After a scare from a "Big Fish" last week, "The Lord of the Rings: The
Return of the King" was finally usurped at the box office after a month
in the top slot by the latest Bennifer offering, "Along Came Polly."
No, not that Bennifer; the new power coupling consists of Ben
Stiller and Jennifer Aniston.
The romantic comedy about unlucky-in-love, germ-phobic risk assessor Stiller took in $27.6 million, according to studio estimates ([article id="1484058"]click for photos from "Along Came Polly"[/article]), giving it
the highest grossing Martin Luther King holiday weekend opening ever,
beating the previous champ, 2001's "Save the Last Dance" ($23.4
A week after its studio erroneously claimed it had beat out "The Return of the King," the Tim Burton tall-tale fantasy "Big Fish" held
on to a distant second place with an estimated $10.4 million. Nipping
at its heels was the new Ice Cube motorcycle drama, "Torque," which
came in at third with $10.3 million ([article id="1484192"]click for photos from "Torque"[/article]), followed by "King" with $10.2
million. The final installment of Peter Jackson's epic trilogy has
already banked $326.8 million domestically and more than $771 million
around the globe, with estimates holding for it to potentially cross
the billion-dollar mark.
The Steve Martin ensemble comedy "Cheaper by the Dozen" continued its
strong showing at #5 with an estimated $8.7 million, putting its
one-month total at $111 million. Both the Tom Cruise drama "The Last
Samurai" and the Jack Nicholson comedy "Something's Gotta Give" also
passed the $100 million mark over the weekend.
The only other new movie in wide release, the PG-13 cartoon "Disney's Teacher's Pet," was a flop, limping into the #13 spot on grosses of
$2.4 million. The news was better for the critically acclaimed Charlize
Theron drama "Monster," which picked up nearly 80 percent more business
in limited release to land at #16 with $1.5 million in estimated
Rounding out the top 10 are "Cold Mountain" at #6 with $7 million; "Something's Gotta Give" at #7 with $6 million; "My Baby's Daddy" at #8
with $3.6 million; "The Last Samurai" at #9 with $3.12 million and
"Calendar Girls" at #10 with $3.1 million.
With the top 12 movies taking in $95.6 million overall, box-office
receipts were four percent less than the same weekend last year.