When is a $70 million opening not a success? When its predecessor opened to $75 million four years ago. This is the predicament facing 'Star Trek Into Darkness,' which opened at number one at box office while being something of a disappointment.

FilmWeekendPer Screen
1Star Trek Into Darkness$70,555,000$18,241$84,091,000
2Iron Man 3$35,182,000 (-51.5)$8,304$337,073,000
3The Great Gatsby$23,415,000 (-53.2)$6,596$90,159,000
4Pain and Gain$3,100,000 (-38.0)$1,276$46,574,000
5The Croods$2,750,000 (-23.8)
642$2,730,000 (-40.5)$1,147$88,735,000
7Oblivion$2,222,000 (-46.0)$1,070$85,500,000
8Mud$2,160,000 (-14.9)$2,250$11,588,000
9Peeples$2,150,000 (-53.4)$1,053$7,858,000
10The Big Wedding$1,100,000 (-55.8)$762$20,198,000


It's all about perspective, really. Many movies would kill for a $70 million. Heck, 2002's 'Star Trek: Nemesis' would have killed for a $70 million total. But when it comes to summer blockbusters, the sequel always has to be bigger and more expensive than the last. 'Star Trek Into Darkness' was not an inexpensive film and the studio was hoping for that opening weekend number to be at least $20 million higher than that. To add insult to injury, the film made less than the first 'Star Trek' even after you factor in additional 3D and IMAX costs. The technical term for that is "a knee to the nuts," but don't quote us on that. Not even a Thursday release could pump these numbers up -- the total gross after four days is only $84 million.

What does this mean for 'Star Trek Into Darkness' and the 'Star Trek' franchise as a whole? It means that this outing of the Enterprise crew probably won't match the $257 million made by the first film. It also means that 'Star Trek 3' (which will still probably happen) will be considerably smaller and less expensive than the first two. Considering how many fans have reacted to this film, that may actually b a good thing in the long run.

While 'Star Trek Into Darknes' stumbled, 'Iron Man 3' continued to do what 'Iron Man' movies do: make a ton of money. The superhero adventure grossed $35 million in its third weekend, bringing its total to $337 million domestic. But that's not even the best news for Marvel and Disney -- the real big news is that it passed the $1 billion mark internationally. If you thought comic book movies were running on fumes, you thought wrong!

In third place, 'The Great Gatsby' took the expected dip, taking in $23 million for a $90 million total. $150 million should be expected at this point (and that's pretty amazing for an F. Scott Fitzgerald adaptation), but in a summer with little romantic fare, it may have long legs. In any case, it's already a bigger success than anyone expected going in.

Like last week, the big successes left little room for everyone else, making the rest of the top ten look like a wasteland. Also like last week, the two quiet winners were 'Mud' and '42,' both of which are transforming into hits in their own way. While '42' inches toward a $100 million gross, 'Mud' remains the sole indie presence in the top ten, not making a bunch of money but not losing its audience either.

But everything else? They're waiting to get pushed out by the arrival of fresh blockbusters. 'Pain and Gain' may break $60 million at this point, which isn't bad. 'Oblivion' is struggling towards $100 million, which is very bad. 'The Croods' is still hanging around because there aren't any other family movies in theaters. As for 'The Bid Wedding' and 'Peeples'? Still dead on arrival.

Next week sees the arrival of 'The Hangover Part 3' and 'Fast and Furious 6.' Now that's a showdown that should prove interesting.

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