The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Breaking News

March 30, 2014

'Noah' rises to top of box office with $44M debut

-- —

LOS ANGELES  — After weathering a sea of controversy, "Noah" arrived in first place at the weekend box office.

Paramount's biblical epic starring Russell Crowe in the titular role opened with $44 million, according to studio estimates Sunday.

The imaginative take on the tale of Noah's Ark from "Black Swan" director Darren Aronofsky led some religious groups to claim the story had been inaccurately depicted and prompted Paramount to add a disclaimer to marketing materials noting that "artistic license has been taken" in telling the story.

The polarizing attention apparently paid off for "Noah," which features such additions to the well-known Bible story as angelic rock creatures and chic wardrobes for Noah and his family.

"Noah," which also stars Jennifer Connelly and Emma Watson, also sailed smoothly in 22 international markets, such as Russia and Australia, earning $33.6 million abroad.

"It certainly feels like the film has really connected with both mainstream moviegoers who are looking for a really sophisticated film and those folks who really want to see a movie that honors their faith," said Rob Moore, Paramount vice chairman. "It's been a very interesting journey to get to this point, but it's definitely a spectacular launch."

"Noah" is the latest faith-centric film to win over audiences this year. Others include the independently released "God's Not Dead," which earned $9 million in its second outing this weekend, and "Son of God," whose domestic total now stands at $57.9 million since opening last month.

"I think these biblical-themed movies are like the next frontier in Hollywood," said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for box-office tracker Rentrak. "Hollywood hadn't cracked the code on a biblical movie that would have mainstream appeal. Now, I think they've figured it out. We may see a flood — pun intended — coming down the pipeline. We already have 'Heaven is for Real' and 'Exodus' slated for later this year."

Elsewhere at the box office, Lionsgate's teen science-fiction thriller "Divergent" starring Shailene Woodley came in second place and earned $26.5 million in its second weekend, bringing its domestic total to $95.3 million.

"Muppets Most Wanted," the globe-trotting Muppet sequel from Disney featuring Tina Fey and Ricky Gervais, captured third place with $11.4 million in its second weekend. The latest Muppet caper's total domestic haul is now at $33.2 million.

The weekend's other major new release, "Sabotage," flopped in the seventh spot with $5.3 million. The Open Road action flick starring Arnold Schwarzenegger is the latest failure for the former California governor, whose "The Last Stand" and "Escape Plan" were box-office duds last year.

Disney's "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," which opens in the U.S. on Friday, dominated 32 international markets by capturing $75.2 million. The sequel stars Chris Evans as the patriotic Marvel super-soldier.

___

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Rentrak. Where available, latest international numbers are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

1. "Noah," $44 million ($33.6 million international).

2. "Divergent," $26.5 million.

3. "Muppets Most Wanted," $11.4 million.

4. "Mr. Peabody and Sherman," $9.5 million ($17.8 million international).

5. "God's Not Dead," $9 million.

6. "The Grand Budapest Hotel," $8.9 million.

7. "Sabotage," $5.3 million.

8. "Need for Speed," $4.3 million ($13.3 million international).

9. "300: Rise of an Empire," $4.3 million ($8.8 million international).

10. "Non-Stop," $4.1 million.

 

1
Text Only
Breaking News
Featured Ads
More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
AP Video
Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Helium debate
Helium
Front page
Poll

Do you think school is starting too early?

Yes, it shouldn't start until after Labor Day.
Yes, it shouldn't start for another week or so.
No, it's about right.
Not sure.
     View Results