Before this box office report goes deeper, baseball movies do not always fare well. They just do not. For every "Field of Dreams," there are more field of nightmares.
That said (or written), as noted here in the earlier report, Clint Eastwood's "Trouble With the Curve," would most likely strike out. The box office was tracking slow after Friday and even a first place finish over the weekend would not show healthy numbers. And that played out. No film could reach $14 million. Plus, "Curve" finished third. But, the silver lining is that baseball movies do not open big, so the take for Clint's pick is not all that bad, on that level (see list below).
It is a photo finish at the top as "House at the End of The Street" and "End of Watch" battle it out. So, the top two films can claim the title right now. When the actuals get released, those numbers will change. Meanwhile, "Resident Evil: Retribution" falls a whopping 68 percent in its second weekend.
1. "House at the End of The Street" - $13,000,000
2. "End of Watch" - $13,000,000
3. "Trouble with the Curve" - $12,720,000
4. "Finding Nemo 3D" - $9,446,000
5. "Resident Evil: Retribution" - $6,700,000
Now, many reasons will surface for "Curve," and yes, one of them would be politics and the empty chair, like it or not. In fact, here was a note from the Hollywood Reporter last week. From Warner Bros., "Trouble with the Curve" is almost certain to draw an older audience. It also could do particularly well among conservative voters pleased with Eastwood's recent speech at the Republican National Convention (conversely, Eastwood's speech might have alienated liberals).
Either way, the box office continues to hurt. So, it has nothing to do with the Eastwood film. It is the state of people not heading through the turnstiles. They simply are not going back to the theaters. Let's throw in something that, perhaps, even Hollywood hasn't considered. The economy may be worse than they think and the prices are way too high. A night out at the theater can no longer be considered "recession proof." Movies always had that label, but can it still claim that, as the prices (food and drink, too) soar?
So, enough about "Trouble With the Curve," it is time to look at the real loser at the box office - "Dredd." Its dismal showing has it landing in sixth with $6.3 million. One more indication that people are not liking what is offered. Looking ahead, can November get here any faster?
The other list will deal with opening weekends for baseball movies.
1. "The Benchwarmers " - $19,656,429
2. "Moneyball Sony" - $19,501,302
3. "The Rookie" - $16,021,684
Not so lofty numbers for baseball openers and the highest-grossing in that genre doesn't feature men playing. Nope. It is "League of Their Own" with just over $107 million. And "Field of Dreams" opened very poorly when it was released.