Box-Office Has A Big “Hangover”

Update (June 7th): A strong surge for Pixar on Saturday put “Up” at #1 with $44.2M (a mere 35% drop), while “Hangover” was a close second with $43.3M. The expensive “Land of the Lost” was #3 with $19.5M, while Nia Vardalos comedy “My Life in Ruins” utterly bombed at #9 with $3.2M.

Original (June 6th):Todd Phillips’ R-rated comedy “The Hangover” dominated box-office business on Friday, pulling in a stunning $16.5 million first day haul and easily eclipsing both the competition and early estimates.

The film now looks set for an opening weekend haul in the high $40 million range – one of the biggest comedy openings ever – up there with the likes of “Meet the Fockers ($46M), “American Pie 2” ($45M) and “Hitch” ($43M) while far ahead of “Wedding Crashers” ($33M), “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” ($21M) and “Old School” ($17M).

Reviews are very good with 75% & 6.6/10 on Rotten Tomatoes, about equal to “Wedding Crashers” (75% & 6.7) and stronger than Philips’ previous two well-liked comedies “Old School” (60% & 5.6) and “Road Trip” (59% & 5.9).

On Metacritic it scored a 73/100 which was far ahead of those other aforementioned comedies (‘Crashers’ with 64, ‘Road’ with 55, ‘Old’ with 54) and one of the best wide release scores of the year so far behind only “Up,” “Drag Me to Hell,” “Star Trek,” “Coraline” and “Adventureland”.

The money and reaction wasn’t so favorable towards “Land of the Lost”. The Will Ferrell-led film adaptation of the classic kids series was seemingly marketed to the littlies but reviews this past week have revealed a lot of adult-targeted gross-out humor. The film scored a mere 28% & 4.4/10 on Rotten Tomatoes, followed by a mere 32/100 on Metacritic.

Either way the expensive ‘Lost’ pulled in a mere $7.2M on its first day, giving a likely estimate at around $20M for the weekend.

Pixar’s “Up” looks to have only a small decline from its astonishing opening last week, with a $13.5M haul on Friday for a 3-day estimate around the $40M range. The extremely well-received feature looks set to be one of Pixar’s most profitable films.