By Sarah Sluis
Midnight screenings of Sex and the City 2 grossed $3 million on Thursday, 20% more than the first
installment. This puts the femme-driven movie in position to earn at least $60 million this weekend. The first SATC earned $62.6 million over the four-day weekend, so the sequel should do just as well--if not better--in its 3,445 theatres. The sex 'n fashion comedy is unlikely to win any awards among critics, but it's sure to please the hordes of fans arriving to the theatres in stilettos. Who knows, maybe there will be a Sex and the City 3 in our future.
Going up against the girls' trek to Abu Dhabi, the competing release this week also features a Middle Eastern setting. Based on a popular video game, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time (3,646
theatres) will play in a couple hundred more theatres but is unlikely to match SATC2's performance. In its favor, the PG-13 film is fairly tame and should attract family audiences. But it's unlikely to expand beyond its fan base, unless it attracts positive word-of-mouth. According to critic Daniel Eagan "this effects-laden spectacle delivers just what it promises and no more," and is "well-crafted but not especially original."
Those delighted by Amelie and Delicatessen will be thrilled to catch Micmacs (5 theatres in NYC), the latest from director Jean-Pierre Jeunet. "A love
story that blossoms in an underground junkyard inhabited by eccentric, slightly roguish characters with kind hearts and pure souls," according to critic Rex Roberts, the movie also includes a few scenes in the Middle Eastern desert (a trend of the week). With a liberal political message (anti-guns) along with deft use of YouTube, this movie will be a winner for Jeunet fans and other adventurous moviegoers.
Rounding out the mix, George A. Romero's Survival of the Dead will open in 21 theatres. The movie centers on a minor character from Diary of the Dead, rewarding loyal fans. Critic Maitland McDonagh called the movie a "shaggy dog tale," but noted that "if anyone has earned the right to trifle with the cannibal dead, it's the guy who unleashed them on us in the first place."
On Tuesday, Screener will circle back to count the spoils of the four-day weekend.