Films Weekend Per Screened Lots of money
1 Inglourious Basterds $37,602,000 $11,881 $37,602,000
2 District 9 $18,900,000 (-49.4%) $6,197 $73,491,000
3 G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra $12,500,000 (-44.0%) $3,162 $120,531,000
4 The Time Traveler’s Wife $10,025,000 (-46.2%) $3,355 $37,448,000
5 Julie & Julia $9,000,000 (-25.3%) $3,654 $59,288,000
6 Shorts $6,600,000 $2,126 $6,600,000
7 G-Force $4,205,000 (-39.2%) $1,642 $107,315,000
8 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince $3,515,000 (-31.6%) $1,816 $290,275,000
9 The Ugly Truth $2,850,000 (-35.9%) $1,446 $82,887,000
10 Post Grad $2,800,000 $1,429 $2,800,000

This just in: A Dawn of the Dead t-shirt. Shit, there’s nothing more in.

There are a couple filmmakers I’m in the bag for. Like some senators fighting against health care reform who happen to be in the pocket of the insurance industry, I should be honest about those filmmakers I hope make movies that make monies. But if I say I’m biased, it’s only because they are interesting, talented filmmakers who make sometimes challenging material, and I want people to see their films. This list would include Quentin Tarantino (along with Edgar Wright, Brian De Palma, Rian Johnson, The Coens, etc.), and such is definitely the case with Inglourious Basterds. Fortunately for all of us, the picture opened, and if the boards are to be believed, it fuckin’ played. Others were targeting a $30 Million dollar weekend, and when the Friday numbers came in that got elevated to $35, but here we see a $37 Million and change opening which suggests that this mother fucker played. It also suggests this will be Quentin’s first film since Pulp Fiction to cross the $100 Million dollar mark, unless those numbers fall off. I know that I’m going back at least once more (if not twice), so it’s got that going for it, which is nice. Brad Pitt is the top-liner, but he is more a member of an ensemble, so the question is whether people will care that he doesn’t have much to do. Next week will tell the tale, but at worst, the film walks with $80.

District 9 had a 60% fall off on Friday, but it leveled out to only drop 50%. With $73 in the bag, it’s safe to say the picture will cross the $100 Million dollar mark, which is great for a film that cost $30 Million. I was watching Drew McWeeny on Attack of the Show, and they were talking about how this was a small budget, and for some context, Pulp Fiction cost $8 Million and grossed $100. That was a long and slow play and this is a film that will likely be on home video by the end of the year. This industry is skewed when $30 Million becomes a low budget. That said, the film is playing, and will continue to, but once it crosses the $100 Million dollar mark, it’s done its job.

Since G.I. Joe opened, its played okay. Not great, not amazing, but also not terrible. Currently it’s on the long slow climb to $150. It should make it. Time Travellers Wife is sorta playing, I expected it to have a similar to Julie and Julia’s 25% drop this week,but it’s near $40 Million, and it still has a chance to double that, though $60-$70 might be more likely. Don’t be surprised if J&J gets to $100, though. Never unerestimate Streep.

Some have noted (especially Scott Weinberg) that Friday was a kind of Grindhouse as Shorts opened opposite Tarantino’s latest. But RR’s kiddie movie was sold shodily and made $6 Million and change. August is a time for dumping. But it didn’t do much damage to G-Force, which would seem to be the direct competition. G may try to get to $120 domestic, but it’s already a semi-hit. Harry Potter may also try and get to $300, which it might, but Warners doesn’t care, so it’s a 50/50 on that one. (For the record, Transformers 2 is at $398.5 Million. It’s going to get to $400 sooner or later). Heigl is doing well, but I don’t know if ninth place and $82 Million can translate to $90. I like that serious critic Glenn Kenny was bemoaning the success of this film because it will forever deny us a look at Heigl’s boobis. Then again, if a serious director wants her to do serious nudity…

You know what’s great about Fox? If they don’t care, they really don’t care. Post Grad is deader than Elvis. Next week brings more movies. Let’s see if I can write two columns.