Sony’s “Moneyball” swung for first last night at the domestic box office with $6.8 million.
Studio believes the Brad Pitt starrer will behave much like last year’s “The Social Network,” showing off its legs with adult auds up through awards season. That given, “Moneyball” should land somewhere in the high teens to win this weekend. Pic scored an A Cinemascore from every demo.
Disney’s “The Lion King” reissue came back for second on Friday with $6.1 million. Dave Hollis, distribution prexy at the Mouse, said there was some concern that the release was too frontloaded and would hit its soph slump this frame, but midweek sales and last night’s perf indicate otherwise.
Fresh faces took the other top spots with Warner Bros.’ “Dolphin Tale” in third with $5.1 million, and Lionsgate’s “Abduction” in fourth with $3.8 million. “Killer Elite,” the first title from Open Road Films, opened last night to $3.5 million.
“Elite” is expected to fall around $12 million or $13 million through Sunday, which invariably meets expectations for Open Road. The distribbery picked up the film for free and only aims to recoup P&A costs.