'Gravity' Retains Top Weekend Box Office Spot, Despite Competition From 'Captain Phillips'

 @ericbrownzzz on October 13 2013 5:36 PM

After an impressive opening weekend, space disaster thriller “Gravity” retained its spot at the top of the box office in its second weekend, fighting off the new Tom Hanks drama “Captain Phillips.”

In its second week at the box office, “Gravity” took in an impressive $44.3 million, showing a strong audience hold after its $55.8 million opening weekend. In fact, according to Box Office Mojo, with only a 21 percent audience drop-off “Gravity” set a record for the biggest ever non-holiday box office hold for a movie that made over $40 million. 

Like last week, much of “Gravity’s” success can be attributed to premium-priced 3D and IMAX screenings. Most critics have urged audiences to see “Gravity” in IMAX 3D, and audiences appear to have gotten the memo. According to The Wrap, 3D screenings counted for 82 percent of “Gravity’s” box office gaul, while IMAX brought in an additional 20 percent. The film’s $9 million in IMAX screenings also set a record for the best second weekend at IMAX, beating out last year’s “The Dark Knight Rises” with $8.9 million.

Clearly, people are still excited about “Gravity,” and it’s likely that the film will have staying power well into November. Depending on how long “Gravity” lasts, it could earn anywhere from $250 million to $300 million by the end of its theatrical run.

While “Gravity” still kept the top box office spot this weekend, it received a strong challenge from the new Tom Hanks drama “Captain Phillips.” Taking in a solid $26 million, “Captain Philips is Hanks’ biggest box office success since 2009’s “Angels and Demons.” Critics have praised Hanks’ performance in the film, earning “Captain Phillips” an impressive 95 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.

“It’s people talking about a performance by Tom Hanks that you don’t want to miss,” Sony distribution chief Rory Bruer told the Wrap. “The movie really is emotional and incredible story telling, and this reminds people of what an incredible actor he is.”

Meanwhile, the Danny Trejo exploitation action film “Machete Kills” also opened this weekend, bombing with an abysmal $3.8 million. Clearly, audiences weren’t excited by another installment of Trejo's over-the-top hitman. Despite the stunt casting of Charlie Sheen, Mel Gibson and Lady Gaga, the audience just wasn't there. While the original “Machete” opened with a decent $11 million, “Machete Kills” bombed so badly that it’s unlikely the series will receive a third installment. 

Check out the top ten movies of the weekend, numbers courtesy of Box Office Mojo.

  1. “Gravity” — $44.3 million
  2. “Captain Phillips” — $26 million
  3. “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2” — $14.2 million
  4. “Machete Kills” — $3.8 million
  5. “Runner Runner” — $3.7 million
  6. “Prisoners” —$3.6 million
  7. “Insidious Chapter 2” — $2.7 million
  8. “Rush” — $2.4 million
  9. “Don Jon” — $2.3 million
  10. “Baggage Claim” — $2.1 million
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