It was one of the most dismal weekends of the year at the North American box office, down 7% from the same weekend last year and some 15% from last weekend. The reasons: two films due to open this weekend (Training Day and Big Trouble) were postponed, the one left - Glitter, pictured here - was a flop, and audiences preferred to stay at home due to nerves over terrorist attacks, especially on Friday night to watch the Sept 11 telethon.
The two hour telethon, which featured stars of film, TV and music, raised over $200m for charities, but sounded the death knoll for movie-going on Friday night. Paramount's Hardball continued to play reasonably well, topping the box office with an estimated $8.2m take, bringing its ten-day total to $19.4m.
Glitter - a 20th Century Fox release domestically, Columbia TriStar internationally - took just $2.5m and was the number 11 movie of the week. Critically panned, the film is directed by Vondie Curtis-Hall and marking the big screen debut of pop diva Mariah Carey.
Carey ironically was one of the stars of Friday night's telethon which was watched by over 60 million. Featuring the likes of Julia Roberts, Tom Cruise, Will Smith, Tom Hanks, Cameron Diaz and Jim Carrey, as well as musical acts Paul Simon, Sting, Neil Young, Celine Dion and Willie Nelson, it was screened on over 30 stations including all four networks.
Meanwhile still playing well in theatres were Dimension's The Others, which climbed back to the number two slot and crossed the $80m gross mark, and New Line's phenomenal hit Rush Hour 2 which climbed up to number four again, bringing its total to $216m.
ESTIMATED TOP TEN US SEPT 21-23
Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimated total to date
1 (1) Hardball (Paramount) Fireworks Pictures $8.2m $19.4m
2 (5) The Others (Dimension) StudioCanal $5.2m $80.2m
3 (2) The Glass House (Columbia) Columbia TriStar $4.4m $11.7m
4 (6) Rush Hour 2 (New Line) New Line International $3.7m $215.7m
5 (3) The Musketeer (Universal) MDP Worldwide $3.5m $22.6m
6 tied (4) Two Can Play That Game (Screen Gems) Columbia TriStar $3.2m $18.2m
6 tied (7) Rock Star (Warner Bros) Warner Bros/Bel Air $3.2m $15.4m
8 (6) Rat Race (Paramount) Fireworks Pictures $3m $51.6m
9 (7) Jeepers Creepers (United Artists) VCL/Capitol Films $2.8m $33.6m
10 (8) American Pie 2 (Universal) UIP $2.6m $139.6m