After a stellar New Year’s Day box office, ticket sales didn’t slow down Friday as the country, yes, continued to go to the dogs. Showing little signs of audience fatigue, “Marley & Me” grossed $9.7 million for $92 million in the bank and skyrocketing well past the magic $100 million mark by end of day Sunday.
Following close behind, and no doubt benefiting from improved TV spots, is Adam Sandler”s “Bedtime Stories.” The Disney comedy pulled in $8.6 million on Friday for a new cume of $73.5 million. After an unexpected rough start, the Adam Shankman directed flick should eventually hit the comedy star”s expected $100 mark, but isn”t the holiday blockbuster the mouse house was expecting. Probably a good lesson that just putting Russell Brand in your movie doesn”t age it up for the whole family. You actually have to make it funny for viewers who won’t be returning to elementary school on Monday.
Solidifying its Oscar candidacy, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” came in third with a strong $7.1 million and a more than expected holiday total of $67.7 million. The Brad Pitt drama could end up anywhere with $125-150 million in total receipts by the time it”s theatrical run winds down. Still, Pitt will have to sleep at night knowing his epic was crushed at the box office by his ex”s melodramatic [spoiler] dead dog movie.
Impressively, three stars besides Sandler have shown some resiliency over the past week. Jim Carrey”s comedy “Yes Man” jumped up to no. 4 on Friday with $5.6 million and a new total of $47.1 million. Tom Cruise”s remarkable comeback, “Valkyrie,” arrived in the fifth slot with $5.5 million and $52 million in nine days. Will Smith, recently named Hollywood”s biggest star by theater owners across the country, has also recovered well from a rough start and his tearjerker brought in $4 million for a new total of $54 million. All three films should end their runs somewhere between $75-90 million.
The complete top ten results for Friday, Jan. 2, according to Variety, are listed below. Look for an overall recap and more detailed analysis on the performance of numerous specialty releases on Sunday.
1. “Marley & Me” $9.7 million, $92.2 million total
2. “Bedtime Stories” $8.3 million, $73.5 million total
3. “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” $7.1 million, $67.7 million total
4. “Yes Man” $5.6 million, $47.1 million to date
5. “Valkyrie” $5.5 million, $52 million total
6. “Seven Pounds” $4 million, $54 million to date
7. “The Tale of Despereaux,” $2.8 million, $39.6 million to date
8. “The Day the Earth Stood Still” $1.9 million, $71.3 million to date
9. “Doubt” $1.8 million, $15.5 million to date
10. “Twilight,” $1.8 million, $174 million to date