Megamind, Due Date and For Colored Girls each opened solidly or better over the weekend, cumulatively fueling the second highest-grossing holiday season kick-off ever (behind 2003 as Sunday's estimates didn't hold). Overall business improved a whopping 27 percent over the same weekend last year when A Christmas Carol (2009) led in its debut.
Commandeering $46 million on around 7,300 screens at 3,944 locations, Megamind left its mark with a more bustling start than How to Train Your Dragon ($43.7 million), A Christmas Carol and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs among others. However, it wasn't quite the mastermind that the similarly-themed Despicable Me ($56.4 million) was. It also fell short of Monsters Vs. Aliens ($59.3 million), and its attendance was around 40 percent of The Incredibles' opening on the same weekend in 2004. Megamind boasted the broadest release yet for the 3D illusion, 2,634 locations, which accounted for 66 percent of the gross (59 percent regular 3D and seven percent IMAX 3D). Distributor Paramount Pictures' exit polling suggested that 57 percent of the audience was female and 52 percent was under 25 years old.
Due Date delivered $32.7 million on approximately 4,700 screens at 3,355 locations, which was the highest-grossing opening ever for an R-rated comedy in November (topping Borat) and ninth-biggest overall. The road trip comedy also out-distanced Role Models' $19.2 million from the same weekend in 2008, though it trailed The Hangover's $45 million. Due Date rode the good will generated by Hangover and the previous efforts from lead actors Robert Downey, Jr. and Zach Galifianakis, coming off as sort of a sequel to Hangover in its marketing. Distributor Warner Bros.' research indicated that 53 percent of the audience was male and 59 percent was under 35 years old, but the movie landed a relatively poor "B-" grade from moviegoer pollster CinemaScore (Megamind had an "A-," while For Colored Girls had an "A").
For Colored Girls made $19.5 million on close to 2,900 screens at 2,127 locations. As sizable as it was, that was on the lower end for a Tyler Perry movie, although it did not bear his name in the title like his previous movies and it lacked his usual comedic elements, being his first adaptation of someone else's work. Among other comparable titles, it was bigger than Beloved and The Secret Life of Bees, though it was smaller than Waiting to Exhale and Poetic Justice. Distributor Lionsgate's exit polling showed that 82 percent of the audience was female, 87 percent was over 25 years old and 81 percent was black.
Halloween holdovers Saw 3D and Paranormal Activity 2 took typical hits. Saw 3D bled 66 percent, which was in the ballpark of its recent predecessors. It grossed $7.7 million (again with 92 percent from 3D presentations) for a $38.3 million tally in ten days, which was low for the series but better than Saw VI. Falling harder than the first movie at the same point, Paranormal Activity 2 dove 57 percent to $7.1 million for a strong $77 million sum in 17 days.
Red and Secretariat again showed off their legs. Red was down 19 percent to $8.7 million for a $71.7 million total in 24 days. Secretariat had the littlest decline among nationwide holdovers, easing less than 19 percent to $4.1 million for a $51 million purse in 31 days.
In limited release, 127 Hours reached a good altitude for only playing at four locations, grossing $264,851. Fair Game was modest by comparison with $651,082 at 46 locations.