35mm or Digital
Per Screen
Meet the Spartans $18,725,000 $7,188 $18,725,000
Rambo $18,150,000 
$6,597  $18,150,000 
27 Dresses
$13,600,000  (-40.9%) $4,424 $45,347,000
Cloverfield $12,700,000 (-68.3%) $3,723 $64,294,000 
Untraceable $11,200,000 $4,729 $11,200,000
$10,300,000  (+3.5% )
$4,245 $100,152,000
The Bucket List
$10,210,000 (-27.5%) $3,502 $57,684,000
There Will Be Blood
$4,887,000 (+66.1%) $5,522 $14,764,000
National Treasure 2
$4,664,000(-38.2%) $2,165 $205,421,000
Mad Money $4,610,000 (-40.4%) $1,866 $15,284,000

This just in: Wu Tang Clan – Still nothing to fuck with

Well, Meet the Spartans is the #1 film in America. Note to anyone who ever used box office to prove quality: Meet the Spartans is the #1 film in America.

Wait a second… I’m guessing when actuals come in this could be a legitimate horse race. Both LionsGate and Fox aren’t above being wrong (though at this juncture, Sunday’s numbers are just good guestimations). Both numbers are excellent for these low-budget films, but the bigger win comes from Rambo. I say that because it will do exceptionally well internationally, and with a relatively low production budget and only one star, it’s great that it will make is money back domestically on top of everything else. It means the world is back in the Stallone business. But where Rocky Balboa opened to $12 Million and got to $70, Rambo is likely front-loaded, though word of mouth might be good. That is to say that even though the critics mostly hated it, people who like violent films loved this movie. The less said about Spartans the better, though everyone bemoaning the bad taste shown by the American public, know that the picture will have a hard time getting past $40 Million. Then again, those films are done so cheaply that that means it’s profitable. If the strike ends expect one next year, if they can find enough things to parody.

But the biggest story of the weekend is the collapse of Cloverfield. This is not surprising as word of mouth was terrible, but let me reiterate: J.J. Abrams, don’t pull this shit with Star Trek. Hiding what Cloverfield was worked, but I think that even the people who knew what it was (which was most people, the audience isn’t that stupid) left disappointed. Still, it’s a gimmick film, which Star Trek (hopefully) isn’t. Cloverfield will likely be another $40 million opening that won’t get to nine digits. If it collapses further next weekend, which it will, eighty-ninety sounds about right. Probably closer to eighty.

Speaking of Nine Digits, Juno hit that this weekend. With the Oscar bounce it got to the hundred mark. My tea leaves are telling me a couple of things, and one is that it’s a real contender, so Jeffery Wells better start banging that drum louder if he wants to get more members to his anti-Juno party. The tea leaves told me other things, but I won’t do that in public again, no matter how many times they ask. This was a big weekend for milestone crossing, Alvin and the Chipmunks crossed $200, I Am Legend $250, No Country $50, and Michael Clayton $40. National Treasure 2 did $200 on Thursday, but there you go.

Untraceable cracked the top five, but it will also likely fall at least 50% next weekend. Is that a success? The film was cheap. There’s that. The Bucket List has a production budget of $45 Million, and the film’s near $60. Will it gets to $90? It’s not out of the question. It only took a 27% drop. The film is playing to it’s crowd. I’m hoping that elderly cinema takes off as a new phenom. Geezesploitation. Lord knows I’m a fan of Death Wish 3.

There Will Be Blood cracked the top ten now that it’s on a number of more screens and will likely play through the Oscar ceremony. It’s hard to say if it’ll do No Country business, but if it wins big it could. Looks like Roger Deakins could be splitting his own vote if the ASC is an indicator, so it’s got a good eye on cinematography. Mad Money clings in the top ten, so there’s that.

But perhaps the biggest winner here is 27 Dresses, which should finish its run around $60-70. That’s much bigger than any of the solo-Jennifer Aniston pictures that courted the same audience. Do people like Heigl? Or is it just retroactive love of Bride of Chucky? The only thing I know for sure is that it takes three licks to get to the center of a tootsie pop. After that, it’s just educated guesses.