‘Titans’ rules theaters

  • Sun Apr 4th, 2010 9:49pm
  • News

Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — The gods of Mount Olympus are the new rulers of the weekend box office. The ancient Greek action remake “Clash of the Titans” debuted at No. 1 with $61.4 million, according to studio estimates Sunday.

Adding Thursday night preview screenings, the movie totaled $64.1 million.

Released by Warner Bros., “Clash of the Titans” features “Avatar” star Sam Worthington as demigod hero Perseus and Liam Neeson as his father, Zeus, king of the Olympian deities.

Opening at No. 2 with $30.2 million was Lionsgate’s sequel “Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married Too?”, reuniting filmmaker Perry with Janet Jackson and other co-stars for another comic drama about eight friends and their relationships.

The previous weekend’s top movie, DreamWorks Animation’s Viking adventure “How to Train Your Dragon,” ran a close third with $29.2 million, raising its 10-day total to $92.3 million.

Miley Cyrus’ teen drama “The Last Song” premiered at No. 4 with $16.2 million. The Disney release raised its total to $25.6 million since opening Wednesday. Written by best-selling author Nicholas Sparks specifically for the “Hannah Montana” star, the movie casts Cyrus as a sullen teen spending the summer with her estranged father.

“Clash of the Titans” continued Hollywood’s hit run of 3-D movies, which has included “How to Train Your Dragon” and the blockbusters “Avatar” and “Alice in Wonderland.”

With $8.3 million, Disney’s “Alice in Wonderland” came in at No. 5 for the weekend, raising its domestic total to $309.8 million and its worldwide haul to $722 million.

“If three out of the top five films doesn’t spell a mandate for 3-D, I don’t know what does,” said Paul Dergarabedian, box-office analyst for Hollywood.com.

Like “Alice in Wonderland,” “Clash of the Titans” was shot in 2-D format and converted to 3-D afterward. Critics gripe that such conversions provide lower-quality 3-D images, but audiences do not seem to mind.

“Clash of the Titans” played on about 6,500 screens at 3,777 theaters, with 1,810 of those screens — or 28 percent — showing it in 3-D. Yet the movie did 52 percent of its business in 3-D format, with fans paying a few dollars more than 2-D tickets cost.

“Why Did I Get Married Too” was Perry’s second-biggest debut, behind last year’s “Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to Jail” with $41 million.

Lionsgate, which has distributed all nine of Perry’s movies, had thought his latest might come in around $25 million for the weekend.

“Every time we do one of his movies, I wake up on Saturday and think, why do I always underestimate him?” said David Spitz, head of distribution for Lionsgate. “He’s unbelievable. He knows his audience.”