Sunday, March 2, 2014

"Non-Stop" and "Son of God" get off to good starts at weekend box office

With two intriguing new releases and a holdover that is still raking in cash, the box office was very strong this weekend. Throw the Oscars into the mix and movie going is up substantially. Universal's thriller Non-Stop led the box office this weekend with $30 million. That's a solid start for the Liam Neeson flick, which only cost $50 million to make. Non-Stop opened higher than both the original Taken and Unknown, two relatively comparable flicks. In addition, Non-Stop received an "A-" Cinemascore, which is pretty good. Non-Stop should finish with about $80 million. However, direct competition from 300: Rise of an Empire and Need for Speed is coming and could cause problems for Non-Stop in the future.

Fox's Son of God opened in second place with $26.5 million, which is pretty good for a film that cost almost nothing to make. With Lent and Easter coming, it's possible that this film could pick up even more steam and with an "A-" Cinemascore, Son of God could end up with grosses as high as $75 million. The LEGO Movie also stayed strong this weekend in third place with $21 million. The animated comedy dropped only 33% and has now grossed $209.3 million. That's pretty great for a film that only cost $50 million and I'm betting that the film will not stop here. The LEGO Movie will probably finish with around $260 million.

After that, the box office was pretty empty. Fourth place belonged to The Monuments Men, which grossed $5 million this weekend to raise its total to $65.6 million. That's pretty impressive for a film with a lackluster Cinemascore. I guess that proves that those scores don't mean anything. In fifth place was 3 Days to Kill, which grossed $4.9 million in its second weekend. That's a rather large 60% drop for the film, which has now grossed $20.7 million on a $28 million budget. In sixth place was Sony's RoboCop which grossed $4.5 million to raise its total to $51.2 million. Hopefully Sony gets good overseas returns on this one. They're going to need it.

Pompeii dropped 58% for a weekend total of $4.3 million in seventh place. With only $17.7 million in the bank on a $100 million budget, Pompeii is the first massive flop of 2014. Frozen finished in eighth place this weekend with $3.6 million. The animated comedy has now grossed $388.7 million in the US and over $1 billion worldwide. Congratulations to Disney on that one. In ninth place was About Last Night, which took another steep drop and only grossed $3.4 million. The romantic comedy has now grossed $43.7 million, which is pretty disappointing considering that it had such a strong opening. And finally, Ride Along rounded out the top ten with $3 million, which was enough to raise the film's total to $127.1 million.

Next weekend sees the release of Mr. Peabody and Sherman and 300: Rise of an Empire. Here are my predictions:

1. 300: Rise of an Empire- $32.5 million
2. Mr. Peabody and Sherman- $27.8 million
3. Non-Stop- $16.4 million
4. Son of God- $15.7 million
5. The LEGO Movie- $14.2 million
6. The Monuments Men- $3.1 million
7. RoboCop- $2.7 million
8. Frozen- $2.65 million
9. 3 Days to Kill- $1.9 million
10. Pompeii- $1.8 million

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