'Ant-Man' Tops 'Pixels' and 'Southpaw' Has Punch at Box Office
You know that sound the ghosts make when Pac-Man eats them? That just happened at the box office this weekend for "Pixels."
The critically panned Adam Sandler movie about vintage video games going crazy opened to a tepid $24 million to fall into second place behind holdover "Ant-Man" with Paul Rudd, which collected $24.9 million in its second week, according to final numbers Monday.
"Paper Towns" also debuted weakly with only $12.7 million, well under estimates for the John Green adaptation that some thought could have topped $20 million on the strength of the author's popularity and the carry-over goodwill from the Green-to-screen hit "The Fault in Our Stars."
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"I'm really somewhat mystified," Chris Aronson, domestic distribution head at 20th Century Fox, which released "Paper Towns," tells Variety. "It's something we're going to have to look at and review on a post-mortem basis and find out why we didn't get more people in."
In fact, the weekend overall was down and some speculated that many would-be moviegoers stayed home because of the shocking shooting last week week at a Louisiana theatre showing "Trainwreck" that killed three and injured nine.
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The box office doldrums didn't hurt "Southpaw," however, as the Jake Gyllenhaal boxing drama -- the only new release aimed at adults -- opened to a better-than-expected $16.7 million, a solid haul considering the movie's budget was only $25 million.