1. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest - $35M - $322M
2. Monster House - $23M - $23M
3. Lady in the Water - $18.2M - $18.2M
4. You, Me and Dupree - $12.8M - $45.3M
5. Little Man - $11M - $40.6M
6. Clerks II - $9.62M - $9.62M
7. My Super Ex-Girlfriend - $8.7M - $8.7M
8. Superman Returns - $7.46M - $178M
9. The Devil Wears Prada - $7.42M - $97.6M
10. Cars - $4.91M - $229M
I'd like to dedicate this week's box office report to my dear wife who headed home to Australia this afternoon for three weeks to see family and meet her new niece.
Not since American Pie 2 in 2001 has a summer movie retained the top spot for three weekends running. Not only that but Pirates 2 faced off four new entries, and still bested the nearest one by over $12M. It's worth noting that Monster House opened Wednesday night, was family friendly and wide opening and still couldn't come close to Pirates 2.
So in its third weekend Pirates takes yet another record, being the fastest movie to cross the $300M mark. This weekend also marks its surpassing of Pirates 1's total domestic run.
On to new stuff. Monster House was expected to drop in at three this weekend but with Cars now entering its seventh weekend on the charts, the family needed a new movie to see and this was it. This pushed the movie to a higher gross than expected. Lady In The Water had been expected to slot in at two and some estimates originally had the movie beating Pirates this weekend.
Lady In The Water was M Night's first movie for Warner's after Disney reportedly told him to burn the script for Lady in the Water, thus breaking their partnership. The trailers had left some confused and early word was decidedly mixed. It'll be interesting to see how well it performs next weekend. It's M.Night's lowest opening weekend since hitting the big time with The Sixth Sense (even that opened at $26M) and is a long way short of the stellar opening of Signs ($60M).
Of the two new releases from last weekend, You Me & Dupree has held up best, losing just 40% of its takings from last weekend. Another half decent weekend and it should recoup its production budget. Little Man took a bigger hit but still cleared over $10M.
Clerks 2 had a successful weekend from its 2,100 screens. Made for just $5M and using the internet to spread the hype instead of pricey TV advertising (or at least less advertising than most movies) it seems both the die-hards and the curious came out to see it. Only Jay & Silent Bob Strikes Back did better opening weekend business. Smith's fight with critic Joel Siegel this week hasn't harmed the hype either. Furthermore, the potential for repeat business is higher than most - Smith has recorded a free podcast commentary for the movie that users can listen to while watching.
The loser for this week is the Luke Wilson/Uma Thurman comedy My Super Ex-Girlfriend, taking just $8M from 2,700 screens. Perhaps a case of one movie too many this weekend? Or people just not that interested by the poster, story and/or trailer. Thurman plays the titular character who is dumped by her boyfriend for being too dull. Unbeknownst to him Thurman is actually a superhero and decides to get revenge using her powers.
Superman Returns & Devil Wears Prada are still fighting it out, with just $240,000 between them. Prada has outperformed Superman budget-wise and continues to be the thorn in the studios side, making the headlines for its success that many felt should have belonged to Superman. Bryan Singer still plans to move ahead with a sequel but expect the budget to have a lid firmly kept on it next time round.
Finally, rounding out the top ten is Cars, now in its seventh weekend and almost certainly its last in the top ten. The movie has taken $310M worldwide and still has a number of areas to open in.