'Shutter Island' to become biggest Martin Scorsese-Leonardo DiCaprio box office hit?
Feb. 28, '10, update: Starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo, Martin Scorsese's thriller Shutter Island has remained at the top of the U.S. and Canada box office chart for the second weekend in a row (Feb. 26–28), collecting $22.2 million at 3,003 locations, according to studio estimates released Sunday. Average: $7,393 per theater.
Shutter Island, the no. 1 movie at the domestic box office all through this past week, has grossed an impressive $75 million after only ten days. As previously reported, the thriller is expected to become the highest-grossing Martin Scorsese-Leonardo DiCaprio collaboration to date.
For comparison's sake, here are the total domestic grosses (not adjusted for inflation) of their three previous efforts:
- Best Picture Oscar nominee Gangs of New York (2002): $77 million.
Also in the cast: Daniel Day-Lewis. Cameron Diaz. Jim Broadbent. Henry Thomas. Liam Neeson.
- Best Picture Oscar nominee The Aviator (2004): $102.6 million.
Also in the cast: Cate Blanchett. Kate Beckinsale. Alan Alda. Alec Baldwin.
- Best Picture Oscar winner The Departed (2006): $132.3 million.
Also in the cast: Matt Damon. Jack Nicholson. Vera Farmiga. Mark Wahlberg.
'Shutter Island' cast
Besides three-time Oscar nominee Leonardo DiCaprio and Mark Ruffalo, the pedigreed Shutter Island cast includes:
Best Actor Oscar winner Ben Kingsley (Gandhi, 1982).
Best Actor Oscar nominee Max von Sydow (Pelle the Conqueror, 1988).
Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Michelle Williams (Brokeback Mountain, 2005).
Best Supporting Actress Oscar nominee Patricia Clarkson (Pieces of April, 2003).
Best Supporting Actor Oscar nominee Jackie Earle Haley (Little Children, 2006).
Emily Mortimer. Ted Levine. Elias Koteas. John Carroll Lynch. Robin Bartlett. Christopher Denham. Ruby Jerins.
'Cop Out' trails 'Shutter Island' despite Kevin Smith name in the news
Despite much (well-timed) publicity surrounding Kevin Smith getting kicked out of an airplane because he was too heavy too fly, new entry Cop Out failed to grab the top spot at the weekend box office.
The cop comedy featuring Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan had to settle for no. 2 with a good $18.5 million as found at boxofficemojo.com – but, at 3,150 theaters, a just okay $5,894 average. For comparison's sake: As seen further up, Shutter Island's average on its second weekend out was $7,393 at 3,003 sites.
Not helping matters, Cop Out's Saturday and Sunday figures were less than impressive. Next weekend, expect a heavy drop for this movie about two cops hunting down a gang of murderers while trying to find a stolen baseball card.
Remake of George A. Romero cult classic in third spot
Another new entry, Breck Eisner's horror remake The Crazies, landed in the third spot, collecting $16.5 million at 2,476 venues – a good $6,672 per-theater average.
Toplining Timothy Olyphant, Radha Mitchell, and Joe Anderson, The Crazies depicts the unpleasant effects of a madness-inducing virus outbreak.
Directed by George A. Romero, the low-budget 1973 original featured Lane Carroll, Will MacMillan, and Harold Wayne Jones.
'Avatar' breaks domestic box office record – sort of
Up for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, Avatar took in $14 million at no. 4, a small 14 percent drop from the previous weekend.
Expect a more significant drop next weekend, as Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, starring Mia Wasikowska and Johnny Depp, will be replacing Avatar at numerous IMAX and 3D theaters.
Whatever happens, James Cameron's sci-fi adventure has already passed the $700 million milestone at the domestic box office. Avatar's cume currently stands at $706.9 million. That's a first, though Avatar is still trailing a number of other movies (e.g., Gone with the Wind, Jaws, Star Wars) in terms of actual ticket sales.
In the Avatar cast:
Sam Worthington. Zoe Saldana. Stephen Lang. Laz Alonso. Joel David Moore. Michelle Rodriguez. Giovanni Ribisi. CCH Pounder.
Three-time Oscar nominee Sigourney Weaver (lead for Aliens, 1986, and Gorillas in the Mist, 1988; supporting for Working Girl, 1988).
'Valentine's Day' passes $100 million milestone
At no. 5, Chris Columbus' $95-million adventure flick Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, starring Logan Lerman, earned $9.8 million. Cume: $71.2 million.
Percy Jackson & the Olympians must perform amazingly well overseas and in ancillary venues in order to recover its budget, as about half of what it earns at the domestic box office goes to exhibitors. Also, marketing/distribution costs aren't included in the studios' reported production price tag.
Percy Jackson was closely followed by Garry Marshall's all-star ensemble Valentine's Day, which collected $9.5 million at no. 6, for a $100.3 million cume. The romantic comedy-drama stars, among others:
Anne Hathaway. Kathy Bates. Shirley MacLaine. Emma Roberts. Jennifer Garner. Carter Jenkins. Taylor Swift. Hector Elizondo.
'The Wolfman,' 'Tooth Fairy' still among Top Ten
The no. 7 movie was Lasse Hallström's romantic melodrama Dear John, with $5 million and $72.6 million to date – or nearly three times its reported budget. Channing Tatum, Amanda Seyfried, Richard Jenkins, and Henry Thomas star.
Joe Johnston's The Wolfman, toplining Benicio Del Toro and Anthony Hopkins, was next with $4.1 million for a grand total of $57.2 million. Not good for a Universal release that cost between $110-$150 million. The modestly budgeted 1941 The Wolf Man starred Lon Chaney Jr. and Claude Rains.
20th Century Fox's Dwayne Johnson kiddie comedy Tooth Fairy, which always performs better on weekends despite having already lost quite a bit of steam, scored $3.4 million at no. 9, reaching a total gross of $53.8 million. Reported budget: $48 million. Also in the cast: veteran Julie Andrews (Hawaii, Thoroughly Modern Millie).
Rounding out the Top Ten was Scott Cooper's Crazy Heart, toplining Academy Award nominees Jeff Bridges and Maggie Gyllenhaal. Crazy Heart earned $2.5 million, bringing its cumulative take to $25 million.
And rounding out the Top Twelve were the Sandra Bullock sleeper blockbuster The Blind Side, with another $1.2 million, and the Denzel Washington post-apocalyptic drama The Book of Eli, with $1.1 million.
Gone from the Top Twelve:
- The Kristen Bell-Josh Duhamel romantic comedy When in Rome.
- The John Travolta-Jonathan Rhys Meyers vehicle From Paris with Love.
- The Mel Gibson crime thriller Edge of Darkness.
More on 'Avatar': Staggering international box office gross
Overseas, Avatar remained at the top of the box office chart for the 11th consecutive weekend, taking in $36.1 million from 6,535 venues in 70 territories. Its worldwide total is a staggering $2.55 billion.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Avatar's no. 1 market this weekend was Japan ($4 million), though France remains the top market overall, with a total of $169 million to date.
Last weekend, Avatar became the no. 14 all-time blockbuster in the latter country (in ticket sales), trailing David Lean's multiple Oscar-winning 1957 war epic The Bridge on the River Kwai, starring Alec Guinness and William Holden. By now, Avatar may well have already crossed that bridge.
Besides, according to Yonhap News Avatar has become South Korea's biggest blockbuster ever, having surpassed the number of tickets sold by Bong Joon-ho's 2006 monster movie The Host. 20th Century Fox Korea has announced that James Cameron's cultural phenomenon has sold more than 13.01 million admissions ($87.3 million) up to Saturday afternoon. The movie opened in South Korea in December.
As mentioned further up, next weekend Avatar will likely suffer a significant box office drop in North America and in most other top film markets, as Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland will be replacing it at numerous IMAX and 3D theaters. 20th Century Fox is reportedly planning to rerelease Avatar – at least on U.S. screens – later this year.
'The Ghost Writer,' 'A Prophet': Limited release hits
Martin Scorsese's Shutter Island grossed (or rather, is grossing) millions this weekend in the U.S. and Canada. The same goes for Cop Out, The Crazies, Avatar, Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief, and Valentine's Day. But forget these Hollywood flicks for a moment.
Or rather, approach the domestic box office data from a different angle and you'll reach the conclusion that the top success stories of the weekend belong to two “small” movies: Roman Polanski's The Ghost Writer and Jacques Audiard's A Prophet.
After adding 41 screens, The Ghost Writer pulled in a remarkable $870,000, landing at no. 17 on the domestic box office chart. The political thriller's per-theater average was a fantastic $20,233, the highest among the top 50 films.
Winner of the 2010 Best Director Silver Bear at the Berlin Film Festival and enthusiastically received by U.S. critics, The Ghost Writer features:
Ewan McGregor. Pierce Brosnan. Kim Cattrall. Olivia Williams.
Best Actor Oscar nominee Tom Wilkinson (In the Bedroom, 2001).
Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner Timothy Hutton (Ordinary People, 1980).
Veteran Eli Wallach (The Misfits, The Victors).
James Belushi. Jeff Burrell. Robert Pugh.
A Prophet, winner of nine César Awards last night (Feb. 27) including Best Picture and Best Director, brought in $170,000 at nine sites. The prison drama's $18,889 per-screen average was right behind that of The Ghost Writer (though in considerably fewer theaters; in other words, The Ghost Writer's box office feat was more impressive.)
Starring Best Actor César winner Tahar Rahim as a young hoodlum fighting for survival inside the walls of a French prison, A Prophet won the Grand Prix at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival and is considered by many as one of the best movies made anywhere on the planet last year.
Michael Haneke & Shah Rukh Khan & Pedro Almodóvar
In other limited release news, Michael Haneke's The White Ribbon, along with The Prophet a Best Foreign Language Film Oscar nominee, earned $168,000 at 82 theaters. Total to date: $1.5 million.
Meanwhile, Karan Johar's My Name Is Khan, starring Bollywood idol Shah Rukh Khan, took in $254,000 for a total of $3.6 million. It's reportedly become Khan's biggest box office hit ever in North America, having barely surpassed his 2007 vehicle Om Shanti Om, which grossed $3.59 million.
And finally, Pedro Almodóvar's Broken Embraces, starring Penélope Cruz, is still collecting a little change here and there. The classy noirish melodrama scored $38,000 this weekend for a total of $4.6 million.
'Shutter Island' tops Friday box office
Feb. 27 update: Shutter Island, the fourth Leonardo DiCaprio-Martin Scorsese collaboration, was the no. 1 movie at the U.S. and Canada box office on Friday (Feb. 26), according to studio estimates. The dark thriller grossed $6.67 million for a total of $59.5 million.
Trailing Shutter Island at no. 2, Kevin Smith's comedy Cop Out, featuring Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan, took in less than initial estimates had indicated: $5.97 million ($1,897 per theater). A notch behind it was another new entry, Breck Eisner's horror flick The Crazies, starring Timothy Olyphant and Radha Mitchell, with $5.97 million ($2,411 per theater).
James Cameron's sci-fi adventure Avatar, starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, and Sigourney Weaver, was no. 4 with $3.1 million – thus getting very close to the $700 million milestone which it should be crossing sometime today.
At no. 5, Garry Marshall's all-star Valentine's Day took in $2.94 million. The cast ranges from Taylor Lautner to Taylor Swift.
Leonardo DiCaprio Shutter Island image: Andrew Cooper / Paramount.
Tom Wilkinson and Olivia Williams The Ghost Writer image: Summit Entertainment.
Sam Worthignton Avatar image: 20th Century Fox.
Radha Mitchell and Timothy Olyphant The Crazies image: Saeed Adyani / Overture Films.