Hugh Jackman's return as the famed X Men proved to be a runaway winner in a weekend that brought few surprises in terms of box office takings
The Wolverine, Hugh Jackman's latest vehicle to star as one of the X Men's most famous recruits; Wolverine, shot straight to the top of the US Box Office this weekend and many other film charts across the globe. Domestically, the film underachieved, taking in a lower-than-expected $55 million, however it's performance overseas gave bosses 20th Century Fox something to celebrate as it brought in roughly $86.1 million, meaning that it has already recouped it's estimated $120 million budget.
The Wolverine underperformed in North America, but recouped it's losses overseas
In spite of the major overseas takings, with the film managing to reach the number 1 spot in 100 countries, the $55m in takings that the film brought in throughout North America is at least $10 million below expectations, and a far cry from the $85.1 million opening that the universally panned X-Men Origins: Wolverine managed to make in early May 2009. With a much better critical reception this time round, some forecasters were predicting the film to go on and beat that number, but with such an encouraging stake in the overseas market, we doubt producers will be losing too much rest over what could be a sleeper hit in the domestic market. Still, with such an underwhelming domestic take, mirroring such recently released flops as R.I.P.D., After Earth and The Lone Ranger, are these poor figures a reflection of a recession-hit economy, or of an audience no longer interested in such throwaway action films?
The rest of the top five offered few other surprises, with last week's number one, the horror The Conjuring, dropping one place with a still impressive $22.1 mil in takings. The third and fourth spots were much more family friendly, with Despicable Me 2 still commanding a strong box office presence at number three, taking $16 mil in it's fourth weekend in cinemas. Last week's new entry Turbo fell behind the animated sequel yet again with only $13.2 mil made over the weekend. With a fourth week in the top five, Despicable Me 2 is now the second most successful film of the year, behind Iron Man 3, taking in an estimated $306.4 mil domestically and a further $660.9 mil worldwide. Adam Sandler's ensemble comedy sequel Grown Ups 2 managed to break past the $100 mil mark, taking $11.5 mil over the weekend and rounding up the top five.
Adam Sandler can still draw in a crowd
Following the top five, and falling into the six-figure takings range, was Red 2 ($9.4 mil), Pacific Rim ($7.5 mil) and The Heat ($6.9 mil), with R.I.P.D. becoming the latest big budget casualty of 2013 with a measly $5.9 mil in only it's second week, taking it's overall earnings to $24.4 mil. A far cry from the eight figure sum pumped into the movie. The newly released docu-drama Fruitvale Station finished off the list with $6.3 million.
Ryan Reynolds has two flops in cinemas now