Talladega Nights screeches into first again

Will Ferrell’s thick-as-old-gravy racing champion Ricky Bobby had some unexpectedly stiff competition this weekend, but still managed to win with Talladega Nights.

The biggest winner (aside from Ricky Bobby) was Step Up, a dancing drama which sees a wrong ‘un bloke with talent hook up with a preening but ultimately loveable ballet dancer. Despite this being the exact plot of Save The Last Dance, the teen girl crowd lapped up the sight of star Channing Tatum in prance togs, to the tune of $21.1 million.

In third was Oliver Stone’s 9/11 based-on-truth drama World Trade Center. The movie did the business everyone expected, making $19 million for the weekend and a $26.8 million total given its Wednesday release. It remains to be seen if it holds on like United 93. Fourth was animated cow comedy Barnyard, which grazed $10.1 million in its second weekend.

Opening low – but this was expected – was Pulse, the new horror thriller starring Veronica Mars’ Kristen Bell and former Lost islander Ian Somerhalder. The story of dead creatures infecting the living via a computer signal made $8.5 million. At sixth, that moneymaking behemoth, Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest finally began to sink into the waves of the charts – but don’t expect it to disappear altogether for a while.

Seventh place was a tie between the misfiring family comedy Zoom and Neil Marshall’s The Descent. With $4.6 million, it looks like Tim Allen’s recent successful run at the family box office has come crashing to an end. Meanwhile, The Descent continued to earn money in its second week.

Ninth went to Miami Vice, which is still far off making its way into profit. This weekend saw it take $4.5 million. Finally, there’s Monster House at 10th, which grabbed $3.3 million for a current US total of $63.7 million – hardly likely to scare the animated big boys at Pixar and DreamWorks.

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