Weekend Box Office – DATE NIGHT Narrowly Edges Out CLASH OF THE TITANS with $27.1 Million

     April 11, 2010

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It was a tight race for supremacy at this weekend’s box office, with 3D holdover Clash of the Titans just barely edged out by the debut of the Steve Carell/Tina Fey comedy Date Night. With less than $300,000 separating the two, these estimates could easily change by the time final numbers are released on Monday.

Title Weekend Total
1 Date Night $27,100,000 $27.1
2 Clash of the Titans $26,875,000 $110.4
3 How to Train Your Dragon $25,350,000 $133.8
4 Why Did I Get Married Too $11,000,000 $48.5
5 Last Song $10,000,000 $42.4
6 Alice in Wonderland $5,600,000 $319.3
7 Hot Tub Time Machine $5,430,000 $36.9
8 The Bounty Hunter $4,300,000 $56
9 Diary of a Wimpy Kid $4,100,000 $53.7
10 Letters to God $1,121,000 $1.1

date_night_set_photo_tina_fey_steve_carell_01.jpgDate Night appears to have won the weekend with an estimated $27.1 million thanks to its extra wide release into 3,374 theatres. Conventional logic said that the action-heavy Clash of the Titans would surpass the comedy come Saturday when the younger set rules the multiplex. But conventional logic lost. Clash had a giant 68% Friday drop followed by a second-weekend fall of over 56% despite its slightly expanded run into 3,802 theatres. Still, the margin of victory for Date Night was remarkably slim.

But considering that Date Night stars two forty-ish TV comedians and that it suffers under the burden of just two dimensions and the lower ticket prices that limitation heralds, the comedy must be commended for wrenching victory out of the jaws of the Kraken. The Fox release made an estimated $8,032 per screen which makes it the biggest comedy debut of 2010 – after all, it hasn’t been a particularly funny year at the box office.

clash_of_the_titans_movie_poster_sam_worthington_pegasus_01.jpgFor awhile there it looked like Dreamworks Animation’s How to Train Your Dragon may have been in the running for second place on its third week in release, despite the fact that it lost about 50 locations as of Friday. Though the film has been a solid performer since its release, it didn’t quite make it to second place according to these estimates though, again, the margin between second and third is pretty slim.

As Date Night was the only major new release of the week (I really don’t want to get into the latest Kirk Cameron-endorsed, religio-flick Letters to God which opened in about 900 locations this week), we have some time to check in on how last week’s titles are doing at the box office:

Last weekend we were “treated” to the release of Disney’s The Last Song starring Miley Cyrus. The film’s $16 million debut wasn’t jaw-dropping, and yet the film is a financial hit thanks to its reported $20 million budget. In its second weekend, The Last Song fell only 37.5% for a total gross of $42.4 million, a smaller second-week percentage drop than Miley’s last movie outing in her Hannah Montana drag.

A far more noteworthy percentage drop was in store for Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married Too. The sequel fell over 70% on Friday and an estimated 62.4% for the weekend. That drop is larger than usual for a Tyler Perry flick, but since I am a Perry virgin, I will not even attempt to explain the incident.

Next week Kick-Ass, director Mathew Vaughn’s labor of love, finally hits theatres alongside the US remake of Death at a Funeral.  Hmm, a funereal comedy versus a movie with “ass” in the title? Which do you think will have the advantage come next Friday?

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