‘Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa’ Tops ‘Gravity’ at Box Office

“Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa,” the comedy from Paramount Pictures, took first place at U.S. and Canadian theaters, toppling “Gravity,” the sci-fi movie that led sales for three weeks.

“Bad Grandpa” collected $32.1 million in its opening, researcher Rentrak Corp. said in an e-mailed statement today. “The Counselor,” a violent, action thriller starring Michael Fassbender and Brad Pitt, opened fourth with $7.8 million for Twentieth Century Fox.

“Bad Grandpa,” starring Johnny Knoxville, is the fourth film since 2002 based on the “Jackass” MTV reality series known for its cast’s self-injuring stunts and pranks. The new film, made for $15 million, is based on a recurring character, Irving Zisman, who goes on a road trip with his grandson. It was projected to collect $30 million, according to BoxOffice.com.

“We’ve been waiting for something to beat ‘Gravity,’ which has had just tremendous legs over the past couple weeks, and got that with ‘Bad Grandpa,’” said James Marsh, a research analyst at Piper Jaffray Cos. “If the word of mouth stays positive, it could threaten $100 million, but R-rated theatrical movies usually don’t have long legs, and the audience is probably thinner for this movie.”

The previous installment, 2010’s “Jackass 3-D,” had the series’ best opening and generated $117.2 million in domestic theaters for Paramount, owned by Viacom Inc. “Bad Grandpa” was the second-best debut for a “Jackass” movie, Rentrak said. All the films were directed by Jeff Tremaine and star Knoxville.

Critical Acclaim

“Bad Grandpa” garnered a 62 percent favorable rating on RottenTomatoes.com, which aggregates reviews. Knoxville, as the title character, takes a cross-country road trip to deliver his grandson to his deadbeat dad. On the way they stage stunts, and the bemused reactions of real-life bystanders are captured on film.

“The movie is hysterical in the worst possible ways; ones that make you feel as if a public apology is due,” Betsy Sharkey wrote in the Los Angeles Times.

“Gravity,” from Time Warner Inc.’s Warner Bros., collected $20.1 million, falling to second in its fourth weekend. The movie has won critical acclaim for its star, Sandra Bullock, and director Alfonso Cuaron, while packing in audiences.

In its third weekend, the film became the first to hold the No. 1 spot for three straight weeks since “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” in December 2012. Made for $100 million, “Gravity” has earned $199.6 million domestically since Oct. 4.

Star-Studded Cast

“The Counselor,” directed by Ridley Scott, stars Michael Fassbender as a lawyer who in a single lapse of judgment gets wrapped up in a drug-trafficking deal with his nightclub-owning client, played by Javier Bardem. The R-rated movie also stars Penelope Cruz as Fassbender’s lover, Brad Pitt and Cameron Diaz.

The screenplay was written by Cormac McCarthy, whose novels include “No Country for Old Men,” and “The Road,” both of which were made into films.

The movie, made for $25 million according to Box Office Mojo, was projected to take in $10 million for the film unit of 21st Century Fox Inc., the estimate of researcher Box Office Guru.

“They have to be a little disappointed,” Marsh said. “It has a star-studded cast and an excellent director, so I guess we’ll see how it holds.”

“The Counselor” garnered a 36 percent “fresh” rating on RottenTomatoes. The Los Angeles Times described the film “as an extremely unpleasant piece of business.”

Shipping Drama

Among returning films, “Captain Phillips,” the acclaimed Somali-pirate shipping drama starring Tom Hanks, generated $11.6 million in ticket sales for Sony Corp., dropping to third from second place. “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2,” the animated sequel also from Sony, remained in fifth place by collecting $6.3 million, which brought its total domestic revenue to more than $100 million in five weeks.

“Carrie,” a remake of the 1976 Brian De Palma movie, collected $6 million to place sixth for Sony.

Weekend revenue for the top 10 films rose 25 percent to $93.3 million from the year-earlier period, Rentrak said. Revenue is up less than 1 percent to $8.70 billion year to date.

The following table has U.S. movie box-office figures provided by studios to Rentrak. The amounts are based on gross ticket sales for Oct. 25 to Oct. 27.

                       Rev.            Avg./   Pct.   Total
Movie                 (mln)  Theaters  Theater Chg.   (mln)  Wks
 1 Bad Grandpa        $32.1    3,336   $9,609   --    $32.1    1
 2 Gravity             20.1    3,707    5,432  -33    199.6    4
 3 Captain Phillips    11.6    3,143    3,704  -29     69.9    3
 4 The Counselor        7.8    3,044    2,577   --      7.8    1
 5 Cloudy With Chance   6.3    3,111    2,017  -35    100.8    5
 6 Carrie               6.0    3,157    1,897  -63     26.1    2
 7 Escape Plan          4.6    2,883    1,581  -54     17.6    2
 8 12 Years A Slave     2.1      123   17,352  131      3.4    2
 9 Enough Said          1.6      835    1,902   -9     13.1    6
10 Prisoners            1.1    1,347      793  -48     59.1    6

Top 10 Films Grosses

This Week Year Ago Pct. (mln) (mln) Chg. =================================== $93.3 $74.8 +25

Year-to-date Revenue

2013 2012 YTD YTD Pct. (mln) (mln) Chg. =================================== $8,701 $8,642 +0.7 Source: Rentrak Corp.