Weekend Receipts: The Grey Howls in First

Let's hear it for Gang Grey, which handily sprinted off with first place at the weekend box office while fellow newcomers One For the Money and Man on a Ledge settled a little more quietly into their own top-five niches. A couple of unremarkable holdovers fared not much better, but hey. At least now we can look forward to February! Your Weekend Receipts are here.

1. The Grey
Gross: $20,000,000 (new)
Screens: 3,185 (PSA $6,279)
Weeks: 1

Audiences got behind the Liam Neeson man-against-the-frozen-wild thriller in a big way -- a surprisingly big way, if you believe some box-office observers. But come on: Since Taken in 2009, Neeson hasn't led a wide release that opened below $20,000,000. And he's only supported in one -- The Next Three Days, which bombed out under $7,000,000 in 2010. Give the guy some credit! Big ups as well to distributors Open Road Films, who've hopefully shaken off their machismo-factory false start Killer Elite and can move forward accordingly. First start: Getting guys (and their dates) to come out for Super Bowl weekend and hold this movie up in Week Two. Developing...

2. Underworld: Awakening
Gross: $12,500,000 ($45,126,000)
Screens: 3,078 (PSA $4,061)
Weeks: 2 (Change: -50.6%)

Actually, 50 percent is a surprisingly low drop for this one against three new wide releases, so hats off to Screen Gems! Place your bets now as to whether or not it has what it takes to beat the franchise's second installment, Underworld: Evolution, as the series' highest grosser at $62.3 million. The math says "not likely," but it'll be close.

3. One For the Money
Gross: $11,750,000 (new)
Screens: 2,737 (PSA: $4,293)
Weeks: 1

Well, that should just about do it for Katherine Heigl's plans for a Stephanie Plum franchise. If this was One For the Money, I'd hate to think how the putative sequel, Two For the Dough, would be rebranded. Two For the Oyyy? Two For Whatever Pocket Change You've Got on You? Two For Anything But Another Katherine Heigl Comedy? You tell me.

4. Red Tails
Gross: $10,400,000 ($33,780,000)
Screens: 2,573 (PSA $4,042)
Weeks: 2 (Change: -44.6%)

Needs more Liam Neeson.

5. Man on a Ledge
Gross: $8,300,000 (new)
Screens: 2,998 (PSA $2,769)
Weeks: 1

Ouch. First the What to Expect When You're Expecting poster, now this. It just wasn't Elizabeth Banks's week. That'll teach her to take second billing to Sam Worthington. Seriously, Hollywood, stop doing that!

[Figures via Box Office Mojo]

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