‘The Help’ Number One at Box Office for Second Week in a Row

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The monster this weekend at the box office, was Hurricane Irene, and it definitely shook things up. When the majority of people living on the east coast were spending their weekend indoors, the box office numbers were pretty low.

Cleaning up the mess was the maids of The Help, who were number one at the box office for the second week in a row, earning an estimated $14.3 million. After three weeks in theaters, it’s still playing on more screens than any of the new movies, and its strong word-of-mouth ensured that it declined only 28% from last weekend. To date, the film has earned $96.6 million.

This weekends strongest debut film was Colombiana, which took the second spot. Despite the hurricane looming, it did as well as predicted, opening with an estimated $10.3 million. The reviews were just so-so, and despite her mega hit in Avatar, Zoe Saldana isn’t much of a box office draw.

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark opened at number three, earning an estimated $8.9 million. Producer and screenwriter Guillermo del Toro is a pretty big box office draw, as he is notably amazing when it comes to horror films. Unfortunately, Katie Holmes and Guy Pearce are not.

Just under Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark, is Rise of the Planet of the Apes which earned only $39,000 less. Its $8.65 million estimate is down 46% from last weekend, typical for a summer hit in its fourth week of release. Since its debut at the beginning of August, Apes has scored $148.5 million.

Opening in fifth place was Our Idiot Brother, with an estimated $6.6 million, which is about $2 million lower than predicted. Despite the appeal of Paul Rudd, the movie had middling word-of-mouth. It comes at the tail end of this summer’s long list of R-rated comedies, and once The Change Up tanked, it became clear that audiences were over it.

What did you see this weekend?