Seven-Day Summary: 'The American' Leads as Summer Ends

by Ray Subers
The American

September 10, 2010

With the summer officially ending on Monday, the box office slowed to a crawl for the remainder of the week. In fact, Wednesday was the first day since April 29 where no movie made over $1 million, and The American's $723,544 Thursday gross was the lowest for a first place finisher since Tropic Thunder led with $542,954 on Thursday, Sept. 11, 2008. Still, the week was up three percent over last year, when The Final Desination led.

After yielding first place to Machete on Friday, The American gained it back on Saturday and held in the top spot for the remainder of the week, finishing with $19.3 million. This was ahead of recent George Clooney movies The Men Who Stare at Goats, Leatherheads, Michael Clayton and Syriana, along with adult-themed Labor Day weekend releases The Constant Gardener and Traitor. In nine days, The American has earned a total of $22.4 million.

Machete came in second place with $16.6 million. This was slightly higher than Grindhouse's $15.5 million first week, though Grindhouse saw slightly greater attendance.

In its second week, Takers dipped 41 percent to $15.6 million. The heist thriller has now earned $42 million, which is a nice chunk of change for a movie that had no fewer than five date changes, along with a title change, on its way to finally hitting theaters.

Going the Distance landed in fourth place for the week with $10.2 million. One must go back to Just Wright in May to find a nationwide romantic comedy with a lower opening gross, and Going the Distance's start qualifies as the worst opening week ever for a romantic comedy debuting at over 3,000 locations.

The Last Exorcism dropped a rough 60 percent to $10 million. Through its second week, the supernatural horror movie has earned $34.7 million. The other release from Lionsgate, The Expendables, finished just behind Last Exorcism for the week, grossing $9.7 million for an excellent four-week total of $95.3 million.

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WEEKEND: Weekend Estimates, 'Boo 2!' #1
DAILY: Friday Estimates, 'Boo 2!' #1
WEEKLY: 'Happy Death Day' Tops the Week with $31.3m
DAILY: Thursday, 10/19 (57 tracked)
DAILY: Wednesday, 10/11 (38 tracked)
DAILY: Tuesday, 10/17 (43 tracked)
New MPAA Ratings Added
DAILY: Monday, 10/16 (41 tracked)