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your box office explained

Your Box Office Explained: The Green Hornet Stings The Dilemma

This Weekend's Winners: Michel Gondry’s The Green Hornet debuted strong ($35 million); The King's Speech more than doubled its presence in theaters, and accordingly, business jumped roughly 40 percent (for an estimated $9.1 million).

This Weekend's Losers: Ron Howard’s new comedy The Dilemma proved its premise to be not much of a conundrum nor that funny, and, accordingly, grossed only a tepid $17.4 million. Meanwhile, Nic Cage’s Season of the Witch plunged by almost 60 percent in its second weekend, grossing only an estimated $4.5 million. Gwynie’s weeper Country Strong also lost big — nearly half its audience — taking an estimated $3.7 million and placing thirteenth, for a total of $13.3 million after two weekends.

How It All Went Down: As Box Office Mojo notes, The Green Hornet scored the “highest-grossing opening ever for a live-action superhero comedy,” proving that there is no superlative which Hollywood will not invent to pat itself on the back. But the sad truth is that box office for this past weekend wasn’t just down by 25 percent compared the same weekend last year — it was one of the least-attended weekends in well over a decade.

Still, that doesn’t mean you can’t buy an opening, and as Sony notes, its first-weekend demographics showed Green Hornet skewing heavily in favor of dudes (61 percent male), no doubt a result of the studio's spending a lot of green on saturating NFL and NBA games with Hornet spots. Sony also got mileage out of the Hornet ride, the Black Beauty: The souped-up Chrysler Imperial toured twenty cities and was featured in four major auto shows, including the Los Angeles Auto Show and the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Meanwhile, Ron Howard’s Dilemma attracted mostly older women — 60 percent female, and nearly the same percentage over the age of 30 — no doubt proving in Vince Vaughn's mind that electric cars really are effete.

Your Top Ten:

1. The Green Hornet: $34 million
2. The Dilemma: $17.4 million
3. True Grit: $11.2 million ($126.4 million)
4. The King's Speech: $9.1 million ($44.6 million)
5. Black Swan: $8.1 million ($73 million)
6. Little Fockers: $7.1 million ($134.2 million)
7. Tron: Legacy: $5.7 million ($156.9 million)
8. Yogi Bear: $5.3 million ($82 million)
9. The Fighter: $5.1 million ($65.8 million)
10. Season of the Witch: $4.5 million ($18 million)

Photo: Sony Pictures