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Box office report: 'Pain & Gain' leads slow weekend with $20 million; 'Iron Man 3' earns $195 million overseas

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In the final weekend before Iron Man 3 kicks off the summer movie season in earnest, Michael Bay’s R-rated action comedy Pain & Gain topped a slow weekend at the box office with $20 million from 3,277 theaters, giving it an average of $6,103 per location. The Paramount film achieved only a fraction of the opening weekend grosses of Bay’s Transformers films, but it only cost a fraction — just $26 million — of those films as well. It’s well on its way to profitability.

Pain & Gain, which stars Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, redeemed both stars following unimpressive box office results for action films earlier this year. Wahlberg’s Broken City petered out with just $19.7 million, while Johnson’s Snitch fared only slightly better, grossing $42.1 million. While both those films had darker, more serious tones, Pain & Gain was marketed as a sunny, over-the-top black comedy. Unfortunately, audience reaction wasn’t particularly sunny. Polled moviegoers issued Pain & Gain a dreadful “C+” CinemaScore. READ FULL STORY

Box office update: 'Pain & Gain' maxes out with $7.5 million Friday

Michael Bay’s action comedy Pain & Gain flexed its box office muscles on Friday, earning $7.5 million on its first day in theaters. Paramount’s $26 million R-rated film, which stars Mark Wahlberg and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, may take in about $21 million (in line with predictions) over the full weekend frame.

In second place, Tom Cruise’s sci-fi adventure Oblivion, which topped the chart last weekend with $37.1 million, dropped 62 percent from its opening day to $5.1 million, putting it on pace for a weekend in the $17.5 million range. The $120 million Universal film’s lackluster “B-” CinemaScore helps explain its hefty second weekend drop, though it will have amassed a solid $65 million by Sunday night. READ FULL STORY

Box office preview: 'Pain & Gain' hopes to do some heavy lifting on opening weekend

Oblivion, 42, Jurassic Park 3D, and Evil Dead have all achieved solid box office runs in April, but for the most part, this month has been nothing to write home about. The middling business trend will likely extend into this last weekend of April, as Pain & Gain (pictured) and The Big Wedding enter theaters. Basically, it’s the calm before the storm of Iron Man 3.

Here’s how the weekend may shake out:

1. Pain & Gain – $21 million
Michael Bay took a break from the Transformers franchise to make Pain & Gain, an action film starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Mark Wahlberg, for just $26 million. The Paramount release, based on a terrific series of articles in the Miami New Times, has a clear shot at winning the weekend. Though Wahlberg and Johnson each endured less-than-impressive results from Broken City and Snitch, respectively, earlier this year, those films felt dark and dour where Pain & Gain feels sunny and fun. Paramount has marketed the film aggressively, and Bay, whether you love him or hate him, has his fans. Pain & Gain is opening in 3,277 theaters, where it may earn about $21 million over its first three days. READ FULL STORY

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