October certainly isn’t as exciting for movies as the Summer season which just ended, but there are new movies coming out each week.

To close out September and open October, DOLPHIN TALE leaped into first place, with LION KING dropping its weekend earnings to half of what it made the previous week. MONEYBALL only took a 38% dip and remained in second place.

COURAGEOUS opened in fourth place, but it had a higher per-theater earnings average than any other film in the top 30 last weekend. On a budget of $2 M, the film has already earned $9 M in one weekend.

In 5th place was 50/50, already surpassing its $8 M budget.

Thriller DREAM HOUSE opened in 6th place and will have a long way to go if it hopes to recover its $50 M budget after building a financial foundation of only $8.1 M in its opening weekend.

ABDUCTION dropped from fourth to seventh as its earnings were but half of its opening weekend total. The $5.6 M it brought in this weekend brings its gross up to roughly $19 M, helping it surpass the halfway point in trying to recoup its $35 M budget.

The Anna Faris romantic comedy WHATS YOUR NUMBER debuted in the 8th spot, bringing in $5.4 and making it somewhat unlikely that it’ll surpass its $20 M budget in its first month in theaters.

KILLER ELITE drops from the 5th spot to number 9 this week, earning just below $5 M. It has a very tough financial road to travel, as its reported budget was $70 M and its current earnings are roughly $17.5 M.

In its fourth weekend in the theaters, CONTAGION finally surpassed its $60 M budget, bringing in $4.9 M to bring its total to $64.5.

The critically acclaimed DRIVE hit the 11th spot and continues to build on its profit, moving up an additional $3.2 M to surpass the $27 M mark, a big success from its $15 M budget.

THE HELP remains in the top dozen earners with just over $3 M, and by the time you’re reading this it will likely have surpassed the $160 M mark on a budget of $25 M.

Despite being widely praised by critics, WARRIOR drops out of the top 15 in weekend earnings. After three weeks at the box office the number of theaters showing the film were cut by half in its fourth weekend. Its earnings to date are roughly $13 M on a $25 M budget.

Two other recently released movies which are big failures at this point:

STRAW DOGS – after three weeks in the theater it failed to bring in $500 K last weekend, bringing its earnings to $10 M on a budget of $25 M.

I DON’T KNOW HOW SHE DOES IT – also having been in theaters three weeks, it brought in just over $400 K last weekend and will have to struggle if it even wants to hit $10 M, which will likely anger the Weinsteins, whose company invested $24 M.

Opening This Week:

The Ides Of March – the Clooney / Gosling political thriller should be a great flick, but it’s hard to determine if movie-goers are going to give it a shot. I certainly will be.

Real Steel – the hype about the Hugh Jackman fighting robot flick tells me that this movie is better than it looks to be, and while I’m somewhat doubtful, this should make a decent amount of coin considering it could appeal to some younger audiences who likely aren’t in the market to see DOLPHIN’S TALE or LION KING and wouldn’t be in the right market for IDES OF MARCH.

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