Weekend Report (cont.): Decent Debuts for 'This Means War,' 'Arrietty'

by Ray Subers
This Means War

February 19, 2012

<< continued from "Weekend Report: 'Safe House' Secures President's Day Lead"

This Means War took fifth place with just over $20 million for the four-day weekend. Its three-day gross was $17.4 million, which is an okay start given the mediocre track record of rom-com/action hybrids like Knight & Day ($20.1 million), The Tourist ($16.5 million) and Killers ($15.8 million). Of course, it was no Mr. & Mrs. Smith ($50.3 million), but realistically what chance does Chris Pine, Tom Hardy and Reese Witherspoon have of matching up against Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie? Considering the unexpectedly strong competition from The Vow and the movie's miserable reviews, this isn't a bad debut at all. The audience was predominantly female (65 percent) and a bit older (60 percent were 25 years of age and older), and the movie received a very solid "A-" CinemaScore.

Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace 3D
plummeted 56 percent to $9.9 million in its second weekend. That's worse than Beauty and the Beast 3D's 51 percent second weekend decline (and that was for a three-day weekend), though a steep drop is fairly typical for sci-fi franchise fare. Including its original release, The Phantom Menace has now made $466.9 million, which is good for fourth all-time and first among Star Wars movies.

Even with the abundance of other choices, Chronicle and The Woman in Black continued to play well in their third weekends. Chronicle dipped 24 percent to $9.2 million, while The Woman in Black eased 23 percent to $7.8 million. The movies have now made $52.6 million and $46.4 million, respectively.

The Secret World of Arrietty debuted in eighth place with $8.7 million. That tops Ponyo's $3.6 million to become the best stateside opening ever for a Studio Ghibli movie, and it even had a slight per-theater advantage for the three-day weekend ($4,235 vs. $3,868). Audiences awarded the movie an "A-" CinemaScore.

Last Weekend
Moviegoers Say "I Do" to 'The Vow,' Check In to 'Safe House'

President's Day Weekend in Past Years:
2011 - 'Unknown' Takes Top Spot, 'Number Four' is Number Three
2010 - 'Valentine's Day' Massacres Presidents' Day Record

2009 - 'Friday the 13th' Hacks Up Top Spot
2008 - 'Jumper' Teleports to the Top
2007 - 'Ghost Rider' Blazes in Debut
2006 - 'Eight Below' Enjoys Warm Reception
2005 - 'Constantine' Smokes in Debut

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