Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve reached a point in movie industry history where a $71 million opening weekend is considered a colossal, franchise-killing failure. Not that we’re complaining, exactly: Shrek Forever After, the fourth and (we hope) final entry in the increasingly desperate fractured fairytale series, easily won the weekend with its $71.3 million take, but fell far short of the $121.6 million raked in by last Shrek movie in the same frame. The news is even worse when you factor in the price-gouging of 3D and IMAX exhibition, which should have led to higher grosses even if fewer people opted to see it. And with Memorial Day bringing more competition in the likes of Prince Of Persia and Sex And The City 2, it’s time at the top stands to be short lived. The only good news for Shrek 4? It wasn’t MacGruber, a barely-screened-for-critics Macgyver parody that inspired an unusually philosophical pan from the New York Times’ A.O. Scott and a mere $4.1 million in ticket sales for sixth place.
Not much happening in limited release, other than the warmly received Michael Douglas vehicle Solitary Man opening strong with $22,250 per screen on four screens. The documentary Exit Through The Gift Shop continues to be the big story of the early summer, taking another $4400 per screen to raise its total to $1.6 million and counting, a huge number for a non-fiction feature.
For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.