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Box Office Breakdown:  The Game Plan Scores the Win

The Game Plan

The execs at Disney must be loving themselves this week.  Not only are are they attached to one of hottest concert tours of the year, they have just taken a surprise win at the box office.  Although many had predicted good things for the terrorism thriller, The Kingdom, a simple father/daughter bonding film moved theatergoers this weekend.

At $22.9 million, The Game Plan took in almost $6 million more than the / vehicle. The movie about a football player who meets the daughter he never knew he had (how exactly is that a Disney storyline?) gave “The Rock” his second best opening (behind 2002’s The Scorpion King).

Meanwhile, Julie Taymor’s Across the Universe made its first entry into the Top 10.  After several weeks in limited release, the musical—which uses 33 Beatles songs to tell its story—will expand into more theaters come October 12th. 

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Box Office Breakdown:  Resident Evil Fights Off Competition

Resident Evil

Between the cheesy trailer and a cast that includes Ashanti—I never would have predicted much for Resident Evil: Extinction.  But given the success of ‘three-quels’ this year, I’m not sure why I was surprised.  Extinction nearly doubled the the box office take of it’s nearest competitor (Good Luck Chuck) and had the biggest debut of any Resident Evil installment.

But the real winner this weekend may be Into the Wild.  The film, based on the Jon Krakauer novel, earned over $51,000 per screen—one of the best averages ever for a movie in limited release.  Given the full-hour coverage on last week, Wild will probably be able to build on its impressive debut.  (The film goes nationwide on October 5th.)

Eastern Promises also turned out some promising numbers after its wide release.  The film took in nearly $6 million in its second week (though it still underperformed the last David Cronenberg/ movie, A History of Violence).  I’m hoping word-of-mouth about the fully-naked Mortensen fight scene (did I grab your attention?) will give this film the lasting power it deserves.

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In Theaters This Weekend (9/14)

The Brave One

If you need a little help planning your weekend, here are a few possible suggestions:

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