Sunday, October 24, 2010

Black Sheep @ The Box Office

The mad party continues this weekend at Paramount Studios. Not only have they replaced themselves at the top of the Box Office but they now lay claim to both the best and fifth best October openings of all time. Now, I was under the impression that audiences would have found a sequel to PARANORMAL ACTIVITY to be a little too much but audiences have once again proven that I don't know them at all. Instead, the film opened to $41.5 million and an impressive per screen average of more than $12K. JACKASS 3D follows in second with a strong second week take of $21.5 million for an $87 million haul. It has already outgrossed both of the previous JACKASS films.

I saw the first PARANORMAL ACTIVITY. I admired what they were able to accomplish on such a small budget but truly felt the gimmick was pretty thin. Whatever they did to beef up the scares in the sequel must have worked because the $41.5 million take is almost double what the first film did on its biggest weekend. So now that the film has proven its franchise possibilities, the only question remains whether it will repeat its other greatest feat from last year - stealing all the Halloween gore freaks away from SAW, which bows in its supposedly final installment next weekend. Question: If it isn't Halloween if it isn't SAW, and SAW is gone after this year, does that mean this Halloween will be our last?

There is very little activity, paranormal or otherwise, below the Top 10 this weekend but Clint Eastwood's HEREAFTER makes its inevitable leap from 24th place on just 6 screens last week to a modest fourth place finish. Mixed reviews seem to have left audiences almost as cold as the film itself. Still, at $12 million, HEREAFTER is $4 million ahead of what Eastwood's last directorial effort, INVICTUS, did on its opening weekend on a similar amount of screens. (Click the film title for the Black Sheep review.)

NEXT WEEK: Even though the SAW franchise crashed and burned last year, the last installment, SAW 3D, opens unopposed next weekend on 2700+ screens. I'm betting the 3D element and the closing of the series will give the franchise the edge it needs to beat PARANORMAL ACTIVITY this year. And sneaking onto 130 screens is that pesky girl again. You know the one I'm talking about. This time, she's THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET'S NEST.

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