Fending off competition from Bridget Jones, Snowden and the Blair Witch, Clint Eastwood's Sully held onto the US number one spot for the second week in a row. The Tom Hanks-led biopic took an estimated $22 million for a current US total of more $70 million and is already a hot Oscar contender.
Adam Wingard's unexpected Blair Witch sequel was the highest new entry taking second place with an opening haul of $9.6 million. The project has been in development for more than five years; Wingard shot the movie in secret under the false title of The Woods. Nobody knew that the Blair Witch sequel existed until the trailer was unleashed at Comic-Con earlier this year. Ignoring the events of the dismal Book of Shadows, Wingard's film serves as a sequel to the original 1999 box office smash. While the new Blair Witch hasn't replicated the success of the original, its $5 million budget should ensure a small profit is generated.
There wasn't just one belated sequel in the top ten this week with Bridget Jones's Baby coming in third place with $8.2 million. The lower than expected opening may seem like a huge misfire, but the biggest US debut in the franchise was back in 2001 with the first movie's $10.7 million launch. On the up side, Bridget Jones's Baby has taken $29.9 million from the rest of the world from only a handful of territories. Historically, the Bridget Jones films gross more than seventy percent of their overall takings from the international box office, so there's no need to label it a flop just yet.
The true story of former CIA technical advisor turned whistleblower Edward Snowden gets the cinematic treatment from acclaimed filmmaker Oliver Stone. Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Snowden grossed an estimated $8 million over the weekend and entered the top ten in fourth place.
Elsewhere in the charts, Ron Howard's Beatles documentary Eight Days a Week: The Touring Years made more than $770,000 from just 85 screens, an impressive feat that may help propel the film into more cinemas. Finally, Eddie Murphy's first movie in four years, Mr. Church, could only manage $400,000 and didn't even break the top twenty.