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Box office report: 'Last Exorcism' ekes out win over 'Takers'

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the-last-exorcismImage Credit: Patti PerretThis one may not be decided until tomorrow as the top two films are only separated by a meager $300,000. It’s interesting that for a weekend that wasn’t generating much attention from Hollywood, both new releases have now grossed over $20 million, creating a real horse race. The Last Exorcism led the charge Friday night, but Takers has come up from behind and is getting mighty close to Exorcism’s gross. Both films well over-performed expectations, with Takers earning an estimated $21 million for the weekend and Exorcism an estimated $21.3 million. It’s likely that either Lionsgate or Sony Pictures has overestimated their Sunday number, though, and we may have a different outcome tomorrow.

If you are to trust the exit polling, The Last Exorcism was universally despised by audiences. According to CinemaScore, the film generated a D with audiences. Not even the younger crowd, which is usually more accepting of movies, could muster more than a failing grade for the documentary-style thriller. Takers fared better, earning a B from audiences, with women under 25 enjoying the film the most.

The rest of the weekend was dominated by holdovers, with the most recent releases falling most. Lottery Ticket dropped a steep 65 percent while Piranha 3-D lost 60 percent of its value. The re-release of Avatar didn’t make much of a dent in its box office, earning only $4 million in its 812 theaters for a twelfth-place finish. The film has now earned close to $754 million domestically.

Spot three for the frame was held by The Expendables, which in its third week grossed an estimated $9.5 million, dropping 44 percent since last weekend for a total cume of $82 million. Eat Pray Love earned $7 million for a total gross of $60 million. And slot five went to The Other Guys, which has stayed in the top five since opening a month ago. Losing only 37 percent of its value for an additional $6.6 million, the film is just on the cusp of $100 million with $99.3 million.

Twilight parody Vampires Suck took the sixth slot, losing over 55 percent of its value for a weekend take of $5.3 million and a total gross of $27.9 million.  Inception landed in spot seven. The mind-bendy thriller, in its seventh weekend in release, grossed another $5.1 million for a total cume of $270 million. Nanny McPhee Returns grabbed eighth place with $4.7 million, a 44 percent drop-off. The British film written by and starring Emma Thompson has earned $17 million in two weeks of release. Ninth place went to the Jennifer Aniston, Jason Bateman-starrer The Switch which lost 45 percent of its value for $4.6 million. The romantic comedy has generated only $16.4 million since opening last weekend.

And spot ten went to Piranha 3-D, which grossed an estimated $4.3 million for a total two-week gross of $18.2 million. Check back next weekend when Going the Distance opens opposite Machete.