The box office got off to a disappointing start for the month of March, with three new releases failing to perform well and the top twelve earning a combined total of just $94.4 million, which is off nearly 40% from this time last year. Leading the way was ‘Jack the Giant Slayer’, which landed in first place with a meager $28 million.
‘Jack’ was never fated to perform exceptionally well at the box office; already an odd niche film—a violent, CGI-enhanced twist on a fairy tale is already a tough sell—the film suffered further from light marketing efforts, continual re-shelving and re-scheduling, and the inability to appeal to family audiences. With a nearly $200 million budget, ‘Jack’ rates as even worse than last year’s ‘John Carter’. At this point the film’s best hope is to kill it at the international box office, which is often more receptive to this type of big-budget film than domestic audiences.
‘Identity Thief’ dropped to second place with a $9.7 million haul. The Melissa McCarthy/Jason Bateman caper film has now grossed over $107 million and will likely soon become director Seth Gordon’s highest grossing film, above even ‘Horrible Bosses’ ($117.5 million).
’21 and Over’ bombed in third place with a terrible $9 million. The film only had a $13 million budget so financially speaking it isn’t a huge loss, but given the film’s ‘Hangover’-style connections it should have done better with the younger set. ‘The Last Exorcism Part 2’ also failed to find footing, pulling in just $8 million. Again, against the film’s $5 million budget that isn’t terrible, but given the film’s terrible “C-“ rating on CinemaScore it won’t be sticking around for long.
‘Snitch’ rounded out the top five, dropping from second to fifth place with a $7.7 million haul. Through ten days the Dwayne Johnson flick has earned $24.4 million, which is a bit low for the actor but at least places it ahead of his last similar film, 2010’s ‘Faster’ (which earned just $23.2 million by the end of its run).