It isn’t turning into the blockbuster opening Disney had hoped for, but “Tron Legacy” found a very strong $18 million on Friday including $3.6 million in Midnight screenings to climb to the top of the box office.
The long awaited sequel to 1984’s “Tron,” the Joseph Kosinski thriller looks like it will finish between $48-50 million for the weekend. That’s a solid start as long as “Legacy” continues to perform throughout the holiday frame, but the Mouse House is going to need a big international tally to hit break even on the reported $250 million plus CGI extravaganza.
Opening in second place with $4.7 million was Warner Bros. “Yogi Bear.” The studio had hoped the flick could duplicate the previous success of 20th Century Fox’s “Alvin and the Chipmunks” franchise during the holidays, but with $16-18 million expected for its debut, a $100 million plus tally seems like a reach at this point. Still, it’s a solid rebound considering how badly the flick came on pre-release polling only a few weeks ago.
Jumping up to no. 3 was the SAG and Golden Globe nominated “The Fighter” which found $3.924 million in only 2,503 theaters. The awards season player is looking at a solid, but not spectacular $11-12 million in its wide debut. The inspirational drama will draw on good word of mouth throughout the rest of awards season and an expected slew of Oscar nominations.
Dropping significantly in the fourth slot was “The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader” with $3.7 million. Last weekend’s top grosser will be lucky to hit $13 million for its second weekend. Clearly, not the hit 20th Century Fox and Walden Media were hoping for.
Expanding to 959 theaters was another SAG and Golden Globe favorite, “Black Swan.” Darren Aronofsky’s dark thriller grossed a stellar $2.7 million on Friday to land in the fifth slot for what should also be an $8-9 million weekend. Considering how close that is to “The Fighter’s” expected cume, the estimate is a huge indicator of just how in demand “Swan” is.
Also debuting Friday was Sony Pictures “How Do You Know.” The first James L. Brooks film since “Spanglish” found just $2.55 million on Friday for what is expected to be an $8-9 million three-day total. That’s incredibly disappointing considering the star power of Reese Witherspoon, Owen Wilson, Jack Nicholson and the pictures $125 million budget. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, the Christmas frame officially has its first bomb.
Look for updated weekend box office estimates Sunday on HitFix.