Sony Animation’s Hotel Transylvania launched huge at the end of last month and finished its opening frame No. 1 with $43 million, breaking the all-time September opening-weekend record and becoming the unit’s top-grossing debut ever. Its domestic cume has reached $137.5 million so far and it’s on the shortlist for the animated feature Oscar. It’s no surprise that the studio wants another one and has set a September 25, 2015 release date for it. So far the competition that week is Fox’s animated ghost pic B.O.O.: Bureau Of Otherworldly Operations, starring Seth Rogen.
What A Weekend! Sony Has Best Ever #1 + #2 Films: ‘Hotel Transylvania’ Sets Records; Uni’s ‘Pitch Perfect’ Tops Screen Average; Walden’s ‘Won’t Back Down’ Flops
SUNDAY AM, 4TH UPDATE: Hollywood finally can celebrate better box office which breaks a 5-week losing streak. Friday and Saturday overperformed for an ‘up’ weekend: $110M total moviegoing, which is +20% better than last year. And Sony Pictures has $66.2M – or 56% – of it. Saturday especially was an “absolutely huge moviegoing day, one we haven’t seen since July,” an executive told me. It was an especially big day for Amy Pascal and Jeff Blake with maybe the biggest ever #1 and #2 openings for a studio.
Columbia/Sony Animation’s Halloween funhouse Hotel Transylvania (3,349 theaters) got off to a monster start Friday and then soared +73% Saturday for $43M by end of Sunday. That weekend cume beat the record for the all-time September opening (shattering Sweet Home Alabama‘s decade-ago $35.6M though not adjusted for inflation or higher ticket prices or 3D’s premium). It’s also the highest grossing debut for Sony Pictures Animation. And it’s 2012′s biggest opening since The Dark Knight Rises. Pic also worked for audiences who gave it an ‘A-’ CinemaScore (‘A’ from females and kids under 18) to guarantee good word of mouth through the month. Sony is claiming Hotel Transylvania cost $85M but I know it cost $104M. Depending on its legs and international preformance, it should gross between $390M-$550M at the worldwide box office. Toon opened day and date in 4 territories including Mexico and Australia.
Bob Osher, president of Sony Pictures Digital Productions, and Michelle Raimo Kouyate, President of Production for Sony Pictures Animation, drove …