Friday Box Office: LONE SURVIVOR Thrives, THE LEGEND OF HERCULES Dies

     January 11, 2014

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Of the five movies opening nationwide as of Friday, only one was brand new – and it’s looking like a bit of a weakling.  The Legend of Hercules, the first of two movies this year to star the mythic strong man, opened to a disappointing $3 million from 2,104 locations.  That means that Hercules is likely to fall short of its (very modest) $10 million goal this weekend.  Considering Hercules is currently rocking a 2% on Rotten Tomatoes, however, things could be worse for the son of Zeus.

Among the four titles expanding their runs this weekend, the clear winner is Lone Survivor.  After two weeks in two locations, Universal’s military drama took in an estimated $14.4 million from 2,876 locations on Friday.  That puts Lone Survivor on track for first place with about $34 million this weekend.  That’s well above the $24 million originally projected and tops the $24.4 million that Zero Dark Thirty realized after its nationwide expansion at this time last year.

 Title Friday Total
1.  Lone Survivor $14,400,000 $14.7
2.  Frozen $3,111,000 $305.7
3.  Legend of Hercules $3,080,000 $3.08
4.  Wolf of Wall Street $2,726,000 $72.3
5.  American Hustle $2,580,000 $95.5
6.  August: Osage County $2,200,000 $2.7

Friday numbers for Her and August: Osage County after the jump:

Spike Jonze’s Her earned a total of $3.3 million playing in less than 50 locations for the past three weeks or so.  On Friday, the critically-acclaimed Warner Bros. release expanded to 1,729 venues and took in an estimated $1.8 million.  Current projections for the weekend are in the $8 million range – or not far off the projected opening for The Legend of Hercules.  Of course, an opening figure that looks bad for Hercules would be a win for Her – based on budget, theatre count, audience demographics and long-term prospects.  Hercules would be lucky to pull out one strong weekend, while Her – with an awards-season assist – should play well for several weeks.

TWC’s August: Osage County was hoping for a similar Oscar season bump.  The adaptation of the acclaimed play starring Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts has earned $2.7 million after two weeks in five theatres.  Now in 905 locations as of Friday, August: Osage County took in an estimated $2.2 million and is expected to hit $7 million through Sunday.  Considering the film’s critical response has been somewhat less than stellar, Friday’s estimate looks promising.

CBS Film’s Inside Llewyn Davis added 573 screens to its theatre count on Friday and $551,000 to its total to bring its domestic gross up to $7.9 million after five weeks.  In terms of Coen Brothers releases, Inside Llewyn Davis should pass the lifetime gross of 2009’s A Serious Man ($9.2 million) by Monday.

Check back tomorrow for full box office coverage

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