Significantly fewer people went to see Disney's The Princess and the Frog on Sunday than the studio had estimated. Official figures put the weekend total at $24,21 million, down from the studio's estimate of $25 million. (Studio estimates released on Sunday include actual figures for Friday and Saturday and educated guess for Sunday.) The result could be a source of concern for Disney since Sunday is usually a big day for films aimed at family audiences, who are strongly influenced by word-of-mouth. Clint Eastwood's Invictus , starring Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon also came in notably below the studio's estimate of $9.1 million, already regarded as a disappointment.. It actually wound up with $8.6 million. Opening in limited release in nine theaters, A Single Man, starring Colin Firth, collected $217,332 -- a huge $24,148 per theater. Playing in three theaters, Paramount/Dreamworks' The Lovely Bones took in $116,616 or $38,872 per theater. And expanding into 72 theaters, Paramount's Up in the Air , starring George Clooney nearly made the top ten as it amassed $2,4 million, or $33,255 per theater. The top 12 films grossed $87.31 million, up 8.6 percent from the comparable weekend years ago. The box-office nudged closer to $10 billion for the year, standing now at $9.79 billion.

The top ten films over the weekend, according to final figures compiled by Box Office Mojo (figures in parentheses represent total gross to date) 1. The Princess and the Frog, Disney, $24,208,916, 3 Wks. ($27,088,786); 2. The Blind Side, Warner Bros., $15,055,258, 4 Wks. ($149,816,797); 3. Invictus, Warner Bros., $8,611,147, 1 Wks. ($8,611,147); 4. The Twilight Saga New Moon , Summit, $7,960,394, 4 Wks. ($267,320,977); 5. Disney's A Christmas Carol, Disney, $6,833,190, 5 Wks. ($124,426,097); 6. Brothers , Lionsgate, $5,014,426, 2 Wks. ($17,416,217); 7. Old Dogs, Disney, $4,409,772, 3 Wks. ($39,996,273); 8. 2012, Sony, $4,351,565, 5 Wks. ($155,288,405); 9. Armored, Sony, $3,504,374, 2 Wks. ($11,750,895); 10. Ninja Assassin, Warner Bros., $2,707,470, 3 Wks. ($34,304,761).

15/12/2009