Hollywood suffered a Labor Day hangover. Or perhaps the world was at the Toronto International Film Festival? Either way, audiences avoided movie theaters over the weekend, producing some of the lowest numbers in years.
The weekend’s winner, if you can call it that, was the supernatural thriller Possession, which held on to the top slot at the box office for a second consecutive weekend, but did so with a meager $9.5 million. Lionsgate wisely added theaters to capitalize on the lack of competition, allowing the film to push its overall cume to $33.3M – pretty good for a film that reportedly kept its budget around $14M.
Lawless continued to draw interest from ticket buyers who might have heard positive remarks from friends and thought it’d be worth seeing on the big screen. John Hillcoat’s period drama – which stars Tom Hardy and Shia LaBeouf as bootlegging brothers in southern Virginia – added another $6M to its pot over the weekend. It now has earned $23.5M to date.
You have to look down in third place for the first new release of the weekend. Bradley Cooper and Zoe Saldana’s The Words was a literal non-starter, posting a tepid $5M over the course of the entire weekend.
It marks the lowest opening of a Cooper vehicle since Case 39 earned $5.3M in October 2010. And it contributes to the overall box office having its lowest recorded weekend for this frame ($51.9M) since 2008 (where the totals equaled $50.3M).
Help should be on the way. Resident Evil returns with Retribution next weekend. Finding Nemo goes 3D. And a full slate of noteworthy films are on the docket for Sept. 21. So be patient, folks. It gets better.
Here’s the full Top 10 list for the weekend:
MOVIE / WEEKEND / TOTAL
1. The Possession, $9.5M, $33.3M
2. Lawless, $6M, $23.5M
3. The Words, $5M, $5M
4. The Expendables 2, $4.7M, $75.4M
5. The Bourne Legacy, $4M, $103.7M
6. ParaNorman, $3.8M, $45M
7. The Odd Life of Timothy Green, $3.6M, $43M
8. The Campaign, $3.5M, $79.4M
9. The Dark Knight Rises, $3.2M, $437.8M
10. 2016 Obama’s America, $3.2M, $26M