The found footage demons have returned to the big screen, but they’re gonna have some poo jokes and 3-D beehive tether balls to contend with at the box office this weekend. The sequel to 2009’s surprise hit, Paranormal Activity, hits this weekend, but it’s placement at the top of the charts is not a forgone conclusion. A little film called Jackass 3-D is still riding strong in the wake of its record breaking weekend. Which of these “documentary” titles will end up on top? We’re not 100% sure, but, if we were the demon, we’d be watching out for flying feces.
If there’s any horror technique that’s hitting stronger in 2010 than the franchise, it’s the found footage film. 2009’s Paranormal Activity hit a nerve with its viral marketing and “demand it” roll-out structure. It seemed certain Paramount would be coming back strong with a sequel, and now, a little over a year later, Paranormal Activity 2 is set to make its own bank. Between the $19.6 million the first film made when it opened wide and the $20.3 million The Last Exorcism was able to concoct earlier this year, it seems fairly evident this new film will do well.
Nothing is ever certain in the world of box office. Judging by the records Jackass 3-D broke last weekend, that statement has never been more relevant. Paranormal Activity 2 could be such an anticipated film that it ends up making its own records. As it stands, though, we can glean that it will do better than the first film, plus whatever will be added given this new film is hitting wide right at the front of its run.
Oh, my God. Oh, my God. Oh, my God. The baby? The baby is in the crib. But, look! He’s not in the mirror! Check out the trailer for Paranormal Activity 2 right here:
It’s not an out-and-out new release, but Clint Eastwood’s latest, Hereafter, expands this weekend. Eastwood’s films aren’t exactly tidal waves at the box office, and not even a tangible tidal wave in Hereafter will be enough to make this latest film a grand success. On six screens last weekend, it made $36,720 per screen, but don’t expect that same kind of turnout when the film goes wide. Look for it to pull in somewhere in the low double digits on its more than 2000 screens this weekend.
The Jackass films have always hit hard. None of the previous two hit as hard as Jackass 3-D, but they’ve always had decent to incredible openings. The surprising thing about these movies, though, is that they haven’t exactly fallen off a cliff in the ensuing weeks. Jackass: The Movie had a 44.1% drop its second weekend out of the gate in 2002, and Jackass: Number Two dropped 49.6% its second weekend in 2006. Jackass 3-D will likely have a drop around that same area, and that will be enough to ensure its second weekend in the #1 spot. Steve-O’s place as an A-list celebrity lives on.
Just like the wide releases this weekend, the limited ones are pretty scarce. The only featured film opening in limited release worth mentioning is one that is almost cringe-worthy. WWE films isn’t exactly known for their Oscar contenders. The Marine aside, their films have ranged from slightly passable to head-slappingly awful. Okay. I liked. The Marine made me want to smack my forehead in frustration, too. Their latest film is Knucklehead. Judging from the title, I don’t think Meryl Streep is anywhere in there, but I’d have to check IMDB to make 100% sure. It does star Paul Wight, aka The Big Show, and the fact that I know that without looking it up makes me want to reevaluate my principles.
Anyway, it’s from WWE films. It’s a comedy, and you know those witty guys and girls over at WWE know how to turn an audience on its ear. I don’t even know what that means. Knucklehead opens this weekend in select cities. Check out the trailer:
Also opening in limited theaters are Inhale, a thriller starring Diane Kruger and Dermot “I’m Not Dylan McDermott” Mulroney, opening in select cities; Kalamity, another thriller starring Nick Stahl and Robert Forster, opening in New York and L.A.; Rising Stars, a family drama about trying to make it as a musica act, opening in Nashville, Tulsa, and Grandville, MI; and The Taqwacores about the Muslim punk rock scene (Spoiler alert: It’s huge!) opening at the Village East Cinema in New York.
Here’s how the top 10 is shaping up this weekend:
- Jackass 3-D – $26m (-48.2%)
- Paranormal Activity 2 – $24.8m NEW
- RED – $13m (-40%)
- Hereafter – $12.2m NEW
- The Social Network – $7m (-31.1%)
- Secretariat – $6m (-35.4%)
- Life As We Know It – $5.4m (-39%)
- Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole – $2.4m (-41.2%)
- The Town – $2.4m (-37.5%)
- Easy A – $1.6m (-37.5%)
All in all, this weekend looks to pull in $100.8 million, down 14% from last weekend. Of course, there is a very good chance my Paranormal Activity 2 numbers are more than conservative. That film could easily break $30 million if the crowd is out in force. The weekend with these numbers will also be down just slightly from the same weekend last year when the first Paranormal Activity scared Saw VI off with its expansion.
We’ll be back on Sunday night to go over the weekend numbers.