‘Resident Evil: Apocalypse’ Spooks Its Way To Top Spot

'Cellular,' 'Without a Paddle' round out the top three.

Given moviegoers’ endless obsession with thrillers and sci-fi flicks, is it
any surprise which new film took up residence at the top of the box-office heap this week?

“Resident Evil: Apocalypse” easily bowed at the #1 spot, bringing in $23.7
million — more than twice what the #2 film earned — according to
early estimates. The sci-fi action flick is the sequel to 2002′s “Resident Evil.”
In that film, an exposed virus turns a group of researchers in a secret
facility into zombies, and a military task force led by Alice (Milla Jovovich) is
sent to contain the virus before it infects the world.

Once again, Jovovich is back as Alice. Along with a few colleagues, she
fights to survive in the contaminated Raccoon City, which is full of dead people
(and one grossly mutated creature) who have been exposed to the virus.

The next entry on the list concerns a virus of another sort: cell phone
dependency. “Cellular,” starring Kim Basinger, Chris Evans and William H. Macy, is
a thriller in which Ryan (Evans) receives a call on his mobile from Jessica
Martin (Basinger), a stranger who claims that she’s been kidnapped, might be
killed soon and needs Evans’ help (though, inconveniently, she can’t tell him
where she is being held). “Cellular” bowed at #2 with $10.6 million.

“Without a Paddle” has been bobbing around the upper half of the top 10 for
the past few weeks, rising and sinking between the #2 and #3 spots. This week,
the comedy, which stars Matthew Lillard, Seth Green and Dax Shepard, drops a
spot to #3 with more than $4.5 million.

Even Jet Li’s martial-arts techniques couldn’t thwart the three flicks that
kicked “Hero” out of the #1 spot it held for two consecutive weeks. In its
third week in theaters, “Hero” dropped three notches to #4 with more than $4.4
million.

The stars of “The Princess Diaries 2,” meanwhile, have been enjoying their
royal engagement at the #5 spot so much that they decided to stay another week.
The flick, in which Anne Hathaway’s princess character must marry before she
can claim the throne, took in more than $2.9 million.

“Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid” was unable to enjoy similar
stability, however. The film, in which a group of scientists hunting for a powerful
flower have their lives threatened by a group of massive reptiles, dropped
three spots to #6 with $2.9 million.

Rounding out the top 10 this week are “Vanity Fair,” which rises one spot
from #7 to #8 with more than $2.7 million; “Collateral,” which drops one spot
from #7 to #8 with $2.7 million; “Napoleon Dynamite,” which takes a four-spot
leap to emerge on the top 10 at #9 with more than $2.6 million; and “Paparazzi,”
which takes a big six-notch dive from #4 to #10 with $2.6 million.

Overall, ticket sales were down from the corresponding weekend last year.

Next week, look for “Wimbledon” and “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow”
to debut in the box-office top 10.

For more with Milla Jovovich, check out our interview, “Milla Jovovich: Cold Kicks In Canada.”

Check out everything we’ve got on “Resident Evil: Apocalypse.”

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