Friday Box Office Analysis
By Tim Briody
January 24, 2009

What did you say about Boston Legal?

[tm:4052_]Underworld: Rise of the Lycans[/tm]

The third entry in the Underworld series comes in easily on top of the box office in Friday with $7.9 million. The previous sequel, Underworld: Evolution, opened around this time two years ago to the tune of $10.2 million so this is a bit of a step back. A 2.62 weekend multiplier is what Evolution earned on its way to a $26.8 million weekend back in 2006 and there's no reason that Rise of the Lycans won't have something similar. Sequels do make my job so much easier. A 2.6 multiplier for the Rhona Mitra-led film gives it $20.5 million for the weekend.

Slumdog Millionaire

It's poked its head in the lower rungs of the top ten a handful of times, but boosted by ten Academy Award nominations and an expansion to 1,411 theaters, [bp:294_]Danny Boyle[/bp]'s Slumdog Millionaire leaps 71% from last Friday to place fifth with $2.7 million. Did you know it's already made $44 million in limited release to this point? It's now a lock for $100 million especially if it picks up anything at the awards ceremony (I like it to win Best Picture). A weekend of $8.3 million should lead to even further expansion in the next couple of weeks.


Inkheart gets thrown to the wolves this weekend with a mere $2 million on Friday. It couldn't even beat the second weekend of Hotel For Dogs (down 43% to $2.5 million) so that's exceptionally bad news. The fortunes might improve a bit over the rest of the weekend, but even eight-year-olds know they just saw this movie and it was called [tm:4165_]Bedtime Stories[/tm]. Give it $6.1 million for the weekend.

Notable Holdovers

[tm:4493_]Paul Blart: Mall Cop[/tm] holds somewhat better than expected, down 43% from last Friday to $5.6 million. The surprise Kevin James hit looks to have another solid weekend with $17.5 million.

[tm:4492_]Notorious[/tm] takes one of the larger declines we've seen in some time, plunging 79% from last Friday to $1.8 million. This one will come and go as quickly as Biggie himself, with a weekend of $5 million.

In the good news department, boosted by a ridiculous number of Oscar nominations, [tm:2545_]The Curious Case of Benjamin Button[/tm] clings to a top ten spot with an increase of 7% from last Friday. It's already got $107 million in the bank so most people who want to see it already have so this is its last hurrah. Give it $5.4 million.