‘The Dukes Of Hazzard’ Outfoxes Critics, Lands At #1

'Wedding Crashers' and Wonka each slip one spot to #2 and #3, respectively.

Move over, Vaughn and Wilson, there’s a new comedic duo in town — and with the help of their buxom co-star and flashy ride, these good ol’ boys are stealing the box-office spotlight.

Starring Seann William Scott and Johnny Knoxville as Bo and Luke Duke and Jessica Simpson as their short-shorts-wearing cousin Daisy Duke (see “Jessica Simpson: Southern Comfort”), “The Dukes of Hazzard” bowed at #1 on the box-office top 10 with more than $30.5 million, according to early estimates. Largely panned by reviewers, the flick finds the Duke brothers — aided by Daisy and Uncle Jesse (Willie Nelson) — wreaking havoc while trying to save their family farm from corrupt politician Boss Hogg (Burt Reynolds).

“Dukes” pushed last week’s #1 film, “Wedding Crashers,” into the #2 spot. Starring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson as a pair of smooth operators who sneak into wedding receptions in search of wine and women (see “Such A Happy Couple: Wilson And Vaughn Crash Hollywood’s A-List”), the comedy earned $16.5 million this week, returning to the box-office position where it debuted four weeks ago.

“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” also moved a notch down in the top 10, slipping from #2 to #3 with over $10.5 million. Tim Burton’s retelling of Roald Dahl’s children’s classic stars Johnny Depp as the chocolate mogul, reuniting with his “Finding Neverland” co-star Freddy Highmore, who plays “the luckiest boy on earth,” Charlie Bucket (see “Tim Burton: Odd Man In”).

“Sky High,” the other family-friendly flick in the top 10, slipped a notch from the #3 spot where it debuted last week to land at #4 with more than $9 million. The film stars Michael Angarano as Will Stronghold, the son of superheroes played by Kurt Russell and Kelly Preston. Despite his parents’ powers, Will — who is enrolled in an elite high school for superhero offspring — shows no sign of similar gifts (see ” ‘Sky High’ Is An Old-School Teen Comedy That’s Also Sharp, Smart Fun, By Kurt Loder” ).

“Must Love Dogs” must have an affinity for the #5 slot on the box-office top 10. Starring Diane Lane as a divorced preschool teacher who renounces dating until her sister places a personal ad in her name, the romantic comedy stuck to the middle for the second week in a row, earning more than $7.4 million.

Rocketing from the #10 spot to the #6 spot is the critically acclaimed documentary “March of the Penguins,” which pulled in more than $7.1 million. The film follows emperor penguins for a year as they take on their annual journey across the Atlantic and back to their breeding ground.

Rounding out this week’s box office top 10 are “Stealth,” which drops from #4 to #7 with $5.8 million; “Fantastic Four,” which falls from #6 to #8 with more than $4 million; “War of the Worlds” which holds at #9 for a second week with more than $3.5 million; and “The Island,” which slides from #7 to #10 with more than $3.1 million.

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

Next week, look for “Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo,” “Four Brothers” and “The Skeleton Key” to debut on the box-office top 10.

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