The Caped Crusader easily fended off a suburban witch to lead the North American box office for a second weekend, according to studio estimates issued on Sunday.
," starring British actor Christian Bale as Gotham City billionaire Bruce Wayne and his crime-fighting alter ego, sold about $26.8 million worth of tickets in the three days beginning Friday. After 12 days, the Warner Bros. release has earned $121.7 million, having cost about $150 million to make.
," Columbia Pictures' update of the 1960s TV series, starring Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, opened at No. 2 with $20.2 million. Michael Caine has a supporting role in both films.
"Mr. & Mrs. Smith
," a crime thriller starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, slipped one place to No. 3 with $16.8 million, taking the total for the 20th Century Fox release to $125.4 million after three weekends.
Two rookies rounded out the top five: "Herbie: Fully Loaded,
" a remake about a magical Volkswagen Beetle, starring Lindsay Lohan, earned $12.8 million for the weekend, and $17.8 million since getting a headstart with a Wednesday opening. The zombie horror "Land of the Dead" followed at No. 5 with $10.2 million for the three days.
While "Batman Begins" enjoyed a strong hold after a decent bow last weekend, and the three newcomers were generally solid, overall sales fell for the 18th consecutive weekend when compared with year-ago figures. According to published reports, this is the worst slump at the box office in about 20 years. Industry observers have pointed the finger at such factors as audience dissatisfaction with mindless summer fare, higher ticket prices and the increasing appeal of DVDs. Source