General News

'Angels' Beat Devil

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Jul 23, 2001 | 8:52am EDT

"Charlie's Angels" won this weekend's box office election by a mile despite projections that "Little Nicky" might give it a devil of a time.

"Angels," Columbia's PG-13 action adventure comedy, continued kicking box office butt in its second weekend with a still sexy estimated $25.0 million (-38%) at 3,037 theaters (theater count unchanged; $8,232 per theater). Its cume is approximately $75.4 million, heading for $150 million or more.

"Angels" had the highest per-theater average for any film playing in 500 or more theaters last weekend.

"Great news for us," Sony Pictures Entertainment worldwide marketing & distribution president Jeff Blake said Sunday morning. "It's just a terrific hold considering the record opening we had the week before."

Asked where "Angels" is going, Blake replied, "We should be able to hit $100 million by Thanksgiving and still have the Thanksgiving Weekend ahead of us. I would say right around that Wednesday or Thursday prior to Thanksgiving we should reach $100 million. We should have a very good weekend following that, so you have to like our chances to do at least $150 million. I'd say that classifies it as a big hit to everybody's credit.

"The advantage continues with it having more than one audience. It's getting the boys and girls and it's getting the kids and the adults who remember the (1970's hit TV) show. It really adds up to a big advantage over a lot of pictures that are more focused (in their appeal)."

Directed by McG, "Angels" stars Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Lucy Liu and Bill Murray.

New Line's PG-13-rated youth appeal comedy "Little Nicky" opened in second place with a little less heat than some Hollywood handicappers had expected for an Adam Sandler movie, but was still sizzling with an estimated $18.1 million at 2,910 theaters ($6,220 per theater). Its four-day cume -- including about $0.5 million from Thursday night preview showings at about 1,800 theaters -- is approximately $18.6 million.

"We opened a comedy in this time to $18 million, and we think that's pretty good -- between the distraction of the election and a lot more competition with 'Charlie's Angels' (because that) opened so big the first week," New Line distribution president David Tuckerman said Sunday morning. New Line's exit polls, he added, "are great. The people who see it love it, and (Sandler's) core audience will come back again. We feel that the picture is going to hold up and make it through Christmas."

Tuckerman pointed out that in projecting the film's performance this weekend, New Line is taking into account the fact that because of the Veteran's Day holiday having fallen on Saturday, "half the schools in America are out on Monday. Some schools were out on Friday and some are out on Monday." "Nicky's" ticket sales this Sunday night could, therefore, be stronger than would normally be the case since a lot of kids won't have to get up to go to school Monday.

Directed by Steven Brill, "Nicky" stars Adam Sandler, Patricia Arquette and Harvey Keitel.

20th Century Fox's opening of its R-rated Navy divers drama "Men of Honor" surfaced in third place with an honorable estimated $14.01 million at 2,092 theaters ($6,698 per theater).

"We're very pleased," Fox distribution president Bruce Snyder said Sunday morning. "This met expectations. The exit surveys -- I don't have the specifics (yet), but I just heard they were wonderful. So with playability on the movie, which we know is wonderful, and the performances, I think we'll be around a while. We're happy."

Directed by George Tillman, Jr., "Honor" stars Robert De Niro and Cuba Gooding, Jr.

Universal's PG-13-rated blockbuster comedy "Meet the Parents" fell two pegs to fourth place in its sixth weekend, still holding very well with an enviable estimated $10.59 million (-16%) at 2,697 theaters (+25 theaters; $3,925 per theater). Its cume is approximately $130.3 million, heading for a domestic theatrical gross of $160 million-plus.

"Parents'" international release is through DreamWorks Pictures, which co-financed the film and will share equally in its success.

"'Meet the Parents' will be the comedy hit for Thanksgiving with this hold," Universal distribution president Nikki Rocco said Sunday morning. "Unbelievable!"

With "Parents" already at $130.3 million, where is it heading in domestic theater? "Past $160 million," Rocco replied, clearly very happy with the picture's continuing strength as the holiday season approaches.

Directed by Jay Roach (director of both "Austin Powers" hits), "Parents" stars Robert De Niro and Ben Stiller.

Rocco also celebrated Universal's continuing success with its expansion of the critically-acclaimed, R-rated drama "Billy Elliot" from the studio's specialized film arm Universal Focus. "Billy," a likely contender for Golden Globe and Oscar nominations, widened again in its fifth week, placing ninth with a terrific estimated $2.78 million at 494 theaters (+375 theaters; $5,625 per theater). Its cume is approximately $6.0 million.

"We're very pleased with the result," Rocco said. "As I've been saying all along, nurturing the film was the best plan, which is exactly what we've done. If you look at the head-to-heads (theater comparisons) in markets that have previously opened, it continued to increase, which is always a good sign. I suspect that this film, because of its fabulous word of mouth, will be around for a long time."

Directed by Stephen Daldry, "Billy" stars Julie Walters, Jamie Bell, Jamie Draven and Adam Cooper.

Warner Bros.' opening of its PG-13-rated sci-fi adventure "Red Planet" landed quietly in fifth place with an estimated $9.01 million at 2,703 theaters ($3,333 per theater).

Directed by Antony Hoffman, "Planet" stars Val Kilmer, Carrie-Anne Moss and Tom Sizemore.

DreamWorks' PG-13 period piece drama "The Legend of Bagger Vance" slid three slots to sixth place in its second weekend with a slow estimated $6.6 million (-42%) at 2,162 theaters (+101 theaters; $3,050 per theater). Its cume is approximately $21.2 million.

Directed by Robert Redford, "Bagger" stars Will Smith, Matt Damon and Charlize Theron.

Buena Vista/Disney's PG-rated football drama "Remember the Titans" fell three rungs to seventh place in its seventh week, continuing to show great legs with an estimated $5.5 million (-21%) at 2,641 theaters (-96 theaters; $2,085 per theater). Its cume is approximately $104.1 million, heading for $110 million in domestic theaters.

Directed by Boaz Yakin and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and Chad Oman, "Titans" stars Denzel Washington.

Warner Bros.' PG-13-rated drama "Pay It Forward" dropped one notch to eighth place in its fourth week with a dull estimated $3.08 million (-28%) at 2,005 theaters (-125 theaters; $1,534 per theater). Its cume is approximately $29.4 million.

Directed by Mimi Leder, "Pay It Forward" stars Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt and Haley Joel Osment.

Universal's critically-acclaimed, R-rated drama "Billy Elliot" from the studio's specialized film arm Universal Focus expanded and finished ninth (see above for details).

Rounding out the Top Ten was 20th Century Fox's PG-13-rated comedy "Bedazzled," down four slots in its fourth week with an unfunny estimated $2.5 million (-46%) at 2,137 theaters (-365 theaters; $1,170 per theater). Its cume is approximately $34.6 million.

Directed by Harold Ramis, "Bedazzled" stars Brendan Fraser and Elizabeth Hurley.

OTHER OPENINGS This weekend also saw the arrival of Paramount Classics' R-rated drama "You Can Count On Me" in limited release, placing 22nd with an encouraging estimated $0.12 million at 8 theaters ($14,774 per theater).

Written and directed by Kenneth Lonergan, it stars Laura Linney.

Paramount re-issued i s R-rated dark comedy "Wonder Boys" last Wednesday in about nine major markets, hoping to attract attention from Motion Picture Academy members since Oscar nominations could give it a new lease on life.

"Wonder" placed 23rd with a not so wonderful estimated $0.092 million at 15 theaters ($6,130 per theater). Its cume is approximately $18.8 million.

Directed by Curtis Hanson, "Wonder Boys" stars Michael Douglas.

Shooting Gallery's thriller "Non-Stop," written and directed by Sabu, opened in 24th place to a quiet estimated $0.015 million at 16 theaters ($955 per theater).

SNEAK PREVIEWS There were no national sneak previews this weekend.

EXPANSIONS On the expansion front, Universal's critically-acclaimed, R-rated drama "Billy Elliot" from the studio's specialized film arm Universal Focus, went wider in its fifth week, placing ninth with an outstanding estimated $2.78 million (see details above).

Artisan Entertainment's controversial unrated drama "Requiem For A Dream" expanded in its sixth week, placing 19th with a still attractive estimated $0.21 million (-15%) at 35 theaters (+10 theaters; $6,110 per theater). Its cume is approximately $1.0 million.

Directed by Darren Arnonofsky, "Requiem" stars Jared Leto and Ellen Burstyn.

WEEKEND COMPARISONS Key films -- those grossing more than $500,000 for the weekend -- took in approximately $104.64 million, up about 5.19% from the comparable weekend last year when key films grossed $99.48 million.

This weekend's key film gross was up about 5.86% from this year's previous weekend when key films grossed $98.85 million.

Last year, Warner Bros.' opening week of "Pokemon: The First Movie" was first with $31.04 million at 3,043 theaters ($10,199 per theater); and Universal's second week of "The Bone Collector" was second with $12.01 million at 2,594 theaters ($4,630 per theater). The top two films one year ago grossed $43.0 million. This year, the top two films grossed an estimated $43.1 million.

STUDIO MARKET SHARES Based on business by key films (those grossing $500,000 or more), last weekend's top six distributors were:

Sony Pictures Entertainment was first with one film ("Charlie's Angels"), grossing an estimated $25.0 million or 23.9% of the market.

New Line was second with two films ("Little Nicky" and "The Little Vampire"), grossing an estimated $20.4 million or 19.5% of the market.

20th Century Fox was third with two films ("Men Of Honor" and "Bedazzled"), grossing an estimated $16.51 million or 15.8% of the market.

Universal tied for fourth place with two films ("Meet the Parents" and "Billy Elliot"), grossing an estimated $13.37 million or 12.8% of the market.

Warner Bros. tied for fourth place with three films ("Red Planet," "Pay It Forward" and "Best in Show"), grossing an estimated $13.37 million or 12.8% of the market.

DreamWorks was sixth with two films ("The Legend of Bagger Vance" and "The Contender"), grossing an estimated $7.19 million or 6.9% of the market.

ADDITIONAL ESTIMATES (11)The Little Vampire/New Line: Theaters: 1,892 (-117) Gross: $2.3 million (-34%) Average per theater: $1,216 Cume: $13.0 million

(12)Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2/Artisan Ent.: Theaters: 2,411 (-909) Gross: $1.86 million (-63%) Average per theater: $770 Cume: $25.0 million

(13)Best in Show/Warner Bros.: Theaters: 477 (-20) Gross: $1.29 million (-15%) Average per theater: $2,694 Cume: $13.0 million

(14)The Legend of Drunken Master/Dimension: Theaters: 888 (-295) Gross: $0.74 million (-53%) Average per theater: $835 Cume: $10.9 million

(15)Lucky Numbers/Paramount: Theaters: 1,640 (-888) Gross: $0.71 million (-66%) Average per theater: $430 Cume: $9.0 million

(16)The Contender/DreamWorks: Theaters: 653 (-656) Gross: $0.59 million (-57%) Average per theater: $907 Cume: $17.1 million

(17)The Exorcist/Warner Bros.: Theaters: 455 (-495) Gross: $0.31 million (-62%) Average per theater: $680 Cume: $39.2 million

(18)Dr. T & the Women/Artisan Ent.: Theaters: 392 (-410) Gross: $0.23 million (-62%) Average per theater: $575 Cume: $12.5 million

(19)Requiem For A Dream/Artisan: (see EXPANSIONS above)

(20)Bring It On/Universal: Theaters: 283 (-188) Gross: $0.20 million (-21%) Average per theater: $710 Cume: $67.3 million

(21)Nutty Professor II: The Klumps/Universal: Theaters: 215 (-46) Gross: $0.18 million (-8%) Average per theater: $815 Cume: $122.9 million

(22)YOU CAN COUNT ON ME/Paramount Classics: (see OTHER OPENINGS above)

(23)WONDER BOYS/Paramount: (see OTHER OPENINGS above)

(24)NON-STOP/Shooting Gallery: (see OTHER OPENINGS above)

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