“Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2” rolled up $9.3 million in its debut Friday, and Sony Animation’s family film is on the way to an easy weekend win at the box office, likely finishing with around $35 million for the three days.
That won’t be enough to top the best September opening ever – the $42 million taken in by Sony’s “Hotel Transylvania” on the same weekend last year – but it is ahead of the $30 million opening of the original “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.”
The sequel is playing in more than 4,000 theaters, far more than any other film, and its “A-” CinemaScore should translate into strong Saturday and Sunday business.
The weekend’s two other openers – the Joseph Gordon-Levitt sex comedy “Don Jon” and the African-American-skewing comedy “Baggage Claim” — and the expanding Ron Howard-directed racing thriller “Rush were bunched with last week’s No. 1 film “Prisoners.” They’re all looking at three-day totals between $9 million and $11 million.
Universal moved “Rush,” which stars Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Bruhl as 1970s Formula One drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda, into 2,297 theaters after its limited debut last week. The well-reviewed thriller took in $3.6 million Friday and was a hit with moviegoers, who gave it an “A-” CinemaScore.
Fox Searchlight’s “Baggage Claim,” directed by David E. Talbert and starring Paula Patton, Taye Diggs and Derek Luke, also received an “A-” CinemaScore while ringing up $3.2 million in 2,027 theaters on its first day in release.
How much the porn addiction subject matter had to do with the “C+” CinemaScore first-audiences gave Relativity’s well-reviewed “Don Jon,” on which Gordon-Levitt made his directing debut and also wrote, is hard to tell. The R-rated comedy, which co-stars Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore and Tony Danza, brought in $3.2 million from 2,422 theaters Friday.
The second-week drop-off for Warner Bros.’ Hugh Jackman-Jake Gyllenhaal revenge thriller “Prisoners” was 52 percent, and it brought in $3.2 million from 3,290 locations and pushed its domestic total past $31 million in the process.
“Metallica Through the Never” rolled out on 305 Imax screens and brought in $798,000 for indie distributor Picturehouse Friday, which means the concert film could top $3 million for the three days.
The Film District horror film “Insidious 2” brought in $2 million and is looking at sixth place and a roughly $6 million third week. The domestic total for the James Wan-directed creeper has passed $64 million.
In seventh was Relativity’s Robert De Niro-Michelle Pfeiffer mob comedy “The Family,” which took in just over $1 million Friday and on pace for a $3.5 million third week.
The Eugenio Derbez family comedy “Instructions Not Included” could become the highest-grossing Spanish-language movie ever U.S. this weekend. The low-budget breakout hit from Lionsgate’s Pantelion Films has taken in $34.6 million since opening Aug. 30 and by Sunday could pass the $37.6 million that the Picturehouse thriller “Pan’s Labyrinth” rung up in 2006.
It brought in $787,000 Friday and was battling with “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” and the pot comedy “We’re the Millers” for the ninth and tenth positions.
Overall, the box office should finish at around $110 million, roughly even with last year’s comparable weekend.