Box Office Analysis, June 13: “Azkaban” Weaves More Magic

Neither Vin Diesel nor Nicole Kidman could topple the teen wizard at the box office this weekend.

Even though it dropped a bit, the third Potter installment Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban took the top spot for the second week in a row with $35 million, easily overpowering its new competitors, including the action-packed The Chronicles of Riddick, which opened second with $24.6 million, and the campy remake The Stepford Wives, which debuted in fourth with $22.2 million.

As more classes let out for summer, distributor Warner Bros. is counting on steady weekday business from youngsters to help sustain “Harry Potter,” Dan Fellman, the studio’s head of distribution, told The Associated Press. “We’re in good shape, even though we took a pretty good drop this weekend,” Fellman said.

The big green sequel Shrek 2, which came in third with $24 million, became the highest grossing animated film of all time with a $354 million grand total, beating last year’s Finding Nemo, which grossed $339 million.

Newcomer Garfield, a big screen version of that popular fat cat comic strip, opened in fifth with $21.6, while after expanding in theaters, the righteous comedy Saved! makes it to the top 10 list for the first time, coming in ninth with $2.5 million.

The top 12 films this week grossed an estimated $155.5 million, up 33.79 percent from this time last year last year, when they totaled $116.2 million, but down 14.90 percent form last week’s $182.7 million take.

The top three films at the box office this time last year were: Disney and Pixar’s G rated Finding Nemo, went back up to first place in its third week with $28.3 million in 3,425 theaters with a $8,287 per theater average; Universal’s PG-13 rated 2 Fast 2 Furious, dropped to second in its second week with $18.6 million in 3,418 theaters with a $5,465 per theater average; and Universal’s PG-13 rated Bruce Almighty, held onto third in its fourth week with $14.2 million in 3,477 theaters, averaging $4,095 per theater.

BOX OFFICE TOP 10, ESTIMATES: (Source: Exhibitor Relations, Inc.)

No. 1: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Warner Bros., PG)

Gross: $35 million (-63%)

Weeks opened: 2

Theaters: 3,855 (unchanged)

Per-theater average: $9,097

Cume to date: $158.1 million

No. 2: The Chronicles of Riddick (Universal Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $24.6 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 2,757

Per-theater average: $8,923

No. 3: Shrek 2 (Dreamworks, PG)

Gross: $24 million (-37%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 3,843 (-288)

Per-theater average: $6,245

Cume to date: $354 million

No. 4: The Stepford Wives (Paramount Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $22.2 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 3,057

Per-theater average: $7,262

No. 5: Garfield (20th Century Fox, PG)

Gross: $21.6 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 3,094

Per-theater average: $7,005

No. 6: The Day After Tomorrow (20th Century Fox, PG)

Gross: $14.5 million (-48%)

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 3,210 (-234)

Per-theater average: $4,533

Cume to date: $153.1 million

No. 7: Raising Helen (Buena Vista, PG-13)

Gross: $3.8 million (-42%)

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 2,103 (-618)

Per-theater average: $1,817

Cume to date: $31.4 million

No. 8: Troy (Warner Bros., R)

Gross: $3.4million (-42%)

Weeks opened: 5

Theaters: 2,003 (-747)

Per-theater average: $1,730

Cume to date: $125.6 million

No. 9: Saved! (United Artists, PG-13)

Gross: $2.5 million

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 589 (+558)

Per-theater average: $4,329

No. 10: Mean Girls (Paramount Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $1.5 million (-49%)

Weeks opened: 7

Theaters: 944 (-873)

Per-theater average: $1,589

Cume to date: $81.3 million

OTHER OPENINGS

Napoleon Dynamite (Fox Seachlight, PG)

Gross: $117,148

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 6

Per-theater average: $19,625

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