Iron Man Solid to Start Summer
By John Hamann
May 4, 2008
Finishing second is Made of Honor, which is really My Best Friend's Wedding with McDreamy playing the Julia Roberts part (it's not a great weekend for opening film creativity). Made of Honor, which was supposed to be counter-programming against Iron Man, did okay as it earned $15.5 million from 2,729 venues. Made of Honor is the opposite of Iron Man in more than just title and subject matter, it also reviewed poorly, receiving an ugly 14% rotten rating at RottenTomatoes. Considering the strength of Iron Man, this shadow dweller should be happy with its weekend total as it limps toward a long shelf life at Walmart.
Third spot goes to Baby Mama, as it competed for the same female demographic that would go to Made of Honor and Forgetting Sarah Marshall. After finishing first last weekend with $17.4 million, Baby Mama dropped 41% to $10.3 million, a respectable gross considering the competition from Iron Man and the other chick flicks. The Universal release has now earned $32.3 million against a production budget of $30 million, so this is another win for Lorne Michaels.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall drops to fourth and has a larger than expected decline from last weekend. The Judd Apatow production earned $6.1 million. Often Apatow's flicks have excellent legs, but with a 38% drop followed by this weekend's 44% drop, $100 million is certainly out of the question. Sarah Marshall's current gross sits at $44.8 million, and could earn $75 million.
Fifth spot goes to Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, last weekend's number two film. Harold and Kumar got stoned, grossing only $6 million and dropping 60%. The first film in the franchise dipped 42% in its second frame. Escape was made for only $12 million, so a gross so far of $25.3 million isn't the end of the world, especially with what should be a rich life on DVD.
Sixth goes to Forbidden Kingdom, as the Jet Li and Jackie Chan pair-up is beginning to lose steam. The martial arts flick earned $4.2 million and was off 63%. Its total now sits at $45.1 million.
Seventh goes to the Jodie Fosters kids flick Nim's Island, which is in its fifth weekend in the top ten. Nim's Island earned $2.8 million and drops 40%. It has now earned $42.5 million against a production budget of $37 million.
Still hanging on to a top ten spot is Prom Night, as it manages to only fall two spots from sixth last weekend. Prom Night ‘earned' $2.5 million this weekend and drops 45%. It's total has reached $41.4 million.
21 is our number nine film this weekend, as the blackjack movie that could starts to slow down. 21 earned $2.1 million, was off 48% and has a gross so far of $79.0 million.
Finally in tenth is the horrible 88 Minutes. The Al Pacino flick that should have gone straight-to-DVD earned $1.6 million and was off 55%. It will finish with less than $20 million.
Overall, there is good news and bad news at the box office. The bad news is that this weekend failed to stay ahead of last year's totals; the good news is that it never had a chance and did better than expected. This year, the top 12 films earned $151.1 million, well back of last year's $181.3 million, but solid nonetheless. What a strong film like Iron Man does is bring patrons into theatres, where the marketing takes over for the rest of the summer crop. Next weekend brings Speed Racer, which isn't going to find Iron Man's size of success.
||Made of Honor
||Columbia Pictures (Sony)
||Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay
||Forgetting Sarah Marshall
||The Forbidden Kingdom
||Twentieth Century Fox
||TriStar Pictures (Sony)
||Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears Who
||Twentieth Century Fox
||20th Century Fox
||Son of Rambow
Click here for all weekend data
Box office data supplied by Exhibitor Relations