Inside Pulse Box Office Report: Iron Man 2 Repeats, Robin Hood Misses Mark

Sorry, Russell. Your English accent is no match for mine.

The true test for any summer blockbuster is to see how well it performs in the weeks after its theatrical bow. Last week, Iron Man 2 rocketed to the top of the list with a $128 million opening weekend (original estimates had it at $133.6 million). Picking up ten screens in its second weekend, the comic-book movie added $53 million to its box office total. It now stands at $423 worldwide.

Compared to the first Iron Man there was a greater loss of revenue (59% vs. 50%). A couple of factors were at play. The week after Iron Man opened, the films What Happens in Vegas… and Speed Racer arrived in theaters. Instead of facing the gargantuan star power (not really) of Ashton Kutcher and Cameron Diaz or a glorified video game on the screen, Iron Man 2 squared off against Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe and their latest collaboration, which looked to recapture the box office glory Gladiator did ten years ago. While Robin Hood proved to be the director’s second biggest box office release (behind Hannibal‘s $58 million weekend in 2001), its $37 million opening wasn’t enough to make Tony Stark quiver in fear. It was, however, a bigger opening than Gladiator had in 2000 – $34.8 million. But I don’t think it will match the Roman epic’s overall box office. Poor reviews and bad word of mouth will kill its business domestically. Overseas, that’s another story.

Looking to take a bite out of Date Night‘s dominance in the couples’ movie department were Letters to Juliet and Just Wright. Both romances performed well despite not being a sequel, based on a comic book or video game. Amanda Seyfried is slowly becoming a budding starlet. Back in February, she starred in the Nicholas Sparks tearjerker Dear John. Now with Juliet‘s $13.7 million opening, she’s toplined two films this year that made a combined $44.1 million in their prospective weekends. The last time Queen Latifah was the central headliner for a movie was 2006’s Last Holiday. In Just Wright she’s paired with rapper-turned-actor Common, who also had a bit part in Date Night. Opening to a respectable $8.5 million, it will most likely be forgotten in two weeks when Sex and the City 2 makes women change wardrobes and go to the movies carrying their Prada bags.

It’s hard to come up with something original when talking about the stellar box office performance of How to Train Your Dragon since it opened back at the end of March, so I’ll just say it is a beast.

As the lone horror movie in the top ten (unless you count the horribleness that is Furry Vengeance), A Nightmare on Elm Street is squeezing as much as it can out of the potential victims that pony up to see a rejuvenated Freddy K. do his thing. Not as scary is Steve Carell and Tina Fey trying to avoid kill shots in Date Night, which added another $4 million to bring its total to $86.7 million.

The bottom of the top ten consists of two movies that even I have no desire to see – The Back-Up Plan ($2.4 million) and Furry Vengeance ($2.3 million). Lucky for Brendan Fraser, a date has been announced for a 2011 sequel to Journey to the Center of the Earth, because, you know, it’s just a movie that screamed out for a sequel. But I guess when any $45 million movie makes $240 million worldwide a sequel is in order. I’m still holding out for a sequel to Juno, because the $7 million comedy made some serious bank ($230 million).

And finally in tenth place is a film that will be exiting the list next weekend, Clash of the Titans. It and Dragon opened up weeks apart, but it is this remake of the 1984 movie that is leaving first. In the span of 45 days it has grossed $455 million worldwide.

On the independent front there were three new releases. The Roadside Attractions’ release Princess Kaiulani opened on 33 screens and earned $184,750. Looking for Eric and The Living Wake opened on a single screen and made $7,300 and $4,800 respectfully. And Best Worst Movie re-entered the box office list with its $8,526 earnings from a single screen.

1. Iron Man 2 – $133.6 million ($423 million)
2. Robin Hood – $37 million
3. Letters to Juliet – $13.7 million
4. Just Wright – $8.5 million
5. How to Train Your Dragon – $5.1 million ($420 million)
6. A Nightmare on Elm Street – $4.7 million ($56.1 million)
7. Date Night – $4 million ($86.7 million)
8. The Back-Up Plan – $2.4 million ($34 million)
9. Furry Vengeance – $2.3 million ($15.1 million)
10. Clash of the Titans – $1.2 million ($455 million)

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