'Electra'-fying competition faces 'Fockers'

Friday, January 14, 2005

U.S. and Canada — North American movie box offices were dominated by Universal pictures last weekend as two of its films, a comedy, Meet the Fockers, and a horror flick, White Noise, together raked in a combined $52.6 million, more than half the $98.3 all films made over the Jan. 7 weekend, according to film tracking firm Box Office Mojo.

But Universal's dominance of the North American box office receipts is in danger as 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Warner Brothers and Sony all have films debuting in wide release Friday.

New to wide release this week

After a two-week drought of new releases with Noise the only debut, the Jan. 14 weekend is relatively crowded as three new films bow and one Oscar-buzz movie expands into wide release.

  • Elektra (PG-13) [1:37] Among the new entries is the Jennifer Garner star vehicle Elektra a semi-sequel to 2003's comic-book based Daredevil where Garner reprise a role of anti-hero. Elektra bows in 3,204 theatres.
  • Coach Carter (PG-13) [2:14]: Paramount pictures releases the 134-minute metaphor heavy Coach Carter, a production of MTV Pictures, featuring Samuel L. Jackson in an inspirational inner-city high school sports movie. Coach Carter will debut in 2,524 U.S. and Canadian movie houses.
  • Racing Stripes (PG) [1:24]: Warner Bros. also enters the debut fray with its live-action talking animal family movie, Racing Stripes, featuring the voices from such a diverse cast as Snoop Dogg, Mandy Moore and Dustin Hoffman. Racing Stripes starts its run with 3,185 venues.
  • House of Flying Daggers (PG-13) [1:59]: Sony Pictures Classics is expanding its wire fu Chinese war epic, House of Flying Daggers. The film has made it to several critics best-of-the-year lists and is considered a front runner for Academy Award nominations in several technical categories.

Wide release films for the weekend of Jan. 14

The following films will be playing in at least 1,000 U.S. and Canada venues:

Source: Box Office Mojo
Rank Title Studio/Distributor Theatre Count Change
1. Meet the Fockers Universal 3,553 +26
2. Elektra 20th Century Fox 3,204 NEW
3. Racing Stripes Warner Bros. 3,185 NEW
4. Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events Paramount 2,540 -803
5. Coach Carter Paramount 2,524 NEW
6. White Noise Universal 2,279 +18
7. Ocean's Twelve Warner Bros. 2,105 -905
8. Fat Albert 20th Century Fox 2,043 -632
9. The Aviator Miramax 1,956 +89
10. Spanglish Columbia 1,662 -925
11. National Treasure Touchstone 1,610 -567
12. In Good Company Universal 1,565 +1,562
13. House of Flying Daggers Columbia 1,016 +874
14. The Incredibles Disney/Pixar 1,002 -617
15. Finding Neverland Miramax 1,000 -77