Inside Pulse Box Office Report: Avatar Goes Unchallenged at Box Office

For a fourth consecutive week, James Cameron’s Avatar was number one at the box office. It has shown some signs of slowing down (this weekend there was a percentage drop of just below thirty), but it managed to gross $48.5 million, which broke a record set by Titanic for best weekend gross in its fourth week of release. And compared to the competition at the box office, Avatar grossed more than the films coming in second, third and fourth places combined. You can blame it on the higher premium of tickets being sold with 3D glasses if you want, but let’s face it: people just have a thing for 10-foot-tall blue aliens.

So the question remains, will it top Titanic at the box office. Domestically, I’m going to say no, but overseas there’s no telling how much the film can rake in. Many look only to the domestic side when equating success for a feature film. I think the foreign grosses are just as important, especially if it’s a big tentpole or summer blockbuster. Just look at Ronald Emmerich’s 2012. It had $200 million in production costs, but it only made $163 million in the States and Canada. Yet overseas, it made more than $595 million. Nothing like some human destruction for the world to rally around.

Of the new releases that came out this week, Daybreakers raked in $15 million; the rom-com Leap Year leaped into sixth place with $9.2 million; and Michael Cera’s delayed-from-fall release Youth in Revolt made a paltry $7.1 million. Well maybe not paltry, but it’s an R-rated comedy that could have easily been PG-13. That’s never a good sign.

Oh, and if you’ve been paying attention, you’d know that The Blind Side with Sandra Bullock has made more money than Terminator Salvation, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, with a domestic take of $219 million. And as a starring vehicle for a female actress hers is the first time a movie has crossed the $200 million mark. Not even Julia Roberts had such an accomplishment.

Forecasting next week’s box office, Avatar gets some machete-wielding competition from Denzel Washington and his film The Book of Eli. And since it’s a Warner Bros. release, it’ll probably take some business away from Sherlock Holmes (another WB release). Eli marks the first film by the Hughes Brothers (Menace II Society) since 2001’s From Hell. I don’t recall any Troy Duffy episode, so I don’t know why the brothers have been away from the camera for so long. Also opening is Jackie Chan’s The Spy Next Door which looks horrendously bad, like someone had the idea to mesh The Pacifier with Paul Blart: Mall Cop. Jackie Chan with Billy Ray Cyrus and George Lopez, I mean really. And The Lovely Bones looks to expand from its limited engagement and move onto 2,400 more screens.

1. Avatar – $48.5 million ($429 million)
2. Sherlock Holmes – $16.6 million ($165 million)
3. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel – $16.3 million ($178 million)
4. Daybreakers – $15 million ($15 million)
5. It’s Complicated – $11 million ($76 million)
6. Leap Year – $9.2 million ($9.2 million)
7. The Blind Side – $7.75 million ($219 million)
8. Up in the Air – $7.1 million ($54 million)
9. Youth in Revolt – $7 million ($7 million)
10. The Princess and the Frog – $4.7 million ($92 milllion)

Source: Box Office Mojo

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