Several tried but ultimatelyno newcomer could topple the might of Harry Potter And The Chamber OfSecrets and Die Another Day, which combined for a one-two ranking over thethree-day portion of a solid Thanksgiving Weekend and switched positions overthe full five-day holiday. According to studio estimates released today, ChamberOf Secrets took $32.2m in its thirdweekend for a $200.2m total score. The Warner Bros picture became the sixth ofthe year to pass $200m behind Spider-Man, Signs, Star Wars:Episode II - Attack Of The Clones, AustinPowers In Goldmember and My BigFat Greek Wedding. It passed themark two days later than predecessor Harry Potter And The Sorcerer'sStone, which grossed $220m in thesame period. Chamber Of Secretsalso passed $200m internationally after another superb overseas run thatbrought in around $55m.
MGM's Die AnotherDay finished a close second on $31mfor a $100.6m running score in its second week. Averaging $9,326 from 3,324venues, the 20th James Bond instalment has now scored a precious $100m for itsbeleaguered studio within 10 days, smashing the previous best mark for a Bond,which was 26 days set by 1999's The World Is Not Enough. Die Another Day ruled the five-day holiday period, however, taking$46.3m compared to $45.8m for Chamber Of Secrets.
Some way behind in third wasBuena Vista's The Santa Clause 2, which climbed one to third with $12.3m for a $113.9m cumulative scorein its fifth week. Opening in fourth was stablemate Treasure Planet with a disappointing $11.9m from three days and$16.5m from five with respective averages of $3,687 and $5,113 from 3,227theatres. Despite good reviews, the space-age version of Robert Louis Stevenson'sTreasure Island failed to reachthe $25m opening haul the studio executives had been hoping for but shoulddisplay strong legs during the Christmas season. Adam Sandler's 8Crazy Nights opened in fifth forColumbia with $10.1m from three days and $15.1m from five. The poorly receivedanimated Hanukkah tale averaged $4,035 and $6,032 respectively from 2,503sites.
Fox's Solaris, Stephen Soderbergh's new film of StanislawLem's novel, opened in seventh place on $6.78m from three days and $9.45mfrom five. The critics liked the movie, in which George Clooney plays a widowerpsychologist summoned to a haunted space station. Natascha McElhone co-stars.It averaged $2,817 (three days) and $3,927 (five days) from 2,406 sites.
Radar Pictures'thriller Wes Craven Presents: Theyopened in ninth place on $5.7m and $8m for five days. Laura Regan stars as atraumatised psychology student with a pathological fear of the dark. Thepicture was released under Miramax's Dimension Films banner and garneredmixed reviews, averaging $3,529 for three days and $4,953 for five from 1,615venues. Down three to eighth was Universal's drama 8 Mile, which added $5.91m in its fourth weekend for$107.57m. 21 pictures have grossed more than $100m each this year, which is onebehind 2000's record. New Line's The Lord Of The Rings: The TwoTowers opens on Dec 20 and willalmost certainly equal the record before year's end.
Bottoming out the table wasUniversal's The Ring, whichadded $5.5m in its seventh week for a superb $120m running total. Paramount'ssnowboarding action vehicle Extreme Ops flopped after dire reviews. It opened out of the top ten on $2.3m fromthree days and $3.1m from five. IFC's My Big Fat Greek Wedding exited the top ten finally, finishing 11th on $4.1mfor a $210.7m cumulative score. Overall the top 12 movies grossed $196.1m fromWednesday to Sunday, down 1.6% on Thanksgiving Weekend last year.
Estimated Top Ten US Nov29-Dec 1, 2002
Film(Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimated totalto date
1 (2) Harry Potter AndThe Chamber Of Secrets (Warner Bros)Warner Bros $32.17m $200.21m
2 (1) Die Another Day (MGM) Fox $31m $100.62m
3 (4) The Santa Clause 2 (Buena Vista) BVI $12.3m $113.9m
4 (-) Treasure Planet (Buena Vista) BVI $11.9m $16.5m
5 (-) Adam Sandler's8 Crazy Nights (Columbia) ColumbiaTriStar $10.1m $15.1m
6 (3) Friday After Next (New Line) New Line International $7.75m $25.61m
7 (-) Solaris (Fox) Fox International $6.78m $9.45m
8 (5) 8 Mile (Universal) UIP $5.91m $107.57m
9 (-) Wes CravenPresents: They (Miramax/Dimension) Radar/FocusFeatures $5.7m $8m
10 (6) The Ring (DreamWorks) UIP $5.5m $120m