Hellboy had a good weekend. Will Smith had an impressive one. Brendan Fraser had an okay one. Eddie Murphy didn't. Have any of the above.
Hellboy II: The Golden Army topped the Friday-Sunday box office with $35.9 million, according to Exhibitor Relations estimates today.
In its second weekend, Smith's Hancock slipped to No. 2, but definitively proved its bad reviews were no match for its star's appeal and moviegoers' taste. The superhero tale grossed another $33 million, and scored the modern box office's ultimate compliment—ticket sales fell less than 50 percent.
Fraser's Journey to the Center of the Earth, a 3-D remake of the classic Jules Verne adventure, opened in third, with $20.6 million.
Murphy's Meet Dave, meanwhile, looked like it was in for a brief, unpleasant run.
The high-concept comedy about little space people bowed in seventh with $5.3 million, the lowest total for a debuting Murphy wide release since the actor's 2002 film The Adventures of Pluto Nash.
It is generally believed that, in box office discussions, it is not a good thing to be compared with Pluto Nash. Ever.
Other box office notes:
- Hellboy II is now the top-debuting Hellboy movie of all time. The original Hellboy opened with $23.2 million in 2004.
- It's a good thing for Sony that Hancock held up as well as it did, for emotional as well as financial reasons. Sony released the first Hellboy but passed on the sequel, leaving Universal to score the box office win with Hellboy II.
- One reason Hancock held up as well as it did: The movie's CinemaScore, as determined by audience polling, was a solid B-plus, significantly better than the movie's Tomatometer reading, as determined by movie-review sampling at Rotten Tomatoes.
- Angelina Jolie had a better weekend than Wanted (fifth place, $11.6 million; $112 million overall), which didn't really have all that bad a weekend itself.
- In its fifth weekend, The Incredible Hulk ($2.2 million) stood at $129.8 million overall, and continued its eerie mimicry of Ang Lee's Hulk, which stood at $128.1 million after five weekends, per Box Office Mojo stats.
- The Incredible Hulk fell out of the Top 10, just like (wait for it…) Lee's Hulk, which fell out of the Top 10 in its fifth weekend.
- Sex and the City ($1.7 million) departed from the Top 10 in its seventh weekend, and after a $148.2 million haul.
- In limited release, the French thriller Tell No One enjoyed a Hancock-ian second weekend, grossing $241,000 at 18 theaters, per Box Office Mojo, for the biggest per-screen average of any movie.
- Josh Hartnett's August did so-so, taking in $6,505 at one theater.
- Harold, a new comedy about a balding 14-year-old played by Two and a Half Men's Spencer Breslin, wasn't especially virile, with $10,300 at three theaters, Box Office Mojo said.
Here's a recap of the top-grossing weekend films based on Friday-Sunday estimates compiled by Exhibitor Relations:
- Hellboy II: The Golden Army, $35.9 million
- Hancock, $33 million
- Journey to the Center of the Earth, $20.6 million
- WALL-E, $18.5 million
- Wanted, $11.6 million
- Get Smart, $7.1 million
- Meet Dave, $5.3 million
- Kung Fu Panda, $4.3 million
- Kit Kittredge: An American Girl, $2.4 million
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, $2.3 million