Unbelievably, The Pink Panther won this weekend, with $21.7 million. Yes, the former Jerk putting on a ridiculous French accent and doing his best Clouseau was clearly what people wanted across the pond.
Also opening well was the third entry in the darkly funny horror franchise Final Destination. Death stalked another pack of disposable teens, and plenty of the geen (that’s geek teen) crowd turned out to enjoy the mayhem. Final Destination 3 scored $20.1 million.
Third was another new arrival: Curious George. The cartoon monkey won the hearts of cinemagoers after charming a generation of American kids with his mischievous behaviour. The traditionally animated film opened to $15.3 million. And George certainly made a monkey out of Harrison Ford, who saw his family-in-peril techno-heist thriller Firewall slope into the charts at number 4 with $13.8 million. Looks like he’ll have to rob a few banks for real to get the figures up.
The highest returning entry was When A Stranger Calls. The stalker thriller took $10 million for fifth place this second weekend, for a running total of $34.8 million so far. Martin Lawrence’s Big Momma’s House 2 slipped down to number six with $6.8 million. Also sliding further down was Nanny McPhee, which grabbed $5.2 million at number seven.
Brokeback Mountain continued to ride the wave of awards acclaim to hang around in the top ten, shifting down to number eight with a weekend total of $4.1 million and a running total of $66.6 million to date. At nine was CG fantasy cartoon Hoodwinked, which ran off with $2.5 million, while rounding out the top ten – and about to make an exit from the chart – is Underworld: Evolution, which took in $2.5 million.