What bad word of mouth? Fighting off negative reviews, Garry Marshall's "Valentine's Day" jumped from a super Friday haul of $14.5 million to a more impressive $18.4 million on Saturday. If current estimates hold, the rom com is looking at $52.4 million for the weekend and $60 million or more by the end of the four-day holiday .
Following the success of last year's "He's Just Not That Into You," New Line upped the ante with "Valentine's Day" packing even more A-list stars into the package and centering the entire rom com around one holiday. Because most of the stars only worked for a few weeks (if that) it wasn't as expensive to produce as you might think and now the Warner Bros. division has already put a sequel tentatively centered on "New Year's Eve" into development. Hint: make sure you get a better script and bring back Julia Roberts and Taylor Lautner OK guys?
Two films fighting for second place had nice, but not spectacular increases after their opening days. Chris Columbus' "Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" went from $9.7 million to $11.5 million on Saturday and $31.1 million for the weekend. Considering the mostly positive reviews and the fact more kids should have been clamoring to see the picture during matinees, that's a bit of a disappointment for Fox. Still, they won't be crying if "Percy" ends the President's Day frame with $40 million.
More impressive was "The Wolfman's" increase from $9.8 million to $10.9 million on its second day resulting in a $30.6 million estimate for the weekend. The Joe Johnson thriller didn't play like a traditional thriller which usually drops after its opener and instead provides hope the long-delayed monster flick will end up with $35-38 million by end of day Monday.
Fourth place was just that little blockbluster known as "Avatar" which was down only 3.7%. And unlike its competitors, it had a massive Friday to Saturday increase to $9.2 million and should make $22 million through Sunday. Yet another $28-30 million for the four day will put James Cameron's record breaker even closer to the $700 million mark domestic. Is $800 out of the question?
Fifth place went to "Dear John" which had a good $5.8 million on Saturday for what should be an $18 million frame 4-day frame. Still, after dropping over 50% this weekend it appears a potential $100 million gross it out of the question. "John" should end up with close to the $80 million another Nicolas Sparks hit made, "The Notebook."
In limited release, Fox Searchlight's "My Name is Khan" debuted with an impressive $1.8 million on only 120 screens. The film's $15,000 average was higher than any film in the top ten. Searchlight also had another strong weekend for "Crazy Heart" as the film continues to be the most successful post-Academy Awards nominated flick. The drama, which reportedly cost only $7 million to produce, grossed an estimated $4 million off only 1,000 screens for a new cume of $16.5 million.
Look for more box office updates as the weekend progresses on HitFix.