"Contagion" Wins at Box Office

By Sam Schulz
|  Sunday, Sep 11, 2011  |  Updated 6:23 PM PDT
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"Contagion," starring Matt Damon, won out at the box office its opening weekend.

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The all-star Steven Soderbergh thriller "Contagion" knocked out the little drama that could, "The Help," this weekend for the number one box office spot.

"The Help," about black housekeepers' relationships with their white employers during the civil rights movement, had spent the last three weeks at the top but was widely expected to be unseated by "Contagion."

That top film about a team of government doctors battling an epidemic of a virus stars Hollywood heavyweights like Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Marion Cotillard and Laurence Fishburne. It brought in a $23.1 million haul its opening weekend.

And although "Contagion" beat out both "The Help" and the third-place mixed martial arts film "The Warrior," its opening weekend wasn't a great weekend for it or for the rest of Hollywood. In fact, it looked like the worst weekend of the summer, revenue-wise, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Behind "The Warrior" with its disappointing opening weekend came the Helen Mirren vehicle "The Debt," which performed respectably in its second weekend.

And the comedy about a wannabe porn star, "Bucky Larsen: Born to Be a Star," bombed with just $1.5 million.

Selected Reading: The Hollywood Reporter, Today Entertainment

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