Paramount's romantic comedy Failure To Launch was anything but a failure in itsopening weekend, soaring to number one on an estimated $24.6m weekend haul.
Buena Vista's comedy The Shaggy Dog - the picture that had beenexpected to dominate the weekend - opened in second place on $16m,marginally ahead of Fox Searchlight's horror remake The Hills Have Eyes, which opened on $15.5m.
Overall the top 12 titles grossed $92.4m, representing a drop ofapproximately 11% against the corresponding weekend in 2005.
Failure To Launch stars Matthew McConaughey as a 35-year-old living with his parentswho is lured out by a dream girl played by Sarah Jessica Parker. Tom Deydirected and Scott Rudin produced the picture, which was given the thumbs downby critics but still averaged an impressive $8,047 on 2,620 screens.
The Shaggy Dog stars Tim Allen as a man cursed by a spell that keeps on turninghim into a sheepdog. Brian Robbins' remake of Disney's 1959 comedy drewbelow-average reviews and averaged $4,576 on 3,057 screens.
French filmmaker Alexandre Aja's remake of The Hills Have Eyes fared a little better with the criticsand averaged $5,916 on 3,501 screens.
Wes Craven, the director of the 1977 original, produced thisversion, which charts the mayhem as a family of holidaymakers stumbles upon aclan of mutant cannibals in the New Mexico desert. Aaron Stanford, KathleenQuinlan and Vinessa Shaw star.
Warner Bros/Nu Image's thriller 16 Blocks slipped to fourth place on $7.3m for$22.7m after two weekends, Lionsgate's Madea's Family Reunion fell four to fifth for $55.8m afterthree, and MGM's The Pink Panther, released through Sony, ranks ninth on $74.6m after five.
The Libertine opened in 11th place on $2.2m through Miramax and The WeinsteinCompany, averaging $2,710 on 815 screens. Johnny Depp stars as the Earl ofRochester, a notorious scoundrel, poet and courtier. Lawrence Dunmore directed.
Next weekend's wide releases are She's The Man, a DreamWorks release through Paramount updatingShakespeare's Twelfth Night to a US high school setting; and Warner Bros graphic novel adaptation VFor Vendetta starringNatalie Portman and Hugo Weaving.
Estimated Top Ten North America Mar 10-12 2006
Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend
gross/Estimated total to date
1 (-) Failure To Launch (Paramount) UIP $24.6m -
2 (-) The Shaggy Dog (Buena Vista) BVI $16m -
3 (-) The Hills Have Eyes (Fox Searchlight) Fox Int'l $15.5m -
4 (2) 16 Blocks (Warner Bros) Warner Bros/Nu Image $7.3m $22.7m
5 (1) Madea's Family Reunion (Lionsgate) LGFI $5.8m $55.8m
6 (3) Eight Below (Buena Vista) Spyglass $5.4m $66.4m
7 (5) Aquamarine (Fox) Fox Int'l $3.7m $12.2m
8 (4) Ultraviolet (Screen Gems) SPRI $3.6m $14.8m
9 (6) The Pink Panther (MGM/Columbia) Fox Int'l $3.6m $74.6m
10 (8) Date Movie (Fox) Fox Int'l $2.5m $44.3m