Over the weekend I got a chance to see Denzel Washington’s new film “Flight”. Denzel does not disappoint!! Another great Oscar worthy performance from him! The numbers don’t lie either….
The Denzel Washington vehicle Flight took off in second place on Friday with $8.2 million from just 1,900 theaters — good for a robust $4,301 per theater average after just one day. Flight‘s Friday gross is slightly ahead of Washington’s 2010 thriller Unstoppable, which started with $8.0 million on the way to a $22.7 million weekend, and it’s a full 39 percent bigger than Argo‘s $5.9 million first Friday. Flight may soar to $25 million over the Friday-to-Sunday period.
Generating the third biggest opening in history for an R-rated film bowing in under 2,000 theaters was Denzel Washington’s pilot drama Flight with an estimated $25M from only 1,884 locations for a spectacular $13,275 average. The Paramount release capitalized on the bankability of its leading man and also benefitted from glowing reviews from major critics as well as Oscar buzz. Also assisting was director Robert Zemeckis who returned to live-action filmmaking after a decade of work in the motion-capture field. The only R-rated films to ever open higher while launching wide in fewer than 2,000 locations were 1999’s The Blair Witch Project ($29.2M) and 2006’s Borat ($26.5M).
Washington has proven to be one of the most durable stars in the business who brings out his fan base each and every time and 2012 has been a landmark year for the 57-year-old double Oscar winner. His CIA thriller Safe House opened powerfully with $40.2M last February on its way to $126.2M. Both figures are second best in his career trailing just American Gangster’s $43.6M and $130.2M from 2007 which, like Flight, launched on November 2. Washington has proven repeatedly that he can draw in millions of fans when playing an anti-hero role.