Of all the movies in all the world, who would have thought it would be a sappy chick flick starring Channing Tatum called “Dear John” that would eventually end “Avatar’s” reign at the top of the box office charts? Well that’s exactly what happened this weekend, as James Cameron was finally knocked off his throne as king of the world with his “Avatar” falling to second place in its eighth week of release. The record-breaking sci-fi epic continues to break all kinds of record, including surpassing Cameron’s own “Titanic” in domestic gross, though doing it with fewer ticket sales, thanks to a combination of today’s higher ticket prices and extra 3D cha-ching.
The romantic drama “Dear John”, based on a novel by tearjerker extraordinaire writer Nicholas Sparks, turned in an impressive $32 million debut, using its large female demo to push “Avatar” to the second spot with $23.6 million. The week’s only other major studio offering, the action buddy movie “From Paris with Love” limped into third place with $8 million, not exactly the type of debut the studio was probably expecting after the film’s director, Pierre Morel, broke through with last year’s sleeper hit “Taken”. God knows ads for “Paris” made mention of that association often enough.
Mel Gibson’s “Edge of Darkness” also took a dive in its second week, managing the fourth spot with another $7 million. The revenge thriller has made just over $29 million so far in two weeks of release. Needless to say, it’s going to have to pick up the pace if it wants to recoup its estimated $80 million budget. At this point, it’s not looking good for Mel’s return to A-list acting.
Here’s how the box office Top 10 looked over the weekend:
1 —–Dear John —–$32,400,000
2 —–Avatar —–$23,600,00
3 —–From Paris with Love —–$8,120,000
4 —–Edge of Darkness —–$7,005,000
5 —–Tooth Fairy —–$6,500,000
6 —–When in Rome —–$5,504,000
7 —–The Book of Eli —–$4,835,000
8 —–Crazy Heart —–$3,650,000
9 —–Legion (2010) —–$3,400,000
10 —–Sherlock Holmes —–$2,630,000