Weekend Box Office: Labor Day Edition - The Butler and One Direction Duke It Out For Top Spot

By Scott Gwin 2013-09-02 16:45:38discussion comments
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Weekend Box Office: Labor Day Edition - The Butler and One Direction Duke It Out For Top Spot image
One the busier Labor Day Weekends in the last few years saw some jostling for the number one spot between two very different movies. One Direction had a small lead over the regular three day weekend, but with Labor Day estimates rolled in the boy bad ended up singing back up to threepeater Lee Daniels' The Butler.

Of course, it's not a true three time number one win for Butler, but that thought is so much nicer than thinking One Direction got even one weekend in the top spot. The five teen heart-throbs did well enough in the movie concert genre, earning $15 million over the regular weekend (the regular weekend number one) and topping out at $18 million through Monday. But by failing to break into at least the $20 million range they fell well short of past teen favorites like Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus.

The Butler added almost $15 million this weekend with an additional $5 million on Monday. That brings is grand total in domestic sales to almost $80 million, a solid performance for a movie made on a $30 million budget and which has held on to steady numbers instead of the usual quick decline most movies go through.

Out of left field and hitting a shocking number 5 over the Labor Day weekend was foreign flick Instructions Not Included which earned an impressive $10 million. It's rare for a foreign movie with limited nation-wide marketing and only showing in 300+ venues to do so well ($29,000 per venue... for comparison, Iron Man 3 opened around $40,000 per venue). Starring long time Mexican success but US relative newcomer Eugenio Derbez, the movie may be a taking off point for the actor's career in US produced movies.

Striking out was Ethan Hawke's action movie Getaway. Debuting in 9th place with less than $6 million over the four day weekend, it's a near record low wide opening for Hawke and a bad start for a movie that, with only $18 million in production costs, had a decent shot to at least break even. But it hasn't been a total bummer summer for Hawke, whose last movie The Purge opened in June and banked over $60 million against its $3 million budget before closing last month.

For the full four day Labor Day weekend estimated totals, check out the chart below:

Lee Daniels' The Butler    $20,010,000 Total: $79,275,000 LW: 1    
THTRS: 3,330
One Direction: This is Us *   $18,000,000 Total: $18,000,000 LW: N     
THTRS: 2,735
We're the Millers    $15,930,000 Total: $112,885,000 LW: 2    
THTRS: 3,445
Planes    $10,668,000 Total: $73,756,000 LW: 5    
THTRS: 3,259
Instructions Not Included * $10,000,000 Total: $10,000,000 LW: N     
THTRS: 347
Elysium    $8,300,000 Total: $80,400,000 LW: 7    
THTRS: 2,539
The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones    $6,800,000 Total: $24,254,000 LW: 3    
THTRS: 3,118
Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters    $6,050,000 Total: $56,590,000 LW: 8    
THTRS: 2,393
Getaway (2013) *   $5,530,000 Total: $5,530,000 LW: N     
THTRS: 2,130
Blue Jasmine    $5,308,000 Total: $21,774,000 LW: 10    
THTRS: 1,179

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