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article image'The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water' soaks up an easy win

By Tim O'Brien     Feb 8, 2015 in Entertainment
A sponge soaked up a box office win in style as it soared with an estimated $55.37 million. "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water" took out "American Sniper," which was still solid in second.
"Sniper" took in $23.3 million and that may surprise some as it continues its amazing run. It did beat the other newcomers, which were "Jupiter Ascending" ($18.4 million) and "Seventh Son" ($7.2 million). Both could be considered big disappointments.
Channing Tatum and Mila Kunis star in "Jupiter Ascending" and that did not help here. Oscar nominee Eddie Redmayne is also in the film. Meanwhile, Julianne Moore (Oscar nominee) and Jeff Bridges (Oscar winner), are in "Seventh Son." Certain films can be a bust in North American but make up for it overseas.
Weekend
1. "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water" - $55.37 million
2. "American Sniper" - $23.3 million
3. "Jupiter Ascending" - $18.4 million
4. "Seventh Son" - $7.2 million
5. "Paddington" - $5.3 million
So, a harmless animated movie about a sponge takes over easily and it shows that family fare still wins out. Good marketing by Paramount helped, too. Now, enter "50 Shades of Grey," with its marketing tie-in and name recognition. It is huge and will be a big win for it as it plays over Valentine's Day.
Subject matter aside, this is quite stunning to see how popular the buzz is. From Fandango sales to products associated with this film, one wonders if it will become the next "Rocky Horror Picture Show." However, this time around, many theaters are asking patrons to leave the props at home.
One sidebar is putting a film such as "50 Shades of Grey" right next to "The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge out of Water" at the venue. That could make for some funny memes on social media and also some odd marketing choices.
But, one of the main takeaway items again is "American Sniper" as it stays solid, and is not dropping much from week to week. As the Oscars loom, it is not considered the front-runner for Best Picture, and Clint Eastwood is not nominated, but it has credentials for a possible upset. But, Oscar is not concerned about box office, so "Birdman" and "Boyhood" continue to battle it out.
Plus, Eastwood did not win with the directors last night (Feb. 7. See here). It is always interesting going in to the Oscars where the winners for director and film are not the same. It has happened recently with "Argo" and "Gravity."
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