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Weekend Box-Office: September 28-30, 2012

Sep. 30, 2012by: Dave Davis

Transylvania at the top!

After a few dreary weeks, September ended with a bang at the box office. Sony's computer-animated monster mash HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA took the #1 spot with $43 million -- a big weekend that breaks the record for September opening (defeating SWEET HOME ALABAMA's $35.6M back in 2002).

The kid-friendly creature feature from director Genndy Tartakovsky ("Samurai Jack") is also the biggest opening for Sony's animation house, which (not counting the CG/live-action hybrid THE SMURFS) previously had CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS as their best performer with a $30.3M opening (and $124.8M domestic total). HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA is also one of the highest openings for anything Adam Sandler has been involved with lately (he voices Dracula in the movie) -- Sandler's last project that opened better was his remake of THE LONGEST YARD with a $47.6M first weekend back in 2005.

In second place with a strong $21.2 million showing was filmmaker Rian Johnson's sci-fi/action movie LOOPER, which pits Joseph Gordon-Levitt against the older, more Bruce Willis-looking version of himself. The time-travel tale got a positive critical reception (currently at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes) and the buzz could carry it for a while. And the movie already had an impressive debut when it opened in China this weekend, reportedly making even more than it did in the US.

LOOPER is also one of the bigger debuts over the past decade for Willis in a starring role (which excludes his brief appearances in THE EXPENDABLES 1 & 2): RED opened to $21.7 million a couple years ago, and before that his best opening was LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD with $33.3M in the summer of 2007.

Last week's top three all hung in there with a drop of around 40% from their opening weekends. The Jake Gyllenhaal/Michael Pena cop thriller END OF WATCH rounded up another $8 million, while Clint Eastwood's drama TROUBLE WITH THE CURVE edged ahead of the Jennifer Lawrence horror flick HOUSE AT THE END OF THE STREET. None of them can be considered smash hits, but they were each made on very reasonable budgets.

Perhaps the most interesting story of the week was the opening of Universal's PITCH PERFECT, which landed at number six with $5.2 million -- not a terribly impressive figure on its own, except the movie was only released on 335 screens (one-tenth that of HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA). The musical comedy, featuring Anna Kendrick and Elizabeth Banks, also generated the highest per-screen average in the Top 10 (it opens wide next weekend). Its performance is particularly remarkable compared to the pitiful $2.7 million opening of the teacher drama WON'T BACK DOWN, which was released in 2500+ theaters and barely made the chart.

Meanwhile, the 3D reissue of FINDING NEMO is floundering, RESIDENT EVIL: RETRIBUTION will likely end up as the second-lowest grossing in the series (domestically, anyway -- it's already made an additional $137M internationally), and Paul Thomas Anderson's THE MASTER seems like it's beginning to dwindle. Did it make enough of a mark to be remembered come award season? Additionally, LAWLESS, THE POSSESSION and PARANORMAN take their leave from the Top 10, as does DREDD 3D after a single week on the chart.

Next weekend brings back Liam Neeson's skilled killer of kidnappers in TAKEN 2, Tim Burton's (re)animated dog FRANKENWEENIE, and the expansion of PITCH PERFECT. What October release are you most looking forward to seeing? VOTE HERE!

# MOVIE TITLE WKND $ TOTAL $
1. Hotel Transylvania $43 M
NEW
2. Looper $21.2 M
NEW
3. End of Watch $8 M $26.1 M
4. Trouble with the Curve $7.5 M $23.7 M
5. House at the End of the Street $7.1 M $22.2 M
6. Pitch Perfect $5.2 M
NEW
7. Finding Nemo 3D $4 M $36.4 M
8. Resident Evil: Retribution $3 M $38.7 M
9. The Master $2.7 M $9.6 M
10. Won't Back Down $2.7 M
NEW

ACCESS BOX-OFFICE ARCHIVES HERE

Source: Box Office Mojo

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8:02PM on 10/02/2012

What else would you expect from American Moviegoers

You know the American Audience is retarded when they support redneck crap like Honey Boo Boo.... (Someone please drop a bomb on the south)....It was obvious that Hotel Transylvania would be #1 which isn't a bad thing because hopefully they'll make a samurai jack movie. While Looper didn't make that much money, I'm glad it at least made more than 20 mil. I get a feeling it's going to make more. Joseph Gordon Levitt is starting to become that actor that's being more established, plus he has yet
You know the American Audience is retarded when they support redneck crap like Honey Boo Boo.... (Someone please drop a bomb on the south)....It was obvious that Hotel Transylvania would be #1 which isn't a bad thing because hopefully they'll make a samurai jack movie. While Looper didn't make that much money, I'm glad it at least made more than 20 mil. I get a feeling it's going to make more. Joseph Gordon Levitt is starting to become that actor that's being more established, plus he has yet to make a bad movie. As for the rest of the chart, none of these movies don't mean a thing. It's a shame Dredd wasn't embraced by the audience. Then again American audiences are full retards who are too easily influenced by media....
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5:13AM on 10/01/2012

Looper *Spoilers*

One thing I cant get my head around.
-SPOILERS BELOW -

Old Joe comes back and overpowers young Joe, we then see YJ back at his apartment and falls (to his death?) off the fire escape.
The loop resets and YJ kills OJ and lives his 30 years etc.
My question is how did the loop reset? I dont get it.
One thing I cant get my head around.
-SPOILERS BELOW -

Old Joe comes back and overpowers young Joe, we then see YJ back at his apartment and falls (to his death?) off the fire escape.
The loop resets and YJ kills OJ and lives his 30 years etc.
My question is how did the loop reset? I dont get it.
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7:40AM on 10/01/2012
When Old Joe comes back the first time and knocks out Young Joe, this is Young Joe considering how things could go if the person sent back turns out to be him. This is Young Joe thinking of what he will do once he is sent back in time. Young Joe kills Old Joe goes to china and grows up to be the Old Joe that escapes, rather than the one that dies in Young Joe's timeline. God, that was a mouthful.
When Old Joe comes back the first time and knocks out Young Joe, this is Young Joe considering how things could go if the person sent back turns out to be him. This is Young Joe thinking of what he will do once he is sent back in time. Young Joe kills Old Joe goes to china and grows up to be the Old Joe that escapes, rather than the one that dies in Young Joe's timeline. God, that was a mouthful.
8:17AM on 10/01/2012
Ah ok, thanks for that
Ah ok, thanks for that
12:51AM on 10/01/2012
over the weekend, my girlfriend and i caught Looper. Its a shame it didn't come out on top but those family animated movies can be killers. anyways, we bought the tickets ahead of time thinking it would be crazy packed on opening night. we get there and we see a huge line, turns out it was for Pitch Perfect. I couldn't believe it. Anyways, Looper was great, going to check it out again in a few days.
over the weekend, my girlfriend and i caught Looper. Its a shame it didn't come out on top but those family animated movies can be killers. anyways, we bought the tickets ahead of time thinking it would be crazy packed on opening night. we get there and we see a huge line, turns out it was for Pitch Perfect. I couldn't believe it. Anyways, Looper was great, going to check it out again in a few days.
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8:15AM on 10/01/2012
Sorry, double post
Sorry, double post
10:22PM on 09/30/2012
I'm also sad to see Dredd not do better b/c its a great film, but I knew it wasn't going to be a big hit. I can only hope it finds an audience on dvd/blu-ray. Like Scott Pilgrim, I'm sure it'll have a cult following.
Looper was one of the best movies of the year, and a second place opening after a kid's film isn't too shabby.
I'm also sad to see Dredd not do better b/c its a great film, but I knew it wasn't going to be a big hit. I can only hope it finds an audience on dvd/blu-ray. Like Scott Pilgrim, I'm sure it'll have a cult following.
Looper was one of the best movies of the year, and a second place opening after a kid's film isn't too shabby.
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+7
7:29PM on 09/30/2012

Dang

Movie goers are dumb. I am glad Looper is doing decent and Transylvania hopefully will lead to a Samurai Jack movie.

But seriously? A stellar movie like Dredd flopping?
Movie goers are dumb. I am glad Looper is doing decent and Transylvania hopefully will lead to a Samurai Jack movie.

But seriously? A stellar movie like Dredd flopping?
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+11
6:23PM on 09/30/2012
Fuck you general movie going public!
You've been dissapointing me this whole year. Awesome looking R-rated movies like Looper or Dredd can't even get a break with you.
Fuck you general movie going public!
You've been dissapointing me this whole year. Awesome looking R-rated movies like Looper or Dredd can't even get a break with you.
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5:50PM on 09/30/2012

I hate to see what happened to Dredd. :-(

The appeal of CGI animation doesn't seem to decrease. Kind of disappointing. I prefer to watch real actors doing real work.
The appeal of CGI animation doesn't seem to decrease. Kind of disappointing. I prefer to watch real actors doing real work.
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4:42PM on 09/30/2012
I'm happy that a Tartakovsky film came out on top. I love his stuff, and he's been gone too long. Hopefully this is a comeback for him.

Looper is my favorite movie of the year so I was hoping it would be #1, but it is still doing great for a low budget R-rated sci-fi film. Word of mouth is sure to make this film a major success. In fact if you count for inflation, it is doing as well as the original Terminator. I'd say that is far better than "ok".
I'm happy that a Tartakovsky film came out on top. I love his stuff, and he's been gone too long. Hopefully this is a comeback for him.

Looper is my favorite movie of the year so I was hoping it would be #1, but it is still doing great for a low budget R-rated sci-fi film. Word of mouth is sure to make this film a major success. In fact if you count for inflation, it is doing as well as the original Terminator. I'd say that is far better than "ok".
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4:20PM on 09/30/2012
Ughhh.... another throwaway CGI kiddie flick to sucker in families take #1. At least Looper is doing OK.
Ughhh.... another throwaway CGI kiddie flick to sucker in families take #1. At least Looper is doing OK.
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3:52PM on 09/30/2012
Glad to see Looper and Transylvania doing great.
Glad to see Looper and Transylvania doing great.
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+12
3:47PM on 09/30/2012

poor Dredd...

seriously Dredd isn't even in the top 10, yet House at the End of the Street remains in there... at number 5 no less... AND with more money raked in this weekend than Dredd did in it's opening weekend? You know how I know there's something wrong with the world?
seriously Dredd isn't even in the top 10, yet House at the End of the Street remains in there... at number 5 no less... AND with more money raked in this weekend than Dredd did in it's opening weekend? You know how I know there's something wrong with the world?
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+12
3:46PM on 09/30/2012
Too bad about Dredd i actually think 3D didnt help it
Too bad about Dredd i actually think 3D didnt help it
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-18
3:16PM on 09/30/2012
Really happy to see Pitch Perfect flopping and Looper doing well. Smart filmmaking can payoff sometimes.
Really happy to see Pitch Perfect flopping and Looper doing well. Smart filmmaking can payoff sometimes.
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4:27PM on 09/30/2012
Did you even read the article? It says Pitch Perfect was shown on just 335 screens and generated the highest per-screen average in the Top 10.
Did you even read the article? It says Pitch Perfect was shown on just 335 screens and generated the highest per-screen average in the Top 10.
+0
3:05PM on 09/30/2012
I'm not surprised!
I'm not surprised!
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