"We did very well on the East and West coasts in a number of major cities," he said. "We're challenged in the Midwest and the South."
It was a soft weekend all around, though, with several newcomers opening poorly, Hollywood.com box-office analyst Paul Dergarabedian pointed out. The horror sequel "Silent Hill: Revelation 3-D" from Open Road Films debuted at No. 5 with $8 million and the Paramount Halloween comedy "Fun Size" arrived in 10th place with just over $4 million. "Chasing Mavericks," an inspirational surfing drama from Fox 2000, didn't even open in the top 12 — it came in at No. 13 with $2.2 million.
The World Series might have been a factor in keeping folks away from the theaters; also, potential moviegoers along the East Coast in the path of Hurricane Sandy might have stayed home this weekend.
"The whole marketplace felt more like September than October. Back in September, we had four down weekends in a row. There was no momentum in the marketplace," Dergarabedian said. "When a holdover is No. 1, it reflects a lack of strength in the marketplace. Every week should have a new movie topping the chart."
As for the philosophical, centuries-spanning "Cloud Atlas," he said: "To have a) a big budget, b) Tom Hanks and c) it's a big, epic film, it doesn't necessarily follow that it's going to be a big box office hit. I admire that they went for it."
But there's hope on the horizon with the animated comedy "Wreck-It Ralph" coming next weekend, the latest James Bond film, "Skyfall," opening Nov. 9 and the final installment in the "Twilight" saga due out Nov. 16. "Skyfall" opened this weekend overseas with a whopping $77.7 million in 25 countries.