Monday, November 14, 2005

Chicken Little Ain't Fallin'!

It was another strong weekend at the box office, not so much because of the four new movies, but largely due to the November 11 Veterans' Day holiday which kicked the weekend off on Friday.

The movie helped most by the school holiday was Walt Disney's computer-animated family comedy Chicken Little, which retained its top spot at the box office despite the slew of new films. It earned $32 million in its second weekend, a minor drop-off of 20% from last week, bringing its total over $80 million.

Three of the four new movies opened in second through fourth place with Sony's family space adventure Zathura doing the best with roughly $14 million, an average of $4,343 per theatre in over 3,200 theatres. It was followed closely by the Weinstein Company's debut offering, Derailed, a thriller starring Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston, which brought in $12.8 million in roughly 2,400 theatres.

The Jim Sheridan directed crime drama Get Rich or Die Tryin', starring rapper 50 Cent, opened on Wednesday, and over the three-day weekend, it came in fourth place with $12.5 million in 1,652 theatres, an average of $7,566 per theatre. It's quite a disappointment for anyone expecting it to replicate the success off 8 Mile by 50 Cent's pal Eminem, which earned over $50 million in the same weekend three years ago.

The military drama Jarhead took a tumble in its sophomore frame, dropping almost 56% to make less than $12.3 million in fifth place, bringing its total to $47 million. On the other hand, Lions Gate Films' Saw II continues to do great business, as it added another $9.4 million to its box office take of $74 million.

Sony Pictures' sequel The Legend of Zorro, starring Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zeta-Jones, dropped down to 7th place with $6.6 million. It has earned just under $40 million in its first three weekends.

Universal Pictures' romantic comedy Prime with Uma Thurman and Meryl Streep, and DreamWorks' Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story continued to bring in audiences, as each of them remained in the Top 10 in eighth and ninth place respectively. Prime made just under $4 million this weekend, bringing its total to just under $19 million, and the Dakota Fanning drama earned another $3.8 million.

The latest adaptation of Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice, starring Keira Knightley, entered the charts at #10 with a weekend gross of $2.8 million in only 215 theatres, an impressive per-theatre average of $13,000. It will expand nationwide over Thanksgiving weekend.

George Clooney's Good Night, And Good Luck and Steve Martin's Shopgirl rounded out the Top 12 with $2.6 and $1.8 million respectively.

In limited release, two movies opened in the $127 thousand range, except that Sarah Silverman's concert film, Sarah Silverman: Jesus is Magic opened in three times fewer theatres than Richard Gere's Bee Season, based on the novel by Myla Goldberg.