'Lee Daniels' The Butler' Starts Strong; 'Kick-Ass 2' & 'Jobs' Underwhelm, 'Paranoia' Flops

on August 17, 2013 by Shawn Robbins

The Weinstein Company reports this morning that Lee Daniels' The Butler accumulated an impressive $8.3 million on opening day yesterday. BoxOffice projects a $24.5 million opening weekend from that figure, an impressive debut for the drama. The recent glut of summer action movies worked in The Butler's favor as adult audiences grew ready for a more cerebral, character-driven film here in late August. Free publicity from the recent legal dispute over the film's title was a factor as well. Much like 2011's The Help, expect a leggy run for The Butler.

We're the Millers is projected to take second place this weekend as it bagged another $5.42 million for its second Friday (off just 36.4 percent from last Friday, its third day of release). The well-received comedy has amassed $57.15 million since opening ten days ago. We're projecting a $17.5 million sophomore weekend.

Universal's Kick-Ass 2 turned out a disappointing $5.8 million Friday opening--including the sequel's $1.3 million Thursday night gross. That's a strong indicator that the film's niche appeal will prevent any audience expansion over the weekend. The film's Flixster rating has already dropped below the first film's to 79 percent (and declining). With fans of the series having turned out, expect a weak hold for Kick-Ass 2 on Saturday as it heads toward BoxOffice's projected $15.3 million weekend--well under the $19.8 million debut of its 2010 predecessor.

Disney's Planes flew to another $3.614 million in its eighth day of release, marking a decline of 55.7 percent from its opening day one week ago. Expect business to pick up over the weekend, though, as schools around some areas of the country were already back in session on Friday. The Cars spin-off has banked $35.56 million since opening and is on pace for a $12 million weekend.

Last weekend's top film, Elysium, slid 64.8 percent from its opening day to $3.9 million on Friday. Having totaled $46.2 million thus far, the Matt Damon-led pic is on course for around $12.5 million in its sophomore frame.

Open Road's Jobs started off modestly with $2.6 million on Friday. The Ashton Kutcher-led biopic about Steve Jobs will take in around $7 million in its opening weekend. That figure appears tepid at first glance, but the low budget means the film still has a shot at profitability in the long run. Meanwhile, Jobs isn't winning over audiences: it carries a mere 52 percent approval rating from Flixster users after just one day in release.

Holdover Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters grossed $2.5 million yesterday, down 49 percent from the same day last week. Since opening ten days ago, the adventure sequel has tallied $33.03 million and continues to perform well below the levels of its 2010 predecessor. Expect a $7.8 million second weekend.

Summer's latest bomb, Paranoia, grabbed a measly $1.3 million yesterday. The film starring Liam Hemsworth, Harrison Ford, and Gary Oldman couldn't turn its star power into a box office draw. Chalk that up partly to opening at the tail-end of one of the most crowded summer markets in recent memory. Additionally, the concept just didn't appeal to audiences and Liam--as the movie's main character--hasn't yet established the same kind of recognition that his brother Chris has. Paranoia currently has a disastrous 45 percent score from Flixster users and is on a trajectory for just $4 million this weekend.

Additional reporting by Daniel Garris.

Tags: Planes, Jobs, Elysium, We're the Millers, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters, Kick-Ass 2, Paranoia, Lee Daniels' The Butler

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