Paramount Pictures' movie-of-the-video-game Lara Croft: Tomb Raider made a big impression at the North American box office at the weekend, taking a massive $48.2m despite across-the-board bad reviews. The movie is the third consecutive hit for director Simon West after Con Air and The General's Daughter and confirms its Oscar-winning star Angelina Jolie as one of the biggest female stars in the world.
The film was co-financed by Mutual Film Co which has sold rights on in several territories and the film's phenomenal success will be a powerful factor in the future of the company which has kept a low profile since its partners Gary Levinsohn and Mark Gordon separated last year. Levinsohn is currently running the company, although there is still dispute over who will own the Mutual name.
Meanwhile Buena Vista's animated actioner Atlantis: The Lost Empire went wide onto over 3,000 screens for a strong $20.4m, although that might not be enough to propel the film over the $100m mark. Meanwhile DreamWorks SKG's animated giant Shrek continued to soar, taking in $12.9m for a grand total of $197.2m. It is now the year's biggest grossing film, will be its first to top $200m and could well beat Toy Story 2 to become the number two biggest animated film of all time.
But Disney's Pearl Harbor is showing staying power at the box office raking in another $9.5m this weekend to bring its four week total to $160m. It is now likely to join Shrek and Universal's The Mummy Returns in the $200m club. Only three films - Mission: Impossible 2, How The Grinch Stole Christmas and Cast Away crossed that mark in the whole year 2000.
Next week's new openers are Universal's The Fast And The Furious and Fox's Dr Dolittle 2.
ESTIMATED TOP TEN US JUNE 15-17
Film (Distributor)/International distribution/Estimated weekend gross/Estimated total to date
1 (-) Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (Paramount) Mutual Film Co/UIP $48.2m -
2 (13) Atlantis: The Lost Empire (Buena Vista) BVI $20.4m $20.9m
3 (2) Shrek (DreamWorks) UIP $12.9m $197.2m
4 (1) Swordfish (Warner Bros) Warner Bros $12.15m $39.2m
5 (3) Pearl Harbor (Buena Vista) BVI $9.5m $160m
6 (4) Evolution (DreamWorks) Columbia TriStar $6.5m $25.4m
7 (5) The Animal (Columbia) Revolution/Columbia TriStar $5.7m $45.4m
8 (6) Moulin Rouge (20th Century Fox) Fox International $5.2m $36.8m
9 (7) What's The Worst That Could Happen' (MGM) Hyde Park/Fox $2.7m $27.3m
10 (8) The Mummy Returns (Universal) UIP $2.4m $193.2m