“The Croods” is connecting with the family crowd. DreamWorks Animation’s 3D prehistoric toon took in $11.6 million Friday and is on its way to a $43 million three-day debut weekend at the box office.
This is the first film Fox is distributing under its new deal with DreamWorks, and it was on a market-high 4,046 screens, 76 percent of which were 3D. First-day audiences gave it an “A” CinemaScore, so word of mouth should provide a boost Saturday and Sunday, when families are expected to turn out in force.
Nicolas Cage, Ryan Reynolds, Emma Stone, Catherine Keener, Clark Duke and Cloris Leachman voice the characters in "The Croods,” co-written and co-directed by Kirk DeMicco ("Space Chimps") and Chris Sanders, a co-writer-director on 2010's “How to Train Your Dragon.”
The success of "The Croods" took a toll on Disney's "Oz the Great and Powerful," which will fall out of the top spot after two weeks and likely wind up third. The 3D "Wizard of Oz" prequel still took in $5.7 million Friday and should finish north of $20 million for the weekend. And its worldwide total surpassed $300 million this week.
The Film District thriller "Olympus Has Fallen" was running second after its first day. It did better than expected with $10 million Friday, and is on pace for a $28 million weekend, well ahead of the $20 million analysts had projected.
Audiences at its 3,098 theaters were sold, giving director Anton Fuqua's R-rated "Olympus" an "A-" CinemaScore. Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart and Morgan Freeman top the ensemble cast that deals with a terrorist takeover of the White House.
"Admission," the Tina Fey-Paul Rudd romantic comedy, opened on 2,160 screens with $2.2 million Friday and is looking at a $6 million weekend. That's less than Focus Features had hoped for and puts it behind the Halle Berry thriller "The Call," which brought in $2.6 million Friday and should have an $8 million second week for Sony TriStar. "Admission" received a "B-" CinemaScore.
"Spring Breakers," the raunchy R-rated teen comedy, brought in $1.7 million Friday and is on pace for a weekend of around $4.7 million. Distributor A24 expanded into 1,050 theaters after last weekend's eye-popping debut, in which it averaged $90,000 on three screens.
If projections work out after Friday's results, the weekend top ten would be rounded out by "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" at $4 million, "Jack the Giant Slayer at $3 million, "Identity Thief" at $2.4 million and "Snitch" at $2 million.
The weekend numbers will be way under last year, when "The Hunger Games" debuted with $152 million. That will put the 2013 box office, which came into the weekend about 13 percent behind 2012, even further back.