Good things may come in threes, but this holiday season is delivering in twos — “The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers,” “Two Weeks Notice” and two Leonardo DiCaprios: “Gangs of New York” this week and “Catch Me If You Can” on Christmas.
The second installment in the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy got an early start, debuting Wednesday and earning $26 million on opening day. “Two Weeks Notice,” opening Friday, is a romantic comedy starring Hugh Grant and Sandra Bullock, while director Martin Scorsese’s epic historical drama “Gangs of New York,” also opening Friday, is a tale of mid-19th century New York gang wars and stars DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis and Cameron Diaz.
DiCaprio, who hasn’t released a movie since 2000’s “The Beach,” nearly competed with himself with “Catch Me If You Can,” a based-on-reality story of a teen con man with an FBI agent (Tom Hanks) on his trail (see “Hanks Gushes Over DiCaprio At ’Catch Me If You Can’ Premiere” ). “Catch Me If You Can” and “Gangs of New York” were originally scheduled to open on the same day until Miramax, the studio that bankrolled “Gangs”’ reportedly huge budget, decided to move their movie’s release date.
“The Wild Thornberrys Movie,” based on the Nickelodeon cartoon, also opens this week, while select cities will be treated to the limited releases of director Spike Lee’s “25th Hour,” Denzel Washington’s directorial debut, “Antwone Fisher,” and the police drama “Narc,” starring Ray Liotta and Jason Patric.
In addition to “Catch Me If You Can,” the live action Italian-made “Pinocchio” will also open on Christmas Day, followed two days later by the limited releases of the Golden Globe-nominated “Chicago” and “The Hours” (see ” ’Chicago’ Leads Pack Of Golden Globe Noms; Eminem Nabs Only One” ).