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Box Office: ‘The Heat’ Burns ‘White House Down’; ‘Monsters University’ Still Valedictorian

Box Office: 'The Heat' Burns 'White House Down'; 'Monsters University' Still Valedictorian

In its second week, Pixar’s “Monsters University” is still top of the class with $46.2 million and a running total of $171 million. Pixar should enjoy the top spot while it lasts. With Universal’s “Despicable Me 2″ and Disney’s “The Lone Ranger” opening next weekend, ‘Monsters’ is bound to lose some of its family audience and may not even get a passing grade this 4th of July weekend.

Not quite as family-friendly, Fox’s R-rated buddy cop flick “The Heat opened to $40 million. Starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy, the film reunites McCarthy with “Bridesmaids” director Paul Feig. This weekend marks the biggest opening to date for both Melissa McCarthy (“Identity Thief” opened with 34.6 million, “Bridesmaids” $26.2 million) and Sandra Bullock (“The Blind Side” opened with $34.5 million, “The Proposal” $33.6 million). Not only do these numbers show that McCarthy is here to stay (somebody wake up Rex Reed), but that the “Bridesmaids” Revolution may be happening as people given two action-filled options (see more below) opted more for the one with two women receiving top billing. If “The Heat” stays strong at the box office, Hollywood may take the numbers to heart (why am I including Hollywood and heart in the same sentence?) and we’ll see more films passing the Bechdel Test. If you’re feeling “The Heat,” check out our review. To read more about more buddy cop movies, check out our “Bringing ‘The Heat’: 10 Good, 5 Bad And 5 Weird Buddy Cop Comedies” feature.

Another film faring well in its second week, Paramount’s “World War Z” made $29.8 million this weekend after doing surprisingly well last weekend. Getting its brain-eating fill at the box office, the zombie-plague film looks to stay around a bit longer than expected.

Not doing quite so well, Sony’s “White House Down” opened in an underwhelming fourth place with $25.7 million. The Roland Emmerich-directed film is about the POTUS (Jamie Foxx) and a wannabe secret service agent (Channing Tatum) defending the White House against a paramilitary group. Up against kid-friendly ‘Monsters,’ fresh ‘Heat’ and buzzed about “World War Z,” “White House Down” seems to have hit the wrong overused notes with audiences, especially with the similarly-premised “Olympus Has Fallen” having been released a few months ago. To add some salt to this weekend’s wound, “White House Down” failed to beat “Olympus Has Fallen” at the box office, the latter having made $30.3 million its opening weekend. And to twist the knife a bit more, “White House Down” cost $150 million to make, which means Sony is strategizing some full-court press on foreign markets this very moment. Maybe we’ll see Tatum and Foxx on Russian TV in glass boxes grasping for air-blown dollars in a month or so. It worked for Aaron Eckhart and Gerard Butler. If you want to see how other films with similar premises battled against each other in the past, check out our 15 Pairs of Dueling Movies & Their Respective Battles. If you’re down with “White House Down,” check out our review.

In fifth, “Man of Steel” has dodged a few bullets with $20.8 million this weekend. With a running total of $248 million, “Man of Steel” is the second highest-grossing film of 2013 so far, behind “Iron Man 3″ ($405 million), and on track to be the third non-sequel superhero adaptation of all time, behind “Iron Man” ($320 Million) and “Spider-Man” ($403 million). Dropping from eight-figure to seven-figure territory, “This Is The End” made $8.7 million, nearing the $75 million mark with a running total of $74.7 million. As predicted last weekend, “Now You See Me” has crossed the $100 million mark, having made $5.5 million this weekend. “Fast & Furious 6” is sticking around with $2.4 million, “Star Trek Into Darkness” has yet to succumb to the darkness, making $2 million this weekend, and “The Internship” failed to get the promotion with the largest percentage drop, earning $1.4 million.

As for specialty box office, it was not a big weekend. Pedro Almodovar‘s “I’m So Excited” soared above the rest, albeit not above the director’s past films. The in-air, sexually-charged comedy opened in 5 theaters and made $103,000, averaging $20,600 per theater (the biggest average per theater of the weekend, beating out the likes of “Monsters University” and “The Heat”). Comparatively, Almovodar’s “The Skin I Live In” made an average of $37,187 in 6 theaters during its opening in 2011 and “Broken Embraces” $53,556 in 2 theaters in 2009. In second place, Jem Cohen‘s “Museum Hours,” about a blossoming friend in an Austrian art museum, opened in 2 theaters and made $29,400, averaging $14,700 per theater. A strong holdover in its third week, Morgan Neville‘s “20 Feet From Stardom” expanded from 6 to 44 theaters and made an average of $5,284 per theater. The Weinstein Company-backed, Paul Andrew Williams-directed “Unfinished Song” expanded from 2 to 19 theaters and made an average of $5,005 per theater. Tel Aviv-based films did relatively well at the indie box office this weekend with Ziad Doueiri‘s “The Attack” and Rama Burshtein‘s “Fill The Void.” In its second week, “The Attack,” about a surgeon grappling with a dark secret, expanded from 3 to 36 theaters and made an average of $3,883 per theater. In its sixth week, “Fill The Void,” about an ultra-Orthodox family coping with the loss of their teenage daughter, expanded from 46 to 61 theaters and made an average of $3,027 per theater. Rounding out a meager weekend in the indie world, Neil Jordan‘s vampire thriller “Byzantium” opened in 6 theaters and made $18,000, averaging $3,000 per theater.

1. Monsters University (Buena Vista) – $46,180,000 ($171,006,000)

2. The Heat (Fox) – $40,000,000

3. World War Z (Paramount) – $29,800,000 ($123,722,000)

4. White House Down (Sony) – $25,700,000

5. Man Of Steel (Warner Bros.) – $20,820,000 ($248,660,000)

6. This Is The End (Sony) – $8,700,000 ($74,681,000)

7. Now You See Me (Lionsgate) – $5,500,000 ($104,681,000)

8. Fast & Furious 6 (Universal) – $2,410,000 ($233,313,000)

9. Star Trek Into Darkness (Paramount) – $2,040,000 ($220,501,000)

10. The Internship (Fox) – $1,425,000 ($41,705,000)

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