Box office report for Jan. 31, 2011: "The Rite" scares its way to No. 1
“The Rite,” the exorcism horror thriller starring Anthony Hopkins, topped the box office over the weekend as it opened with $15 million, according the the Associated Press.
The PG-13, “Exorcist”-influenced movie drew most of its audience from the older-than-25 demographic.
The other debut this weekend, CBS Films’ action film “The Mechanic,” which stars Jason Statham and Ben Foster, took in $11.5 million, tied for third with Sony’s updated superhero film “The Green Hornet.”
Last week’s top film, the romantic comedy “No Strings Attached,” starring “Black Swan” Oscar nominee Natalie Portman and Ashton Kutcher, slipped to second with $13.7 million.
Several Oscar contenders, including “Black Swan,” “The Fighter” and “True Grit,” got a box-office boost from their accolades. In its 10th week of release, the Weinstein Company’s “The King’s Speech” earned $11.1 million to reach No. 5, while adding nearly 900 screens.
“The King’s Speech,” about King George VI’s (Colin Firth) effort to overcome his stutter, has usurped “The Social Network” as the frontrunner for the Feb. 27 Oscars. When the Academy Award nominations were announced last week, the British monarchy saga led with 12 Oscar nominations. Its director, Tom Hooper, won best director from the Directors Guild on Saturday, while the cast won best ensemble and Firth best actor at Sunday’s Screen Actors Guild Awards.
“The King’s Speech” saw the biggest box-office increase after Oscar nominations were announced last Tuesday, jumping 41 percent from its performance the previous weekend.
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