Box Office Guru Wrapup: Vantage Point Claims Top Spot on Oscar Weekend

Larry the Cable Guy fails to do primetime numbers.

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On Oscar weekend, the best seat on the charts belonged to Vantage Point, which looked down upon the box office with a strong opening, while the other new releases left relatively small impressions.

Opening on only 114 screens less than the other three new releases combined, Sony's ensemble pic Vantage Point opened with a strong $23.8M, according to estimates. Launching on 3,149 screens nationwide, the political thriller averaged $7,558 per screen while earning less than positive reviews from critics. The twisted tale of an attempted Presidential assassination benefited from good advertising and many recognizable faces in the cast.


 

Second and third places were close between two films which opened last weekend. Former box office champ, Jumper, dropped 53% from its 3-day tally and fell to second place with an estimated $12.65M, bringing its cume to $56M. Most effect-laden sci-fi films have drops of this size, and the unfavorable reviews with poor word-of-mouth didn't help matters. Still, look for Hayden Christensen and company to end their run in the $85M range. Following closely in third place was the storybook sensation, The Spiderwick Chronicles which dropped 33% to $12.6M, according to estimates. Its total now stands at $43.6M which should lead to a grand finale in the $85M range as well. That would put the Disney film in line with the last two Disney films released over President's Day weekend, 2007's Bridge to Terabithia which finished with $82M and 2006's Eight Below which ended its run with $81.6M


 

Fourth place went to urban dance flick Step Up 2 The Streets with an estimated $9.8M, a drop of 48% from last weekend. Adding a new dimension to cleverly named sequels, the total for the Disney title now stands at $41.4M. Look for a final gross in the $65M range which would match the original's $65.2M from 2006. Anticipation now ramps up for how part three will be named. Fifth place went to the hard bodies of Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson as their romantic comedy Fool's Gold brought in an estimated $6.2M this weekend, bringing their booty to $52.4M. Sixth place definitely went to another romantic comedy, Definitely, Maybe, which grossed $5.2M this weekend, according to estimates. This represents a 47% drop from last weekend, bringing the film's total gross to $21.8M. Look for a final total maybe in the $35M range.


 

In another photo finish, seventh and eighth places were taken by two films on opposite ends of the box office mountain. Currently in seventh is Best Picture Oscar nominee and Independent Spirit Award winner Juno which added another $4.1M to its already robust gross, according to estimates. Its total now stands at $130M after 12 weeks of release. Following closely in eighth was the Jack Black and Mos Def comedy Be Kind Rewind, which took in an estimated $4.05M from its opening weekend. Released on only 808 screens, its per screen average was a decent $5,012. Directed by Michel Gondry, the reviews for the quirky comedy were mostly positive.


 

Being welcomed into the ninth position was the Martin Lawrence homecoming comedy Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, which grossed $3.9M this weekend, according to estimates, bringing its total up to $35.5M. And rounding out the top ten was another Oscar nominee for Best Picture, There Will Be Blood, which struck oil again with $2.5M, according to estimates. Its total now stands at $35M after 9 weeks in theaters.


 

This weekend's other new releases both debuted outside the top 10. Larry the Cable Guy's latest attempt a movie career, Witless Protection grossed an estimated $2.1M from 1,333 screens for a poor average of $1,643. And the long delayed Charlie Bartlett grossed $1.8M, according to estimates, from 1,122 screens for an average of $1,622. Look for both these films to find more business on DVD.


 

The top ten films grossed $84.9M which was off 11% from last year when Ghost Rider remained at number one with $20.1M; and also down 11% from 2006 when Madea's Family Reunion debuted in the top spot with $30M.

Author: Sujit Chawla, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

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