‘Captain America’ Scores Third Straight Win; Auds Believe in ‘Heaven Is for Real,’ Dismiss Johnny Depp’s ‘Transcencence’

Heaven is for Real Movie Review

Sony's faith-based pic nabs $28.5 mil over five-day Easter weekend bow

Even Johnny Depp couldn’t save Warner Bros.-Alcon Entertainment’s pricey sci-fi blunder “Transcendence” from a dismal $11.2 million domestic start, while Sony’s faith-based miracle “Heaven Is for Real” amassed an estimated $21.5 million in three days, with $28.5 million from Wednesday through Easter Sunday.

“Heaven Is for Real,” which scored an overall ‘A’ CinemaScore rating, still trailed Disney-Marvel’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” over the three-day frame: The superhero holdover claimed its third straight win at the Stateside box office, grossing $26.6 million for a domestic cume of $201.5 million.

The Marvel wonder, which fell just 36% Friday-Sunday, has surpassed the original “Captain America” ($177 million) in only 15 days domestically. Globally, the sequel also has far surpassed its predecessor with a whopping $586.6 million, of which overseas territories have contributed $385.1 million and counting.

Elsewhere internationally, Sony’s “The Amazing Spider-Man 2” kick-started its worldwide run bowing early in 14 offshore markets, including the U.K., Mexico and Germany, where the film totaled a stellar estimated $47 million — the largest opening this year for that group of territories.

The early overseas bow is meant to distance the tentpole from the influx of summer blockbusters bowing over the coming weeks.

“Spider-Man 2” also overperformed in Imax internationally, amassing $2.3 million of the weekend gross, for a per-screen average of $47,000.

Meanwhile, the solid domestic weekend gross for “Heaven Is for Real” was foretold by the film’s strong mid-week start. The film, which is based on Todd Burpo’s best-selling real-life book, already has more than doubled its production cost of $12 million.

“It’s definitely been a concerted effort to get the word out on this film,” said Sony worldwide distribution topper Rory Bruer. “We’re very proud of this result.

“The film really does promote a dialogue among so many people, whether you believe or not,” Bruer added.

Also looking attract religious auds over the holiday weekend, Freestyle Releasing’s “God’s Not Dead” estimated $4.8 million in its fifth frame, down just 13%. The distrib is estimating a modest $1.7 million on Easter Sunday given the competition in the market place. Pic’s cumed $48.3 million.

Attracting a more nonsecular crowd, Open Road’s R-rated comedy spoof “A Haunted House 2” debuted within expectations, grossing a projected $9.1 million in three days, though only half of what the original made during opening weekend. Still, the sequel cost a modest reported $4 million to produce.

Disneynature’s wildlife documentary “Bears” got off to a decent start domestically, grossing an estimated $4.9 million from 1,720 locations. Like “Heaven Is for Real,” the nature doc scored an ‘A’ CinemaScore, with families contributing a sizable 67% of the pic’s opening three-day gross.

“Transcendence,” which was budgeted for an estimated $100 million, fell mostly flat with domestic audiences, as it received a poor ‘C+’ CinemaScore. Auds under 18 rated the film most favorably, with a ‘B’ grade.

The WB-distributed film marks the directorial debut for Oscar-winning cinematographer Wally Pfister, who is the d.p.-of-choice for Christopher Nolan. The pic languished in development until Depp signed on to star. And while his presence couldn’t save the film, it’s likely Depp was the main draw for those who did turn out opening weekend.

“Audiences are very sophisticated,” noted Warner distribution exec Jeff Goldstein, “and for the general public this just didn’t look like anything they wanted to see.”

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  1. nelson says:

    Update ! The movie Heaven is for Real just trumped Rio 2 from the second spot on the box office charts ! I guess, Gods not Dead, after all ! Wow two low budget movies crushed the Colossal big budget fiasco Noah !

  2. Julienne says:

    Alcon got to big for it’s britches.

  3. nycrn says:

    I saw Noah and enjoyed it, but I didn’t think it would be the next Passion of the Cross, one of my favorite movies of all time.

  4. Voice of Reason says:

    Huh? Who showed up armed with rifles at rallies while Mr. Obama was running for President in 2008? Right wingers!!!! Who shows up at Tea Party rallies and makes fun of the first family, referring to them as Monkey’s from Kenya? Right Wingers!!! If you’re looking for a divided war zone, just turn on Fox “News” I know you nut jobs live in an alternate universe, but to claim its the President who is racist is completely ridiculous.

  5. Sales mean nothing…
    Well, it looks like most people think like me – Transcendence is WAY better than Captain America:

    • Julienne says:

      Ummmm, you’re in the wrong industry, if you think sales mean nothing. Word of mouth is THEE biggest advertiser in the world. I’ve liked films that tanked at the box office…it didn’t mean they were better.

  6. Smooth says:

    You wing nuts should start caring more about other people if you’re so worried about division. Listen loser for your future knowledge, because your post says that you don’t have it right now is: This is a show business information blog, not a political looney tune blog. Keep your political nonsense on the blogs where it belongs.

    We realize that you political nuts have no life, but the rest of us do. We want show business information and like to read comments pertaining to the SHOW BUSINESS articles that we click the link to read. Take your “we can’t believe we lost the election” political nonsense somewhere else. If you really wanted to help your loony cause you would be out registering new voters instead of bothering us.

    This is not a Wing Nut recruiting blog, now go away.

  7. Michael Anthony says:

    h HWell, count yourself as the first person , who needs more God in their lives. Your description if the country is only half right. You leave out many of the oppressors and haters. How about all those anti-gay right wingers? Or, is heaven only for straights? An then you blame the President and liberalism!! Seriously? You must remember your bible and not judge! And remember that America is for all. Left and right wing, gay and straight, all colors and all religions, even atheism.

    • Julienne says:

      Read your rant again homey. I’m talking about why people went to the movies and need more God…and your spewing hatred…HELLO? I don’t hate anybody. I’m mixed races just like Obama and I have gay friends, I don’t judge people…I’m just making a valid statement about this administrations divisiveness. Using “Racism” as a Political Ploy, is not peace and harmony. Grow a brain.

  8. WorldWideWebber says:

    I find it interesting that there was no mention of Rio 2 anywhere. Did it fall off that fast Saturday and Sunday to not make a compelling enough race with Captain America? Also, to the commenter above, Noah likely burned off demand as it opened over a month ago. I’m pretty sure the studio decided, smartly, to not open the film around Easter.

  9. Glenn C. says:

    Well, Noah as of April 20, has made over $291 Million worldwide! The budget being around $125 million. Not bad. So I don’t know where or what you are getting YOUR info! Noah has done well.

  10. Will says:

    Uhh…yea it did. “Noah” is estimated to have made $5 million, good for the number 9 position on box office charts, and more than the $4.8 million that “God’s Not Dead” is estimated to have made. Check your facts before making a post, otherwise you just look foolish.

    • Jason says:

      Silly Nelson. And it’s pulled in about $300m globally and growing in about a month. Far from the next Passion, but a moneymaker none the less.

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