Sept. 28 update: D.J. Caruso’s action blockbuster Eagle Eye stormed to the top of the North American box office this weekend with US$29.2 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.
DreamWorks’ Shia LaBeouf vehicle easily knocked out its competition after opening in 3,510 theaters and securing the top spot early on Friday. Co-starring Michelle Monaghan, the flick centers on a slacker and a single mother who are framed as terrorists and forced to participate in a major political assassination.
Debuting in second place with $13.5 million was George C. Wolfe’s romantic drama Nights in Rodanthe. Based on the acclaimed novel by Nicholas Sparks, and starring Richard Gere and Diane Lane, the movie follows two single parents who fall in love during a stormy weekend at an old beachside inn.
Last weekend’s box office winner, Lakeview Terrace, dropped to No. 3, earning $7 million and lifting its cumulative gross to $25.7 million after two weeks in release. Directed by Neil LaBute, Sony’s thriller follows a racist cop (Samuel L. Jackson) who tries everything in his power to get his new neighbors to move out again.
Meanwhile, Alex Kendrick’s Christian-themed drama Fireproof, about a firefighter who embarks on a spiritual mission to save his marriage, ranked fourth this weekend with $6.5 million in ticket sales. Kirk Cameron, Erin Bethea and Ken Bevel star.
Sept. 21 update: Lakeview Terrace topped the North American box office this weekend with US$15.6 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.
Neil LaBute’s thriller won an easy fight against its competition in what was a relatively quiet weekend at the movies. Starring Samuel L. Jackson, the film follows a ruthless cop who launches into a turbulent feud with his new neighbors (Patrick Wilson and Kerry Washington).
Meanwhile, last week’s box office champion Burn After Reading dropped to No. 2, earning $11.2 million and reaching a domestic total of $36.4 million after two weeks in release. Helmed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the comedy stars Brad Pitt and Frances McDormand as two gym teachers who try to sell classified CIA documents.
Opening in third place with $8.3 million was Howard Deutch’s latest comedy, My Best Friend’s Girl, in which Dane Cook takes women on horrible dates to make them appreciate their ex-boyfriends. Jason Biggs and Kate Hudson co-star.
Following closely at No. 4 was Anthony Leondis’ animated feature Igor, which pulled in $8 million. Featuring the voices of John Cusack, Steve Buscemi, and Molly Shannon, the movie follows a hunchbacked servant who dreams of becoming an evil scientist and winning the annual Evil Science Fair.
Sept. 15 update: Joel and Ethan Coen’s Burn After Reading beat Tyler Perry at the North American box office this weekend with US$19.4 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.
Starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Tilda Swinton, Frances McDormand, and John Malkovich, the crime comedy delivered the best opening ever for a Coen brothers film, surpassing the $12.6 million earned by The Ladykillers in 2004.
Tyler Perry’s The Family That Preys, starring Perry, Kathy Bates, and Alfre Woodard, debuted in second place with $18 million, which is less than the opening weekend grosses of his previous films Meet the Browns ($20 million) and Why Did I Get Married? ($21.3 million).
Meanwhile, Jon Avnet’s crime drama Righteous Kill opened at No. 3 with $16.5 million. Starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino, the film follows two veteran NYPD detectives struggling to hunt down a mysterious serial killer.
The Women, the weekend’s other nationwide release, ranked fourth with $10.1 million in ticket sales. The Diane English-directed comedy stars Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Debra Messing as four best friends who help support each other in times of misery. Eva Mendes co-stars.
Last week’s box office champion, Bangkok Dangerous, dropped all the way to eighth place, taking home $2.4 million. Starring Nicolas Cage as a hit man who falls in love during a crucial assignment, the film brought its domestic total to a paltry $12.5 million.
Sept. 9 update: Nicolas Cage’s latest action vehicle Bangkok Dangerous topped the North American box office this weekend with an underwhelming US$7.8 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.
As the only nationwide release, Danny and Oxide Pang’s widely panned flick ended the three-week reign of DreamWorks’ Tropic Thunder, leading an incredibly slow weekend. In the film, Cage stars as a lonely hitman who travels to Bangkok and falls in love with a local woman.
Ben Stiller’s action comedy closely followed at No. 2, earning $7.5 million and reaching a domestic total of $96.8 million after four weeks in release. With Stiller, Jack Black, and Robert Downey Jr. in the lead roles, Tropic Thunder centers on a group of actors fighting for survival in a dangerous jungle.
Meanwhile, The House Bunny climbed back up to No. 3, collecting $5.9 million. Starring Anna Faris as a former Playboy bunny who becomes the housemother of a geeky sorority, the Fred Wolf-directed comedy lifted its cumulative gross to $36.9 million.
Vin Diesel tattoo show doomed
Sept. 2 update: According to studio estimates made public on Sunday, Tropic Thunder ruled the North American box office for the third consecutive weekend (Aug. 29-31, ’08) while the Vin Diesel actioner Babylon A.D. landed with a thud in second place.
With $11.5 million in ticket sales, Ben Stiller’s R-rated action comedy easily protected its no. 1 spot from four new releases, lifting its domestic total to $83.8 million. Distributed by DreamWorks, Tropic Thunder centers on a group of actors as they fight for survival in a dangerous jungle.
Update: Over the extended Labor Day weekend, Tropic Thunder collected $14.6 million.
Besides Ben Stiller, Tropic Thunder also features:
Best Actor Oscar nominee Robert Downey Jr. (Charles Chaplin in Chaplin, 1992).
Jack Black. Jay Baruchel. Brandon T. Jackson. Steve Coogan. Danny McBride.
Bill Hader. Rachel Avery. Tyra Banks. Reggie Lee. Matthew McConaughey.
Cameos: Tobey Maguire. Jason Bateman. Jennifer Love Hewitt. Alicia Silverstone. Lance Bass.
Babylon A.D. falls while The Dark Knight rises
Debuting with a mere $9.7 million, 20th Century Fox’s science-fiction adventure Babylon A.D. stars Vin Diesel as a mercenary escorting a young woman (Mélanie Thierry) from Mongolia to New York City. Mathieu Kassovitz directed.
Besides Vin Diesel and Mélanie Thierry, Babylon A.D. features the following:
Michelle Yeoh. Lambert Wilson. Mark Strong. Joel Kirby. Jérôme Le Banner. David Belle.
Veteran Charlotte Rampling (The Night Porter, The Verdict).
Best Actor Oscar nominee Gérard Depardieu (Cyrano de Bergerac, 1990).
Update: Over the extended Labor Day weekend, Babylon A.D. grossed $11.54 million.
Meanwhile, Christopher Nolan’s summer blockbuster The Dark Knight climbed back up to no. 3, earning $8.7 million and reaching an impressive total gross of $502.4 million after seven weeks.
As per boxofficemojo.com, two weeks ago the Batman Begins sequel surpassed George Lucas’ Star Wars (not factoring in inflation) on the domestic box office chart, taking the second spot on the all-time box office list, behind only James Cameron’s Titanic.
The Dark Knight stars Christian Bale in the title role, in addition to Heath Ledger, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Aaron Eckhart, and two-time Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner Michael Caine (Hannah and Her Sisters, 1986; The Cider House Rules, 1999).
Trailing Babylon A.D. and The Dark Knight, Fred Wolf’s The House Bunny collected $8.3 million at no. 4. Starring Anna Faris as a former Playboy bunny who becomes the housemother of a geeky sorority, the youth-oriented comedy lifted its cumulative gross to $27.8 million after two weeks.
New entry Traitor opened in fifth place, raking in $7.9 million in ticket sales. Directed by Jeffrey Nachmanoff, and starring Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce, the thriller has reached a domestic total of a meager $9.4 million since its Wednesday release.
Spoof comedy Disaster Movie unfunny debut
Jason Friedberg and Aaron Seltzer’s spoof comedy Disaster Movie, this week’s third major release, debuted in seventh place with $6.1 million. That’s about $12.4 million less than the opening-weekend gross of their previous escapade, Meet the Spartans. The eclectic cast includes the likes of Matt Lanter, Vanessa Lachey (as Vanessa Minnillo), Carmen Electra, and Kim Kardashian.
Rounding out the top 10 was Woody Allen’s comedy Vicky Cristina Barcelona, which earned $3 million and a total haul of $12.7 million. Penélope Cruz, Javier Bardem, Scarlett Johansson, and Rebecca Hall star.
And just in case you were wondering, new release College only made it to no. 15 despite screenings at more than 2,000 theaters. Ultimately, Deb Hagan’s teen comedy pulled in a paltry $2.1 million.
Aug. 25 update: Tropic Thunder topped the North American box office for the second consecutive weekend with $16.1 million in ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday.
Ben Stiller’s critically acclaimed action comedy managed to fend off a bunch of new releases, lifting its domestic total to $65.6 million after a solid two-week run. Starring Stiller, Jack Black, and Robert Downey Jr., the film centers on a group of actors on the run from ruthless criminals.
Following closely in second place was new entry The House Bunny, which debuted with $15.1 million. The Fred Wolf-directed comedy stars Anna Faris as a Playboy bunny who becomes the housemother of an unpopular sorority after being tossed out of the Playboy mansion.
Opening at No. 3 with $12.2 million was Paul W.S. Anderson’s Death Race, in which Jason Statham plays a prisoner forced to participate in a brutal car race. Based on Paul Bartel’s Death Race 2000, the action flick co-stars Joan Allen, Ian McShane, Tyrese Gibson, and Natalie Martinez.
Based on Paul Bartel’s 1975 release Death Race 2000, Death Race stars Jason Statham as a prisoner who’s forced to take part in a deadly car race. The 1975 original featured David Carradine, Simone Griffeth, Sylvester Stallone, and Mary Woronov.
The third wide release of the week was MGM’s The Longshots, which debuted in eighth place with only $4.3 million. Helmed by Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst, the sports drama stars Ice Cube as a former high-school football star who helps his niece (Keke Palmer) become the quarterback of a local team.
The only new film to open outside the top 10 was 20th Century Fox’s comedy The Rocker, which stars Rainn Wilson as a failed drummer who joins his nephew’s high-school band. Since its release Wednesday, The Rocker has pulled in a disappointing $3.8 million.
Ben Stiller comedy Tropic Thunder dethrones The Dark Knight
Aug. 18 update: Directed by Ben Stiller, Tropic Thunder kicked The Dark Knight off its throne at the North American box office this weekend (Aug. 15–17), having earned $26 million according to studio estimates released on Sunday.
Since its Wednesday debut, Tropic Thunder has lifted its domestic total to $37 million. Starring Stiller, Jack Black, and Robert Downey Jr., the action comedy follows a group of actors pursued by ruthless criminals after their director drops them off in the middle of a jungle.
Also in the Tropic Thunder cast:
Jay Baruchel. Brandon T. Jackson. Steve Coogan. Danny McBride. Bill Hader. Rachel Avery. Tyra Banks. Reggie Lee. Matthew McConaughey.
Cameos: Jason Bateman. Tobey Maguire. Jennifer Love Hewitt. Alicia Silverstone. Lance Bass. Jon Voight.
Two-time Best Actor Oscar nominee Nick Nolte (The Prince of Tides, 1991; Affliction, 1998).
Three-time Oscar nominee Tom Cruise (lead for Born on the Fourth of July, 1989, and Jerry Maguire, 1996; supporting for Magnolia, 1999).
The Dark Knight approaches $500 million
As found at boxofficemojo.com, trailing Tropic Thunder at no. 2 was Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight, starring Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Aaron Eckhart, and Michael Caine.
The Batman Begins sequel took in $16.7 million, bringing its total gross to $471.4 million after five impressive weeks.
Debuting in third place with $15.5 million was Warner Bros.’ computer-animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which serves as an introduction to the upcoming television series of the same title. Directed by Dave Filoni, the sci-fi adventure follows Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi as they try to close a crucial deal with Jabba the Hutt.
Meanwhile, 20th Century Fox’s horror remake Mirrors opened in fourth place with $11.1 million. The Alexandra Aja-directed flick stars Kiefer Sutherland as a security guard who becomes obsessed with evil mirrors. Paula Patton costars.
At no. 5, David Gordon Green’s Pineapple Express earned $10 million in ticket sales, reaching a cumulative gross of $62.9 million. Sony Pictures’ stoner action-comedy stars Seth Rogen and James Franco as two potheads on the run from a gang of merciless killers.
Rounding out the Top Ten at the North American box office were:
- Adam McKay’s comedy Step Brothers, which reached a total of $90.8 million thanks to this weekend’s earnings of $5 million. In the cast: Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly, Mary Steenburgen, Adam Scott, Kathryn Hahn, Richard Jenkins, Seth Rogen.
- Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, starring Penélope Cruz, Scarlett Johansson, Javier Bardem, and Rebecca Hall, which debuted with $3.7 million.
And just in case you were wondering, this week’s other release (452 theaters), the animated Fly Me to the Moon 3D, only made it to no. 12, with $2 million. In the voice cast: Nicollette Sheridan, Kelly Ripa, Christopher Lloyd, Adrienne Barbeau, and veteran Tim Curry (The Rocky Horror Picture Show).
Vin Diesel Babylon A.D. image: 20th Century Fox.
Matt Lanter Disaster Movie image: Lionsgate Pictures.
Robert Downey Jr. Tropic Thunder image: Paramount Pictures.
Paula Patton Mirrors image: 20th Century Fox.