After being beaten mercilessly into submission by the unprecedented
Arctic Vortex which swept most of the country, people began to finally leave
their homes and lead a normal life – like going to the movies. And what did they
want to see?
Evidently they wanted to see the Afghanistan-set war
actioner Lone Survivor with Mark Wahlberg. The Universal pickup, which, like Lee
Daniels’ The Butler, was independently financed by a large group of
private investors, pulled in a very surprising $38 million, way above what most box
office predictions for the film, which was pegged for an upper teens to
mid-$20 million range.
Universal, which badly needs some good news after the
massive box office bust that was 47 Ronin,
played it cards right with Survivor, with an aggressive marketing campaign, starting months before the film came out, with a major profile piece on director Peter Berg in the New York Times Sunday Magazine, and
opening the film in selected theaters weeks in advance to generate strong word
The other major opening, The Legend of Hercules, pretty much faded into the background with
just $8.6 million. No doubt that other Hercules movie, starring Dwayne Johnson, which opens in late July, will have a much
In second place was Disney’s
Frozen with $15 million, which is showing the strongest box office legs
for any film in months. People really love the film, and the word-of-mouth is
Activity: The Marked Ones saw a huge 65% drop off from last week, but The
Wolf of Wall Street, in third place this week, is doing well and American Hustle has already passed the $100 million domestic mark.