Warner Bros' Training Day remained at the top of the box office over the weekend with an estimated $13.55m gross, some $90,000 more than MGM's Bandits which opened in second position with $13.46m. It was a disappointing performance for the action comedy starring Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton and Cate Blanchett which had been expected to open in the $20m range and MGM attributed its so-so showing to anthrax scares and warnings of terrorist attacks which kept target adult audiences at home in front of their TV screens.
Bandits was release in 3,207 theatres, scoring as site average of $4,198. Training Day, in its second weekend, hit $4,994 at 2,712 theatres. Reviews for Bandits, which is directed by Barry Levinson, were decidedly mixed, some critics calling it overlong and derivative.
Despite the political climate, the box office continued to outpace last year, this weekend up 6.4% from the same one last year. Buena Vista's Mafia comedy Corky Romano, a critically panned vehicle for Saturday Night Live star Chris Kattan, opened in third place with $9.3m, while Iron Monkey - a Cantonese language martial arts picture from 1993 - scored an impressive $6m gross in a new release presented by Quentin Tarantino through Dimension Films.
Meanwhile Universal Focus scored a hit with its 68-screen release of David Lynch's latest opus Mulholland Drive for which Lynch shared the director prize at the Cannes Film Festival this year. The film, originally shot and conceived as a TV pilot and subsequently remolded into a theatrical film by Lynch with the backing of StudioCanal, grossed $708,000 for a strong site average of $10,412.
ESTIMATED TOP TEN US OCT 12-14
Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimated total to date
1 (1) Training Day (Warner Bros) Warner Bros/Village Roadshow $13.5m $43.6m
2 (-) Bandits (MGM) Hyde Park/MGM-20th Century Fox $13.5m --
3 (-) Corky Romano (Buena Vista) BVI $9.3m --
4 (2) Serendipity (Miramax) Miramax International $9m $26.6m
5 (3) Don't Say A Word (20th Century Fox) New Regency/Fox International $6.7m $41.8m
6 (-) Iron Monkey (Dimension) $6m --
7 (4) Zoolander (Paramount) UIP $5.1m $35.8m
8 (5) Joy Ride (20th Century Fox) New Regency/Fox International $4.9m $14.7m
9 (6) Max Keeble's Big Move (Buena Vista) BVI $4m $10.9m
10 (7) Hearts In Atlantis (Warner Bros) Warner Bros $2.8m $20.7m