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'Grown Ups 2' Among Biggest Adam Sandler Hits & 'Pacific Rim' Disappoints

Adam Sandler Grown Ups 2Adam Sandler Grown Ups 2: One of Sandler's biggest domestic openings ever?

Directed by Dennis Dugan, and starring Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, David Spade, and Kevin James, Grown Ups 2 opened with $41.5 million from 3,491 North American locations this past weekend, July 12-14, according to weekend box office actuals found at Boxofficemojo.com. That figures includes an estimated $2.3 million from Thursday evening and midnight screenings – and it's about $1 million below studio estimates published on Sunday. Grown Ups 2's per-theater average was a solid $11,890. (Image: Adam Sandler in Grown Ups 2.)

Although a more modest gross than studio estimates indicated, $41.5 million was enough for the $80 million-budgeted Grown Ups 2 to easily beat Guillermo del Toro's $190 million-budgeted sci-fi actioner Pacific Rim, which took in $37.28 million by Sunday evening – also about $1 million below studio estimates. Grown Ups 2 ended up trailing only the animated 3D holdover Despicable Me 2, which features the voices of Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig, and which grossed $43.89 million.

Adam Sandler's latest tragedy has a dismal 9 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average at Rotten Tomatoes. But this type of cinematic garbage seems to be exactly what North American audiences are hungry for. Though, admittedly, not as much as before – at least not when it comes to Adam Sandler movies.

Adam Sandler's biggest movie debuts

Grown Ups 2 has been heralded as Adam Sandler's fourth biggest opening weekend ever (not including the animated Hotel Transylvania) at the North American box office. But that isn't exactly accurate.

It's true that even adjusted for inflation, Grown Ups 2 remains ahead of Grown Ups's $40.5 million in 2010. However, once inflation is factored in, no less than eight Adam Sandler movies (once again not including the animated Hotel Transylvania) remain ahead of Grown Ups 2: The Longest Yard, Anger Management, Big Daddy, Click, 50 First Dates, The Waterboy, You Don't Mess with the Zohan, and Mr. Deeds.

Now, will Grown Ups 2 end up with a cume of $162 million at the domestic box office like its predecessor? The answer is: that's certainly possible, but don't be too surprised if the sequel – as those tend to be more frontloaded – finishes its run with a considerably more modest $120-$130 million. (See also: “Adam Sandler 'That's My Boy': His Worst Box Office Flop?”)

Also: as per Box Office Mojo, Grown Ups 2 added $1.7 million internationally. It's unclear in how many territories.

Adam Sandler heads Grown Ups 2 cast

Besides Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, David Spade, and Kevin James, Grown Ups 2 also features Bridesmaids' Maya Rudolph, 2002 Best Actress Academy Award nominee Salma Hayek (Frida), A History of Violence's Maria Bello, Milo Ventimiglia, Colin Quinn, Nick Swardson, Steve Buscemi, Alexander Ludwig, Georgia Engel, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Jimmy Tatro, Jared Sandler, Chris Titoni, Shaquille O'Neal, Jon Lovitz, Steve Austin, and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2's Taylor Lautner in a cameo.

Adam Sandler Grown Ups 2 photo: Sony Pictures.

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Grown Ups 2 Taylor LautnerGrown Ups 2 beats original Grown Ups, Pacific Rim disappoints on opening weekend: Box office (image: Taylor Lautner in Grown Ups 2)

Here's a quick rundown of the top twelve movies at the North American box office this weekend, July 12-14, 2013. Universal's Despicable Me 2, featuring the voices of Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig, was the no. 1 movie, with an estimated $44.75 million – down a not inconsiderable 46 percent – according to figures found at Box Office Mojo. Despicable Me 2's cume currently stands at $229.23 million.

The no. 2 movie was the $80 million-budgeted Adam Sandler comedy Grown Ups 2 – which North American critics apparently feel plays out like a tragedy, what with a dismal 9 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average at Rotten Tomatoes. Anyhow, American and Canadian audiences seem to be thirsty for tragedies: Grown Ups 2 scored $42.5 million and a solid $12,174 per-theater average. Besides Sandler, the Dennis Dugan-directed Grown Ups 2 also features Chris Rock, David Spade, Kevin James, Bridesmaids' Maya Rudolph, Academy Award nominee Salma Hayek (Frida), Milo Ventimiglia, Patrick Schwarzenegger, Jimmy Tatro, and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2's Taylor Lautner in a cameo. Of note: the original Grown Ups opened with $40.5 million in 2010.

At no. 3, Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim collected $38.3 million, averaging $11,695 per location – a highly disappointing figure for a movie that cost a reported $190 million. In fact, if the studio estimate is on target, Pacific Rim has officially joined M. Night Shyamalan / Will Smith's After Earth, Roland Emmerich / Channing Tatum's White House Down, and Johnny Depp / Armie Hammer's The Lone Ranger as the latest big-budget summer 2013 flop at the domestic box office. (Here's more detailed information on the box office performance of Pacific Rim.)

Co-written by Guillermo del Toro and Clash of the Titans / Dog Days of Summer's Travis Beacham, Pacific Rim features Sons of Anarchy and Queer as Folk's Charlie Hunnam, Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Rinko Kikuchi (Babel), Diego Klattenhoff, Charlie Day, Max Martini, Ron Perlman, Burn Gorman, Idris Elba, Robert Kazinsky, Clifton Collins Jr, Brad William Henke, Larry Joe Campbell, Mana Ashida, and Santiago Segura.

The Heat passes $100 million milestone

The Sandra Bullock / Melissa McCarthy comedy The Heat added $14 million (down 43.5 percent), thus surpassing the $100 million milestone at the domestic on its third weekend out. The Heat's cume is $112.36 million. Note that every single holdover among the top twelve suffered drop-off rates above 40 percent.

Down a terrible 62 percent, The Lone Ranger added $11.14 million – resulting in a paltry $2,853 per-theater average. At this rate, the Gore Verbinski-directed action / comic Western will have trouble reaching $100 million in the U.S. and Canada. The Lone Ranger's cume: $71.1 million.

At no. 6, Monsters University, featuring the voices of John Goodman, Billy Crystal, and Helen Mirren, continued its relatively steep downward trend, collecting $10.62 million (down 46 percent), for a $237.76 million cume. Marc Forster / Brad Pitt's World War Z was next with $9.43 million (down 49 percent), cuming at $177.08 million.

Man of Steel: Superman to fly below $300 million level?

Rounding out the top twelve on the domestic box office chart were the following movies:

  • Roland Emmerich / Channing Tatum / Jamie Foxx's big-budget thriller White House Down with $6.15 million (down 54 percent). Cume: A dismal $62.96 million.
  • Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain with $5 million (down a relatively steep down 50 percent on its second weekend). Cume: $26.37 million.
  • Zack Snyder / Henry Cavill / Amy Adams' Man of Steel with $4.82 (down 58 percent after losing 755 locations). Cume: $280.99 million. At this rate, the $300 million milestone at the North American box office may turn out to be beyond Superman's capabilities.
  • James Franco / Seth Rogen's apocalyptic comedy This is the End with $2.95 million (down 50 percent). Cume: $91.7 million.
  • Jesse Eisenberg / Isla Fisher's heist thriller Now You See Me with $1.31 million (down 54 percent). Cume: $113.28 million.

Taylor Lautner, Jared Sandler, Milo Ventimiglia, Chris Titoni in Grown Ups 2 photo: Sony Pictures.

July 14

Pacific Rim Charlie Hunnam Jaeger'Pacific Rim' with Charlie Hunnam.

Pacific Rim weekend box office: Likely trailing Grown Ups 2, Despicable Me 2

Despite a quite promising Thursday evening start, Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim should not get even close to the $50 million mark at the domestic box office this weekend, July 12-14, 2013. Del Toro's homage to Japanese monsters movies of the '50s and '60s has lost quite a bit of steam, apparently after IMAX pre-sales ran their course.

According to studio estimates, Pacific Rim took in $14.62 million on Friday, July 12, including a better-than-expected $3.6 million from Thursday evening and midnight shows. Of Thursday's figure, an estimated $835,000 originated from 331 IMAX theaters – out of a total of 3,275 venues. IMAX locations have likely continued to boost Pacific Rim's box office fortunes throughout the weekend, but what about the film's other 2,944 North American venues?

Pacific Rim vs. Prometheus, Inception

As I mentioned in my Pacific Rim box office post yesterday, comparisons to Ridley Scott's Prometheus or to another mid-July non-sequel, Christopher Nolan / Leonardo DiCaprio's Inception, were iffy. In early June 2012, Scott's R-rated horror sci-fier, which features several mid-level stars such as Michael Fassbender and Best Actress Oscar winner Charlize Theron (Monster), took in $3.56 million from midnight screenings and $51.05 million on its first weekend. Inception debuted with $62.78 million in mid-July 2010.

However, unlike Pacific Rim, neither Prometheus nor Inception was sold as a fanboy movie event like Michael Bay's Transformers movies, or megabudget superhero movies such as Zack Snyder's Man of Steel, Joss Whedon's The Avengers, or Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises. And fanboy events (much like fangirl events, e.g., the record-breaking midnight shows of New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn - Part 1), unless accompanied by solid word of mouth and positive reviews, tend to be quite frontloaded.

Even so, following its impressive late Thursday performance, I was expecting Pacific Rim to bring in about $45 million by Sunday evening. But if early weekend estimates found at Deadline.com are on target, Guillermo del Toro's Jaeger vs. Kaiju actioner may have a little trouble reaching even $40 million. Deadline's current estimate is $39.7 million; a few hours earlier it was $37 million. Based on the film's Friday take and barring an unexpected Saturday surge, Pacific Rim will likely end up in that upper $30 million range.

Pacific Rim vs. World War Z

For comparison's sake: both Marc Forster / Brad Pitt's zombie movie World War Z and Pacific Rim cost a reported $190 million. World War Z opened with $66.41 million last June. An opening below $40 million for Pacific Rim means bad news for producing companies Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures. It also means that unless business remains relatively steady in the next couple of weekends, Pacific Rim can be added to the list of domestic summer flops in relation to their gargantuan costs – along with Johnny Depp / Armie Hammer's The Lone Ranger and M. Night Shyamalan / Will Smith's After Earth.

The good news: to date, World War Z has earned $167.65 million in North America – plus an estimated $207.4 million internationally. Chances are Pacific Rim will follow a similar box office trajectory, with the bulk of its earnings coming from outside the United States and Canada. On Thursday, Pacific Rim collected an impressive (estimated) $7.8 million from 25 markets, including $2 million in Russia and $1.5 million in South Korea. Somewhat surprisingly, as the Kaiju make a special appearance at the Sydney Opera House, the film disappointed on opening day in Australia, landing in fourth place.

Pacific Rim vs. Grown Ups 2

Pacific Rim currently has a 67 percent approval rating and 6.6/10 average among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics. That may not seem very impressive, until you compare it to the latest Adam Sandler tragedy, the Dennis Dugan-directed Grown Ups 2: 9 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average. But as the old saying goes, If you offer them rotten garbage, they'll gulp it all and ask for seconds.

Also featuring Chris Rock, David Spade, Kevin James, Maya Rudolph, Salma Hayek (once upon a time a Best Actress Oscar nominee, for Frida), and a cameo by Taylor Lautner, Grown Ups 2 should gross around $41-43 million from 3,491 sites this weekend. If so, that should place Grown Ups 2 ahead of both Pacific Rim and the original Grown Ups ($40.5 million in 2010), but behind Despicable Me 2. Universal's 3D animated feature, whose voice cast includes Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig, should collect around $45 million.

And I should add that The Lone Ranger should consider itself lucky if it grosses more than $10 million this weekend, following a highly unimpressive $3.36 million take on Friday.

Official weekend box office estimates come out on Sunday morning. Weekend box office actuals will be released on Monday.

Pacific Rim cast

Co-written by Guillermo del Toro and Travis Beacham (Clash of the Titans, Dog Days of Summer), Pacific Rim features Sons of Anarchy and Queer as Folk's Charlie Hunnam, Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nominee Rinko Kikuchi (Babel), Diego Klattenhoff, Charlie Day, Max Martini, Ron Perlman, Idris Elba, Burn Gorman, Robert Kazinsky, Clifton Collins Jr, Larry Joe Campbell, Mana Ashida, Brad William Henke, and Santiago Segura.

Charlie Hunnam Pacific Rim photo: Warner Bros. (See also: Pacific Rim & Charlie Hunnam 'male bonding.')

July 12

Charlie Hunnam shirtless Pacific RimPacific Rim box office: Guillermo del Toro's monster movie to reach $50 million in North America? (Image: A shirtless Charlie Hunnam uses his biceps to scare off the Kaiju in Pacific Rim)

Could Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim reach $50 million at the domestic box office by Sunday evening (July 14, 2013)? Thursday evening and midnight shows brought in a somewhat better-than-expected $3.6 million according to studio estimates found at Boxofficemojo.com. Comparisons to Ridley Scott's Prometheus, which took in $3.56 million from midnight screenings in early June 2012, are iffy; after all, Scott's horror sci-fier was rated R, and, unlike Pacific Rim, it wasn't sold as a cinematic fanboy event along the lines of Michael Bay's Transformers movies, or Man of Steel, The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, and the like. And fanboy events (much like fangirl events, e.g., the Twilight movies), unless accompanied by phenomenal word of mouth and highly positive reviews, tend to be quite frontloaded.

So, although Prometheus opened with $51.05 million in the U.S. and Canada – and Christopher Nolan / Leonardo DiCaprio's Inception opened with $62.78 million in mid-July 2010 – barring a surprising Friday evening and Saturday surge, chances are Pacific Rim will gross somewhere in the mid-$40 million range on its debut weekend. Of note: an estimated $835,000 of Pacific Rim's Thursday gross was earned at 331 IMAX theaters – out of a total of 3,275 venues. Expect pricier IMAX locations to continue to boost the film's box office fortunes throughout the weekend.

Pacific Rim and World War Z

Box-office pundits had been expecting Pacific Rim, which reportedly had been tracking modestly in the last few weeks, to open between $30 and $40 million. At this stage, that sounds like a pretty low-ball range. Either way, Pacific Rim will almost surely have a much less impressive opening weekend than Marc Forster / Brad Pitt's zombie movie World War Z, which debuted with $66.41 million this past June. And that's not very good news for Warner Bros. and partner Legendary Pictures, as Pacific Rim – like World War Z – reportedly cost a mammoth $190 million.

The good news: World War Z has to date earned $167.65 million in North America – in addition to an estimated $207.4 million internationally. Chances are Pacific Rim will follow a similar box office trajectory, i.e., the bulk of its earnings will come from outside North America, even though the film disappointed on its Australian opening, landing in fourth place according to The Hollywood Reporter. On Thursday, Pacific Rim collected an estimated $7.8 million from 25 markets, including $2 million in Russia and $1.5 million in South Korea.

Pacific Rim reviews

Pacific Rim currently has a barely passable 67 percent approval rating and 6.6/10 average among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics. If that doesn't sound all that impressive, well, Pacific Rim looks like an Ingmar Bergman masterpiece when compared to the latest Adam Sandler “comedy,” Grown Ups 2, which has a 9 percent approval rating and 3.2/10 average. Grown Ups 2, which earned $2.3 million from Thursday nights shows, is expected to gross around $40+ million this weekend as well (from 3,491 locations). As an ancient wise man once said, If you offer them fetid trash, they'll come – and they'll bring the family, too.

According to Deadline.com, Pacific Rim, Grown Ups 2, and holdover Despicable Me 2 featuring the voices of Steve Carell and Kristen Wiig, are all vying for top position somewhere in the $40+ million range this weekend. All three movies should be earning around $14 million this Friday, as per Deadline. If so, that means Despicable Me 2 is racing ahead of the pack, as the 3D animated feature doesn't have the advantage of Thursday evening's box-office-inflating shows.

Pacific Rim cast

Co-written by Guillermo del Toro and Travis Beacham (Clash of the Titans, Dog Days of Summer), Pacific Rim features Sons of Anarchy and Queer as Folk's Charlie Hunnam, Best Supporting Actress Academy Award nominee Rinko Kikuchi (Babel), Diego Klattenhoff, Charlie Day, Burn Gorman, Idris Elba, Max Martini, Robert Kazinsky, Ron Perlman, Clifton Collins Jr, Larry Joe Campbell, Brad William Henke, Mana Ashida, and Santiago Segura.

Shirtless Charlie Hunnam Pacific Rim photo: Warner Bros.

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