Wow, was it really two weeks ago? On its opening weekend, The Hangover surprised Hollywood and depressed the folks at Disney by knocking Up one notch down and staking out the number one box-office spot for two straight weeks. (The only film to do that so far this year.) We never saw it coming. Yeah, it was an obvious mid-level hit, but The Hangover, with a $35 million production budget and a bit more than that added for marketing has already turned a profit by tallying up $135 million, and the weekend has just started.
Where were we? Actually we were in Hollywood. Well, damn near, just over the hill in Burbank, on a bit of a movie mission ourselves. On its first weekend of release we did call the utter failure of Land of the Lost and we're feeling just a bit smug about Will Ferrell's challenge to Mike Myer's stupidity supremacy of last year's The Love Guru. All that's left to say on that score is that we hope both actors will work a little harder on the concept phase of releasing their next movies. Unfortunately our gut tells us that it will just mean a trip back to the sequel trunk to rehash old characters. We count just a summer or two until Austin Powers and Ricky Bobby are rebooted. Here's an idea - save us from half of the endless marketing and join forces for one film - maybe Austin Powers investigating NASCAR?
In the meantime, The Hangover tackled the likes of Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian and lots of held over Star Trek popularity, then a week later absolutely blew Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 off it's hanger straps, a film we really thought would open at number one and instead turned in a very disappointing $23 mil. opening weekend. It's worth noting that last weekend was also the opening of Eddie Murphy's latest family film offering, Imagine That, that no one imagined was going to land in the top three but didn't really expect to not make the top five. With only a $5.5 mil take, Imagine That made less than 2 grand for each theater it opened in. What's it going to take for Eddie Murphy to get back into a great movie?
And that brings us to yesterday's start of a three way showdown. Will The Hangover... hangover or will one of the newcomers, Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds in The Proposal or Jack Black and Michael Cera in Year One, make a dent. Right now the good news is at Disney (whose Pixar release UP has now crossed the $200 million mark) who have the floor with The Proposal which placed first in it's first day of release. That bumped The Hangover down to number two for it's first time in 10 days and Year One, appropriately we think, bringing up third. Our bet is that's the way it's going to stay through Sunday. But hey, we can't say we were out screwing around on the West Coast if we're wrong this time.
The weekend's still young - get out and buy a ticket and help us out here.