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The Box Office's 10 Biggest President's Day Weekends of All Time

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | February 21, 2011 |

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | February 21, 2011 |

How bad was the President’s Day Weekend at the box-office? Last year, three of the films that opened over President’s Day weekend are now among the top ten President’s Day openers ever. This year, none of the three wide releases broke into the top ten. In fact, it’s the first President’s Day weekend since 2002 in which one of the new releases did not become one of the top 10 President’s Day weekend openers (it might be noted, however, that most of the President’s Day weekends during the last decade had the benefit of being closer to Valentine’s Day).

Unknown did manage to land in the top spot. The Liam Neeson amnesia thriller put up an estimated $25.5 million over the four-day weekend, which would put it at 11th all time. Meanwhile, based on the box-office numbers this weekend, the expected I Am Number 4 franchise doesn’t look like it will materialize, and the Next Big Movie Star, Alex Pettyfer, may have to wait another movie or two before he earns that title. I Am Number 4 landed at number three with $22 million, which is probably less than what they spent on marketing alone on the $60 million picture. Squeezed in between Unknown and I Am Number 4 was the holdover, Gnomeo and Juliet, with $24.5 million. In fact, after the final numbers are in, there’s a possibility that Gnomeo will actually surpass Unknown, such is the power of a family film in a marketplace with no other family-film options.

The good is that Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son landed at number five with $19 million. The bad news: It still made $19 million. Adjusted for inflation, that may be a little over half of the $34 million the first Big Momma’s House movie opened with, but that’s still half that have not learned their lesson. Unbelievably, $19 million worth of people who presumably saw the first and the second Big Momma movies still willingly paid to see the third. This country is fucked up.

Here, for posterity, are the 10 Biggest President’s Day Weekend Openers of All Time, otherwise known as 9 shitty movies and Bridge to Terabithia.

10. Bridge to Terabithia $28 million opened weekend ($82 million cumulative)

9. Jumper $32 million ($80 million)

8. Constantine $33 million ($61 million)

7. The Wolfman $35 million ($61 million)

6. Percy Jackson and the Olympians $38 million ($88 million)

5. Friday the 13th Remake $43 million ($65 million)

4. Daredevil $45 million ($102 million)

3. 50 First Dates $45 million ($120 million)

2. Ghost Rider $52 million ($115 million)

1. Valentine’s Day $63 million ($110 million)

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.