Well, not quite, but the second installment of the 2008 summer superhero-movie trifecta did lurch in theaters this weekend, and while The Incredible Hulk's $54.5 million take doesn't quite stand up to Iron Man's debut (or, presumably, the sure-to-be-massive The Dark Knight's), it was more than enough to land the franchise's latest big-screen attempt at No. 1–though it did not match the opening numbers of Ang Lee's oft-maligned precursor, Hulk, whose shadow still looms over this reboot.
While the bad press that has swirled around this weekend's No. 3 entry, The Happening, didn't leave it completely DOA (we call that The Speed Racer Effect), it could be blamed for the fact that M. Night Shyamalan's latest was beat out by last week's No. 1, Kung Fu Panda (No. 2 with $34.3 million). More likely though, is the fact that the flick is rated R–Shyamalan's first R-rated film ever, in case you haven't been bludgeoned with that fact enough–and in fact, The Happening scored the second-highest debut of the year from an R-rated movie, after Sex And The City (which lands at the No. 6 spot this week with $10.2 million).
Word of mouth likely is to blame for You Don't Mess With The Zohan's 57-percent tumble this week, the biggest drop of the top 10. The generally poorly reviewed (it scored only 35 percent fresh on rottontomatoes.com) comedy dropped to No. 4 this week with $16.4 million. After four weeks, Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull has settled into the middle of the pack at No. 5 ($13.5 million), while Iron Man lands at No. 7 after seven weeks–the longest stay of any of the top 10.
More detailed numbers and the rest of the top 10 can be found at boxofficemojo.com.