1. The Sweeney (406 sites) W/E: £1,545,294 NEW (Includes W/Th previews)
2. ParaNorman (480) W/E: £1,393,123 NEW
3. Anna Karenina (495) W/E: £813,395 Total: £2,731,426
4. Lawless (406) W/E: £790,378 Total: £2,575,336
5. Dredd (415) W/E: £769,381 Total: £2,725,180
6. Hope Springs (417) W/E: £728,689 NEW
7. Brave (515) W/E: £584,321 Total: £20,138,592
8. Total Recall (368) W/E: £472,232 Total: £4,918,739
9. The Possession (278) W/E: £346,642 Total: £2,856,003
10. Ted (267) W/E: £317,035 Total: £29,847,210
Source: The Guardian
After a quiet couple of weeks for box office, things start picking up the pace a little once again as the hard nuts of The Sweeney, thanks to two additional days of previews, get a top spot debut as Nick Love has a film open to more than £1 million since he started working on the big screen. The very well marketed film which saw
significant coverage through work with Orange and the Industry Trust’s ”Find Any Film” ads, this managed to find an audience ready for a couple of hours of Ray Winstone looking sweaty and calling people slags. The £3 m million budgeted film should manage to make its money back at least a couple of times over when all is said and done, and will do well enough on UK soil, which given the almost zero commercial appeal it will have worldwide is a good thing indeed. I don’t think this kind of money will have anyone calling for a sequel but after a couple of disappointing commerical projects for Love, it should give him a bit more leeway to do what he does, for better or worse.
Opening in second place is the first new kids product in a little while as ParaNorman uses its 3D ticket prices to gain an opening which given the term-time opening and very much PG rated antics is probably a bit of a success for Universal. This along with production company Laika’s own Coraline isn’t the most commerically viable kids film ever made to say the least but its encouraging to see it get an audience nonetheless and it’s got a fair while before competition for the kid pound hits, making it what should be a solid little earner, if nothing too spectacular, for the next month at least.
After some rather lacklustre opening figures last week, Anna Karenina, Lawless and Dredd all look to be settling in for a few weeks of decent takings here on in as the weather gets colder and people look to the big screen for comfort. The big winner of these three is AK which with a drop far less than 10% can start to make some of the money which Universal will be expecting. Outperforming last week’s number 1 Dredd, it’s going to be headed to £3 million any time now and is the only middlebrow costume drama out there for the forseeable meaning that with steady weekday grosses inevitable, Universal are onto a homespun winner. Lawless dips just over 10% week-on-week, something which will be of huge relief for Momentum who marketed the hell out of the film to relatively little return in its opening frame. Not as impressive as these but bearing in mind the usual quick action drop-off, it’s also nice to see Dredd only drop around a quarter from last time round also. These are all tainted by the fact that the weekend prior was a pathetic one for Box Office generally but still, these performances will make the bean counters happier.
Slightly disappointing in its opening week is the old-age sex dramedy Hope Springs which may have found problems at the Box Office which can be summised with my description of it there. Though the British sensibility generally enjoys a bit of smuttiness in their films, openly talking about these kinds of issues in the rather direct way the film’s marketing shows works as quite the turn-off for some and with the older demographic aimed at here, this is only going to be more so. The film has a strong cast and most reviews haven’t been too unkind but it just seems like it couldn’t quite get people out for it. The film could do well in coming weeks but there are an awful lot of releases coming up and this may struggle to retain screens.
The remainder of the chart sees holdovers performing to relative degrees as Brave only drops around 10% week-on-week as it and the aforementioned ParaNorman provide the only family entertainment in the Ten and does well for it. Total Recall tumbles less than it has been though a less than £5 million take after a few weeks is not all that strong at all, The Possession continues to make decent money given the horror genre of it though I have the feeling it could have performed a little better if released a few weeks later, and Ted makes his likely last appearance as he gets within touching distance of a staggering £30 million take.
Another rammed release schedule hits us this coming week, with a lot of competition for the adult pound again, as Oliver Stone brings us the hot young cast of Savages, Entertainment will be hoping the Brad Pitt factor can elevate the 18-rated Killing Them Softly, Jennifer Lawrence brings post-Hunger Games heat to Momentum’s The House At The End Of The Street, Entertainment go for the feel-good factor with the huge French success Untouchable, Lionsgate bring us FrightFest closer Tower Block and lastly, Sony release the real-life based drama Hysteria. It’s going to be a bit of a bloodbath this week with all but perhaps the last two likely making an impression on the chart making for one which will look very different this time next week.