You may remember back when Will Smith’s The Pursuit of Happyness opened that I said something like ‘never underestimate the power of a movie star.’ Well, someone more knowledgeable than me (I know that’s hard to imagine, but to be fair I am referring to the great screenwriter and film philosopher William Goldman) also said ‘nobody knows anything,’ and he was right, because not only did Disturbia take the box office crown this weekend, but both it and the equally star-less The Invisible beat Next over the weekend.
Just to put that in some context, Disturbia made $9.1 million over the weekend, a 30%drop, raised its total to $52 million, and stars Shia LaBeouf and David Morse. The Invisible stars Justin Chatwin (most famous as Tom Cruise’s obnoxious older son in War of the Worlds) and Marcia Gay Harden, and opened to $7.6 million from 2,000 theatres for a decent $3.7k average.
Next comes from veteran action director Lee Tamahori (also a veteran weirdo; Tamahori was arrested in January of last year dressed in drag attempting to offer himself as a prostitute) and stars Nicholas Cage, Julianne Moore, and Jessica Biel. It opened in third place with $7.2 million, from 700 more theatres than Invisible, a much weaker $2.6k average, and almost certainly two or three times the budget.
Like the man said, nobody knows anything.Disturbia, in fact, continues to make a mockery of some of Hollywood’s biggest movie stars the last two weeks. Last week, it held onto the top spot over Anthony Hopkins in Fracture, which fell to fourth this week with $7 million, a 35% drop, and a $21 million total. The previous week it opened much better than Perfect Stranger, which was headlined by Bruce Willis and Halle Berry, and is no longer even in the top ten.
Still, it’s no Blades of Glory, which made $5.2 million this weekend, off 32%, and raised its total to $108 million. Disney’s Meet the Robinsons was close behind with $4.8 million and an $88 million total. Edgar Wright’s Hot Fuzz had the best hold in the top ten, falling just 18% to $4.7 million (while adding 477 theatres but maintaining a good $3.7k average) and bringing its total to $12 million. Fuzz has already made a relative fortune overseas, and if it maintains any kind of legs over the coming weeks of summer blockbusters, Hollywood will surely be calling on Wright.
Vacancy fell to eighth with $4.2 million and a $13 million total, although the 44% fall is better than one generally expects from a horror film, and much better than I expected in the wake of the VA Tech shootings. The Condemned proved once and for all that America’s fascination with wrestlers as movie stars has come to an end by opening in ninth place with just $4 million from 2,310 theatres for a weak $1.7k average. Sorry, Steve Austin. You missed the boat.
In tenth place was Sony’s Are We Done Yet? with $2.8 million and a $43.8 million total. And in a sign that the world is still a somewhat sane place, the awful-looking Jaime Kennedy comedy Kickin’ It Old Skool opened outside the top ten with a dismal $2.8 million from 1,816 theatres for a $1.5k average. Thank you, dear readers, for exercising your voice as filmgoers and choosing not to see it, thus saving us from more Kennedy comedies.
As usual, one final note, and file this one under the category of morbid fascination, but a documentary called Zoo opened in one theatre this weekend and made $8.5k for- you guessed it- an $8.5k average. Zoo played a few festivals and got some decent reviews, which is a little surprising given its subject matter. You see, it explores the true story of a Seattle man who died after fornicating with a stallion. That log line alone will merit an expansion and probably result in decent box office. I have no idea what that says about our culture, and I’m not sure I want to.
So that’s it for this week, fellow movie fanatics. Tune in next week when Spiderman 3 will dominate discussion of all things Hollywood and be reviewed at water coolers around the country, while WB throws poor Curtis Hanson’s Lucky You in front of the Spiderman locomotive.