Weekend Report: 'Puss' Purrs Softly

by Ray Subers
Puss in Boots

October 31, 2011

With over $34 million, Puss in Boots scored the top Halloween weekend ever, though it was notably lower than nearly all other DreamWorks Animation titles. Justin Timberlake and Johnny Depp also underwhelmed, though Timberlake's In Time drastically outperformed Depp's The Rum Diary. Even with all three titles missing the mark to various degrees, overall box office was up around 10 percent from the same frame last year when Saw 3D let with $22.5 million.

Puss in Boots's debut was the lowest for a DreamWorks Animation movie since 2006's Flushed Away, though that was a co-production with Aardman Animation. It's also less than half of Puss's last big screen appearance, Shrek Forever After, which opened to $70.8 million last May. It did at least manage to barely top Saw III ($33.6 million) for top Halloween weekend opening ever.

According to distributor Paramount Pictures, the audience was 59 percent female and 55 percent 25 years and older. Additionally, 35 percent of the audience was Hispanic. 3D presentations at 2,827 locations accounted for 51 percent of grosses, while IMAX screenings at 268 venues contributed 7 percent. The movie received an "A-" CinemaScore and should hold up well without any direct family competition over the next three weeks, though reaching Megamind's $148.4 million total will be tough.

Paranormal Activity 3 plummeted 66 percent to $18.1 million for its second weekend. That's worse than Paranormal Activity 2's 59 percent decline, and that had to contend with the opening of Saw 3D. Still, with a 10-day total of $80.9 million, Paranormal Activity 3 will exceed its predecessor's $84.8 million total sometime this week.

In Time debuted in third place with $12.05 million from 3,155 theaters. That's lower than star Justin Timberlake's Friends with Benefits ($18.6 million) and comparable sci-fi movies like Source Code ($14.8 million) and Surrogates ($14.9 million). It did at least manage to open higher than Repo Men ($6.1 million) and Babylon A.D. ($9.5 million).

After a great hold last weekend, Footloose fell a steeper 47 percent to $5.5 million in its third frame. The remake has now grossed a solid $38.5 million.

Even with an active promotional push from star Johnny Depp, The Rum Diary stumbled in to fifth place with just $5.1 million from 2,273 theaters. That's a fraction of Depp's The Tourist ($16.4 million), and it's actually the worst start ever for a Depp movie opening at over 2,000 locations.

Last Weekend
'Paranormal' Possesses Fall Record

This Timeframe in Past Years:
2010 - 'Saw' Sharpens with "Final Chapter," 'Paranormal Activity' Fades
2009 - 'Michael Jackson' Strikes Top Spot
2008 - 'Zack and Miri,' 'Changeling' Contribute to Bleak Halloween
2007 - 'Saw IV' Loses Little Blood
2006 - 'Saw' Sharp in Third Outing
2005 - 'Saw II' Gores 'Zorro' on Halloween Weekend

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