Box Office News

B.O. ANALYSIS: 'Urban Legends' Should Top Box Office

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May 08, 2001 | 3:19am EDT

Suburban teens should help cut "Urban Legends: Final Cut" the biggest slice of box office pie this weekend.

"'Urban Legends' can actually do double digits," one insider observes. "It'll be nice to see that again, won't it?"

"Urban," an R-rated horror sequel opening from Columbia Pictures at 2,539 theaters, is heading for first place with $12-13 million.

"Teens, particularly, have to be hungry for something to go see," says a distribution executive. "I think it's got a shot at $12 million."

Directed by John Ottman, "Urban" stars Jennifer Morrison.

Second place should go to DreamWorks and Columbia's critically-acclaimed "Almost Famous," which will expand to about 1,200 theaters in its second week. The R-rated comedy drama should do $7-8 million.

"They're in theaters where it ought to do business," a source says of the film's strong launch at 131 theaters last weekend. "They're upscale, limited, big city (theaters) and, boy, if this movie doesn't do it there, where will it do it? This weekend will be the first indication of whether the movie plays in the heartland."

Written and directed by Cameron Crowe, "Famous" stars Billy Crudup, Kate Hudson and Frances McDormand.

Driven by "Urban" and "Famous," the weekend should be a big improvement over last weekend when key films only took in about $47.4 million.

"Well, that's like being the tallest building in Wichita, Kansas," laughs one insider. "It'll be better than the worst weekend in three years!"

Warner Bros.' reissue of its R-rated 1973 horror classic "The Exorcist" should turn enough ticket buyers' heads to finish third. Arriving at 664 theaters, it should nail down $6-7 million.

Directed by William Friedkin, "Exorcist" stars Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair and Max von Sydow.

Universal and Beacon Pictures' PG-13-rated comedy "Bring It On" should drop one peg to fourth place in its fifth week. Last weekend "Bring" did $5.1 million and was only off 25 percent. If it takes another 25 percent drop, it will do about $4 million.

"Bring," which only cost Universal about $10 million, has grossed over $51 million and is heading for $60 million in domestic theaters.

Directed by Peyton Reed, "Bring" stars Kirsten Dunst, Eliza Dusku, Jesse Bradford and Gabrielle Union.

Universal's R-rated psychological thriller "The Watcher" should slip four slots to fifth place in its third week with $3-4 million.

"Watcher," which Universal reportedly picked up from Interlight for only $5 million, has grossed over $17 million and is heading for $25 million in domestic theaters.

Directed by Joe Charbanic, "Watcher" stars James Spader, Marisa Tomei and Keanu Reeves.

Warner Bros. and Castle Rock Entertainment's R-rated action comedy "Bait" should sink four pegs to sixth place in its second week with a gross that's also in the $3-4 million range.

Directed by Antoine Fuqua, "Bait" stars Jamie Foxx.

USA Films' R-rated dark comedy "Nurse Betty" was fourth last weekend with $4.7 million, a drop of 35 percent. If it falls 35 percent this time around, it should place seventh with about $3 million.

Universal owns "Nurse Betty," having acquired it when the studio took over PolyGram. Universal turned the specialized picture over to USA Films to market and distribute.

Directed by Neil La Bute, "Nurse" stars Morgan Freeman, Renee Zellweger, Chris Rock and Greg Kinnear.

The weekend's other wide opening, Fox Searchlight Pictures' R-rated romantic comedy "Woman On Top," won't come in anywhere near the top of the chart.

"Woman," arriving at 1,000-plus theaters, appears headed for eighth place with a modest $2-3 million.

Directed by Fina Torres, "Woman" stars Penelope Cruz.

Filling out lower rungs: "Space Cowboys," "The Cell," and "What Lies Beneath."

This weekend will also see 20th Century Fox's limited release of its PG-13-rated drama "The Dancer" in New York and Los Angeles.

Directed by Fred Garson, "Dancer" stars Mia Frye and Josh Lucas.

Lions Gate Films' R-rated drama "Under Suspicion" opens exclusive engagements in New York and L.A.

Directed by Stephen Hopkins, "Suspicion" stars Morgan Freeman and Gene Hackman.

MGM's release of United Artists' PG-rated musical drama "The Fantasticks" opens exclusively in New York, L.A. and San Francisco.

Directed by Michael Ritchie, it stars Joel Grey and Barnard Hughes.

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