Summer Movie Season Earns Big

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Universal Pictures
    Brad Pitt and Quentin Tarantino have landed their history lesson on World War II at the top of the box office.

    Labor Day marks the end of summer movie season, and one hyphenate sums up the revenues: ka-ching!

    Though the 2009 season had no mega-blockbuster like last year’s “Dark Knight” overall sales still surpassed chart-topping 2007 by 4%, raking in about $4.4 billion. Attendance, however, was slightly down due to a longer-than-usual selling period, confirming for some that recession-driven escapism is on the decline.

    The summer's top five films were “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen,” “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” “Up,” “The Hangover” and “Star Trek.”

    Labor Day movie traffic alone saw four films gross more than $10 million, closing the season on a high note, reports Variety:

    “The Final Destination” and “Inglourious Basterds” landed at Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, followed by new entries “All About Steve” and “Gamer.”

    “Final Destination” grossed an estimated $15.4 million from 3,121 theaters for the four-day holiday frame, bringing the film’s cume to $50.6 million in its first 10 days. Overseas cume through Sunday was $31.1 million for a worldwide total of $81.7 million.

    Weinstein Co.’s “Inglourious Basterds” grossed an impressive $15.1 million from 3,358 for the four days. Estimated cume through Monday was $95.2 million, making it Quentin Tarantino’s second-highest domestic grosser after “Pulp Fiction.”

    “Basterds” was the top pic Sunday. International cume through Sunday was $83.3 million for a worldwide haul of $178.5 million. That’s still short of the $213.9 million grossed by “Pulp Fiction” at the worldwide box office.

    Among the three new wide entries, Sandra Bullock-Bradley Cooper comedy “All About Steve” fared the best, placing No. 3 for the frame and grossing an estimated $13.9 million from 2,251 theaters. Film came in on the higher end of expectation on the strength of adult females.

    Other films that earned well while garnering critical acclaim included "Julie & Julia," "G.I. Joe" and "District 9."