The latest entry in the supernatural found footage franchise, ‘Paranormal Activity 4’ managed to scare up $30.2 million over the weekend, landing it solidly in first place and more than recouping its humble $5 million budget. While that’s a fairly good number, it’s a steep drop from last years’ ‘PA3’, which netted $56.2 million on opening weekend; and while the franchise has become a Halloween classic, this latest flick might have trouble hitting the $100+ million mark set by its predecessors. Stay tuned.
‘Argo’ remained in second place with $16.6 million, posting only a mild 14.6% drop from its opening week. It seems Ben Affleck is golden behind the camera; while ‘Argo’ is slightly trailing ‘The Town’ for an opening gross($19.5 million versus $23.8 million), ‘Argo’ posted a much better second week drop (versus 34.5%) and could end up raking in a larger overall domestic gross.
‘Hotel Transylvania’ actually moved up a spot this week, from fourth to third place; it pulled in $13.5 million. ‘Taken 2’ plummeted from first to fourth place with a mere $13.4 million, but Liam Neeson surely isn’t worried; over three weeks the film has managed to net a respectable $106 million (versus its $45 million budget), meaning it could very easily hit the $145 million mark set by the first ‘Taken’.
Finally, Tyler Perry’s latest film ‘Alex Cross’ opened in fifth place, pulling in a measly $11.8 million against a $35 million budget. It’s an odd genre switch for Perry, who leaves behind beloved Madea and raunchy comedy for detective drama (the film adapts the character created by novelist James Patterson). The change-up doesn’t seem to be working for him.
Keep in mind that when Morgan Freeman first took on the role of Alex Cross in 1997’s ‘Kiss the Girls’, that movie netted about $13 million on opening weekend—fifteen years ago. Adjusted for inflation, that’d be roughly $19 million today. It gets worse with 2001’s ‘Along Came a Spider’, which netted about $16 million (roughly $21 million in today’s dollars). In other words, Perry has little chance of matching—let alone beating—the established competition.