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September 29, 2008 |

By Dustin Rowles | Box Office Round-Ups | September 29, 2008 |

25. The Lucky Ones ($208,000): What the hell happened here? Solid cast (Rachel McAdams, Tim Robbins), good director (Neil Burger, The Illusionist), and decent marketing. Despite being released on over 400 screens, it could only muster up $200,000 — that’s less than 4 people per screening. I think Hottie or the Nottie fared better in its first weekend (and maybe even Blonde Ambition). What the hell? People just don’t want to see anything that has even the smallest association with the Iraq War, I suppose. Ranylt has the review up this afternoon, and I’m as curious as anyone to know if it’s as bad as the box-office receipts suggest.

9. Miracle at St. Anna ($3.5 million): This one was another dud, despite the presence of Spike Lee and a huge marketing push (I’ve been seeing trailers since June). What’s going on with war films these days? There’s been plenty of them over the last three or four years, but I don’t think there’s been a successful one since before 9/11 — Pearl Harbor, in May of 2001. Could that be right? Can anyone think of a war film since then that’s grossed more than $50 million?

5. Burn After Reading ($6 million; $45 million): You may have a hard time believing this, but in terms of box-office, Burn After Reading is now the Coen Brothers second-largest grossing film, after No Country for Old Men, having surpassed O Brother Where Are Thou? on Sunday. Fun Fact: Burn’s $19 million opening was the biggest of Frances McDormand’s career.

4. Fireproof ($6.5 million): Seriously?

3. Lakeview Terrace($7 million; $25 million): Like the Coen Brothers, Neil LaBute has been around for a while now, and is considered a fairly reputable director by most (save for The Wicker Man), but it took LaBute 11 years to finally make a film that will eventually gross more than $30 million. That’s the power of Sam Jackson, folks. Also, very little competition.

2. Nights in Rodanthe ($13 million): The $13 million opening was on par with the other three Nicholas Spark’s adaptations (A Walk to Remember, $12 million; Message in a Bottle, $16 million; and The Notebook, $13 million), but I seriously doubt this one will have the legs of the other three. Let’s hope the hell not, anyway; he’s got 9 other books, all of which I’m sure are ripe for adaptation (one of which is already in production: Dear John, starring Amanda Seyfried and Channing Tatum). All is not lost, however; the Rodanthe comment thread exploded into a slew of dating advice over the weekend. I’m going to caution against accepting too much dating advice on Pajiba, lest you find yourself with a vagina full of sand.

1. Eagle Eye ($29 million): Not bad — Eagle Eye edged out Jackass: Number Two for the fourth best September opening of all time (number three, strangely enough, was The Exorcism of Emily Rose, which I barely remember existing, which just proves how little competition there is in September). Here’s what the Dreamworks PR flak had to say about the box-office performance:

“The conceit of the film is intriguing to all. Between GPS, employee codes, bank PIN numbers, this could conceivably be within the realm of possibility within a few years.”

Ummm. No. No it can’t. But congratulations, Chip Sullivan — you’re officially responsible for the dumbest thing a studio spokesperson has ever uttered. That’s no easy feat, my friend.

But check out the comment thread for Eagle Eye, 70-plus comments on the merits of Shia LaBeouf; it’s the world vs. Barbado Slim. And he holds his own.

Save Shia!

The Weekly Box-Office Round-Up / Dustin Rowles

Box Office Round-Ups | September 29, 2008 |

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

Fireproof | Pajiba Love 09/29/08

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