Laika Entertainment’s “ParaNorman,” an animated comedy thriller starring a small-town boy who battles zombies, opened at third place in the North American box office this weekend with $14 million.
Distributed by Focus Features and Universal Pictures International, ParaNorman made another $2 million overseas.
The 3D puppet-animated film fared considerably behind the live-action The Expendables 2, which opened at $28.8 million (and another $17.3 million abroad), and The Bourne Legacy, which garnered $17 million (plus $18.2 million overseas) in its second weekend.
ParaNorman has the interesting distinction of being the first 3D stop motion animated film that is also computer generated. Twenty seven major characters had their faces “built” in a computer. Through computer modeling, it was easy to manipulate the characters faces for expressions and speaking. Once created, each pose was then outputed to a 3D printer. The 3D printers build up each character’s face by depositing hundreds of layers of fine white plaster-vinyl powder, which is then sprayed with ink. Over 31,000 parts were created this way… each thirty seconds would require almost 300 faces per character.
In international theaters for films distributed overseas by Hollywood studios, Pixar’s Brave was in fifth place with $14.4 million, according to Rentrak. Ice Age: Continental Drift was at No. 7 with $10.1 million.
Fox’s Ice Age: Continental Drift has made $150.1 million domestically since it opened July 13.
Overall, domestic revenues reached $139 million, up 12% from the same weekend last year, when The Help topped the box office with $20 million, tracking company Hollywood.com said. Business had been down the previous three weekends this summer.
According to Hollywood.com, revenues have reached $3.9 billion since the first weekend of May down 5% from the same period last summer, when the season closed with an all-time high of $4.4 billion.
“We’re winding down the summer, and we’re in the dog days of August. They’re called that for a reason, because we’re experiencing the typical summer slowdown, only it seems worse this year,” Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian said.
Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at United States and Canadian theaters were released by Hollywood.com. Final domestic figures are scheduled for release Monday.