(all figures are based on the actual box office numbers released on Monday, Feb 25)
The weekend of the Academy Awards is generally slow at the box office, and this past weekend was no different. The tallies from this weekend were off a staggering 22 percent from the same weekend last year, more than likely from the Oscars telecast and the lack of decent fare at the theaters.
Identity Thief, in its third weekend, reclaimed the top spot with $14.02 million. The Jason Bateman-Melissa McCarthy comedy has earned $93.6 million, putting on the road to $100 million, while Universal Pictures is now considering a sequel already.
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's solo film Snitch finally broke the tough guy film slump by debuting at $13.2 million, coming in at second place. Though nowhere close to last year's smash hit Journey 2, Johnson's solo film career has been sketchy at best, and this debut is quite impressive given that the Stallone and Schwarzenegger's films couldn't even muster $10 million in their opening weekends.
Escape From Planet Earth managed to eek past Safe Haven to capture third place with $10.7 million, while the Nicholas Sparks adaptation earned $10.5 million. Escape is still doing fine as the first family film of the year, though Jack the Giant Slayer will definitely steal the thunder next weekend. Safe Haven, meanwhile, is slowly becoming a modest hit, inspiring Fox 2000 to pick up Sparks' The Longest Ride.
John McClane found himself in fifth place as A Good Day to Die Hard tumbled almost 60% with a second-weekend gross of $10.2 million. Domestically speaking, the film is doing very poorly, and will certainly not make it to $100 million, which is usually the franchise's benchmark. However, all is not lost. The film has grossed over $132 million overseas, and will still make 20th Century Fox a profit.
Dark Skies darkened sixth place with $8.2 million, which is paltry by horror film standards, and will probably disappear quickly with The Last Exorcism II debuting next week. Despite the fact the film has already recouped its $3.5 million budget, there really aren't many silver linings on the clouds.
Ironically, Silver Linings Playbook had much to be proud of this weekend. In seventh place, Silver Linings is the only Oscar-nominated flick to remain in the Top 10 with $5.8 million, easing less than 8 percent from last week, continuing to take advantage of the excellent word-of-mouth from audiences and could pick up some momentum with star Jennifer Lawrence's Best Actress win during Sunday's Academy Awards telecast.
Eighth and ninth places showed this year's teen supernatural romances starting to slow down a little, indicating that audiences may be a little tired of Twilight-like films. Warm Bodies earned $4.8 million, which isn't horrible seeing that it's been out for four weeks now, and has $58.2 million to it's domestic total, thanks to its unique nature. However, Beautiful Creatures continues to be pummeled by the competition, earning $3.6 million this weekend, making the two-week total a weak $16.5 million. Though the film is vastly superior to Twilight, the marketing campaign was too close to the now-ended franchise, and may have caused audiences to remain uncertain until it's released on video.
Though February ended on a low note, March shows that there are much better films to come, and that usually results in better box office grosses, so stay tuned.