Box Office Results: Jim Carrey Outruns The Chicken

Published June 25th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Two Jim Carreys for the price of one prove irresistible for movie-goers, according to ABC online on Sunday. Me, Myself & Irene, starring Carrey as a cop whose dual personalities fall for the same woman, debuted as the top weekend film with $24.2 million, according to studio estimates on Friday. 

Chicken Run, featuring the voice of Mel Gibson in an animated adventure of hens on the lam from their poultry farm, opened in second place with $17.5 million. 

With no other new movies in wide release, the overall box office slumped for the third straight weekend compared to last year. The top 12 movies grossed $101.4 million, down 20 percent from the same weekend a year ago. 

Studios expect things to heat up next weekend and into the Fourth of July as three big movies debut. Gibson’s Revolutionary War flick The Patriot opens Wednesday, followed by George Clooney in The Perfect Storm and Robert De Niro in The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle on Friday. 

“The box office hasn’t had a stellar blockbuster release in the past few weeks, but the stage is set for a really big weekend this coming week,” said Robert Bucksbaum of Reel Source, which tracks movie ticket sales. 

The record for a Carrey headliner is the $37.8 million his "Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls" opened with in November 1995, followed by $31.5 million for "The Truman Show" in June 1998. At least "Irene" did better than his last movie, his dramatic foray "Man on the Moon," which opened to $7.5 million last December.  

Me, Myself & Irene marked Carrey’s return to gross-out comedy as he reunited with Dumb & Dumber creators Peter and Bobby Farrelly. Carrey plays a mild-mannered Rhode Island policeman whose obnoxious alter-ego gets loose while escorting a suspect (Renee Zellweger; his real life girlfriend) to New York. 

Reuniting Carrey and the Farrelly brothers “is the closest thing to a sure thing you can get,” said Tom Sherak, head of distribution for 20th Century Fox, which released Me, Myself & Irene. 

“Somebody said comedy is king, and they’re right.” 

The movie’s R rating kept many teenagers out, lowering the potential gross. 

Playing in 3,020 theaters, Me, Myself & Irene averaged a healthy $8,013 per cinema, compared with Chicken Run’s average of $7,025 in 2,491 theaters. 

The Farrelly brothers were last in theaters with 1998's "There's Something About Mary." That film opened at No. 4 with $13.7 million, reached No. 1 in its eighth weekend and ended up with $176 million domestically. "Dumb and Dumber" opened at No. 1 with $16.4 million and ended up with $127 million.  

 

 

Chicken Run’s To Number 2 

 

Chicken Run, featuring the voice of Mel Gibson in an animated adventure of hens on the lam from their poultry farm, opened in second place with $17.5 million. 

It is the first film produced under a long-term deal between DreamWorks and British clay-animation studio Aardman, which created the Oscar-winning Wallace & Gromit shorts. The voice cast also includes Miranda Richardson, Julia Sawalha and Jane Horrocks. 

“One of the challenges was obviously marketing the concept of clay animation,” said Jim Tharp, DreamWorks’ head of distribution. “I think this is really a good start to using that medium to tell a story.” 

It was DreamWorks’ best opening ever for an animated film, edging the $17.2 million taken in by Antz over its first weekend. 

According to Reuters, Shaft, now at number 3, earned $17.5 million this week, Gone in Sixty Second’s third week produced $9.5 million. The Nicholas Cage movie was followed by Martin Lawrence’s Big Momma’s House, which netted $8.7 million, M-I:2 took home $8 million this week, earning the hit a total of $189 million, which surpasses the $181 of its prequel. Gladiator grossed $4 million this week and Titan AE rested at $3.7 million. At number 9 is Dinosaur, which earned $3.5 million and finally, falling down to number 10 is Boys and Girls which grossed $3.1 million. 

With no other new movies in wide release, the overall box office slumped for the third straight weekend compared to last year. The top 12 movies grossed $101.4 million, down 20 percent from the same weekend a year ago. 

However, studios expect things to heat up next weekend and into the Fourth of July as three big movies debut. Gibson’s Revolutionary War flick The Patriot opens Wednesday, followed by George Clooney in The Perfect Storm and Robert De Niro in The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle on Friday 

“The box office hasn’t had a stellar blockbuster release in the past few weeks, but the stage is set for a really big weekend this coming week,” said Robert Bucksbaum of Reel Source, which tracks movie ticket sales--Albawaba(Various Sources)

© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

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