How do you know that the summer movie season is officially done? Check the box office and if it looks like this weekend, it’s over. The months of massive openings and long legs are over. Welcome to the doldrums that are late August and September.
Since the box office numbers from last week were not formally released until after the weekend passed, we need to play a quick game of catch-up with ‘The Dark Knight Rises.’ The third and final of Christopher Nolan’s Batman movies opened to $160 million, a number that is staggering, but not record breaking. Did it even stand a chance of breaking the $200 million mark and challenging ‘The Avengers‘ for highest opening weekend of all time? Did the tragic events in Aurora, Colorado have an adverse effect on the opening gross? To that second question: yes. To that first question: no.
When ‘Prometheus‘ opened big last month, there was the usual “Ah, so R-rated movies can perform well at the box office!” discussion that tends to happen every year or so. Well, that has nothing on this weekend, which found two R-rated movies topping the box office. And it’s not like ‘Ted‘ and ‘Magic Mike‘ just did okay either…both films opened big, blowing away expectations and leading the charge in one of the most interesting box office weekends of the summer so far.
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