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Weekend Box Office Report: ‘The Wolverine’ Opens On Top, But is it Enough?

20th Century Fox

The X-Men franchise may have kickstarted the superhero movie revolution, but it’s lagged behind the competition in recent years, with ‘X-Men: First Class’ and ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ failing to match the business of the first three films in the series. So all eyes are on ‘The Wolverine,’ and its number one opening is certainly a reason to celebrate … but is the opening big enough?

Film Weekend Per Screen
1 The Wolverine $55,000,000 $14,016 $55,000,000
2 The Conjuring $22,130,000 (-47.1) $7,323 $83,867,000
3 Despicable Me 2 $16,024,000 (-35.7) $4,610 $306,413,000
4 Turbo $13,325,000 (-37.5) $3,498 $55,768,000
5 Grown Ups 2 $11,500,000 (-42.1)
$3,530 $101,664,000
6 Red 2 $9,400,000 (-47.9) $3,117 $35,074,000
7 Pacific Rim $7,540,000 (-52.9) $2,898 $84,026,000
8 The Heat $6,850,000 (-26.4) $2,873 $141,245,000
9 R.I.P.D. $5,857,000 (-53.9) $2,055 $24,352,000
10 Fruitvale Station $4,657,000 (+529.8) $4,377 $6,339,000

The $55 million opening for ‘The Wolverine’ is $30 million less than its predecessor made in 2009, which must feel bad for Hugh Jackman and company because ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’ is an awful film and ‘The Wolverine’ isn’t bad at all. Still, you can’t shake your head at a number one opening and ‘The Wolverine’ didn’t cost as much as many of its superhero movie brethren. In other words, this isn’t over yet. If the film takes a massive drop next week, there could be a problem, but if people like it, it could become a minor hit.

While we can waffle back and forth on the subject of ‘The Wolverine,’ there’s no denying the fact that ‘The Conjuring‘ is a massive hit. Its second weekend saw it take a 47% drop, which is an amazing number for a horror film, which tends to drop 60% or more. With $83 million in the bank, the James Wan-directed horror flick is looking at an easy $100 million (and where it will stop, nobody knows). That’s incredible for a horror film and even more incredible for a R-rated horror film.

In third place, ‘Despicable Me 2‘ continued to bring in the business, grossing another $16 million and bringing its total to $306 million. It’s still $100 million away from the total gross of ‘Iron Man 3,’ but it’s easily one of the biggest successes of 2013. Considering its staying power, we wouldn’t completely rule out $400 million (although it’s unlikely). The only people not happy with the power of ‘Despicable Me 2′ are the folks behind ‘Turbo,’ who continued to eat dirt for the second week in a row. Between ‘Turbo’ and ‘R.I.P.D.‘ (which continued to be a non-event in slot number nine), Ryan Reynolds is having a very rough week.

Meanwhile, ‘Grown Ups 2‘ crossed the $100 million mark, but it still looks unlikely to match the gross of the first film. ‘Red 2‘ continued to under-perform, not finding the legs that made the first film a hit. ‘Pacific Rim‘ continued to climb to $100 million, but there’s no getting around it: Guillermo del Toro’s epic sci-fi movie is a box office misfire.

And ‘The Heat‘? Well, ‘The Heat’ continued to kick ass. With a current total of $141 million, it’s one of the summer’s biggest hits.

Which brings us to slot number ten and the quiet success of the week: ‘Fruitvale Station‘ expanded into more theaters, grossing a strong $4.6 million (for a $6.3 million total) with a 52% increase. Those are amazing numbers for a low budget indie drama. In fact, it was a strong weekend in general for indie fare, with Woody Allen’s ‘Blue Jasmine‘ grossing $102,000 in limited release.

Next week sees the release of ‘2 Guns.’ If ‘The Wolverine’ is going to gain momentum, this will be its best and only chance.

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