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Posted at 01:32 AM ET, 10/31/2011

‘Puss in Boots’ beats ‘Paranormal Activity 3’: A weekend box office Q&A


“Puss in Boots”: A box office winner. (Anonymous - AP)

Was “Paranormal Activity 3” the No. 1 movie at the weekend box office for the second week in a row?

No.

Did a new release open at the top of the ticket-selling heap?

Yes, it did.

It wasn’t a movie in which Antonio Banderas provides the voice of a cat, was it?

Uh, maybe.

More answers to pressing questions about the weekend box office — as well as a list of the top five movies in America and a poll that allows you to predict next weekend’s big winner — after the jump.

Do people love watching Banderas provide the voice of a cat who can make ultra-adorable eyes at other cartoon characters?

Evidently they do. Or at least, they do if they have kids and need something to do with them on a Saturday. That’s probably part of the reason that “Puss in Boots,” the fourth animated film in the “Shrek” franchise, made $34 million and opened at No. 1.

Boy, those “Shrek” movies are unstoppable, aren’t they?

Well, yes and no. Obviously being the No. 1 movie in America is a good thing. But comparatively speaking, that $34 million is not that impressive. In fact, as the L.A. Times notes, that’s the smallest debut for a Dreamworks Animation release in five years, since 2006’s “Flushed Away.” And if you say “flushed away” and animated to most people, they just think you’re talking about a plot point from “Finding Nemo.”

Paranormal Activity 3” still managed to scare a significant number of moviegoers, though. Right? Right?!

Well, it came in second with $18.5 million, which marked a 65 percent drop in business from the week before. On the plus side, the prequel to a prequel has earned $81.3 million in North America, which is a decent haul for a movie with a modest budget.

How did Justin Timberlake do with his sci-fi vehicle “In Time”?

Not great, but not bad. It debuted in third place and brought in $12 million.

Hold on a second. You haven’t mentioned Johnny Depp’s The Rum Diary” yet, a film that features Depp acting like he’s in an inebriated state. And as we know from the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series, Depp acting like he’s in an inebriated state = box office gold.

It does when Depp is playing a pirate in a Disney movie based on an amusement park ride. In a film based on a Hunter S. Thompson novel, on the other hand, Depp drunk = $5 million in its opening weekend.

Last question: did “The Three Musketeers” fare better in its second week in theaters?

Not at all. It made $3.5 million, giving it a total of $14.8 million so far. Sorry, Milla Jovovich.

The top five movies at the weekend box office, based on studio estimates, are:

1. “Puss in Boots” — $34 million

2. “Paranormal Activity 3” — $18.5 million

3. “In Time” — $12 million

4. “Footloose” — $5.4 million

5. “The Rum Diary”— $5 million

Now, vote in this box office prediction poll and weigh in with a comment: was “Puss in Boots” worthy of the No. 1 spot? What movie did you see this weekend and did it live up to your expectations? (I was pleasantly surprised by the compelling but hardly perfect “In Time.”)

By  |  01:32 AM ET, 10/31/2011

Categories:  Box Office, Movies

 
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