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Evan tops the US box office

Given that Universal pumped more than $170 million into the production of Evan Almighty, we’re sure the executives were hoping for a slightly better opening than the distinctly low result achieved by the new Steve Carell comedy.

$32 million might seem like a lot of money, but with that huge estimated budget to be made back, this won’t seem like much of a heavenly success. Especially when you consider that 1408, the new Stephen King Adaptation – which is mostly John Cusack on his own in a scary hotel room – opened in a thousand fewer cinemas and still managed to grab $20.1 million. That nudged it into second, ahead of even Fantastic Four: Rise Of The Silver Surfer, which sank to third in its second week, a huge drop of 65% and hardly good news for the blockbuster release. It took $20 million this weekend.

At fourth are the boys of Ocean’s Thirteen, doing decent if unspectacular business and making $11.3 million at the weekend for a running total of $91 million. While it secured a place above Knocked Up in this weekend’s chart, the comedy continues to hold really well, boasting a relatively minor 25% drop and bringing its total to within one day’s earnings of beating The 40-Year-Old Virgin’s total tally.

Sailing into sixth place are those Pirates Of The Caribbean, as At World’s End docked in the middle of the charts with $7.2 million. The pirate adventure is now up to $287 million. Surf’s Up wiped out again, with just $6 million, dropping down to seventh and seeing its total earnings rise to a meagre $47 million. Looks like penguins are no longer box office gold.

Eighth place went to Shrek The Third, still grabbing the kiddie business, making $5.7 million for a $307 million total. Expect it to drop like a stone once Pixar’s latest slice of cinematic genius, Ratatouille, hits the charts next weekend.

Teen ‘tec Nancy Drew also failed to set kiddie imaginations on fire and has now slumped to ninth, making just $4.5 million this weekend and $16.1 million so far. The producers might want to slow down those sequel plans. Finally, Michael Winterbottom’s take on the Daniel Pearl Kidnapping story could only track down $4 million, despite boasting a well-publicised lead role for Angelina Jolie.

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