Box Office: July 16-18, 2010

Monday, 19 July 2010 08:49 Written by  Eric Walkuski
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Box Office: July 16-18, 2010

Coming into the weekend, all eyes were on Inception, Christopher Nolan's dreamy sci-fi tale starring Leonardo DiCaprio. Obviously, Nolan has tons of street cred thanks to his Batman films, but is that enough for a 2 1/2 hour movie where the story was still somewhat hazy to those walking into theaters? And while DiCaprio is one of the world's biggest movie stars, he's not a guaranteed hit-maker. (See: Body of Lies, Revolutionary Road.)

For one weekend at least, Warner Bros. has nothing to worry about; Inception performed very well, raking in an estimated $60 million during its first three days. It's the second straight hit for DiCaprio, whose Shutter Island opened to $41 million back in February on its way to $128 million domestic (with an additional $166.7 million overseas). As for Nolan, it's obvious that his name carries some weight with moviegoers, who were eager to see what the imaginative director had up his sleeve (it didn't hurt that the ad campaign featured epic visions of crumbling towers, folding cities and Matrix-like fight scenes). The real question for Inception will be if it has strong word of mouth with the Average Joe (of course the fanboys will see it 2 or 3 more times). It will need legs to recoup its reported $160 million budget - for right now though, life is but a dream over at Warner Bros.

Disney, however, might think it's having a nightmare, as their big-budget adventure The Sorcerer's Apprentice came in with a very un-magical $17 million weekend. The fantasy flick, from the seemingly can't-miss re-teaming of National Treasure trio Nicolas Cage, director Jon Turtletaub and producer Jerry Bruckheimer, actually opened on Wednesday, but couldn't do much with the extra two days, grossing an estimated $24 million total. For Disney - and Bruckheimer - it's the second straight live-action disappointment of the summer, after Prince of Persia opened to $30 million; that film has made only $89 million so far here in the states. (Lucky for the Prince, however, is the much more impressive $237 million it has made overseas). Pirates of the Caribbean 4 probably can't come soon enough...

As far as last week's holdovers go, Despicable Me did well, losing only 42% of its audience and amassing $118 million thus far. Universal's animated film, which reportedly had a budget of only $60 million, is already a hit wth a sequel being prepped as we speak. Less exciting news for Predators, though. The 20the Century Fox horrorshow dropped a whopping 72% in its second week, gobbling up only $6 million after a more-than-servicable $24 million opening. Obviously, the biggest fans of the extraterrestrial hit it up during its first weekend but didn't pass along many accolades to their friends. Right now I'm sure Fox is just glad it only cost around $40 million to produce.

Title..... Weekend Gross..... Total Cume.....

1. Inception - $60,400,000 - $60,400,000
2. Despicable Me -$32,734,000 - $118,365,000
3. The Sorcerer's Apprentice - $17,373,000 - $24,461,000
4. The Twilight Saga: Eclipse - $13,500,000 - $264,900,000
5. Toy Story 3 - $11,742,000 - $362,709,000
6. Grown Ups - $10,000,000 - $129,254,000
7. The Last Airbender- $7,450,000 - $114,833,000
8. Predators - 6,800,000 - $40,084,000
9. Knight & Day - $3,700,000 - $69,209,000
10. The Karate Kid - $2,200,000 - $169,202,000

Source: Box Office Mojo

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