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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

North American box office: Sandra Bullock rules, vampires drool

Team Sandy wins — take that, Team Edward and Team Jacob:

1. The Twilight Saga: New Moon: $66.3 million (2nd week; drops 54%)
2. The Blind Side: $57.5 million (2nd week; up 67%)
3. 2012: $25.2 million (3rd week; drops 5%)
4. Old Dogs: $24.2 million (NEW)
5. A Christmas Carol: $22.1 million (4th week; up 80%)

actual numbers, not estimates, for the 5-day weekend
Oh, sure, New Moon was still the biggest movie of the Thanksgiving holiday, whether you look at it as a five-day — Wednesday, when all the new wide releases opened, through Sunday — or as a three-day, the usual Friday through Sunday weekend. But the Twilight movie took huge drops — New Moon’s three-day gross of $42.9 million was 70 percent less than the prior weekend — while The Blind Side positively surged. And the distance between New Moon and The Blind Side tightens even more over only the three-day: the Sandra Bullock flick took in $40.1 million from Friday through Monday, a jump of almost 18 percent (and it has already passed the $100 million mark). So by any measure, the Bullock movie a screaming success, even facing such stiff competition as New Moon. (Or, you know, not really, ahem, stiff since Edward is such an abstinence poster boy, but let’s not go any further there than we have to.)

It was the highest grossing Thanksgiving holiday ever, according to Box Office Mojo, though only ninth in terms of attendance (a reflection of higher ticket prices). But New Moon’s drop was the worst second weekend Thanksgiving drop ever. But the film is now the most successful vampire movie ever — it was close to a total North American cumulative take of $231 million by the end of the holiday weekend, way beyond Twilight’s cumulative take of $193 million.

Oh, this is making my brain hurt…

Other debuts: Ninja Assassin? Not so good, way down at No. 6 with $21.2 million (though it will quickly turn a profit and will certainly spawn sequels). The Road? Better, at a smidge under $2 million over the five-day, at only 111 locations, for a per-screen average of $17,815, more than New Moon’s and only a little less than Blind Side’s (and more than Blind Side’s over the three-day). The Princess and the Frog? Astonishing, at a per-screen of $608,430 over the five-day, and $393,095 over the three-day. (That’s still good enough for only the third-best ever, and that’s with whopping $30 and $50 ticket prices.)

Other great per-screens? Over the five-day, Broken Embraces took in $85,319 on each of its two screens, and Me and Orson Welles took in $21,356 on each of its four screens.

Disappointing? Fantastic Mr. Fox, in its first weekend in wide release, took in only $9.4 million, good enough only to edge its way up to No. 8. It’s not looking like the film will do anything like the gangbusters business it’s done in the U.K.

[numbers via Box Office Mojo]



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