Storm creates worst moviegoing turnout in 2011, but Viola Davis-vehicle keeps top spot.
Call it the movie that’s ‘helping’ its way to becoming the blockbuster hit of the season.
This past weekend, Hurricane Irene pounded most of the Northeast states from North Carolina to Massachusetts, but it didn’t stop moviegoers from turning out to see The Help. The '60s period drama starring Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer earned $14.3 million this weekend. The movie’s total box office gross to date is expected to hit the $100 million mark by mid-week, according to Deadline.
Because of the range of the tropical storm, which at its peak was larger than the size of Europe, industry insiders have already dubbed this the “worst moviegoing weekend in 2011." Hurricane Irene decreased movie theater audiences by up to 20% percent and several theater chains located along the East Coast including AMC, Regal and Clearview Cinemas closed its doors for the weekend.
But the storm's windy rains were no match for The Help's reign at the box office. Even with three new movies released this week, including the highly anticipated Zoe Saldana revenge-action-thriller Columbiana, this film adaptation of the bestselling book still managed to beat out all of its movie competition.
The Help's stars have already garnered plenty of Oscar buzz, but the question remains just how long will it rule the top of the box office?