The new kids on the block were not too far behind. The 'tween actioner Agent Cody Banks opened at No. 2 with $15 million and the knife-driven thriller The Hunted came in third place with $13.5 million, while the creepy rat movie Willard scurried into eighth place with $4 million.
THE TOP TEN
Buena Vista's PG-13 Bringing Down the House laughed to the bank once again with an ESTIMATED $22.4 million (-28%) in 2,801 theaters ($7,997 per theater). Its cume is approximately $61.6 million, which means moviegoers apparently do want to see a ghetto fabulous gal from the 'hood turn an uptight white guy's life upside down.
MGM's junior spy movie aimed directly at the highly profitable 10-13 age group, the PG-rated Agent Cody Banks, debuted in second place with an ESTIMATED $15 million at 3,369 theaters ($4,452 per theater).
The film centers on a typical teenager who loves to skateboard, hates math and feels like a complete idiot around girls. But Cody Banks differs from other teens in one big way: He's actually a junior CIA agent out to save the world--and of course, a girl.
Taking a look at the flip side of what being a government agent is really like, Paramount Pictures' dark R-rated thriller The Hunted opened at No. 3 with an ESTIMATED $13.5 million at 2,516 theaters ($5,366 per theater).
The story follows a Special Forces assassin trained in the use of knives who goes off the deep end and must be stopped by the agent who taught him to be a killing machine.
Sony Pictures' R-rated Tears of the Sun fell from last week's No. 2 spot to No. 4 with an ESTIMATED $8.8 million (-48%) at 2,973 theaters ($2,960 per theater). With a highly patriotic theme about an elite Navy SEAL team sent in to rescue a American doctor and the Nigerian village she's taking care of, its cume is approximately $30.8 million.
Riding high on some serious awards buzz after winning several Screen Actors Guild honors, Miramax Films' PG-13 Chicago slipped one notch to fifth place with an ESTIMATED $7.7 million but still managed to gain 13 percent more in box office totals than last week. The film played in 2,600 theaters ($2,966 per theater) and now in its 12th week has a cume of approximately $125.4 million.
Sixth place belonged to the R-rated DreamWorks laffer Old School, which dropped three spots from last week with an ESTIMATED $6.8 million (-26%) in 2,452 theaters (-255 theaters; $2,773 per theater). The comedy about a trio of former college buds who start their own off-campus fraternity has accumulated approximately $60.9 million so far.
Romance still makes it up there on the top ten list as Paramount's PG-13 How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days dropped from fifth to seventh place with an ESTIMATED $4.8 million (-28%) in 2,430 theaters (-467 theaters; $1,988 per theater). Now in its sixth week, the film's cume is approximately $93.8 million.
*Box office estimates provided by Exhibitor Relations, Inc.
New Line Cinema's ratty PG-13 Willard debuted at No. 8 with an ESTIMATED $4 million at 1,761 theaters ($2,286 per theater).
A loosely based remake of the 1971 cult classic, the story revolves around a timid introvert who can psychically command his whiskered, four-legged friends to do whatever he wants--including "tearing up" some of his enemies. Blech.
20th Century Fox's PG-13 comic-book actioner Daredevil shimmied its way down from seventh to ninth place with an ESTIMATED $3.040 million (-42%) at 2,054 theaters (-724 theaters; $1,480 per theater). In its fifth week, the film's cume is approximately $96 million.
Barely coming in under Daredevil was Warner Bros. R-rated Cradle 2 the Grave, which dropped four spots to take 10th place with an ESTIMATED $3.003 million (-54%) at 2,150 theaters (-475 theaters; $1,397 per theater). The high-octane actioner's cume is approximately $31.7 million.
Fox Searchlight's PG-13 Bend It Like Beckham, which was a huge hit in Britain last year, opened in limited U.S. release with an ESTIMATED $151,717 in 6 theaters ($25,286 per theater).
The film follows the aspirations of a young Indian girl living in London whose only desire is to play soccer--even if it means going against her traditional family's wishes.
This weekend's top 12 films grossed $93.3 million, down 1.33 percent from last weekend's take of $94.5 million, as well as down 22 percent from the $120 million of the same weekend last year.
Last year's top grossers were all newcomers: 20th Century Fox's Ice Age opened at No. 1 with a whopping $46.3 million (3,316 theaters; $13,966 per theater) while Sony's Resident Evil came in second with $17.7 million (2,528 theaters; $7,004 per theater) and Warner's Showtime in third with $15 million (2,917 theaters; $5,146 per theater).