Sunday, January 29, 2006

Momma Sequel's Big at Box Office


Martin Lawrence has something to thank the gods of box office this weekend, because after starring in the biggest flop of his career, last summer's Rebound, he was able to bounce back with the comedy sequel Big Momma's House 2. It grossed an estimated $28 million its opening weekend, thanks to the support of his fans, happy to see him back in the dress and wig, and if those numbers stand, it will become the third biggest January opener ever. It earned three million more in its first three days than the original movie made five years ago before going on to earn $117 million and become Lawrence's first major solo hit.

Opening in over 1,000 fewer theatres, Universal Pictures' family film Nanny McPhee, written and starring Emma Thompson, found similar success with its Mary Poppins like story, as it earned roughly $14 million its opening weekend, an average of over $7,000 per theatre. Its a great start for the British export, which cost around $34 million to produce.

As would be expected, Sony/Screen Gems' own sequel Underworld: Evolution, starring Kate Beckinsale, took a dive in its second weekend with a 58% drop-off for an estimated $11.1 million in its second weekend. It has grossed $44 million in its first ten days.

Touchstone Pictures' military drama Annapolis, directed by Justin "Better Luck Tomorrow" Lin, was James Franco's second movie of the year--and it's only January!--and it did slightly better than Tristan & Isolde did over MLK weekend in a few hundred fewer theatres. It earned roungly $7.7 million, an average of $4,802 per theatre, putting it in fourth place just ahead of the Weinsteins' animated hit Hoodwinked. The latter added another $7.4 million to its box office gross of $37.8 million.

The Western romance Brokeback Mountain, starring Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, continued to expand into more regions, adding 458 theatres just days before Oscar nominations are announced. Despite the doubters, the controversial film has managed to cross the $50 million with a weekend take of $6.3 million, just as director Ang Lee, was honored by the Directors Guild (DGA) last night with their highest honor for helming the film.

Walt Disney's basketball drama Glory Road, produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, and Queen Latifah's Last Holiday both felt the brunt of the new movies, dropping out of the Top 5 with $5.2 and $4.8 million respectively. They've both earned just over $30 million.

Walt Disney's The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe looks to be ending its impressive two-month run in the Top 10 with another $4.4 million, bringing its grand total to a massive $277 million.

Richard Shepard's crime comedy The Matador, starring Pierce Brosnan and Greg Kinnear, expanded into 885 theatres this weekend, and it entered the Top 10 with a respectable $3.8 million.

Sony's remake of Fun with Dick and Jane, starring Jim Carrey and Téa Leoni, dropped out of the Top 10 despite an additional $3.6 million, which brought its total gross up to $106.3 million.

This week's second big comeback was the Johnny Cash biodrama Walk the Line with Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon, which began reexpanding into more theatres and finding new fans in the days leading up to Oscar nominations. It reentered the Top 12 for the first time in months with $2.9 million over the weekend.

Opening in limited release, Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story, Michael Winterbottom's second teaming with Steve Coogan ("24 Hour Party People"), earned $59.8 thousand in three theatres while the Fox Searchlight romantic comedy Imagine Me & You earned slightly less in more than twice as many theatres, not a good start for a movie the studio hopes to expand nationwide in February.

Disney also opened its documentary Roving Mars in 27 theatres this weekend, where it earned an estimated $397 thousand.