It was a glass half-full, glass half-empty kind of weekend at the box office for "Funny People," writer-director Judd Apatow’s comedic meditation on fame, humor, life, and death.
According to figures from Hollywood.com Box Office, it opened at the top spot with an estimated $23.4 million, better than Apatow’s The 40 Year-Old Virgin ($21.4 million) — hence, the glass is half full. But that figure is far lower than the debut for Apatow’s “Knocked Up” ($30.7 million), and it’s the worst opening for a comedy for star Adam Sander since his 2000 turkey “Little Nicky” — hence, the glass is half empty. Of course, “Funny People” was billed more as a thoughtful dramedy than a balls-out Sandler laugh-fest, and when matched against the opening frames for Sandler’s serious efforts “Reign Over Me,” “Spanglish,” and “Punch-Drunk Love,” Funny People is far and away the winner — and the glass is half full again. But whether it’s a comedy, drama, or dramedy, “Funny People’s” $75 million budget is quite the handful of pretty pennies, and with a shaky “B-” Cinemascore, the film is going to have a hard time overcoming tepid word-of-mouth — and we’re back to the half-empty glass. So let’s just move on, shall we The cup of a certain adolescent wizard, meanwhile, definitely runneth over. Thanks to its debut on IMAX (and the premium ticket prices that come with it), “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” came in second with $17.7 million, a soft 40 percent drop from last weekend for $255.5 million total.
EW.com: Box office top 10
EW’s picks of the week
At this rate, the film is well on its way to the upper ranks of the ‘Potter’ franchise. The guinea pigs of “G-Force” were right on its heels at third place, nibbling up $17.1 million, a decent 46 percent drop for a two-week cume of $66.5 million. And Katherine Heigl’s romcom “The Ugly Truth” took in an additional $13 million, a 53 percent drop for fourth place and $54.5 million total. Of the two other wide releases this weekend, at least the sci-fi family comedy “Aliens in the Attic” — which grossed a meager $7.8 million for fifth place — broke into the top 10. The torture porn flick “The Collector” collected a grisly $3.6 million and plopped dead at 11th place. Box office on a whole was down a massive 22 percent from last year, when The “Dark Knight” and “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” both took in over $40 million, but the specialty market showed some vibrant signs of life. Bone fide indie hit “(500) Days of Summer” expanded to 266 theaters for $2.7 million, a $10,338 per theater average. And three widely disparate films opened in four theaters each to healthy per theater averages: The quirky romantic comedy “Adam” ($16,566 per theater), the stylish vampire film “Thirst” ($13,793 per theater), and the eco-thriller-cum-documentary “The Cove” ($13,600 per theater). Finally, a true milestone was reached this weekend by “The Hangover.” With $5.1 million this weekend for a running total of $255.8 million, the summer’s biggest die hard blockbuster has passed “Star Trek” and (for a brief moment) “Harry Potter 6” as the third highest grossing movie of the year.