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Box Office: A Fistful of Dollars for Rango

The Reject ReportOf course you can’t really fit many dollars in your hand. Even if you’re rocking Benjamins, the most you could fit in one hand would be a couple of hundred thousand. Rango made a whole lot more than that this weekend even if it wasn’t able to manage $40+ million.

In fact, Rango gave Johnny Depp his highest weekend outside of the Pirates series and a collaboration with Tim Burton. Considering he makes a new movie with Burton every other month, that may not seem like such an accomplishment. It was also able to break into the 10 highest March openings of all time, sliding in between Robots and Wild Hogs. You know, those marks of groundbreaking cinematic achievement. Even with this nice of an opening weekend and the overall positive buzz it’s been able to generate, Rango will have a hard time matching its $135-million budget in worldwide sales let alone what it brings in domestically.

The Adjustment Bureau did reach higher than anticipated, as it broke past the $20-million opening weekend mark. Not that there will be much clamoring anyway for an Adjustment Bureau 2, but that’s not too shabby for first-time director George Nolfi.

Elsewhere for the new releases, Beastly wasn’t able to hit very hard with the expected Twilight demographic and just barely broke into double digits. That’s still not bad considering its reported $17-million budget. Take Me Home Tonight…well, what can you say for a movie that opens on more than 2000 screens and isn’t even able to get into the top 10. With only a $1747 per screen average, it came in the #11 spot under Never Say Never with only $3.5 million. Time for Topher Grace to get relegated back to the #3 or 4 billed spot. And poor Dan Fogler, funny as he may be, might have to continue his stay just that side of the obscurity wall.

Here’s how the weekend broke down:

  1. Rango – $38m NEW
  2. The Adjustment Bureau – $20.9m NEW
  3. Beastly – $10.1m NEW
  4. Hall Pass – $9m (-33.4%) $27m total
  5. Gnomeo and Juliet – $6.9m (-48.4%) $83.6m total
  6. Unknown – $6.6m (-47.3%) $53.1m total
  7. The King’s Speech – $6.5m (-11.4%) $123.8m total
  8. Just Go With It – $6.5m (-38.3%) $88.2m total
  9. I Am Number Four – $5.7m (-48.2%) $46.4m total
  10. Justin Bieber: Never Say Never – $4.3m (-53.9%) $68.8m total

The weekend’s top 10 were able to bring in $114.5 million. That’s about average for the first weekend in March. The last two years have been at opposite ends of the demographic spectrum. Alice in Wonderland topped the charts last year while Watchmen did it the year before. One of those two had pretty strong legs that carried them through three weeks of impressive receipts. Here’s a hint: it wasn’t the one with the CG blue penis. That bodes pretty well for the kid-friendly Rango.

Next weekend looks somewhat like a recap of what we had here. A sci-fi movie (Battle: Los Angeles), a CG animated movie (Mars Needs Moms), and a semi-horror flick aimed at the Twihards (Red Riding Hood). It’ll be interesting to see which of them will be able to come out on top or if that fistful of dollars Rango is sure to make will give it a repeat.

Come back next week for more Box Office predictions and final tallies

Jeremy's been writing about movies for a good, 15 years, starting with the film review column of his high school newspaper. He stands proud as the first person in his high school to have seen (and recommend) Pulp Fiction. Jeremy went on to get a B.A. in Cinema and Photography with a minor in journalism. His experience and knowledge of film is aided by the list of 6600 films he has seen in his life (so far). Jeremy's belief is that there are no bad films, just unrealized possibilities. Except Batman and Robin. That shit was awful.

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