Ice Age 2 still hot at the US Box office

The studio estimates put the frosty ‘toon at the top despite a big drop

In what was an easily predictable outcome, Ice Age sequel The Meltdown continued to flood the box office charts across the pond, washing away all comers with a $34.5 million second week. But when your competition is the new film starring David Spade and Rob Schneider, a thriller that everyone thinks is a dodgy Tarantino rip-off or a cliché-fest with Antonio Banderas teaching inner city kids to ballroom dance, the chance of an upset is low anyway.

As with last week’s opening, the animated behemoth continued to break those creative “records” – the 49% drop in this second week represents the largest for a cartoon release not opening over a thanksgiving weekend. Or something. At this rate, Uwe Boll will be able to claim a successful film because it was attended by more people with ginger hair on a Tuesday than any other film featuring Kristanna Loken as Sonic The Hedgehog.

Schneider and co didn’t embarrass themselves, however. Geek sports comedy The Benchwarmers scored a healthy second place with $20.5 million and even Antonio should be happy with Take The Lead’s $12.7 million start as he and his hip-cha-cha-hop dancing students sashayed into the charts.

Spike Lee’s Inside man slipped from second to fourth this weekend, grabbing $9.2 million, which put it ahead of the week’s third new entry, Lucky Number Slevin. The twisty thriller with Josh Hartnett, Morgan Freeman, Lucy Liu and Bruce Willis couldn’t quite attract the crowds to its
Slick style, taking $7.1 million for fifth.

Sixth was nabbed by Failure To Launch, which, with our supply of flight puns now almost exhausted, continues on a wing and a prayer with $4.1 million. The film has now made more than $79 million in the US alone. Seventh place went to roller-skating coming-of-age pic ATL, which hasn’t exactly become the sleeper hit it hoped, though its low budget should mean a decent return thanks to a $17.2 million US total to date.

Eight was V For Vendetta, slipping down from fifth place and now likely to creep quietly out of the charts with a disappointing $62 million earned in the States. Worldwide, the film has grabbed $76 million, hardly Spider-Man-level box office, and putting it in the middle rank of Moore adaptations - LXG earned more and From Hell was less successful. Seems there’s no accounting for taste… Ninth place went to the last of the new entries, niche comedy and English teacher’s nightmare Phat Girlz, which made $3.1 million.

Last, but most definitely not least is Thank You For Smoking. An early limited release hasn’t seen it scratch the charts before now, but the jet-black satire of cigarette firm spin has shot in at 10 with $2.4 million. It’s one to watch when it arrives in the UK in June.

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