Box Office: Mediocre Comedy Wallops Abysmal Comedy
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The box office didn’t quite post the spectacular numbers of recent weeks, but the top ten was still comfortably above the comparable weekend in 2007. The weekend’s #1 pic was the big-screen version of retro spy-comedy TV series Get Smart, which opened with a stronger-than-expected $39 million (estimate). The Steve Carell-Anne Hathaway blockbuster received mostly mediocre notices from critics, but fared far better than the weekend’s #4 film – the other wide opener, Mike Myers’s The Love Guru, which seems to be a shoo-in at this point for the Worst Picture Razzie. The expensive tentpole pic tanked with an estimated $14 million.
Holdovers dominated the rest. Kung Fu Panda rose back up to #2, narrowly beating the second weekend of The Incredible Hulk which, unsurprisingly, fell hard after comic nerds descended upon it last weekend. The #5 film was The Happening, which fell almost 70%. M. Night Shyamalan doesn’t quite yet equate to box office poison, but he’s not far off.
Next weekend will be an interesting one to watch. The openers – Wall-E and Wanted – both have strong commercial prospects, and could also be (*gasp*) decent flicks. Wall-E in particular is an interesting gamble – will Charlie Chaplin-style humor translate for today’s ADD-infected kids? I think it will. This is a lush $180 million robot movie after all. My bet is for $65 million. Incredibles numbers.