'The Lion King 3D' Shatters Expectations, Completely Overshadows Newcomers

on September 18, 2011 by Phil Contrino
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The Lion King 3D is off to an amazing start. It's quite clear that the film is enticing a healthy portion of nostalgic twentysomethings in addition to families. This opening shatters the $12.5 million haul of Toy Story/Toy Story 2 in 3D from 2009. Heading into the weekend, The Lion King had a worldwide theatrical haul of $784.3 million.

Contagion is headed for a solid sophomore frame thanks to $4.63 million on Friday and $6.480 million on Saturday. A rush of mainstream media coverage on the science of the film is largely responsible for that. 

Drive managed to rope in a respectable $4.025 million on Friday and $4.454 million on Saturday. The Ryan Gosling vehicle received a warm critical reception, and now the paying public seems to be largely on the same page: more than 18,000 Flixster users have combined to give Drive a healthy 81% approval rating. Some people clearly despise the film though, because the overall CinemaScore rating is a C-. Drive's violent final act combined with its meditative (read: slow moving) nature make it a tough sell for casual moviegoers.

Straw Dogs delivered a lackluster $1.985 million on Friday and $1.930 million on Saturday. Sony is reporting that 51% of the audience was female, and 54% was over 25. Director Rod Lurie's remake is clearly too harsh and uncompromising for mainstream digestion. More than 8,000 Flixster users have combined to give the film a disastrous 52% approval rating. The overall CinemaScore rating is a C.

With only $1.558 million in the bank on Friday and $1.806 million on Saturday, The Weinstein Company's I Don't Know How She Does It is off to a very mediocre start. Sex and the City fans aren't following star Sarah Jessica Parker as she attempts to have a viable career outside of the beloved property. More than 8,000 Flixster users have combined to give the film a weak 51% approval rating. 2011 has been a terrible year for TWC. Scream 4, Hoodwinked Too!, Spy Kids: All the Time in the World, Our Idiot Brother and Apollo 18 have all opened to mediocre numbers.

Domestic comparison data:

Jan. 1 to Sep. 18, 2011: $7,606,438,000*
Jan. 1 to Sep. 18, 2010: $7,909,287,000
Total decrease: $302,849,000, -3.8%*

Sep. 1 to Sep. 18, 2011: $380,268,000*
Sep. 1 to Sep. 18, 2010: $357,579,000
Total increase: $22,689,000, 6.3%*

Sep. 16 to Sep. 18, 2011: $100,000,000*
Sep. 17 to Sep. 19, 2010: $100,668,000
Total decrease: $668,000, .66%*

Additional reporting by Daniel Garris.

Tags: The Lion King 3D, Contagion, Drive, Straw Dogs, I Don't Know How She Does It
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