Steven Soderbergh‘s plague thriller Contagion brought down The Help this weekend, as we predicted. The Warner Brothers picture made $23.1 million during its opening weekend, conquering other new releases like Warrior and Bucky Larson: Born to Be A Star. Contagion hit strong, winning over both audiences and critics – so far, the film holds an 82% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and an even better rating from our critic Damon Houx who also interviewed the stars and director. Following its three-week streak at the top of the box office, The Help came in at No. 2, making $8.7 million (bringing its total to $137 million). Warrior, another hit with the critics, landed quietly at No. 3, earning $5.6 million. As for Adam Sandler‘s new project Bucky Larson, well, the film didn’t make it to the top ten. During its weekend debut, the porn comedy landed thirteenth, making only $1.45 million.

  1. Contagion | NEW | Warner Brothers | Weekend Gross $23,135,000 | Average Per Theater $7,180 | Total Gross $23,135,000 | Film’s Budget – $60 | Week 1
  2. The Help | Last Week #1 | Buena Vista | Weekend Gross $8,691,000 | Average Per Theater $2,961 | Total Gross $137,093,000 | Film’s Budget – $25 | Week 5
  3. Warrior | NEW | Lionsgate | Weekend Gross $5,607,000 | Average Per Theater $3,000 | Total Gross $5,607,000 | Film’s Budget – $25 | Week 1
  4. The Debt | Last Week #2 | Focus Features | Weekend Gross $4,905,000 | Average Per Theater $1,699 | Total Gross $21,993,000 | Film’s Budget – $20 | Week 2
  5. Colombiana | Last Week #6 | TriStar | Weekend Gross $4,000,000 | Average Per Theater $1,6991 | Total Gross $29,779,000 | Film’s Budget – $40 | Week 3
  6. Rise of the Planet of the Apes | Last Week #5 | Fox | Weekend Gross $3,875,000 | Average Per Theater $1,342 | Total Gross $167,836,000 | Film’s Budget – $93 | Week 6
  7. Shark Night 3D | Last Week #4 | Relativity | Weekend Gross $3,533,000 | Average Per Theater $1,241 | Total Gross $14,797,000 | Film’s Budget – $25 | Week 2
  8. Apollo 18 | Last Week #3 | Weinstein Company | Weekend Gross $2,913,000 | Average Per Theater $875 | Total Gross $15,001,000 | Film’s Budget – $5 | Week 2
  9. Our Idiot Brother | Last Week #7 | Weinstein | Weekend Gross $2,761,000 | Average Per Theater $1,152 | Total Gross $21,420,000 | Film’s Budget – $5 | Week 3
  10. Spy Kids: All the Time in the World | Last Week #9| Weinstein Company | Weekend Gross $2,506,000 | Average Per Theater $985 | Total Gross $34,227,000 | Film’s Budget – $27 | Week 4

Despite the success of Contagion, the box office hit a new low these past few days. The total weekend gross was $66.4 million for the top ten, one of the lowest earnings this year. The beginning of NFL season and the anniversary of 9/11 may have contributed to this, hopefully Contagion and Warrior will pick up some slack before Drive crashes into theaters.

What did you watch this weekend?