Will Ferrell and Jon Heder skated to another gold medal victory over the Easter holiday as the comedy "Blades of Glory" remained atop the charts despite the arrival of a handful of new pictures. The Quentin Tarantino–Robert Rodriguez experiment "Grindhouse" opened well below expectations and finished with disappointing results in fourth place.
Overall, moviegoers were in the mood for existing films as the top five holdovers all dipped by less than 33%. The top ten delivered more than $100M in ticket sales for the sixth consecutive frame giving the marketplace continued strength.
Comedy was king of the box office once again as "Blades of Glory" grossed an estimated $23M in its second weekend slipping only 30%. The Paramount release has now laughed up an impressive $68.4M in just ten days and looks headed north of $120M. The gross was slightly bigger than the $22.1M sophomore weekend take of Ferrell’s last hit "Talladega Nights" which tumbled by a larger 53% in its second lap last summer. With no major comedy competition this month, "Blades" should continue to pull in healthy numbers in the weeks ahead.
Also holding up well in its second weekend was Disney’s animated pic "Meet the Robinsons" with an estimated $17M, off 32%. Still attracting solid business from its 3D engagements, the G-rated toon has banked a solid $52.2M in its first ten days and is also hoping to join the century club.
Leading the crop of new flicks was the Ice Cube comedy "Are We Done Yet?" with an estimated $15M for a third place finish. The Sony followup to the 2005 sleeper hit "Are We There Yet?" averaged a solid $5,214 from 2,877 sites and has grossed $19.1M since opening on Wednesday. "Done"’s extended five-day opening was similar to "There"’s three-day bow of $18.6M from January 2005. That film went on to collect $82.3M and still stands as Cube’s top-grossing picture ever. Like the first one, the PG-rated Done played primarily to a family audience.
The weekend’s big shocker was the violent two-for-one pic "Grindhouse" which debuted in fourth place with an estimate of only $11.6M. The three-hour-plus homage to the B movies of the 1970s averaged a decent $4,417 from 2,624 locations but did not come close to the opening weekend tallies of previous films from directors Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez. The long running time for the $53M production forced theaters to offer fewer showtimes and a lack of female appeal may also have contributed to the less-than-stellar bow. Openings for other R-rated offerings from the maverick filmmakers include $29.1M for Rodriguez’s "Sin City" and $22.1M and $25.1M for Tarantino’s "Kill Bill" installments. Reviews for "Grindhouse" were very positive but The Weinstein Co. may not find much long-term success as most fans of the directors probably planned to see it sooner rather than later.
Hillary Swank’s new horror flick "The Reaping" came in fifth place in its debut grossing an estimated $10.1M from 2,603 locations for a moderate $3,872 average. The R-rated tale of a scientist investigating supernatural occurances in a small Louisiana town launched on Thursday and scared up $12M over four days. "The Reaping" also took off in 16 international markets and grossed an estimated $7.1M overseas.
The year’s biggest blockbuster "300" followed in sixth place with an estimated $8.8M in its fifth battle, down just 23%, lifting the overall domestic haul to $193.9M. Overseas, the Spartan smash pulled in another $32M over the weekend boosting the international total to $173M and the global gross to a stunning $367M. "Wild Hogs," the second largest hit of 2007, dipped 21% to an estimated $6.8M giving Buena Vista a fantastic $145.5M to date.
Dropping to eighth was Mark Wahlberg’s action pic Shooter with an estimated $5.8M, off 31%, for a cume of $36.7M. Falling 47% to an estimated $4.9M was the Warner Bros. toon "TMNT" which put its total at $46.7M thus far.
Fox’s family drama "Firehouse Dog" opened in tenth place with dismal results grossing an estimated $4M from 2,860 theaters. Averaging a weak $1,399, the PG-rated film about a boy and his celebrity pooch bowed on Wednesday and collected $5.3M over five days. With so many other films courting the family crowd over Easter weekend, "Dog" was completely overlooked.
The top ten films grossed an estimated $107.1M which was dead even with last year’s Easter frame when "Scary Movie 4" opened at number one with $40.2M; but up 23% from 2005’s holiday in March when "Guess Who" debuted on top with $20.7M.
Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com