Box Office: ‘The Help’ Proves that Maids Are Better than Barbarians & Vampires

Every year, the time between May and August is always considered a heavy season for big blockbuster-style films. But this year has been like that on steroids. Normally, there are a handful of big films that carry fanboys and fangirls throughout the summer season, but this year we had one just about every week consistently from the beginning of May.

That fact alone has got to be why when two large, previously established franchises hit theaters, neither open in the box office’s top 3. That’s what happened this weekend, as the independent comedy The Help came in at the number 1 spot with just over $20 million.

Just after that, Fox’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes managed to stay strong at #2 with $16 million. Of the 3 big releases this weekend, we didn’t expect Robert Rodriguez’s Spy Kids: All the Time in the World to open as big as the #3 spot with an estimated $12 million, but it did.

Lionsgate’s hope at revitalizing the Conan the Barbarian franchise to a younger, edgier audience seemed to have failed, sadly, as the film had a soft opening of $10 million at the #4 spot. Even sadder is the fact that Buena Vista’s Fright Night barely missed the top 5 as it opened at #6 with just under $8 million.

Is everyone burned out on big budget flicks? Do we need a bit of a break? It would seem that way, as The Help did not expect to have this much of a boost from its first weekend last week.

Next week, things are a bit different, as TriStar’s Colombiana opens wide along with Guillermo del Toro’s Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and Our Idiot Brother starring the affable Paul Rudd.

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