Hollywood on course for biggest summer box office in 2013

Elysium The summer box office takings have topped $4.1bn (£2.6bn) so far

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Hollywood is on course for its biggest ever summer box office in the US despite several high profile flops.

Big budget films The Lone Ranger, Will Smith's After Earth and animation Turbo all hugely underperformed in America.

However figures show studio films have earned $4.1bn (£2.6bn), close to 2011's previous high of $4.4bn (£2.8bn).

Sci-fi Elysium, from District 9 director Neill Blomkamp, topped this week's North American chart earning $30.5m (£19.7m) in its opening weekend.

Starring Matt Damon and South African actor Sharlto Copley, the film had a fairly modest debut after costing $115m (£74.3m) to make.

Elysium matched studio expectations but opened with a lower figure than director Blomkamp's surprise 2009 low-budget hit, which took $37.3m (£24.1m) in its first three days.

Rory Bruer, head of distribution for Sony, said Elysium would be "very profitable", adding "international is going to be the big, big win on this film for us".

North American box office

  1. Elysium - $30.5m
  2. We're the Millers -$26.6m
  3. Planes - $22.5m
  4. Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters - $14.6m
  5. 2 Guns - $11.1m

Source: Hollywood.com

In a crowded week for new releases, Jennifer Aniston's comedy We're The Millers took the second slot with $26.6m (£17.2m) while Disney animation Planes took $22.5m ($14.5m).

The weekend's takings brought 2013's total box office to $7bn (£4.5bn) so far.

Sci-fi Pacific Rim and Jeff Bridges' action comedy R.I.P.D were other high budget films which left studios disappointed at the box office over the summer.

Chris Aronson, the head of distribution for Fox, admitted 2013 had seen some "high-profile failures," but added, "the summer's been fantastic despite the gloom and doom some in the media have portrayed".

The summer flops have been offset by the success of films such as World War Z - which has crossed the $500m (£323m) global takings mark despite rumoured problems and reshoots - and the doomsday comedy This Is the End, which has made $96m (£62m) - three-times its budget.

Animations Despicable Me 2 and Monsters University also earned huge box office numbers worldwide, taking $746m (£482m) and $637m (£412m) respectively to date.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 28.

    There is no correlation between how good a movie is and how much it takes at the box office

  • rate this

    Comment number 20.

    Does it annoy anyone else when they see stories like this yet at the same time these companies bleat on about how much Piracy hurts this industry.

  • rate this

    Comment number 27.

    I have finally given up going to the cinema.

    With two children, it was costing us as a family of four £35 for tickets and £14.40 for two drinks and popcorn between us. Thats near 50 quid, or 65 if we wanted drink/food each.

    They stopped us being able to pick your own seats and make you sit through 35 minutes of adverts.

    It home cinema all the way now. 50" TV, sit where I want, no adverts.

  • rate this

    Comment number 11.

    Profits at an all tme high - creativity, originality, intelliegence and entertainment value at an all time low

  • rate this

    Comment number 25.

    I went to the cinema for the first time in several years the other day. It cost £30 total to watch Pacific Rim in 3D IMAX and get some snacks. It was basically a computer generated version of Power Rangers.

    Absolutely no chance of me doing that again, I'm done with 'blockbusters' and will just wait for things to come out on Netflix, who actually seem to have a viable and fair business model.


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