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It seems neither killing your boss nor striking up friendships with zoo animals is enough to upset the magnificent reign of Michael Bay’s Transformers: Dark of the Moon. The third and not-so-final installment is now the highest grossing movie of 2011. After a second-weekend haul of $47 million, the overall gross stands at $261 million. The previous domestic title holder was The Hangover Part II, which now sits comfortably at $250 million after nearly seven weeks in release. “Transformers” only took a 52 percent dive, a slightly smaller dip than the previous sequel. The bigger news is the international gross, which is zooming toward epic proportions. After less than two weeks in release overseas, the movie has eclipsed the domestic pull and nears $300 million.
The new movies also made a decent amount given their mild budgets in comparison to the mammoth robots. Oddly enough, Zookeeper, Kevin James' first commercial stinker, cost $80 million to produce. It only made a quarter back this weekend. Horrible Bosses, on the other hand, usurped second place with $28.1 million on a $30-million budget. R-rated comedies are making a killing this summer compared to traditional family fare. Take note, Hollywood.
If you don’t believe it just take a look at the fading lights from the last few weeks. Mr. Popper’s Penguins clings to the last rung of the charts. Jim Carrey, of all people, has a movie that has not even passed the $100 million mark. Besides that tweeny-bopper comedy Monte Carlo has already dropped to eighth place while the milquetoast Larry Crowne landed number six. In contrast Bad Teacher is well on its way to triple digits with $78.7 million to its name.
The Top Ten
1. Transformers: Dark of the Moon - $47.0M (weekend)…$261M (gross)
2. Horrible Bosses - $28.1M…$28.1M
3. Zookeeper - $21.0M…$21.0M
4. Cars 2 - $15.2M…$148.8M
5. Bad Teacher - $9.0M…$78.7M
6. Larry Crowne - $6.2M…$26.5M
7. Super 8 - $4.8M …$118.5M
8. Monte Carlo - $3.8M…$16.1M
9. Green Lantern - $3.1M…$109.7M
10. Mr. Popper’s Penguins - $2.8M …$57.7M
Two movies come out next week. Both are old friends; one much older than the other. Buena Vista will release the silly old Winnie the Pooh in 2,300 theaters. As far as counterprogramming goes, it is not the worse release we’ve seen this season. Still, it ultimately does not stand a chance in the market. The weekend belongs to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. Part 2 of the final installment of the franchise comes off of the epically successful seventh movie “Deathly Hallows Part 1.” That movie scored $954 million in worldwide totals beginning in November 2010. Rabid fans helped the series ender open at $125 million.
Looking at the previous six movies shows an ebb and flow in budgets and opening hauls, but there is no doubt it has been one of the most consistent winners in the film market. The very first movie is still the most successful domestically with $317 million and worldwide with $974 million total. It was the sixth movie however that had the largest budget, one quarter billion dollars. The second movie had the longest runtime at 2 hours and 41 minutes while this final entry has the shortest at 2 hours and 10 minutes. “Deathly Hallows Part 1” landed the highest international gross over Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by just $2 million. And after all the charts and figures have been analyzed only a few things can easily be predicted. Being the last, and already well-received by critics, “Deathly Hallows Part 2” will be the highest grossing movie of the series. The additional 3D and IMAX screenings will add extra juice both in the States and even more so overseas. Expect the opening weekend to match the $125 million start of the predecessor or perhaps a bit more given the nostalgia-loving fans who will venture out for multiple viewings this weekend.