'Social Network' easily wins the weekend at box office; 'Let Me In' disappoints

social-networkImage Credit: Merrick MortonDavid Fincher’s The Social Network, destined to be in the thick of Oscar talk this year, dominated the box office this first weekend in October, taking in $23 million from 2,771 locations. The PG-13 rated movie depicting the controversial founding of Facebook was met with an almost completely positive response from critics, and now adds a B+ from audiences, according to exit pollster CinemaScore. While expectations had placed the film starring Jesse Eisenberg and Andrew Garfield in a zone similar to The Departed, or around $27 million for its opening frame, the film’s positive word of mouth should bolster its performance in coming weeks, when it can be expected to draw in more male and younger audiences and approach The Departed’s total domestic gross of $132 million.

The other two new wide releases, horror films Let Me In and Case 39, did not connect nearly as well with moviegoers. Let Me In, a new take on the Swedish film Let the Right One In, scored brilliantly with critics, but opened to just $5.3 million, landing it in seventh place for the weekend. Audiences were less enthusiastic, giving the film directed by  J.J. Abrams protege Matt Reeves (Cloverfield), who recently met with Christopher Nolan about Superman, a C+, according to CinemaScore. Case 39, which stars real-life couple Renee Zellweger and Bradley Cooper and had sat on the shelf at Paramount for some time, was just a hair behind in eighth place, also with an estimated $5.3 million, and actually a better B- score from audiences, according to CinemaScore.

Turns out being the only kid flick at the multiplex can be a hoot, as Zack Snyder’s Legend of the Guardians scored a surprisingly good hold to finish at No. 2 in its second weekend. The Owl movie fell only 33 percent for a haul of $10.9 million, raising its cume to $30 million. Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps had a steeper drop-off due to the competition from Social Network. The Oliver Stone-directed flick fell 47 percent to $10.1 million. Its cume now stands at $35.9 million for its first ten days in release.

The Town continues to impress. The Boston-set heist drama directed by Ben Affleck dipped only 36 percent in its third weekend in theaters. With another $10 million in the bank, the Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm-starrer has now grossed $64.3 million. Easy A is also holding strong. Falling only 34 percent its third weekend in theaters, the Emma Stone-starrer grossed an estimated $7 million for a new cume of $42.4 million.

You Again also held in surprisingly well in its second week following a lackluster debut. It brought in $5.6 million this weekend to finish sixth, a decline of only 34 percent, giving it a new ten-day cume of $16.4 million. Following the two horror newcomers, the ninth slot went to Devil, which grossed $3.7 million. The film from producer M.Night Shyamalan has now earned $27.4 million after three weekends in release. Alpha and Omega landed in tenth place with an estimated $3 million added to its total. The 3-D animated flick from Lionsgate has grossed $19 million after three weeks.

In limited release, Paramount expanded Davis Guggenheim’s public-school indictment Waiting for Superman to 34 locations for a three-day box office of $407,000 and a total two-week gross of $600,000. Catfish also expanded to 136 theaters this weekend. The documentary that depicts today’s world of social networking grossed $607,000 for a cume of $1.6 million.

Check back next weekend when the Katherine Heigl, Josh Duhamel-starrer Life As We Know It opens opposite Diane Lane’s Secretariat.

Comments (114 total) Add your comment
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    Saw ‘The Town’ last night and it was awesome. So happy for ‘Happy A’ nice, cute movie. I will have to go see ‘The Social Network’ due to the great reviews.

    • Larry David

      Saw ‘The Social Network’, best movie of the year along with ‘A Prophete’. Yes, even better than ‘Inception’. So glad its number 1. Though I am bummed for ‘Let Me In’, its equal to the original and much scarier.

      • Bruceloved*ck

        Inception was good? Disappointing.
        Let Me In – vastly superior….

      • GetItRight!

        Wow your information is so wrong. Case 39 made more than Let me in. Box office mojo*


    I meant ‘Easy A’, great now I have turned into one of those people who posts a second comment, in order to correct the first comment. I blame the Republican Party for it.

    • Lance

      It can’t be the Republican Party’s fault. You used the word happy, and if I’m not mistaken that word is nowhere in a Republican’s vocabulary.

      • Shawn


      • Large Marge

        Well done, Lance.

      • Gurly

        Laugh while you can Libtards!

  • Jose

    damn i had social network at 27 million, but itll have legs during the oscar race. but throwing in “THE DEPARTED”threw me off.

    • Tony


  • Ken

    Good, next time don’t remake a really good film that was released to a lot of theaters in the US just a couple of years ago, had great reviews and had a huge following and is loved by many. Make your own damn movie next time. Probably not the exact reason it did so poorly…but sometimes the right things happen.

    • Connie

      It may not be the exact reason but I’m sure it was a big part. The only reason it was remade was to try to capitalize on the current vampire craze.

      • m1

        I personally don’t mind remakes. For example, the Let Me In remake made me want to seek out the original after hearing good things about it. Sometimes, a remake of a foreign film could be the best thing to happen to a horror film.

      • m1

        @m1: I mean FOREIGN film, not horror.

      • manx

        @m1 a lot of horror films are foreign remakes so you were good

  • Bradd Bradd

    The Social Network is my favorite movie of 2010 so far (yes, more then Inception). It was brilliant, the acting was superb, and the entire story was devestating in it’s irony. I wished it opened stronger, but i know it will have strong legs.All the rest of the movies held on well. Solid weekend.

    • noa apostrophe needed

      its irony – NOT it’s irony

      • ForAnAngel

        It’s “No” not “noa”

      • Jerv

        That was beautifully done. Having majored in English, there’s nothing I love seeing more than some A-hole who calls someone out (on the difference between a subject/verb contraction and a possessive pronoun, no less) get called out, himself. NOW, “it’s irony.”

  • Bruce

    I am actually surprised made this much. I mean a movie about the origins of facebook just doesn’t sound interesting to me. I realize that it has a 98% on rottentomateos, but it just doesn’t seem all that interesting.

    • Bruce

      I mean Social Network.

      • Anna

        Why did you feel the need to be specific? Is there another movie about the origin of facebook out now.

      • Michael


      • Bruce

        Yes. I believe Catfish.

      • Anna

        I see you have no clue what catfish is about but I promise you it is not about Mark Zuckerberg’s love of fish. It’s about people who are facebook users and not the origin of facebook.

      • Bruce

        Ok Anna.

    • Dave

      You really should give it a shot. When I first heard about it a year ago, I scoffed at the idea of it too. But then I heard David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin were on board, and I figured that there has to be something interesting about this story if the two of them wanted to be involved. I saw it this weekend, and I thought it was fantastic. It is a very intriguing and mesmerizing film. The acting is great and the writing is superb. It’s certainly a lot more interesting than just being a movie about facebook.

    • JBD

      It’s easily one of the best movies of the year. Like Dave says, it’s got more to it than just facebook. The characters make the movie incredible.

      • Bruce

        Ok, thank you Dave and JBD. I’m hearing lots of good stuff about this movie from my friends too. I guess I’ll check it out.

    • cheekbrown

      You gotta see it to make a serious comment about it. It’s probably the most intelligently written movie this year. Yet it still grabs you emotionally, in a Shakespearean way. Friends betraying friends – that makes for good drama.

    • Chris

      I agree with you 100%. Nothing about it screams must see.

  • Robert Taylor

    Here’s what I don’t get about these articles, and perhaps it’s because there are different writers on the articles for different weeks.

    How is it possible that half the time a B+ cinemascore is mediocre and the other half of the time a B+ represents strong audience response?

    I’m not trying to bash “The Social Network” (easily the best script in years), but after being at 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, being called a masterpiece by everyone and suddenly being hailed as the Oscar frontrunner…isn’t a B+ response from audiences who live for Facebook (literally) a bit of a disappointment?

    • John N.

      I noticed the same thing too. I have even seen writers describe a B+ as just ok. It seems that unless a film scores in the A range then the reaction from the audience is deemed a disappointment.

    • Erin

      Agree. The writers change their opinion if a B+ is a good score on not.

      For example, EW loves Twilight and a B+ for Twilight was deemed a good score, while for other movies a B+ is just ok.

    • RyRyNYC

      I pointed that out last week in the comments…

      • Robert Taylor

        If they knowingly keep flip-flopping depending on the magazine or writer’s opinion of the film, then that’s misleading the reader because of writer bias, which is a huge no-no in journalism.

      • rascal020978

        while in general writer bias is a no no in journalism, when it comes to critical pieces such as reviews, the rules are different

    • Genoa

      A lot may have to do with budget/expectations – while a more modestly budgeted drama may gain enough word of mouth to retain audience with a B+, a huge blockbuster that will need to haul in big bucks for weeks might not do it with anything less than an A.

    • Kris

      It’s because the reviews go so over the top in their praise that audiences are expecting the best movie they’ve ever seen in their lives, and can only be disappointed. How many reviews have compared The Social Network to Citizen Kane? A lot. Isn’t that overstating things a bit? It’s a good movie. It’s a lot more interesting that you’d expect a movie about Facebook to be. It is NOT Citizen Kane. If you tell a person they should expect a game changer like Citizen Kane, and they get a perfectly good, but not life changing, movie instead, they’re going to give it a B. What reviewers *should* be saying is that it makes a subject that should be boring, and makes it interesting, which is what makes it impressive.

      • Woot

        I think reviewers comparing it to Citizen Kane were commenting more on the structure rather than the movie being a game changer.

    • goob

      The oscars are not voted on by people going to see the movies its voted on by an array of actors, directors, and producers. Therefore based on positive critical success The Social Network is considered an oscar favorite. Which hasw nothing to do with its “cinema score”.

  • m1

    CinemaScore is STUPID!

    Anyway, it’s a shame that Let Me In bombed. I blame the people who sit through idiotic horror films like Saw and those Final Destination films.

    • Annette

      Hey – I sat through your so-called idiotic Saw and Final Destination movies and I also went to see Let me in on Saturday – What gives?

  • cam

    “Let Me In” would have done twice as well if not for the bully “case 39.” Those poor kids. :( …weird about the disconnect between audiances and critics with that tho. Maybe the audiance was expecting it to be a gore-porn slasher, rather than artisitc drama?

    anyways, I hope Chloe bounces back. I’ll see her movie and Social Network.

    • tipsy

      Chloe doesn`t have anything to bounce back from. She got raves for Kick Ass and LMI performaqnces and she wasn`t the boxoffice draw in any of them. Kick Ass`s most recognizable name was Cage and second was Minz-Plasse while comic book fans also knew Mark Millar.

      In LMI case, marketing pumped up “from the director of Cloverfield” and “based on the acclaimed book and movie”. Moretz and Smith-McPhee didn`t feature as markee names nor they were mentioned as the reason to see the movie. So I gather people didn`t like Cloverfield all that much.

      So despite low grosses of those two movies, she collected rave reviews at the tender age of 12-13, not at all bad.

      • Urvy

        I’ll bet it would been cheaper if she dubbed in the original Swedish version, while with a Swedish accent.

  • Troy

    Now it’s time for that dumbass m1 too give us his laughable opinion for movies he hasnt seen, yet only likes them cause he reads critics’ reviews and that is sadly how he makes up his mind about them… Sad pathetic fool

    • JBD

      There’s no need to start another comment war. And probably half these people have no idea who m1 is, so you’re obviously just trying to get a rise out of m1.

      • Duncan

        Let them go at it.. I think they’re hilarious, these 2 idiots and their bickering lights up my Sunday afternoon. And I am not fan of Troy, that guy clearly has issues.. But m1 is indeed an annoying little t–wat who feels superior to others..

      • m1

        @Duncan: Actually, no. That’s just me speaking my opinion. But if you want to be constantly bashed for posting disrespectful comments like that, feel free.

    • m1

      If you want to continue to embarrass yourself, feel free.

      • Troy

        No, I’ll let the embarrassment all to your mother. She cant be proud of you.. Now way

  • Adam

    Well, I’ll certainly never be taking the advice of CinemaScore if it’s going to direct me towards crap like Case 39 over a fantastic film like Let Me In.

    • tipsy

      Case 39 didn`t have “from the director of Cloverfield” which may be the reason why some people were directed towards it. I don`t know why LMI thought Colverfield association was a good marketing idea. That movie had an embarrassing 70% drop in its second weekend, a clear sign how much people “loved” it.

  • m1

    I am SO happy for Easy A. It deserves the wonderful box office it’s been getting.

    EW lets dating site users sprinkle their ads on the site, yet I can’t post the URL to my IMDb vote history?! What is this!

    • Troy

      Cause no one cares what you think, you retard….

      • Sarah

        Sigh, I wish EW would block both Troy and m1.. Atleast from the comment section. It would make things more enjoyable for everyone else

      • m1

        You do realize I was going to post my vote history to get you to shut up about how bad my taste is, right?

        @Sarah: Gee, YOU’RE a pleasant one.

      • Troy

        So you finally admit you have bad taste.. Smartest thing you have done so far

      • m1

        @Troy: Oh, sorry, I meant how “bad” my taste is.

      • Asher

        Actually, Sarah is the pleasant one in this situation.

      • m1

        @Asher: Then tell me this: what sort of non-pleasant person DOESN’T defend himself/herself after being called a ‘dumbass’, ‘retard’, ‘c-nt’, or ‘tw-t’?

  • Will J

    The Social Netowrk is yet another masterpeice from the master, David Fincher. Should definitely win a lot of Oscars, especially for Fincher himself. One of the greatest shames of our time is the man behind Seven, Fight Club, Zodiac, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button has yet to win an Oscar for his phenomeonal driecting skills.

    • Dave

      The fact that Zodiac was completely snubbed by the Oscars was ridiculous. Not a single nomination, when it easily should have been nominated for at least Best Picture and Best Director.

    • Frank

      Eh. Maybe he should try to stop being a pretentious d^&k and then they might give Fincher something. Oscars are a subjective award based on very little (certainly not who gave the best performance, directorial effort or anything else). People campaign incessantly for them and still don’t win. Not the way it should be but the way it is. David Fincher being a pretentious d%^k and Sorkin being an arrogant hack, the odds are they’re never going to win one.

      • Duncan

        So you know David Fincher personally? Well I’ll take a movie from that arrogant prick, then a movie from mr. nice guy michael bay anytime..

      • Dave

        Frank, and what, may I ask, do you base your assessment of Fincher’s personality?
        Actually, there’s no point in hearing your opinion if you really believe that Sorkin is a hack. Arrogant? Maybe, but I really can’t say since I don’t know the man personally. But a hack? Nope. And if Sorkin is so unlikable, as you try to say, then The West Wing wouldn’t have won so many Emmy awards.
        I’d say the odds are that at some point in the future (whether it be for Social Network or something else), Fincher and Sorkin will both have an Oscar.

    • Bedc01

      The Game and Panic Room were amazing.. And I am one of the few who appreciated ALIEN 3 (well me and Owen Gleiberman who gave that movie an A-).. Such an underrated film

  • Matt C.

    What a disappointing weekend for Let Me In…but it’s even more disappointing that it was beaten by Case 39. Hopefully the weekend actuals will have LMI grossing more. But I really want to see The Social Network, I’ve heard nothing but good things.

  • Lorna

    Not suprised by Let Me In’s performance at the box office. It’s a R-rated horror movie with preteens as the leads. The trailers looked boring, dark and depressing instead of scary and interesting. Plus, most of it’s targeted horror fan audience already saw the original. I’m not saying the remake is a bad movie but that it was never gonna do well at the box office.

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