, dropping 39% to an estimated $8.5M for a cume of $28.3M after ten days. The 3D Focus release may end up with $50-55M which is a solid figure for a toon not based on a pre-existing brand. Falling a reasonable 43% in its third round, the Will Ferrell comedy The Campaign followed with $7.4M. Warner Bros. has banked $64.5M to date.

The trilogy-ending super hero smash The Dark Knight Rises climbed back into the top five thanks to a light 35% dip to an estimated $7.2M. That was about even with the 36% slide that 2008's The Dark Knight saw in its sixth frame which was also the weekend before the Labor Day holiday session. Holding up well for a threequel, Rises now sits at number 11 on the list of all-time domestic blockbusters passing the $415M of the 3D toon Toy Story 3. Batman gets his ticket into the top ten on Monday when it will surpass the $422.8M lifetime gross of The Lion King.

Audiences around the world continued to come out for Bane and pals as Rises smashed two more barriers -- $500M overseas and $900M worldwide. The weekend saw an estimated $15.3M from 62 foreign markets pushing the overseas tally to $519M and the worldwide haul to $941.2M. With $82.1M in the United Kingdom, Rises surpassed The Avengers to become that market's top grosser of 2012 and biggest super hero film of all-time. That's an amazing achievement given that there were no 3D surcharges and the distraction of the London Olympics were there. With Christopher Nolan's final Batman set to open Monday in China and Wednesday in Italy, it could smash the one billion dollar global mark by Labor Day. The director's trilogy has now amassed a stunning $2.3 billion around the world.

Disney's family drama The Odd Life of Timothy Green has been a modest success and slipped only 34% in its sophomore session to an estimated $7.1M. The PG-rated film has grossed $27.1M in 12 days and looks headed towards $45-50M.

The fast-paced bike messenger thriller Premium Rush led the weak crop of new releases with a seventh place debut grossing an estimated $6.3M. The Joseph Gordon-Levitt-starrer earned good reviews from film critics but averaged a slow $2,794 from 2,255 theaters. Sony's PG-13 release skewed 55% male and 67% over 25, according to studio research, and moviegoers were not too amazed by the boy wonder as the CinemaScore grade was a mediocre B.

The political documentary 2016: Obama's America enjoyed a strong nationwide expansion and jumped into the top ten with an estimated $6.2M from only 1,091 theaters, up from last weekend's 169 locations. Released by Rocky Mountain, the PG-rated pic that examines how the re-election of the president would be harmful to the nation generated the best average of any film in the Top 20 with $5,718. Total stands at $9.1M and with two weeks of political conventions coming up and the film gaining media attention, much more is likely to come with 2016 on its way to possibly reaching $30M or more -- a gargantuan number for a doc.

Appealing to a core audience of conservatives who do not want Obama to win another term in office, 2016 originally took a low-key approach with its July 13 release in one solo Texas theater where it debuted with a muscular $31,610. It then expanded slowly and saw grosses get diluted down. But now with the Republican political convention set to start this week, the distributor strategically went nationwide making the film accessible in all markets to all who are interested since that party's agenda will be dominating news coverage. The doc has used a low-cost marketing approach with a faith-based push and conservative talk radio to reach its target audience and will now widen its base to eventually bring in dollars from liberals who want to know how their candidate is being vilified. Michael Moore used a similar approach in the election year of 2004 attracting business from blue states and red states alike with the anti-Bush documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 which opened at number one thanks to heavy controversy on its way to $119.2M, making it the top-grossing documentary by far of all-time. The president bashed by the film won re-election that year.

Mature audiences continued to turn out for the Meryl Streep-Tommy Lee Jones comedy Hope Springs which slipped only 34% to an estimated $6M for a cume of $45M to date for Sony. Rounding out the top ten was the new R-rated action-comedy Hit & Run which was ignored by moviegoers opening with a lousy $4.7M, according to estimates, for a weak $1,629 average from a very wide $2,870 locations. The Open Road release started its run on Wednesday and has collected only $5.9M in five days. Reviews were mixed for the Kristen Bell-Dax Shepard film and public interest was never high at all.

Also dead on arrival was the new supernatural thriller The Apparition which was given a more scaled-back release in 810 locations and found itself with an estimated $3M for a lukewarm $3,648 average. Reviews were negative across the board for the PG-13 haunted house flick and even though there was zero competition from other scary movies, audiences still saw no need to pay top dollar for this product.

The indie comedy Sleepwalk With Me scored a spectacular platform debut this weekend grossing an estimated $65,000 in only one Manhattan location. The critically-acclaimed film won the audience award at Sundance this year and director/star Mike Birbiglia supported the film by appearing at Friday and Saturday shows. IFC Films will expand Sleepwalk this Friday into many more markets for the long holiday weekend including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Houston, and Dallas, and expand further throughout September.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $76.3M which was up 10% from last year when The Help held onto the number one spot with $14.5M; but down 13% from 2010 when Takers opened on top with $20.5M.



Follow Gitesh on Twitter.

Comments

Lyle Bandoquillo

Lyle Bandoquillo

Great to see the Dark Knight rising again ;-P

Aug 26 - 03:52 PM

Andrew Hunt

Andrew Hunt

Anyone else notice that they completely ignored the Bourne Legacy?

Aug 26 - 04:06 PM

Isaac

Isaac H

Yeah, that is odd. I assume it's in the top ten, as this is only its third week and grosses for everything else are so low. Why isn't it here?

Aug 27 - 08:53 AM

Andrew Targaryen

Andrew Targaryen

Very strange indeed...

Aug 27 - 05:47 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

mentioned to a friend that the new horror movie had gotten zero on RT, and they thought I was talking about the Possesion. They hadn't heard about the Apparition. Preminum Rush is really Bad news for JGL. He will probably be limited to Indies and Supporting roles in Blockbusters at this point. I don't see him being a big star now.

Aug 26 - 04:10 PM

The.Watcher

The Watcher

Seriously? The dude just did a huge role for one of the biggest films of all time, is coming out with a blockbuster co-starring Bruce Willis, and is generally one of the most likable stars in Hollywood right now, but because he did a low budget side-movie, you write him off? Unless you're being sarcastic, but if so, having that sentence follow a serious one was a bad move.

Aug 26 - 05:56 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

Listen, I think he's one of the best actors out there right now. I'm just being realistic. Hollywood doesn't give people many second chances. Preminum Rush was the first time he has starred in a major movie, and not even cracking the top 5 is embarrassing for him. Like I said, he is obviously going to continue to get roles is some big oscar contenders and some supporting work in blockbusters, I'm just saying he's probably not going to be the massive star people have been hyping him up as. I hope you see what I'm trying to say.

Aug 26 - 06:24 PM

Ralph

Ralph Myers

He starred in 50/50 which did mad good

Aug 26 - 06:36 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Premium Rush was fantastic. I saw it at the drive in along with The Dark Knight Rises. I think JGL is fantastic and hope to see him in a big blockbuster Nolan film again but if your upset you won't' see him in any films like Looper ever again then don't be. Looper looks awful as are more than half of Big Blockbuster films. More JGL in films like "50/50" and "Brick" please. P.s. see "Brick"

Aug 26 - 06:39 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

He will never be a massive star like a Johnny Depp or anything and to be honest, I don't see him as a 'lead role' kind of actor. But that's fine, many actors have made their bread and butter in secondary roles - and those actors usually appear in more films.

Aug 26 - 10:41 PM

DBrock

David E-Brock

I don't think he is trying to be a huge star. That is why he did indie flicks exclusively for about ten years. He has enough cred in Hollywood as a great actor that he can get the roles he wants. He has really found a niche as the lead actor in lesser known wide releases like The Lookout,500 Days of Summer,and 50/50. And then he gets offered great supporting roles by Nolan..he is exactly where he needs to be right now. If he was trying to be Hollywood's next big thing,he would have churned out a million 10 Things I Hate About You knock offs. The guy picked good roles and proved he has chops,and now the people that matter in Hollywood are giving him some real work. As far as I am concerned,he has been a massive star for years. Check out where the hype came from...if you like indies,he has done a crapton of them. Personal favorite:Brick.

Aug 27 - 11:15 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

BRICK IS AWESOME!!

Aug 27 - 12:25 PM

Alberto Zeeky

Alberto Zeeky

I can't even begin to laugh at the statement of this essentially being a nail in the coffin for the movie career of JGL. Is it his fault the movie didn't prove to be successful? God no. His job is to act, which based on the reviews is what he managed to do very good. Fact is I hadn't even really heard of the film much and had only begun to see TV spots for the film a week before its release, I only accidently stumbled upon the trailer because it was in a related video category for TDKR trailer.

I plan to be seeing Premium Rush this week, it really just isn't a film you have to rush out and see, especially with the nearing of the end of the summer most people don't exactly find it a priority to spend their summers indoors in a movie theatre, drive in's on the other hand are a different story.

Aug 26 - 10:23 PM

todd123

Todd Garry

Wow I couldn't disagree more. Not to mention Looper is directed by Rain Johnson( same director of brick). I also think Johnny Depp is the most overrated actor out there. The last 10 or so movies he has done have been terribly average or just plain bad. JGL will definitely become a big star and he already is one of the bigger actors out there in my mind and a lot of my friends.

Aug 27 - 08:56 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Todd, As of this moment right now. You re my Hero. The preview for Looper looks awful and yes one of my many flaws is judging films by there previews. Director of Brick is the Director of Looper starring JGL and Bruce Willis. I'm gonna pull a 180 and see this film in theaters now. Thanks dude!

Aug 27 - 12:27 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

A much worse box office weekend than I expected. I did feel that one of the holdovers would top the box office because all of the new releases were not really hyped that much. Apparition's 0% is quite impressive for a bad movie, although I have noticed that most films that get this rating in the last few years have less than 100 reviews, sometimes way less. Of course opening in less than 1000 theaters will probably have that effect.

I'm surprised the anti-Obama documentary is doing so well, but Obama really is vilified by the right a lot, and I guess it has been getting a lot of attention from conservatives. It won't do as well as Fahrenheit 911 because that movie was more high profile but it should make some decent cash.

I have high hopes that the Possession will help end the summer season on a high note, at least critically as unlike the abysmal Apparition it does seem legitimately scary and actually has acting. But being the only movie on what is typically a very slow day for movies doesn't help the box office numbers much.

Aug 26 - 04:30 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

For this week, I am hoping Lawless lives up to Hillcoat's last two films (The Road and The Proposition), as well as the amazing cast.

Aug 26 - 10:48 PM

todd123

Todd Garry

Minus Shia. I am not saying he is a bad actor but something about him rubs me the wrong way. But Lawless does look damn good.

Aug 27 - 08:58 AM

Brad H.

Brad Hadfield

Perhaps because everything that comes out of his mouth in interviews is verbal diarrhea, er, Shiarrhea?

Aug 27 - 11:00 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

The Boof certainly has a chip on his shoulder. Although I'm also looking forward to this film, I hate the posters with just Shia trying to look all gangster tough. Not looking tough, looking like he's trying to be look tough. Shia has no screen presence, so he overcompensates by acting with enourmous amounts of anxiety.

Aug 27 - 12:53 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

Agree with all you guys on the dislike for Shia. The one-two punch of Hardy and Pierce getting meaty roles more than makes up for it, plus the supporting turns by Oldman and Chastain also look great. Richard Roeper loved the movie eventhough he fully admitted Shia is incredibly outmatched any time he shares a scene with one of the heavy hitters in the film. Not sure if they were trying to get an actor with more box-office clout or to appeal to a younger audience, but the idea of him trying to look hardcore is a little ridiculous, especially when put up against the brute that is Tom Hardy.

Aug 27 - 11:20 PM

Jonathan Edward O.

Jon Owens

lawless!!! yes I'm right there with you King!! The Road is one of my fav's from a few years ago! Can't wait to see what Hillcoat does with this!!

Aug 27 - 08:14 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

I was excited for Lawless the first time I saw the trailer. Hillcoat is an incredibly underrated filmaker, and all his movies have a powerful quietness about them that I love. I still hope that one day he can get financing for The Reaving and convince Christian Bale to come back to star. That film sounded fantastic.

Aug 27 - 11:25 PM

Heather Griffiths

Heather Griffiths

Yes, what's up with ignoring Bourne? I thought it was a pretty decent film. But then I'd watch pretty much anything Renner is in.

Aug 26 - 05:34 PM

Lyn Adams

Lyn Adams

Saw Bourne Legacy over the weekend, and honestly it was quite entertaining! Odd its not mentioned at all.

Aug 27 - 05:41 AM

The.Watcher

The Watcher

Seriously? The dude just did a huge role for one of the biggest films of all time, is coming out with a blockbuster co-starring Bruce Willis, and is generally one of the most likable stars in Hollywood right now, but because he did a low budget side-movie, you write him off? Unless you're being sarcastic, but if so, having that sentence follow a serious one was a bad move.

Aug 26 - 05:56 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

Listen, I think he's one of the best actors out there right now. I'm just being realistic. Hollywood doesn't give people many second chances. Preminum Rush was the first time he has starred in a major movie, and not even cracking the top 5 is embarrassing for him. Like I said, he is obviously going to continue to get roles is some big oscar contenders and some supporting work in blockbusters, I'm just saying he's probably not going to be the massive star people have been hyping him up as. I hope you see what I'm trying to say.

Aug 26 - 06:24 PM

Ralph

Ralph Myers

He starred in 50/50 which did mad good

Aug 26 - 06:36 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Premium Rush was fantastic. I saw it at the drive in along with The Dark Knight Rises. I think JGL is fantastic and hope to see him in a big blockbuster Nolan film again but if your upset you won't' see him in any films like Looper ever again then don't be. Looper looks awful as are more than half of Big Blockbuster films. More JGL in films like "50/50" and "Brick" please. P.s. see "Brick"

Aug 26 - 06:39 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

He will never be a massive star like a Johnny Depp or anything and to be honest, I don't see him as a 'lead role' kind of actor. But that's fine, many actors have made their bread and butter in secondary roles - and those actors usually appear in more films.

Aug 26 - 10:41 PM

DBrock

David E-Brock

I don't think he is trying to be a huge star. That is why he did indie flicks exclusively for about ten years. He has enough cred in Hollywood as a great actor that he can get the roles he wants. He has really found a niche as the lead actor in lesser known wide releases like The Lookout,500 Days of Summer,and 50/50. And then he gets offered great supporting roles by Nolan..he is exactly where he needs to be right now. If he was trying to be Hollywood's next big thing,he would have churned out a million 10 Things I Hate About You knock offs. The guy picked good roles and proved he has chops,and now the people that matter in Hollywood are giving him some real work. As far as I am concerned,he has been a massive star for years. Check out where the hype came from...if you like indies,he has done a crapton of them. Personal favorite:Brick.

Aug 27 - 11:15 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

BRICK IS AWESOME!!

Aug 27 - 12:25 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

Listen, I think he's one of the best actors out there right now. I'm just being realistic. Hollywood doesn't give people many second chances. Preminum Rush was the first time he has starred in a major movie, and not even cracking the top 5 is embarrassing for him. Like I said, he is obviously going to continue to get roles is some big oscar contenders and some supporting work in blockbusters, I'm just saying he's probably not going to be the massive star people have been hyping him up as. I hope you see what I'm trying to say.

Aug 26 - 06:24 PM

Ralph

Ralph Myers

He starred in 50/50 which did mad good

Aug 26 - 06:36 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Premium Rush was fantastic. I saw it at the drive in along with The Dark Knight Rises. I think JGL is fantastic and hope to see him in a big blockbuster Nolan film again but if your upset you won't' see him in any films like Looper ever again then don't be. Looper looks awful as are more than half of Big Blockbuster films. More JGL in films like "50/50" and "Brick" please. P.s. see "Brick"

Aug 26 - 06:39 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

He will never be a massive star like a Johnny Depp or anything and to be honest, I don't see him as a 'lead role' kind of actor. But that's fine, many actors have made their bread and butter in secondary roles - and those actors usually appear in more films.

Aug 26 - 10:41 PM

DBrock

David E-Brock

I don't think he is trying to be a huge star. That is why he did indie flicks exclusively for about ten years. He has enough cred in Hollywood as a great actor that he can get the roles he wants. He has really found a niche as the lead actor in lesser known wide releases like The Lookout,500 Days of Summer,and 50/50. And then he gets offered great supporting roles by Nolan..he is exactly where he needs to be right now. If he was trying to be Hollywood's next big thing,he would have churned out a million 10 Things I Hate About You knock offs. The guy picked good roles and proved he has chops,and now the people that matter in Hollywood are giving him some real work. As far as I am concerned,he has been a massive star for years. Check out where the hype came from...if you like indies,he has done a crapton of them. Personal favorite:Brick.

Aug 27 - 11:15 AM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

BRICK IS AWESOME!!

Aug 27 - 12:25 PM

Ralph

Ralph Myers

He starred in 50/50 which did mad good

Aug 26 - 06:36 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Premium Rush was fantastic. I saw it at the drive in along with The Dark Knight Rises. I think JGL is fantastic and hope to see him in a big blockbuster Nolan film again but if your upset you won't' see him in any films like Looper ever again then don't be. Looper looks awful as are more than half of Big Blockbuster films. More JGL in films like "50/50" and "Brick" please. P.s. see "Brick"

Aug 26 - 06:39 PM

Ralph

Ralph Myers

Premium Rush sucked

Aug 26 - 06:56 PM

Rahul Adusumilli

Rahul Adusumilli

Bourne!

Aug 26 - 07:12 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

So they pulled "Apparition" back to 800 screens? I noticed it wasn't playing at a lot of theaters. Even though it's still listed as "wide:, it played on less screens than "Obama's America". And it's worth pointing out that "Hit and Run" was the biggest success this weekend. With a budget of a mere 2 million, it has already more than doubled its return. I personally think they should have used the Hungarian title "Uss vagy fuss!".

Aug 26 - 07:19 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

It's a good thing the movie was so cheaply made, because its going to struggle to even make 20 million at the box office.

Aug 26 - 09:42 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

It'll struggle because most people can see "cheapness" duct-taped across its bumper.

Aug 26 - 09:51 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Bradly Cooper is in it and the Budget is only 2 mil? How did that happen, does Dax S. have some kind of crazy dirt on him?

Aug 27 - 12:49 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'll assume a lost bar bet.

Aug 27 - 12:54 PM

BMS1234

brandon sideleau

Nice to see the Dark Knight Rises doing so well...regardless of what the hipsters think, I thought it was the best of the trilogy. I saw the first Expendables and I'm really in no hurry to see this one...will catch it on bluray. I'll pass on the conservative propaganda film. Doesn't look like anything interesting hitting theaters for a few weeks....I hope 'Looper' is good...it has promise. I like JGL, but I think I'll wait for bluray on Premium Rush...looks like it could be fun, but not gonna risk the $12 ticket when I can get it for $1 in a few months.

Aug 26 - 09:22 PM

Valmordas

Val Mordas

I actually liked the first best, followed by 'Rises' and TDK last - they were all great films; I simply liked the origins story and finale a little better.

Aug 27 - 08:05 AM

Merlin235

Merlin Ambrosius

Go see Obama's America. Open your mind a bit.

Aug 27 - 11:54 AM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

Dinesh D'Souza slams minds shut.

Aug 27 - 12:50 PM

Jonathan Edward O.

Jon Owens

Just like Mr. Moore!

Aug 27 - 08:22 PM

Jaxx Raxor

Adam Jones

It's a good thing the movie was so cheaply made, because its going to struggle to even make 20 million at the box office.

Aug 26 - 09:42 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

It'll struggle because most people can see "cheapness" duct-taped across its bumper.

Aug 26 - 09:51 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Bradly Cooper is in it and the Budget is only 2 mil? How did that happen, does Dax S. have some kind of crazy dirt on him?

Aug 27 - 12:49 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'll assume a lost bar bet.

Aug 27 - 12:54 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

It'll struggle because most people can see "cheapness" duct-taped across its bumper.

Aug 26 - 09:51 PM

Brad and Netflix

Bradly Martin

Bradly Cooper is in it and the Budget is only 2 mil? How did that happen, does Dax S. have some kind of crazy dirt on him?

Aug 27 - 12:49 PM

Janson Jinnistan

Janson Jinnistan

I'll assume a lost bar bet.

Aug 27 - 12:54 PM

Francesco F.

Jacob Smith

Premium Rush was an enjoyable movie, I wasn't expecting it to be as good as it was. Sad to see it do so poorly, I thought it would do better. I guess the marketing and the fact that Colombia decided to embargo reviews till the day before it opened are to blame. Hopefully this doesn't hurt JGL, he's a good actor. I find it ironic that they moved the movie from January to August to cash in on JGL from The Dark Knight Rises. Look how well that turned out. It probably would have done better had it been released in January. Not sure why they decided to not mention Bourne Legacy. It technically came in second place not paranorman.. Glad to see Expendables still doing well at the box office somewhat.

Aug 26 - 09:51 PM

What's Hot On RT

Cosplay Gallery
Cosplay Gallery

See over 250 Comic-Con Costumes!

Critics Consensus
Critics Consensus

Hercules Is Mighty Fun

Historical TV Shows
Historical TV Shows

40 TV depictions of past eras

Weekly Ketchup
Weekly Ketchup

Idris Elba joins King Arthur

Find us on:                     
Help | About | Jobs | Critics Submission | Press | API | Licensing | Mobile