Weekend Box Office – REAL STEEL Takes Top Spot Again with $16.3 Million; FOOTLOOSE a Close Second with $16.1 Million

     October 16, 2011

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In a photo-finish that could very well end up too close to call, it looks like Shawn Levy’s sci-fi pic Real Steel has topped the box office for the second weekend in a row, just edging out the Footloose remake. Estimates have Real Steel with $16.3 million for the weekend, with Footloose finishing with a respectable $16.1 million. The neck-and-neck race may come down to Sunday totals, with the family-heavy day giving a slight edge to the all-ages Real Steel. Hit the jump for more details.

Title Weekend Total
1 Real Steel $16,300,000 $51,744,000
2 Footloose $16,100,000 $16,100,000
3 The Thing $8,700,000 $8,700,000
4 The Ides of March $7,500,000 $22,154,000
5 Dolphin Tale $6,345,000 $58,672,000
6 Moneyball $5,500,000 $57,712,000
7 50/50 $4,315,000 $24,344,000
8 Courageous $3,400,000 $21,378,000
9 The Big Year $3,325,000 $3,325,000
10 The Lion King 3D $2,708,000 $90,452,000

the-thing-teaser-posterThe other new releases for the weekend fared significantly worse. Universal’s The Thing prequel took in a mere $8.7 million. Directed by Matthjis van Heijningen, the film serves as a prequel to John Carptenter’s 1982 film of the same name. Originally dated for April, the release date was shifted to October in order to allow time for reshoots. The additional work on the film didn’t appear to help much, as the pic garnered generally negative reviews from critics. Audiences seemed to agree, as the weekend estimate is significantly lower that what pre-weekend tracking had predicted.

Elsewhere, Fox’s PG comedy The Big Year pretty much bombed, with the weekend totals for the film accumulating to a mere $3.3 million. The David Frankel-directed comedy boasted a strong comedic ensemble with Steve Martin, Owen Wilson, and Jack Black, but the trailers for the pic were considerably void of big laughs and the critical response was lackluster.

The Ides of March dropped only 28%, taking in a modest $7.5 million on only 2,199 screens to bring its total up to $22.1 million. The George Clooney-directed pic is on an awards season track, but faring better is the Brad Pitt-starred Moneyball. That film’s total is up to $57.7 million. It’s got the critical acclaim, strong lead performance, stellar critical reviews, and audiences are responding as evidenced by its healthy box office total. Less of a player in the Oscar race (though still a potential player), the “cancer comedy” 50/50 took in $4.3 million to bring its cumulative total up to a respectable $24.3 million. While not a particularly showy take, the budget was a mere $8 million and the film has been boosted by positive reviews.

dolphin-tale-movie-posterOn the family side of things, Dolphin Tale continues to rake in the dough as its $6.3 million weekend brings its total to $58.6 million in four weeks. The Lion King’s extended 3D theater engagement has proved profitable for Disney, but it looks like just about everyone who was gonna see it has, as its weekend total was a paltry $2.7 million. The Mouse House is not unhappy, though, as its total gross is up to $90.4 million, and the 3D run has launched the film into the top 10 grossing films of all time. Additionally, the Christian film Courageous took in $3.4 million, bringing its total up to $21.3 million. Against a budget of $2 million, the religious-themed pic has proved highly profitable..

Next week the third installment in the Paranormal Activity franchise will square off against Paul W.S. Anderson’s action-centered take on The Three Musketeers. The previous film in the micro-budget horror franchise, Paranormal Activity 2, broke the record for R-rated midnight showings and went on to enjoy a $41 million weekend. Whether audiences have grown tired of the found-footage genre remains to be seen, but Three Musketeers has the potential to draw on some of the Pirates of the Caribbean crowd (though the lack of Johnny Depp could prove troublesome).

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