Immortals Send Jack and Jill Tumbling
By John Hamann
November 13, 2011
Immortals also had more than a bad Adam Sandler film to compete against. The final Harry Potter film hit DVD on Friday, and video game record breaker Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was released as well. Suffice to say that it's been a fanboy kind of long weekend, and I bet kids of all ages are going to be tired on Monday. Credit should go to the marketing team behind Immortals for simply getting people out to the movies despite other entertainment options.
Finishing second is Jack and Jill, an Adam Sandler comedy that is being compared to the absolute worst in his repertoire, Little Nicky (just typing those words gives me the heebie jeebies). Despite looking and smelling very bad, the Sandler fan club still showed up in droves this weekend, as Jack and Jill somehow earned $26 million from 3,438 venues. Is it the worst Adam Sandler film ever made? Probably yes, at least in terms of reviews. 1996's Bulletproof, in which Sandler co-starred with Damon Wayans, got three positive reviews out of 39. Eight Crazy Nights received 13 positives out of 106. Grown Ups got 15 positive out of 157. Jack and Jill did far worse. It got only two positive reviews out of 62 (and neither of the two came from BOP Fave Armond White - though that's only because he's not listed), but still earned a B from the Cinemascore people (their business model doesn't make sense to begin with – why not just ask the Sandler fan club to grade it without seeing it?). Jack and Jill is billed as a Thanksgiving movie, but hopefully this one will be on the way out before turkey weekend arrives.
Third is Puss in Boots, which had another extremely solid weekend, but not enough to keep it above Immortals or Jack and Jill (that will likely change when actual results are reported, though). After two consecutive weekends right around the $35 million mark, Puss in Boots' hold on the mid-30's was going to have to give at some point. In its third frame, the slow starter but super holder from DreamWorks Animation earned another $25.5 million and dropped only 23%. I find it amazing how this one has turned from an "uh-oh" for the studio into a huge moneymaker. After its first weekend, Puss in Boots looked like a $100-120 million earner; after two weekends a $130-150 million earner, to this weekend, where it now looks like at least a $175 million earner. Next weekend will bring the big test, as Happy Feet 2 opens on Friday (I never understood the $200 million the original earned, and have not been impressed with the marketing for the sequel so far). Puss in Boots crossed the $100 million mark on Saturday, and now sits with $108.8 million so far in the domestic coffers (and already $40 million from overseas).
Fourth goes to Tower Heist from the former producer and former host of the Oscars. After an only okay opening for Tower Heist last weekend, director Brett Ratner put his foot in it last week when he made some really stupid remarks about gay people; Eddie Murphy then backed him up. Afterward, the pair left the Oscars show, and we all breathed a sigh of relief (I can't have another year at the Oscars like last year). Meanwhile, Ratner's film about a stealing from a large, hard, erect piece of architecture had the bottom fall out this weekend, as after opening to $24 million last weekend, Tower Heist could only pull in $13.2 million in its second frame. The studio will likely cry competition from Jack and Jill, but I really don't think that's the case. Like Jack and Jill, I no longer want to think of this one at all. It has a cume so far of $43.9 million against a budget of $75 million.