Friday Report: 'Unknown' Leads, 'Four' Dims

by Brandon Gray
I Am Number Four

February 19, 2011

I Am Number Four went No. 2 on Friday as the top spot was taken by the less-hyped Unknown.

Promoted as the follow-up to Taken, Unknown dredged up an estimated $6.7 million first day at 3,043 locations. While that was less showy than Taken's $9.4 million start, it was stronger than Edge of Darkness, tripled the last thriller featuring Liam Neeson, The Next Three Days, and did over two and a half times the business of the last Presidents' Day weekend Euro-thriller The International.

With an estimated $6.2 million at 3,154 locations, "flashlight hands" saw his franchise hopes flicker out, despite a flood of advertising prior to release. I Am Number Four's first day was significantly worse than Jumper's $8.7 million first Friday as well as Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief's $9.6 million, and neither spawned sequels. The sci-fi action romance, which is essentially a blonder version of television's Roswell even though it's based on a recent "young adult" novel, may even rank lower than No. 2 by the end of the weekend, given how close behind the movies ranked No. 3-5 were.

In third, Just Go With It racked up an estimated $5.2 million, down 45 percent from last Friday for a $47.8 million tally in eight days. The drop and the grosses were worse than Adam Sandler's last February romantic comedy, 50 First Dates.

Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son lumbered into fourth with an estimated $4.8 million debut at 2,821 locations. That was much less than its predecessors: The first Big Momma's House pulled in $7.7 million (or $11.4 million adjusted for ticket price inflation), while Big Momma's House 2 bagged $8.4 million (or $10.2 million adjusted).

Rounding out the Top Five, Gnomeo and Juliet attracted an estimated $4.3 million, off only 30 percent from last Friday for a $35.3 million tally in eight days. The animated comedy is still in the running to top the weekend, given that children's movies gain lots of ground on Saturdays and Sundays this time of year and tend to dominate Presidents' Day Mondays.

Justin Bieber: Never Say Never cooled precipitously in its second Friday, down 69 percent to an estimated $3.8 million for a $38.7 million in eight days. Bieber continued to shame the Jonas Bothers, but his digits were still lower than Hannah Montana and Michael Jackson: This Is It. The Eagle was in ninth, fizzling 64 percent to an estimated $1 million for a puny $12.5 million in eight days.

Meanwhile, The King's Speech held its ground again, boasting the smallest Friday-to-Friday decline among nationwide releases. The Oscar contender was off 19 percent to an estimated $1.5 million, lifting its total to $98.2 million in 85 days. It will cross the $100 million mark on Saturday, and, after topping The Social Network on Thursday, it will surpass Black Swan on Sunday.

Related Story
Weekend Briefing: 'I Am Number Four' Aims for Franchise-Worthy Numbers

Related Chart
Grosses for Friday, Feb. 18, 2011

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