Nearly a month after it opened in theaters, Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises finally relinquished its coveted spot atop the box office charts, and it took the combined strength of a new Bourne adventure and the latest Will Ferrell comedy to make it so.
With Jeremy Renner subbing in for Matt Damon, The Bourne Legacy opened to a solid $40.2 million. It is the third-highest opening of the franchise (besting only the initial Bourne movie, which opened to $27.1M in June 2002). But Legacy opened relatively close to Supremacy ($52.5M) and Ultimatum ($69.2M), giving the latest Bourne a very good shot at surpassing $100M at the domestic box.
That likely will be an attainable target for The Campaign, as well. Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis’ broad political comedy bounced out of the gate with a $27.4M opening, good for second place on this weekend’s Top 10. As far as R-rated openings go, The Campaign is third for 2012 -- behind 21 Jump Street and Ted -- though both of those films raced past the $100M mark (with Ted crossing $200M). With no other major comedies on the horizon for the remainder of August, The Campaign has a very good shot at entertaining audiences for the duration of the month.
The weekend’s other wide release got a jump start on the competition, but couldn’t make a play at the top of the list. Hope Springs stars Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones as an older, married couple trying to rekindle their fading relationship. Even with the awards-worthy firepower in the cast (Steve Carell co-stars as a relationship therapist), Springs only sprung to an estimated $20M over the course of its first five days (it opened on Wednesday). It sits at No. 4 on the Top 10 list.
After four weeks in theaters, The Dark Knight Rises has grossed $390.1M domestically. It is the 15th-highest-grossing film of all time, and is closing in on Michael Bay’s Transformers 2 ($402.1M). And yet, Nolan’s final Batman film still hasn’t surpassed either The Hunger Games ($407.2M) or The Avengers ($617.2M) on 2012’s all-time chart.