The Lorax claimed first place again in the light of John Carter‘s failure to surpass its already mediocre expectations. To say that John Carter has an uphill battle in the race to recoup its $250 million budget is a giant understatement at the very least. Then there were the other new wide releases, Silent House and A Thousand Words, none offering any sort of punch at the box office.
So the tiny orange moustache wielding Lorax took home top honors again with $38.8 million, that’s $121.7 million in the grand scheme of things (read 10 days) and makes this the new highest grosser of 2012. Not too shabby but also not the first time a Dr. Seuss adaptation has lead a premature year. Back in 2008 Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who! opened in the middle of March and a few weeks later it was the top grossing film that year, that was until Iron Man came and took the lead. I have a feeling the Robert Downey Jr. played hero will repeat that feat against The Lorax when The Avengers opens in May.
John Carter opened with $30.1 million, and let me break down this number for you guys. Looking back, that debut is almost even with the 2010 Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, another big budget live-action Disney epic that should have been more then it ended up being. That film finished with $90.7 million in North America so at first glance that’s where John Carter might be headed, but not quite. You see, the hero of Mars started the weekend with just $9.8 million (less than the Prince). That was supposed to turn a 3-day opening of $26-27 million, but that’s not the case for John Carter since it went up on Saturday with $12.3 million and then had the smallest top 10 drop on Sunday. That’s a good omen for the film but unfortunately with numbers this small, John Carter faces an impossible task when it comes to covering its $250 million budget. For better or worse, I very much enjoyed John Carter and it’s probably my favorite film so far this year (of the ones I saw). I can see this being my new guilty pleasure for years to come. Sadly John Carter can’t jump on Earth as high as he could on Mars.
In 3rd place Project X turned in $11.1 million for a $39.7 million 10 day total. Can you say sequel? I certainly can and it seems Warner already did, after all, the film only cost $12 million to make.
Act of Valor kept its head up in 4th with $6.9 million (actually just $8.123 shy of $7 million). That brings the active duty Navy SEALs flick to $56 million after 17 days. I could see Relativity attempting to get a sequel out of this considering the budget was only $12 million the first time around.
Silent House, a remake of a very low budget Uruguayan 2010 horror flick, was 5th in its opening weekend with just $6.6 million. This is certainly far from a good number and on the low end of the genre.
The last new wide release of the weekend was the Eddie Murphy comedy A Thousand Words with $6.1 million, a number we’ve come to expect from the once extremely bankable star. At least A Thousand Words fared better then the last solo endeavors of Eddie Murphy, Imagine That ($5.5 million opening) and Meet Dave ($5.2 million0. You see, Paramount had this film shelved for a while now and after the success of Tower Heist they probably hoped Eddie Murphy’s star would rise again. Clearly they were wrong.