Box Office News

Box Office Analysis, Aug. 29: "Hero" Slays Competition

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Aug 30, 2004 | 8:33am EDT

The weekend before Labor Day sees a Hong Kong film take the box office.

The Chinese indie Hero, which stars Jet Li and Zhang Ziyi as high-flyin' Chinese swordsman, opened in the top spot this weekend with $17.8 million, while that sneaky snake tale Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid debuted in second with $13.2 million. The sequel, however, didn't surpass the original Anaconda, which opened in 1997 with $16.6 million.

The Aaron Eckhart/Ben Kingsley serial killer drama Suspect Zero also opened this weekend, but much further down the list, coming in 10th place with $3.4 million. Other newcomer Superbabies: Baby Geniuses 2 failed to make the top 10, debuting with a piddly $3.3 million.

This week, the Top 12 films grossed an estimated $84.7 million, down 31.11 percent from last weekend's $123 million take and slightly down 0.11 percent from last year's draw of $84.8 million.

The top three films at the box office this time last year were New Line's R-rated Freddy vs. Jason, which took the No. 1 spot in its second week with $13.1 million in 3,014 theaters, averaging $4,364 per theater; Sony's PG-13 S.W.A.T., which took second in its third week with $10.5 million in 3,204 theaters, averaging $3,303 per theater; and Buena Vista's R-rated Open Range, which came in third in its second week with $9.4 million in 2,163 theaters, averaging $4,383 per theater.

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

No. 1: Hero (Miramax, PG-13)

Gross: $17.8 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 2,031

Per-theater average: $8,765

No. 2: Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid (Sony Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $13.2 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 2,905

Per-theater average: $4,544

No. 3: Without a Paddle (Paramount, PG-13)

Gross: $8.7 million (-36%)

Weeks opened: 2

Theaters: 2,730 (unchanged)

Per-theater average: $3,187

Cume to date: $27.8 million

No. 4: The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement (Buena Vista, G)

Gross: $8 million (-38%)

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 3,331 (-159)

Per-theater average: $2,422

Cume to date: $75 million

No. 5: Exorcist: The Beginning (Warner Bros., R)

Gross: $6.7 million

Weeks opened: 2

Theaters: 2,813 (+10)

Per-theater average: $2,394

Cume to date: $30.8 million

No. 6: Collateral (DreamWorks, R)

Gross: $6.3 million (-38%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 2,728 (-301)

Per-theater average: $2,309

Cume to date: $80 million

No. 7: Open Water (Lions Gate, R)

Gross: $5 million (-56%)

Weeks opened: 4

Theaters: 2,709 (unchanged)

Per-theater average: $1,846

Cume to date: $23.5 million

No. 8: Alien vs. Predator (20th Century Fox, R)

Gross: $4.8 million (-61%)

Weeks opened: 3

Theaters: 2,880 (-521)

Per-theater average: $1,667

Cume to date: $72 million

No. 9: The Bourne Supremacy (Universal Pictures, PG-13)

Gross: $4.6million (-29%)

Weeks opened: 6

Theaters: 2,079 (-453)

Per-theater average: $2,213

Cume to date: $157.7 million

No. 10: Suspect Zero (Paramount Pictures, R)

Gross: $3.4 million

Weeks opened: NEW!

Theaters: 1,500

Per-theater average: $2,267

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