Box Office News

Box Office Analysis, July 18: Robots' Revolt

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Jul 18, 2004 | 11:01am EDT

One of the three laws of Will Smith should state that his films must premiere at the top of the box office. The sci-fi thriller I, Robot, in which Smith stars as a detective trying to pin a murder on a robot, debuted with a strong $52.2 million to defeat former reigning champ Spider-Man 2.

If Sunday’s estimates hold, I, Robot becomes the biggest opener ever for Smith, barely passing Men in Black II, which grossed $52.1 million when it opened at No. 1 over the Fourth of July weekend in 2002. But it easily outperformed Smith’s last starring effort, the actioner Bad Boys II, which took in $46.5 million when it debuted at No. 1 exactly one year ago.

But although Spider-Man 2 was unseated, it swung into second with a sticky $24.2 million in its third week of release, pushing through the $300 million mark. Not bad for a modest neighborhood superhero.

This week also saw the opening of Hilary Duff’s bubbly teen comedy Cinderella Story, which earned a frothy $13.8 million to place it at No. 3.

This weekend, the Top 12 films grossed $138.3 million, up less than 1 percent from last weekend's $137.8 million, and also down less than 1 percent from the same weekend last year, when they grossed $138.3 million.

The top three films at the box office this time last year were Sony Pictures’ R rated Bad Boys IIwith $46.5 million in 3,186 theaters with a $14,602 per theater average; Buena Vista's PG-13 rated Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl with $34 million in 3,559 theaters with a $9,563 per theater average; and 20th Century Fox's PG-13 rated The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen with $10.1 million in 3,559 theaters with a $3,384 per theater average.

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

No. 1: I, Robot (20th Century Fox, PG-13)

Gross: $52.2 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 3,420

Per-theater average: $15,278

No. 2: Spider-Man 2 (Sony Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $24.2 million (-46%)

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 4,058 (-108)

Per-theater average: $5,964

Cume to date: $301.7million

No. 3: Cinderella Story (Warner Bros., PG)

Gross: $13.8 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 2,625

Per-theater average: $5,257

No. 4: Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (DreamWorks, PG-13)

Gross: $13.4 million (-53%)

Weeks opened: 2

Theaters: 3,104 (+13)

Per-theater average: $4,317

Cume to date: $56.5 million

No. 5: Fahrenheit 9/11 (Lions Gate, IFC Films; R)

Gross: $7 million (-37%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 2,004 (unchanged)

Per-theater average: $3,493

Cume to date: $93.8 million

No. 6: King Arthur (Buena Vista, PG-13)

Gross: $6.9 million (-54%)

Weeks opened: 2

Theaters: 3,086 (unchanged)

Per-theater average: $2,245

Cume to date: $37.8 million

No. 7: The Notebook (New Line Cinema, PG-13)

Gross: $5.4 million (-17%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 2,089 (-199)

Per-theater average: $2,609

Cume to date: $53.6 million

No. 8: White Chicks (Sony Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $3.4 million (-45%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 1,730 (-471)

Per-theater average: $1,965

Cume to date: $63.4 million

No. 9: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (20th Century Fox, PG-13)

Gross: $3.2 million (-44%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 1,945 (-499)

Per-theater average: $1,658

Cume to date: $104.5 million

No. 10: The Terminal (DreamWorks, PG-13)

Gross: $3.1 million (-38%)

Weeks opened: 5

Theaters: 1,804 (-509)

Per-theater average: $1,718

Cume to date: $71.2 million

OTHER OPENINGS

The Door in the Floor (Focus Features, R)

Gross: $444,983

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 47

Per-theater average: $9,468

Maria Full of Grace (New Line Cinema, R)

Gross: $124,000

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 7

Per-theater average: $17,714

Zhou Yu’s Train (Sony Pictures Classics, NR)

Gross: $23,11

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 6

Per-theater average: $3,852

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