Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted is Number One

HollywoodNews.com: As I often say, ranking is a relatively irrelevant stat that shouldn’t be used as a barometer for box office success. Both wide releases opened like rather well this weekend, and in this case the weekend gross of the second place film is arguably a more impressive achievement. Anyway, the number one film of the weekend was Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (review) which debuted with a pretty big $60 million. That’s pretty close to the $63 million that Madagascar 2 opened with back in 2008 and the $61 million that the first film debuted with over its four-day Memorial Day 2005 opening weekend. I had theorized that the film might explode even higher due to the utter lack of kid pics this summer (ala The Lorax earning $70 million in March after months of no family films), but I’m not going to pretend that this debut it’s ‘disappointing’. It’s still a solid debut that’s right in line with the previous entries of the series, give or take inflation and the 3D bump. It’s almost identical to the $60 million debut of Kung Fu Panda in June 2008 and the $59 million debut of Dreamworks’s Monsters vs. Aliens in March of 2009. The film earned an ‘A’ from Cinemascore and while it’s not quite that good it is a lot of visually creative fun. That most kids are already out of school made the film’s Friday ($20 million) play like a proverbial Saturday, meaning that there was no Saturday jump ($22 million) as is sometimes the case with animated films. The film played 45% 3D, 56% female and 54% under 25 years old.

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