This weekend's box office has certainly got to have producers of big-budget tent-pole films running scared: horror film The Conjuring, costing just $20 million to produce, was the top earner at the box office this weekend. The fright fest took in $41.5 million, easily out-pacing Pacific Rim and R.I.P.D. and already a major hit for distributor New Line.
Fruitvale Station, produced by the Weinstein Company in relation with BET Films, is proving to be another dark-horse hit. The intense indie drama, based on the final days in the life of Bay Area teen Oscar Grant III (played by Michael B. Jordan) before he was killed without cause by transit police, expanded to more theaters in its second week and has grossed $1.3 million since its release. The film will expand to wide release this Friday, with analysts anticipating a long run for the buzz-worthy film.
It was a terrible weekend for R.I.P.D., Universal's big-budget action comedy starring Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges. The film grossed only $12.8 million at the box office, a major bomb that will likely cost the studio tens of millions of dollars. The weekend's two other new entries, Turbo and Red 2, also underperformed. Animated film Turbo couldn't take the heat away from Despicable Me 2 and Red 2 fell far short of the opening weekend box office for its predecessor, Red.
Next week, Hugh Jackman's The Wolverine will attempt to bite into the box office pie and Sundance hit The Way Way Back will search for an adult audience in a sea of tent poles aimed at kids and teens.
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(photo: Warner Bros Pictures)