Weekend Box Office

Box Office Guru Wrapup: Big Love for Valentine's Day

Percy Jackson and The Wolfman round out the top three.

by | February 14, 2010 | Comments

Proving how starpower can trump reviews at the box office, the romantic comedy Valentine’s Day led a wave of three debuting hit films that breathed new life into the marketplace over a record Presidents’ Day holiday weekend. Taking home the silver and bronze medals respectively were the fantasy pic Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief and the monster flick The Wolfman which finished the three-day race just $473,000 apart. Powered by these three big hits, the Top 20 surged to $190M, a new all-time high for this holiday.

Moviegoers looking for love lifted the star-studded ensemble comedy Valentine’s Day to number one with an astonishing estimate of $52.4M resulting in the third largest opening ever in the month of February. Warner Bros. launched the PG-13 film ultrawide in 3,665 theaters and averaged a sensational $14,300. Very few live-action comedies have ever debuted north of $50M making Day‘s performance remarkable. Those that have included star vehicles (Bruce Almighty‘s $68M), sequels (Austin Powers in Goldmember‘s $76.6M) and franchise pics (Sex and the City‘s $56.8M).


Critics panned Valentine’s Day giving it some of the worst reviews of the year so far, but audiences paid no attention and responded to the abundance of stars (Julia Roberts, Ashton Kutcher, Jessica Alba, Jennifer Garner, Jamie Foxx, Bradley Cooper, Anne Hathaway, Queen Latifah, Taylor Lautner, Taylor Swift among others), a strong marketing push, and the timely release over Valentine’s Day weekend. The date pic charmed another $30.4M from overseas audiences in 52 markets for a $83M global gross.

There was a close battle for second place but initial studio estimates put Fox’s Percy Jackson & The Olympians in the runnerup spot by a slim margin with an estimated $31.1M in its first weekend. The PG-rated fantasy adventure averaged a solid $9,267 from 3,356 locations. Reviews were mixed, but the best among the three new wide openers. With schools out on Monday, Percy aims to widen the lead over the four-day stretch.


Universal debuted its monster movie The Wolfman in third with an estimated $30.6M from 3,222 sites for a muscular $9,506 average. Produced by and starring Benicio Del Toro, the R-rated chiller played more to fans of horror and thrillers and stood out from the weekend’s other offerings. Reviews were mostly bad. Overseas, it scared up $21M from 37 markets for a worldwide bite of $52M.

Together the three new releases grossed a staggering $114M over three days and will likely boost that tally to about $135M over the Friday-to-Monday long weekend. That’s almost twice the $72.1M that last year’s trio of new films collected over the same four-day holiday. In 2008, four films launched over the Presidents’ Day frame grossing $90.4M over four days.


Avatar dropped down to fourth place but only lost 4% of its weekend gross taking in an estimated $22M propelling the record cume to $659.6M. The Fox overachiever should shatter the $700M mark before March arrives. Internationally, James Cameron was still on top with another $59M boosting the overseas haul to $1.69 billion and the worldwide tally to an eye-popping $2.35 billion.

The hit tearjerker Dear John fell 50% from its solid opening and grossed an estimated $15.3M pushing the ten-day tally to $53.2M. The Sony release could end up with an impressive $80-90M. Dwayne Johnson’s durable kidpic The Tooth Fairy followed with an estimated $5.6M, off just 16%, for a cume of $41.5M in 24 days for Fox.


John Travolta and Mel Gibson followed with their latest action offerings. From Paris With Love grossed an estimated $4.7M, down 42%, for a $15.9M sum for Lionsgate. A final of around $25M is likely. Edge of Darkness dropped just 33% to an estimated $4.6M giving Warner Bros. $36.1M to date.

Fox Searchlight added 186 runs to its Oscar contender Crazy Heart and enjoyed a 12% bump up to $4M, according to estimates. The Jeff Bridges pic has collected $16.5M thus far. Rounding out the top ten was Oscar winner Denzel Washington’s latest effort The Book of Eli which grossed an estimated $3.3M, off 31%, for a $87.2M total.


In limited release, Fox Searchlight’s My Name is Khan opened to an estimated $1.9M from 120 theaters setting a new record for the largest opening ever for a Hindi-language film in North America. The PG-13 film starring Shah Rukh Khan topped all films in release this weekend with a $15,500 per-theater average. [Full disclosure: This writer was a consultant on the release of this film.]

The top ten films grossed an estimated $173.6M which was up 14% from the Friday-to-Sunday portion of last year’s holiday frame when Friday the 13th opened in the top spot with $40.6M; and up a massive 56% from 2008’s holiday when Jumper debuted at number one with $27.4M.

Author: Gitseh Pandya, Box Office Guru.

Tag Cloud

Calendar DGA 24 frames spanish language PaleyFest Chilling Adventures of Sabrina American Society of Cinematographers Syfy werewolf movies blaxploitation die hard Rom-Com universal monsters kids Trailer screenings Disney Plus Stephen King Paramount NBC Tarantino biography Lucasfilm Emmy Nominations Captain marvel Pop sequel Country Avengers comedies cancelled TV series Shudder Reality Competition WGN green book witnail directors Mindy Kaling Musical Arrowverse Film Nominations video on demand Crunchyroll E3 Classic Film singing competition Ellie Kemper The CW Brie Larson YouTube comics Columbia Pictures BBC America romantic comedy GoT golden globes APB Warner Bros. science fiction TCA Shondaland teaser TCA Winter 2020 dragons Interview Horror MCU PBS Hulu mockumentary LGBT Trophy Talk Adult Swim elevated horror strong female leads TV docudrama Fox News Mystery Spike Rock FOX Writers Guild of America discovery Cannes Holidays Photos Quiz Emmys natural history scary movies critics Creative Arts Emmys cancelled television festivals SundanceTV talk show USA Network spain space anthology crime thriller A&E Martial Arts Heroines canceled Lifetime Christmas movies Disney Channel PlayStation Food Network Countdown 20th Century Fox true crime reviews Pop TV Disney streaming service Netflix Christmas movies Spectrum Originals Tomatazos Sundance TV Infographic chucky cartoon dramedy Best and Worst Music foreign satire Set visit Marathons Summer franchise cooking zero dark thirty Winners aliens award winner dark MSNBC Star Trek Ovation Tubi Cartoon Network Baby Yoda hist San Diego Comic-Con Disney Character Guide renewed TV shows Rocky 45 all-time travel Bravo Video Games Nat Geo Ghostbusters Amazon Prime Video concert ghosts BBC See It Skip It Apple serial killer Masterpiece GIFs HBO Go adventure a nightmare on elm street diversity Paramount Network cults 2018 canceled TV shows disaster Binge Guide CBS tv talk supernatural OWN Year in Review Sneak Peek Peacock dceu Amazon crossover Valentine's Day Comedy Central hispanic Mary Poppins Returns Travel Channel CW Seed Certified Fresh DC Comics Pet Sematary Acorn TV criterion adaptation animated IFC Anna Paquin political drama Extras spy thriller Universal cars TruTV movie FX IFC Films Dark Horse Comics sports E! Watching Series Election DirecTV 2016 GLAAD RT21 Crackle Comics on TV Turner Classic Movies Marvel Lionsgate Starz psycho robots Premiere Dates halloween mission: impossible mutant FX on Hulu 2020 medical drama blockbuster justice league Mudbound harry potter rotten movies we love CNN doctor who batman SDCC quibi AMC latino Apple TV+ facebook Drama VH1 Academy Awards Podcast game show comic DC Universe BBC One Oscars Elton John New York Comic Con Sundance Now Nickelodeon USA nature period drama OneApp ABC TIFF news CBS All Access police drama TV Land CMT vampires Sci-Fi El Rey screen actors guild versus Logo Funimation Holiday social media cats Epix composers indiana jones asian-american National Geographic Polls and Games Marvel Television 21st Century Fox NYCC Black Mirror Grammys name the review BET Biopics game of thrones VICE A24 crime drama binge Family christmas movies X-Men war Endgame jamie lee curtis cops Red Carpet Netflix historical drama Film Festival Schedule documentaries Christmas boxoffice anime Rocketman based on movie Opinion child's play Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Toys VOD President Freeform Sony Pictures ABC Family Pixar The Witch RT History The Purge History theme song comiccon indie what to watch Superheroes Disney+ Disney Plus joker BAFTA Super Bowl stoner politics 2019 71st Emmy Awards Esquire Fall TV Song of Ice and Fire spinoff Animation Vudu Britbox Sundance zombies dogs cancelled TV shows slashers Mary Tyler Moore Pirates television Western Thanksgiving transformers Kids & Family LGBTQ Box Office breaking bad Reality cancelled unscripted cinemax video romance thriller stand-up comedy YA ESPN south america TNT TCM SXSW documentary miniseries spider-man TCA 2017 YouTube Premium Spring TV Women's History Month zombie Hallmark Christmas movies First Look casting Winter TV Marvel Studios TV renewals Fantasy parents Comedy Showtime Turner 2015 children's TV streaming Trivia YouTube Red free movies First Reviews richard e. Grant Lifetime best Star Wars sitcom psychological thriller Walt Disney Pictures HBO Max HBO book crime 2017 reboot Black History Month Awards DC streaming service Awards Tour TBS Television Academy Hallmark Apple TV Plus independent FXX revenge The Arrangement Cosplay dc MTV Teen WarnerMedia Chernobyl Comic Book ratings Mary poppins Hear Us Out Musicals toy story TLC 4/20 Amazon Studios Tumblr sag awards Amazon Prime series ITV Pride Month twilight 007 films Action technology Discovery Channel Superheroe The Walking Dead finale BET Awards