Darren Aronofsky's Noah, led by an all-star cast including Russell Crowe, Emma Watson, Jennifer Connelly and Ray Winstone, managed to hit the weekend box office like a tsunami (that will be the last water pun), managing to earn itself $44 million, despite the protests and controversy recently drummed up by a number of religious groups.
The film still has a long way to go just to break even with its enormous budget (not including the extensive print and ad campaign), but the film is doing well overseas as well, nabbing $51.1 million, bringing its worldwide total to an impressive $95 million opening.
The young adult sci-fi action thriller Divergent, starring Shailene Woodley, Ray Stevenson, Kate Winslet, Miles Teller, Theo James, and dozens of similar-looking gorgeous twenty-year-olds, dropped 51.5 percent, but still managed to earn an impressive $26.5 million, bringing its domestic total to $95.2 million, surpassing its comparatively moderate $85 million budget.
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In its second weekend, Divergent was able to make as much or more than many of the recent young adult franchise failures made in their entire theatrical runs, including The Host ($26 million), Beautiful Creatures ($19.4 million), and Vampire Academy ($7.7 million).
Muppets Most Wanted managed to drop just one spot, earning $11.3 million, which is a 33.1 percent drop from last weekend. The Muppets have faced negative reviews and lackluster enthusiasm this time around, and have only managed to earn $33.2 million off a $50 million budget. If the film is lucky, it might break even before ending its theatrical run, but Captain America's release next weekend won't do it any favors.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman has managed to cling high on the list, earning $9.5 million, bringing it's total to $94.9 million. That is not a bad haul for most films, but somehow Mr. Peabody cost a mind-boggling $145 million (compared to The LEGO Movie's totally reasonable $60 million budget) and has yet to come close to breaking even after four weeks.
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Shockingly, the small-budget religious film God's Not Dead, based off a chain email popular ten years ago, only dropped 1.5 percent to fall one spot and come in at number five with $9 million dollars. Some experts think the religious groups opposed to Noah went to see God's Not Dead in support of a more-traditional religious film, thus bolstering its returns despite terrible reviews.
The Grand Budapest Hotel remains a small-scale indie juggernaut by distinguishing itself as the only film to gain more money than the previous weekend, increasing 30 percent and snagging $8.8 million. The increase came from playing in an additional 673 theaters (for a total of 977 nationwide), and universally positive reviews.
Sabotage fell hard, like a DEA agent bursting into a drug house, tripping on their own shoe-laces and falling face first onto the floor. This powerhouse cast including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sam Worthington, Terrence Howard and Josh Holloway, just to name a few, burst into the top ten at a staggeringly disappointing 7th place, only stealing $5.3 million in its first weekend, against a $35 million budget. Despite its poor performance, the film isn't going to go down as a legendary bomb, due to its relatively low budget.
Arron Paul's action film Need for Speed, which earned $4.3 million, 300: Rise of An Empire, which earned $4.3 million, and The LEGO Movie, which earned $3.1 million, rounded out the weekend top ten.
1. Noah - $44 million
2. Divergent - $26.5 million
3. Muppets Most Wanted - $11.3 million
4. Mr. Peabody & Sherman – $9.5 million
5. God's Not Dead - $9 million
6. The Grand Budapest Hotel - $8.8 million
7. Sabotage - $5.3 million
8. Need For Speed - $4.3 million
9. 300: Rise Of An Empire - $4.3 million
10. The LEGO Movie – 3.1 million