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Whisper Numbers: The weekend box office gets Taken 2

Business is about to pick up once again as Fox unleashes the action sequel Taken 2 [TAKE2]. 2009’s Taken took the industry by surprise with a $24.7 million debut on Super Bowl weekend, which Hollywood typically counterprograms with female-targeted fares.  Showing tremendous legs, Taken finished with $145 million and made Liam Neeson [LNEES] an action star who went on to topline The A-Team, Unknown and The Grey. The sequel shifts the setting from Paris to Istanbul but does not stray far from the original formula. Maggie Grace [MGRAC] takes a more active role this time as the daughter who helps her father fight her mother’s kidnappers. The R-rated film has been tracking extremely well with both sexes. Breaking into 3661 theaters, Taken 2 may score over $40 million.

Hotel Transylvania [HTRNS] smashed all expectations to set a new opening weekend for the month of September. The animated family film should hold at least 60% and finish second at around $26 million.

Disney’s Frankenweenie [FRNKW] is the latest stop-motion animated feature from director Tim Burton [TBURT]. Unfortunately, the Frankenstein-inspired story comes just a week after the animated monster mash Hotel Transylvania, which will compete for the family audience. The PG-rated black and white film will have to draw from older teens and adult Burton fans. Sparking into 3005 theaters, Frankenweenie could raise $16 million.

Universal expands the musical comedy Pitch Perfect [PTCPF] into wide release a week after earning $5.1 million from just 335 theaters. The ensuing word of mouth should help bring in around $14 million from 2770 locations.

Adult moviegoers turned out for the smart sci-fi actioner Looper [LOOPR]. A 45% decline would net another $11 million in its second weekend.

That’s the whisper from the virtual trading floor.



Tag(s): TAKE2, LNEES, MGRAC, HTRNS, FRNKW, TBURT, PTCPF, LOOPR

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By Box Office Whisperer on Thursday, October 4, 2012 @ 04:04 PM 6335 views

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