October 5, 2014

EARLY WEEKEND BOX OFFICE: “Gone Girl” and “Annabelle” Race To the Wire


Strong Saturdays for both GONE GIRL (20th) and ANNABELLE (New Line/Warners) suggest that no matter who claims victory on Sunday morning, we may not really know who’s won the weekend until final numbers are available the next day.  According to preliminary box office figures at Deadline, Gone Girl climbed about 15% on Saturday to $15.3M, putting it in line for a excellent $38-39M weekend.  That 15% Saturday bump is moderately good when compared to other major fall dramas aimed at an adult audience:  11% for The Social Network, 13% for The Town, 29% for Prisoners, and a huge 49% for Argo (the latter, of course, being much more of a rousing audience-pleaser).

That Saturday bump for Gone Girl was more or less expected.  What comes as a surprise is the hold that Annabelle had, falling less than 10% from Friday to $14.5M.  Remarkably, that’s a better hold than the 18% Saturday drop for The Conjuring, which had some of the best word of mouth any horror movie has enjoyed in years.  Annabelle, like Gone Girl, could reach $39M or so for the weekend, very close to Conjuring‘s $41.9M.

The success of the newcomers didn’t come at the expense of the holdovers at the multiplex.  THE EQUALIZER (Columbia/Sony) fell just 38% Saturday-to-Saturday to $8.4M, and is on track for a $18M weekend, which would put it at $63M after 10 days, with $100M very reachable.  The Saturday-to-Saturday drop for THE BOXTROLLS (Laika/Focus/Universal) was a mere 20% at $6M, giving it a $13M weekend and $33M after 10 days.  THE MAZE RUNNER (20th) was down 31% to $5.5M, for a $12M weekend and $74M after 17 days, also on track for a possible $100M US total (and at a lower budget and with more overseas potential than Equalizer).

About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."