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Weekend Box Office: Limitless Leads but Not Quite the Perfect Drug

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By Chris Kavan - 03/21/11 at 12:16 AM CT

Although Limitless prevailed at the box office, proving Bradley Cooper can hold is own as a leading man, the overall box office was still down 9% from the same weekend last year, extending Hollywood's losing streak. The $19 million opening for Limitless couldn't quite measure up to Unknown and The Adjustment Bureau, which both opened with over $21 million.

The other two wide releases, the courtroom drama The Lincoln Lawyer and the alien road-trip comedy, Paul, were neck-and-neck in 4t and 5th place. Mathew McConaughey's Lawyer edged out Paul, $13.4 million to $13.2 million, though a final tally could have the two films switching places. Lincoln Lawyer had a small bump, and plenty of publicity, from a Groupon deal.

The family-friendly Rango held the #2 spot and dropped only 32% to take in $15.3 million and up its total to about $92.6 million. Battle: Los Angeles, like most sci-fi films, took the biggest hit, dropping 59%, though it held on to the #3 spot with $14.6 million and now stands at $60.6 million, better than the recent Skyline and The Day the Earth Stood Still.

The film that had the biggest audience holdover from last week was Mars Needs Moms, which dropped only 23%, but it's a small consolation as the $15.4 million total after two weeks still qualifies it as an absolute bomb for a $150 million budget (not including marketing).

I can say that I'm finally excited for a film this coming week, as I've been looking forward to Sucker Punch for quite awhile. I will be even happier if it can finally cure these box office blues, along with the Diary of a Wimpy Kid sequel, Rodrick Rules and the drama Miral, which was originally scheduled for a 2010 release, but will finally get its due.


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