Sunday, August 23, 2009

Black Sheep @ The Box Office: Glorious Box Office Basterds

There wasn't much question as to whether Quentin Tarantino's INGLORIOUS BASTERDS would debut atop the box office this weekend. It's stiffest competition going in was DISTRICT 9, leftover from last weekend. No, the question was how well it would do and it has done very well. With a well-deserved R-rating, INGLORIOUS BASTERDS nailed down a per screen average of nearly $12K for a grand total of over $37 million. This is Tarantino's highest opening weekend ever, easily besting the former record holder, KILL BILL VOLUME 2, with $25 million. Depending on how it performs in the weeks to come, INGLORIOUS BASTERDS could easily surpass PULP FICTION ($107.9 million) as Tarantino most success film of his career. It was definite redemption for the filmmaker, whose last film, the DEATHPROOF portion of the GRINDHOUSE double bill opened to a miserable $11.6 million. The second film in the GRINDHOUSE set was directed by Robert Rodriguez, whose SHORTS, posted disappointing results this week, landing in 6th place. I thought the kid friendly pic would do well with little competition in sight but it must be time for kids to think about going back to school instead of crazy wishing stones. The only other Top 10 debut went to the Alexis Bliedl vehicle, POST GRAD, which, coming in tenth place, barely passed the final exam. Female driven pics continue to hold well, from THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE, THE UGLY TRUTH and JULIE & JULIA, all posting declines under 30%. The near 60% decline is probably a little disappointing to the DISTRICT 9 people considering the phenomenal word of mouth it has generated. It won't stop the two greenlit sequels though. Outside the Top 10, ADAM saw a 22% jump after adding 29 screens but the big success story belongs to Renee Zellwegger whose period comedy, MY ONE AND ONLY, opened to the best per screen average of any film this week, with a $15K average.

NEXT WEEK: Ang Lee gets the jump on everyone else, opening his lovefest, TAKING WOODSTOCK on two screens on Wednesday before bumping to over 1000 screens on Friday. Outside of that I hope you like horror because your only new options are Rob Zombie's HALLOWEEN 2 (3000 screens) and THE FINAL DESTINATION (3000 screens), the supposed last in the series and the first in 3D.


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