What looked like a fair fight between four strong contenders for number one this weekend ended up a lopsided bruising by the Beyoncé Knowles thriller Obsessed, which raked in an estimated $28.5 million and left the competition behind in a bloody heap. (Hold on, Box Office fans, the over-the-top brawling metaphors just get worse from here.) Despite a widespread critical drubbing (Metacritic smacked it with a 22 score), Obsessed clearly tapped into a female-driven audience bloodlusting for some schlocky, catfighting fun with its story of a woman (Knowles) battling to keep a mentally
unhinged secretary (Ali Larter) from stealing her husband (Idris Elba). Knowles’ full-court media press last week certainly didn’t hurt either: Nearly doubling many prognosticators’ estimates (including that of EW’s own Joshua Rich), Knowles pulled in her biggest three-day opening since 2002’s Austin Powers in Goldmember and can officially cross off “become a bona fide movie star” on her list of Things I Need To Do To Dominate The World.
Zac Efron managed to keep his matinee-idol face relatively unharmed, meanwhile, with 17 Again dropping a respectable 51 percent to come in second with $11.7 million, for a 10-day total of $39.9 million. Hot on Efron’s heels, however, was the weekend’s second donnybrook-ing flick. Fighting, starring Channing Tatum as, well, a fighter, made a higher-than-expected $11.4 million, and very well may end up passing 17 Again for the No. 2 slot when final numbers come out on Monday. (The number bodes well for Tatum, who headlines this August’s blockbuster hopeful G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.)
The Soloist, alas, suffered the worst beating, banking just $9.7 million for fourth place, an anemic number for the already enfeebled adult drama. Critical indifference — just a 61 on Metacritic — probably didn’t help the film’s cause, and the film may have never recovered from Paramount’s decision to move the film from its prestige picture slot last fall to the far dicier spring season.
The Disneynature doc Earth landed a fifth-place finish with $8.5 million, and its $4 million opening on Wednesday (a.k.a. Earth Day) lifted the film to a $14.2 million five-day total. Although those numbers are shy of what some thought the film could do, it remains the second-best opening weekend ever for a documentary, next to just Fahrenheit 9/11.
Finally, The Informers, based on the Bret Easton Ellis novel, opened in limited release to a puny $300,000, or just $622 a theater. The highly regarded Mike Tyson documentary Tyson, by contrast, debuted at $86,000 on just 11 screens for a vigorous $7,818 per-theater average, one of the best of the weekend. It seems fisticuffs of any stripe were your best bet for this weekend, which, according to figures from Box Office Mojo, was up a whopping 30 percent from last year, when the significantly less violent Baby Mama was tops.
More Box Office News:
17 Again handily wins the weekend
Hannah Montana: The Movie wins the weekend
Fast & Furious shatters records with $72.5 mil weekend
Monsters vs. Aliens opens at No. 1 with $58.2 mil
Knowing cruises to weekend victory
EW.com’s Box Office Chart