There there, Scott Pilgrim Versus The World fans, there there.
Let us console you, because the news on its face isn’t very good: A $10.5 million opening weekend for fifth place, well behind the other openers and a notch back from Inception in its fifth week. Here’s how you process it: (1) The movie got made, and it can’t get unmade. You will enjoy it now and in the numerous features-packed, exorbitantly priced special editions to come. (2) Edgar Wright is a supremely talented filmmaker who will continue to get work after this. (3) Passion matters: The movie will be embraced as a cult item for decades to come, and resurface in any conversation/thesis paper that reflects on pop culture in cinema, the elasticity of the form, and the seamless intersection of video games, comics, and other media. (4) The Expendables may have earned $35 million for first and Eat Pray Love another $23.7 million for second, but no one will remember them past this weekend. One is a dumb, gimmicky, disposable (and, okay, kinda fun) throwback to a fondly misremembered era in action filmmaking, the other a navel-gazing late-summer staycation of a movie. The people who saw these movies have already forgotten them and will move on to the next thing they’ll forget about five minutes after seeing it. (5) Getting hung up on box office numbers is a relatively recent phenomenon, and it’s kind of stupid. You didn’t pay for Scott Pilgrim to get made, a behemoth corporation called Universal did—and it can absorb the negligible losses. So long as the project slipped past the studio gatekeepers—it did!—and the creative folks involved get to work again—they will!—it’s an unambiguous victory for you and your new favorite movie. So chin up.
In limited release, the acclaimed Australian thriller Animal Kingdom got off to a reasonably promising start, taking $9,100 per screen on seven screens. Hopefully it won’t fade the way the year’s other acclaimed Australian thriller, The Square, did a few months ago.
For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.