Finally getting its wide release a month after hitting theaters, Clint Eastwood’s Gran Torino topped the box office this weekend, pulling in $29 million and kicking that damn dog (Marley & Me, which was ousted into fourth place with an $11.3 million weekend) off his lawn. This marks the highest grossing opening weekend for any of Eastwood’s movies and brings the movie’s five-week total to $40 million.
In an almost dead heat, two of the week’s new releases rounded out the top three as Bride Wars, starring Anne Hathaway, Kate Hudson and Candice Bergen, took in $21.5 million and David Goyer’s The Unborn, starring Odette Yustman and Gary Oldman, raked in $21.1 million.
David Fincher’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button finished off the top five with $9.4 million, while the week’s other new release, Bill Duke’s T.D. Jakes adaptation, Not Easily Broken, finished ninth with a respectable $5.6 million in a mere 724 theaters.
Check back next week at the Top of the Box Office report to see if Eastwood’s growl can stand up against a cluttered and somewhat confusing lineup of new releases that includes, in no particular order, a horror remake released one month prior to its obvious holiday tie-in, and in 3D no less, (My Bloody Valentine 3-D); a wide release for Ed Zwick’s Holocaust flick starring Daniel Craig, Liev Schreiber and Jamie Bell (Defiance); a hip-hop biopic starring Jamal Woolard, Derek Luke and Angela Bassett that looks like a made-for-TV movie (Notorious); an Indian kung-fu movie starring Akshay Kumar and Gordon Liu that will see the widest U.S. release of all time for a Bollywood picture (Chandni Chowk to China); and Hotel for Dogs.