Denzel Washington powered The Equalizer to the fourth highest September debut ever. The R-rated action movie opened with an estimated $35 million, ranking it behind Hotel Translyvania, Insidious Chapter 2 and Sweet Home Alabama. The Equalizer was Washington’s third highest opening behind American Gangster and Safe House.
The Equalizer marks the 12th consecutive Washington movie to open north of $20 million, ten of those being rated R. In addition to a strong turnout by his fans, the film also scored a solid A- Cinemascore grade, suggesting good word-of-mouth.
According to BoxOfficeMojo, the audience was split evenly between men and women and skewed older with 65% of the audience over the age of 30.
Last week’s box office winner, The Maze Runner dropped down to second with $17.5 million. The sci-fi film ran its 10-day total to $58 million. The film held onto to first place in international markets though, adding $27.2 million to its worldwide total. South Korea and Australia were the two biggest holdover markets.
The other new wide release this past weekend, The Boxtrolls, placed third with $17.25 million, a total above previous Laika Animation productions, Coraline ($16.8 million) and ParaNorman ($14.1 million). The film scored a strong B+ Cinemascore grade from an audience which skewed female (57%).
This Is Where I Leave You settled into fourth with $7 million, raising its 10-day total to $22.6 million. Rounding out the top five was Dolphin Tale 2 with $4.8 million. The sequel has now earned $33.7 million, a total that is more than $15 million behind the first film.
The invasion thriller No Good Deed dropped into sixth place with $4.6 million for a three week domestic total of $46.6 million while Liam Neeson’s A Walk Among the Tombstones plummeted into seventh with $4.2 million.
Guardians of the Galaxy took eighth place, adding $3.78 million to its $319 million domestic total. Fox’s comedy Let’s Be Cops finished ninth with $1.5 million and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles rounded out the top ten with $1.45 million. The Turtles reboot has banked $187.2 million domestically and $342 million worldwide.
Internationally, The Equalizer earned $17.8 million while Lucy extended its strong international run adding another $11.1 million to its $269.1 million total. The film opened in first place in Italy with $3.2 million and is likely to top $400 million worldwide by Friday.