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Box Office Report: 'Friday the 13th' slashes records

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Friday13th01_l

Friday13th01_l

With $42.2 million, the biggest opening gross thus far in 2009, Friday the 13th easily won the record-breaking Presidents Day weekend box office race, beating out Valentine’s Day favorites Confessions of a Shopaholic and He’s Just Not That Into You, as well as solid holdovers Taken and Coraline. (All totals listed here are according to early three-day estimates from Media by Numbers; rough figures for the four-day holiday weekend will be out tomorrow.)

That $42.2 mil sum is the top first-weekend figure for any movie in the nearly 30-year-old Friday the 13th series — including the 2003 mashup Freddy vs. Jason, which premiered with $36.4 mil. (In fact, the original Friday the 13th movie, from 1980, grossed just $39.7 mil during its entire run, not adjusted for inflation.) In addition, this marks the best bow ever for a horror remake, besting The Grudge‘s $39.1 mil debut gross. And it arrives despite a weak B- CinemaScore review from an audience that skewed male. In other words, great as this first frame was for Friday the 13th, expect a big drop next weekend.

Second place went to hearty holdover He’s Just Not That Into You, which banked an expected $19.6 mil on a slight 29 percent drop. Taken came next at No. 3, with $19.3 mil in its third frame, a mere 6 percent decline from its previous outing. In three weeks, the out-of-nowhere Liam Neeson juggernaut thriller has grossed nearly $78 mil.

Audiences were just not that into freshman flick Confessions of a Shopaholic (No. 4), however. The Jerry Bruckheimer-produced farce opened with an okay $15.4 mil and drew a similarly okay CinemaScore grade of B from a crowd that was 75 percent female.

Coraline rounded out the top five with $15.3 mil, another teensy decline of just 9 percent from last weekend. Paul Blart: Mall Cop (No. 6) brought its five-week sum to $110.5 mil, making it the first-ever non-sequel January release to hit the century mark. And new movie The International (No. 7) stumbled with just $10 mil — and a poor CinemaScore grade of C+ from mostly older men.

Overall, it was the best Presidents Day weekend ever: The total gross of all movies playing during this frame was about $190 mil, which trumps the previous benchmark of $157 mil in 2007 (and is up more than 38 percent from last year). No doubt, Washington and Lincoln would be proud.

More Box Office News:

Box Office Preview: Can Friday the 13th win on Friday the 13th?

EW.com’s Box Office Chart

He’s Just Not That Into You gets lots of love

Taken scores a touchdown
Paul Blart edges out Underworld 3 to win the weekend

addCredit(“John P. Johnson”)

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