B.O. Roundup, September 6-8: 'Riddick' Rules the Roost

Sunday, 08 September 2013 12:20 Written by  Jordan DeSaulnier
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B.O. Roundup, September 6-8: 'Riddick' Rules the Roost

Sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY! 

Sounds like the perfect day of the week for a rundown of the domestic box office on this, the first full weekend of September 2013.

The huge openings and crowded release dates of summer are behind us now, with a single new wide release, Riddick, arriving in first place on the slowest weekend of the year so far.  That attendance is so low in early September is not unusual; between football and the school year kicking off, most Americans aren't eager to hit the multiplex.

So the central figure from David Twohy and Vin Diesel's Pitch Black and Chronicles of Riddick returned to the screen with modest expectations.  Riddick debuted atop the heap with an estimated $18.6 million from 3,107 locations.  Twohy and Diesel made Riddick for a reported production cost of $38 million, so that's a robust showing for a scifi anti-hero with a cult following.  Still, the summer's-over dip had a greater impact than Universal bargained for, as the distributor was projecting a weekend gross of at least $20 million.

Riddick's showing guaranteed it the number one spot, unseating Lee Daniels' The Butler.  Last Sunday, estimates put the 3D concert documentary One Direction: This is Us in first place, but when the actual figures rolled in on Monday, the historical drama with the sprawling cast ended up ahead for the third consecutive weekend.  Now, The Butler appears to have ceded its claim to the top spot, earning an estimated $8.9 million from 3,330 theaters.  That brings its domestic total to a whopping $91.9 million.

Last week's big story was actually Instructions Not Included, the Spanish-language family-comedy from Eugenio Derbez that debuted in fifth place despite appearing on only 347 screens.  The film maintained by far the strongest per-theater average as it expanded to 717 locations nationwide.  Instructions Not Included is now nipping at The Butler's heels, hauling in $8.1 million and bringing its domestic total to $20.3 million, according to estimates.  It hopped up to third place, ahead of We're the Millers and Planes rounding out the top five.

All in all, the top twelve movies in America brought in $66.9 million.  That's the quietest frame of the year, but it's still up almost 30% from the corresponding weekend last year.

1. Riddick                                                        $18.6 million              New Release

2. Lee Daniels' The Butler                              $8.9 million               $91.9 million

3. Instructions Not Included                           $8.1 million              $20.3 million

4. We're the Millers                                          $7.9 million              $123.8 million

5. Planes                                                           $4.2 million              $79.2 million

6. One Direction: This is Us                            $4.1 million              $79.2 million

7. Elysium                                                         $3.1 million              $85.0 million

8. Blue Jasmine                                                $2.6 million              $25.4 million

9. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters                $2.5 million              $59.8 million

10. The World's End                                         $2.3 million              $21.7 million

The upcoming Friday brings two major new releases: Robert De Niro and Tommy Lee Jones star in Luc Besson's The Family, while James Wan once again oversees spooky shenanigans with Insidious: Chapter 2.

Until then, it's Furyan season at a theater near you.

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