‘Knowing’ Tops Weak Weekend Box Office

'I Love You, Man,' 'Duplicity' round out top three, but attendance lowest in eight years.

The Box-Office Top Five

#1 “Knowing” ($24.8 million)
#2 “I Love You, Man” ($18 million)
#3 “Duplicity” ($14.4 million)
#4 “Race to Witch Mountain” ($13 million)
#5 “Watchmen” ($6.7 million)

The box office isn’t experiencing any March madness this year. Despite a variety of offerings and some A-list names, the top five came in with a whimper, not a bang. Business was down 6 percent, and attendance was the lowest it’s been in eight years.

Despite the lighter fare on offer, moviegoers chose to lose themselves in plane crashes and natural disasters. Nicolas Cage’s thriller “Knowing” took the top spot with $24.8 million, an event actually predicted within the movie itself.

But some preferred to indulge in a little bromance as the Paul Rudd/ Jason Segel comedy “I Love You, Man” manfully hugged its way to the #2 spot with $18 million. Despite its guy-meets-guy theme, exit polling indicated that the audience was split evenly between men and women, proving that “bromance” crosses all gender lines.

It was plain old guy-girl romance that took a more modest place on the chart, as “Duplicity” opened at #3 with a modest $14.4 million. Middling reviews dogged the Julia Roberts/ Clive Owen caper, but the pairing did attract a female audience of about 68 percent, and Universal has hopes that it will hang in for the long haul.

“Race to Witch Mountain” dropped all the way to #4, bringing in a mere $13 million for a total of $44.7 million. Still, it fared better in its second week than “The Last House on the Left,” which fell to #6 with only $5.9 million, for a total of $24 million.

It’s Warner Bros.’ “Watchmen” that really continued to flag at the box office. It fell 62 percent, landing at #5 with only $6.7 million. In three weeks it has brought in only $98.1 million. It will likely top $100 million, but it hasn’t had the staying power expected from repeat viewings, and is one of the lowest-earning comic book adaptations to date.

Upcoming Releases

DreamWorks’ “Monsters vs. Aliens” gets a 3-D release, while Lionsgate’s supernatural thriller “The Haunting in Connecticut” and Fox’s cop thriller “12 Rounds” get the 2-D treatment.

Check out everything we’ve got on “Knowing,” “I Love You, Man” and “Duplicity.”

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