It was a good weekend at the North American box office with The Twilight Saga: Eclipse leading the pack.
Eclipse, ahem, eclipsed the others and managed a $64.8 million opening weekend. Now that might seem a little small compared to what Twilight and New Moon did ($69.6 million and $142.8 million) but the real story here is Eclipse actually opened on Wednesday and has made since (weekend included) $176.3 million in 6 days (Monday included). So if we look in perspective, it’s pretty much in line with what New Moon made ($178.8 million in 6 days).
Add to that another $100 million from the few international markets Eclipse opened in and you’ve got a very impressive $276.5 million worldwide for a movie that cost about $68 million. I expect this to finish with around the same numbers as New Moon, maybe a bit more, $300 million or so in North America and another $450-$500 million from the rest of the world for what could become the first movie in the Twilight series to reach $800 million worldwide. Keep hitting that iron while it’s hot Summit Entertainment, as long as you keep making stuff like Red, I can take all the Twilight movies you can push.
Next in line is The Last Airbender (formerly Avatar: The Last Airbender) based on the popular (actually very popular by looking at the numbers) animated series of the same name. This one, despite some of the worst reviews of the year, managed to open with $40.3 million over the weekend, but again, just like with Eclipse, the number might seem small but in reality they are bigger because this opened on Thursday to $17.5 million and went on to make $69.3 million in 5 days (Monday included). Will this drop like a rock next weekend and just barely match the $150 million budget Paramount invested in it? We’ll just have to wait a few more days.
Toy Story 3 is in third place after 3 weeks with $30.2 million (again, smaller number because the 4th of July fell on Sunday) and has made so far $301.8 million in 18 days matching Shrek 2 ($302.6 million in 18 days) as the fastest animated movie to pass $300 million (7th overall). With $150.8 million from the rest of the world so far (not having opened in most of the big markets yet) Toy Story 3 has generated $452.6 million worldwide. I can see this last entry in the series gettingt to $400 million or so in North America (and probably finish the year in first place if Harry Potter doesn’t have something good to say in 3D) and as high as $900 million and even $1 billion worldwide. First Alice in Wonderland, now this, having two movies pass 1 billion in the same year would be something Disney can only dream of.
From this point on everything is pretty standard, Grown Ups made $19 million for $77.6 million and will surely be another $100+ million Adam Sandler movie, Knight & Day did $10.4 million and $45.7 million so far while Karate Kid keeps on giving (to Sony and the Smith family) with another $8 million that adds to $151.5 million for Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan.
The A-Team, Get Him to the Greek, Shrek Forever After and Letters to Juliet (making a comeback) finish the top 10.