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The Dark Knight Express Rolls for 4th Straight Weekend

The Reject Report: July 18

I am beginning to sound like a broken record week after week here at The Reject Report. Every weekend it seems as if some new movie comes along to try and challenge the weekend domination of The Dark Knight. And every weekend, the same thing happens: the challenge ends up falling short, and the Caped Crusader ends up winning the weekend. So it went this weekend with Pineapple Express failing to topple The Dark Knight despite a very strong start on Wednesday and Thursday. The Batman wins again with a weekend haul of $26 million to Pineapple Express’ $22 mil.

I have to say though, I thought for sure I was going to be writing a “The Dark Knight is finished” column after Wednesday night’s numbers came in. The Judd Apatow-produced Pineapple Express opened that evening with a $12.1 million haul, the best Wednesday night ever seen in the month of August. The Dark Knight was buried in third place at $5 million, behind even The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 ($5.7 million). Pineapple Express also won Thursday night. By Friday, though, it became clear that this weekend was likely to be yet another Dark Knight win, as Pineapple Express barely edged out The Dark Knight $7.8 mil to $7.5 mil — a much tighter margin than expected. And then the weekend matinees came in heavily for The Dark Knight and that clinched yet another weekend for this steamroller of a movie.

Of course, if Pineapple Express counted the full five days up against The Dark Knight, then Pineapple Express can claim that IT prevailed, with a haul of $40.4 million including the Wednesday and Thursday numbers. Still, this does not take away from the weekend victory of The Dark Knight, which has now ended every weekend on top of the box office for four weeks straight against fairly stiff competition. The last movie to accomplish this feat was The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King ages ago. The Dark Knight is now up to $441 million domestic and should pass Star Wars to become Number 2 of all time very soon, likely by next weekend. You can talk about ticket price inflation all you want, but this is quite an achievement by any measure.

The numbers:

1. The Dark Knight $26 million
2. Pineapple Express $22.4 million
3. The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor $16.1 million
4. Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 $10.7 million
5. Step Brothers
$8.9 million
6. Mamma Mia!
$8.0 million
7. Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D $4.8 million
8. Hancock $3.3 million
9. Swing Vote
$3.1 million
10. WALL-E $3.0 million

As an aside The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 has now made $19.7 million since its own Wednesday opening.

I dunno about you, but I am out of things to say. This has been another great weekend for The Dark Knight, a pretty decent week for Judd Apatow (for a change), and another week of milestones at the box office. It’s been a heckuva run for this latest Batman movie and for this franchise, with more milestones ahead.

See you later this week for more of the Reject Report! Watch out for another special early edition as Tropic Thunder rolls out Wednesday.

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