(Advertisement)

Expendables keeps No. 1 spot

Posted: August 31, 2012 at 4:32 a.m.

Jeremy Renner has the lead role in The Bourne Legacy. The film came in second at last weekend’s box office and made more than $9.3 million.

— Hollywood may have run out of summer hits, but a political documentary is helping to fill the gap.

Holdover movies easily topped the weekend box office again, led by Sylvester Stallone’s The Expendables 2 at No. 1 for the secondstraight weekend with $13.4 million.

The weekend’s new wide releases were overshadowed by 2016: Obama’s America, which expanded from limited to nationwide release and took in $6.5 million to finish at No. 7.

The documentary is a conservative critique of what the country would look like four years from now if President Barack Obama is re-elected.

Released by Rocky Mountain Pictures, Obama’s America surpassed the $6 million debut of the No. 8 movie, Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s action tale Premium Rush, a Columbia release that played in more than twice as many theaters as the Obama documentary.

The weekend’s other new wide releases opened weakly. Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell’s road-chase comedy Hit and Run, released by OpenRoad Films, debuted at No. 10 with $4.5 million, and the Warner Bros. fright flick The Apparition opened at No. 12 with $2.8 million.

The weak openings are typical of late August, a dumping ground for movies without much audience appeal as the summer blockbuster season winds down and young viewers switch to back-to-school mode.

But with less competition from Hollywood releases, it also opens the door forsurprise successes such as Obama’s America.

Obama’s America opened in a handful of theaters in mid-July and did strong business as it gradually widened to more cities. It jumped into the top-10 last weekend as it expanded into 1,091 theaters, leading all other wide releases with an average of $5,966 a cinema.

That’s a solid average, especially for a political documentary. But it pales next to the king of political documentaries, Michael Moore’s George W. Bush assault Fahrenheit 9/11, which opened at No. 1 with $23.9 million in June 2004, averaging $27,558 in 868 theaters. Fahrenheit 9/11 went on to become the top-grossing documentary ever with $119.1 million domestically.

Obama’s America is based on the book The Roots of Obama’s Rage, written by Dinesh D’Souza, who co-directed the movie with John Sullivan.

The documentary now has climbed to a $9.3 million domestic total, with prospects for strong business as the presidential election heats up following the conventions.

Released by Lionsgate,The Expendables 2 raised its domestic total to $52.2 million after two weekends.

In limited release, IFC Films’ Sleepwalk With Me had a huge debut with $77,400 in a single New York theater. Produced and co-written by Ira Glass of National Public Radio’s This American Life show, Sleepwalk With Me stars writer-director Mike Birbiglia in a semi-autobiographical story of a stand-up comic struggling with career and romance, along with bad bouts of sleepwalking.

MovieStyle, Pages 36 on 08/31/2012

(Advertisement)



« Previous Story

BOX OFFICE

The top 20 movies at U.S. and Canadian theaters Friday through Sunday, followed by distribution studio, gross, number of theater locations, average receipts per location, t... Read »

Next Story »

Outside the law

Howard (Jason Clarke), Forrest (Tom Hardy) and Jack (Shia LaBeouf) are the bootlegging Bondurant brothers in John Hillcoat’s Depression-era crime drama Lawless.

Lawless 87 Cast: Shia LaBeouf, Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce, Jessica Chastain, Mia Wasikowska, Gary Oldman, Dane DeHa... Read »