EInsiders.com : : : Reviews | DVD | Inside Scoop | Box Office | Interviews | Columns | Obits | Contests

Sunday, March 2, 2008

'Semi-Pro' scores No. 1 debut with $15.3m, Feb. 29-Mar. 2, 2008

Will Ferrell's latest comedy Semi-Pro earned the top spot this weekend with a tepid $15.3 million debut, amid a slew of poorly-reviewed new openings and current releases that has caused the box office to slide 28% below last year's comparable frame. Indicative of the slow business, Semi-Pro became the worst starring comedy opening of Will Ferrell's career since 1998's A Night at the Roxbury debuted with $9.6 million.

Averaging $4,906 in 3,121 theaters, the New Line release fell well short of the actor's more recent blockbuster successes like 2007's Blades of Glory with $33m, 2006's Talladega Nights with $47m, 2005's Kicking and Screaming with $20.1m, and 2004's Anchorman with $28.3m. Though reviews were mostly negative, the biggest problem appears to be the film's R rating, which excluded a huge portion of Ferrell's core demographic (the other films previously listed were all rated PG-13).

Sony's political thriller Vantage Point fell one notch to second, falling a decent 43% to $13 million. In ten days, the $40 million budgeted ensemble pic has grossed $41 million, and should have no trouble breaking $70 million domestically.

Showing even stronger legs was Paramount's children's fantasy adaptation The Spiderwick Chronicles, which fell just 33% to $8.8 million this weekend. Enjoying solid reviews and strong word of mouth, the $90 million budgeted film has now grossed $55 million, and appears on pace to finish with $80-85 million by the end of its run.

Among other debuts Sony's poorly-reviewed period piece The Other Boleyn Girl bowed with an impressive $8.3 million from just 1,166 theaters, averaging a top ten best $7,118. Starring Natlie Portman and Scarlett Johansson, the film skewed heavily to a female audience.

Fox's sci-fi actioner Jumper rounded out the top five, falling just 40% to an estimates $7.6 million. Budgeted at $85 million, the film has grossed a strong $66.8 million in three weeks of release.

Summit Entertainment's ugly-duckling drama Penelope debuted in eighth with $4 million, averaging just $3,349 in 1,196 theaters. Starring Christina Ricci, the PG-rated pic received largely mixed reviews from critics.

Rounding out the top ten were two of Oscar night's big stars, Best Picture Winner No Country for Old Men and the Best Original Screenplay winner Juno. No Country saw nearly a doubling of theaters to its release slate, vaulting the film back into the top ten with $4 million. In 17 weeks of release, the Miramax picture has grossed $69.5 million. Juno slipped 19% to $3.3 million, pushing its 13 week cume to an incredible $135.1 million. Despite Best Actor winner Daniel Day Lewis' big night, Paramount Vantage's There Will Be Blood lost 154 theaters, falling 40% to $1.6 million. In ten weeks, the $25 million budgeted book adaptation has grossed a solid $37.6 million.

No comments: