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Nikki Finke calls Ashton Kutcher a flop-machine

By Scott Mendelson

hollywoodnews.com”: “…any movie starring Ashton Kutcher is probably a bomb…” – Nikki Finke discussing Paramount’s unwillingness to personally send her a press briefing on No Strings Attached

An absolute falsehood. She bases her assertion on a single film, Killers, which opened with $15 million and grossed $93 million worldwide (which would have been fine had the film not cost $70 million). Valentine’s Day (an ensemble film where he had the lead role) opened to $56 million just last year. What Happened In Vegas opened to $20 million and ended up with $219 million worldwide (his biggest grosser ever) just under three years ago. Sure, he occasionally out-and-out whiffs (A Thing Like Love, My Boss’s Daughter), but Kutcher is a relatively consistent opener.

Of his fifteen wide-openers as a lead (including No Strings Attached, which should do about $20 million following a $7.3 million Friday), his lowest is My Boss’s Daughter with $4.2 million, followed by A Lot Like Love with $7.3 million. After that we get the lower-end, but okay openers: $13 million for Dude, Where’s My Car and Killers with $15 million. Then he he has seven films opening between $17-23 million. The two high-end outliers are Cheaper by the Dozen at $27 million and Valentine’s Day. Point being, Kutcher is a reliable opener who delivers mid-level opening weekends for movies that generally have mid-to-low budgets, films that generally gross (9 out of 14 so far) between $93 million and $219 million worldwide. Ashton Kutcher actually remains one of the more reliable stars working today, as long as you keep your budget in check.

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