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Sun setting on record summer

Written by Barbara Vancheri on .

From Box Office Mojo, the latest take on the summer that was (is) winding down:

SHERMAN OAKS, CALIFORNIA -- The summer movie season doesn't officially close until Labor Day, but it's already the highest-grossing summer on record.

- Summer 2009's total gross stands at over $4.2 billion through Sept. 3, the highest ever. It was the third summer in a row to exceed $4 billion.

- Due to when Labor Day landed this year, Summer 2009 did have an extra week over 2008, but it still grossed more in the same amount of time.

- In terms of estimated attendance, however, Summer 2009 was no record breaker. Summer 2002 is still tops on this front, followed by 1999, 2003, 2004, 2007, 1998 and 2001.

- While no movie was as monumental as ‘The Dark Knight' from last year, ‘Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen' is on the verge of hitting $400 million and ranks as the ninth highest-grossing picture of all time.

- The ‘Transformers' sequel and many other movies were in line with reasonable expectations, but the breakout success of Summer 2009 was ‘The Hangover.' With $270.7 million and counting, the ribald comedy became the highest-grossing picture of its sub-genre and has nearly matched the final tally of ‘There's Something About Mary' adjusted for ticket price inflation. The ‘Star Trek' re-launch also excelled by becoming the top picture of its franchise, adjusted for ticket price inflation.

- The comedy genre ran the gamut from the successes of ‘The Hangover' and ‘The Proposal' to the season's bigger failures: ‘Land of the Lost,' ‘Year One,' ‘Bruno' and ‘Funny People.' The industry had high hopes based on these movies' high profile release dates, but many may have been blinded by the big name talent involved: each picture was fundamentally flawed in terms of audience appeal, mining material that has disappointed time and again in the past.

The Top-Grossing Movies of Summer 2009 (as of Sept. 3)
Rank. Movie Title (Distributor) / Total Gross in Millions

1. 'Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen' (Paramount) / $399.6

2. 'Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince' (Warner Bros.) / $295.1

3. 'Up' (Disney) / $289.9

4. 'The Hangover' (Warner Bros.) / $270.7

5. 'Star Trek' (Paramount) / $256.8

 

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