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The domestic box office took a pounding Friday as a trio of new films underwhelmed.
After a healthy start Thursday night, Paramount and MGM’s R-rated Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters slowed Friday night, grossing $6.1 million for the day to place No. 1 and earning a B CinemaScore.
That puts the Jeremy Renner–Gemma Arterton film on course for a $17 million weekend, notably less than expected (it had looked like Hansel & Gretel would hit $25 million). Some Hollywood studio executives blamed bad weather in the mid-Atlantic and in the west for Friday’s sobering results.
Hansel & Gretel, costing $50 million to produce, could make up ground overseas. It opened in Russia last weekend to a healthy $8.6 million, placing No. 1.
Parker posted an opening-day gross of $2.1 million to come in No. 5 behind Hansel & Gretel, Mama, Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty. The pic now is expected to gross $6.3 million for the weekend versus $8 million to $10 million.
Directed by Taylor Hackford (Ray), Parker is being distributed domestically by FilmDistrict. Moviegoers gave the pic a B+ CinemaScore.
Movie 43, drawing a D CinemaScore, grossed $1.8 million for a projected weekend take of only $5 million.
The roster of stars appearing in Movie 43 — a series of comic shorts and the brainchild of Peter Farrelly — includes Hugh Jackman, Kate Winslet, Emma Stone, Halle Berry, Gerard Butler, Naomi Watts and many others. A raft of filmmakers and talent directed the various vignettes, including Elizabeth Banks, Brett Ratner, Griffin Dunne and Bob Odenkirk.
Relativity Media spent a modest $6 million to make Movie 43 and says it was a creative risk worth taking.
Universal’s horror pic Mama, produced by Guillermo del Toro, continued to benefit from its teen friendly PG-13 rating, placing No. 2 on its second Friday with $3.9 million and pushing its total to $39.7 million.
Academy Award contenders continue to lure audiences. The Weinstein Co.’s Silver Linings Playbook, directed by David O. Russell, continued to shine one week after expanding nationwide, grossing $2.34 million for domestic cume of $61.8 million.
Kathryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, from Sony and Annapurna Pictures, all but tied with Silver Linings on Friday, grossing $2.32 million for a domestic total of $62.4 million.
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