Even with his often-overwhelming internal conflicts and occasionally malfunctioning web, Spider-Man managed to take the #1 spot at the box office this weekend.
"Spider-Man 2" spun circles around all other films, taking in $115.8 million, according to early estimates. The superhero sequel had a larger opening than its predecessor, reeling in $180.1 million in its first six days of release (the film opened on Wednesday), and beat the record for a mid-week opening previously held by "The Matrix Reloaded," which took in $146.9 million last year in its first six days in theaters. "Spider-Man" raked in $144.2 million in its first six days in theaters in 2002.
"Fahrenheit 9/11" dropped a spot from #1 to #2. The highly controversial Michael Moore documentary, playing in nearly 1,000 fewer theaters than all the other films in the box-office top 10, took in $21 million.
The comedic duo of Shawn and Marlon Wayans helped keep "White Chicks" in the upper half of the top 10, bringing in $12 million in its second week in theaters to land at #3.
It was a tight race for the #4, #5 and #6 spots this week, with "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story," "The Notebook" and "The Terminal" separated from each other by a mere $125,000. "Dodgeball," however, managed to knock out the competition, coming in at #4 with more than $10.4 million in ticket sales. The romantic flick "The Notebook" took the #5 spot with more than $10.3 million, while the Tom Hanks-starrer "The Terminal" landed at #6 with $10.2 million.
"Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" and "Shrek 2" continue to prove that fantasy flicks have staying power. "Harry Potter" hangs on to a spot in the top 10 for a fifth week, sliding in at #7 with more than $8.1 million, bringing its total box-office pull to more than $225.3 million. The total earnings for "Shrek 2" easily surpass all other films in the top 10 with $410.2 million in ticket sales. "Shrek 2" raked in $7.9 million and dropped from #7 to #8 this week.
Rounding out the top 10 are "Garfield," which comes in at #9 with $3.6 million; and "Two Brothers," which takes the #10 spot with $3.6 million.
Overall, ticket sales were up for the Fourth of July weekend this year from the corresponding weekend in 2003.
Next week, look for "King Arthur" (opening Wednesday) and Will Ferrell's "Anchorman" to make appearances on the countdown. Also out is the Metallica documentary, "Metallica: Some Kind of Monster."
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