Cashing in on the enormous success of his Batman movies, director Christopher Nolan convinced Warner Brothers to gamble on Inception, which, unlike the bulk of summer blockbusters, is original, ambitious, and made for adults. That sounds like the set-up for an auteur catastrophe, but Nolan’s talent for melding spectacle with big ideas was enough to propel Inception to #1 at the box office, with a very healthy $60.4 million on its opening weekend. In a gloriously topsy-turvy box-office frame that saw Nolan’s expensive art film celebrated by the masses, producer Jerry Bruckheimer, Hollywood’s most reliable purveyor of braindead hits, fell on his face for the second time this summer. Though Bruckheimer’s earlier Prince Of Persia: Sands Of Time did well enough overseas to recoup its flaccid domestic haul, it’ll take a lot of creative accounting to dub The Sorcerer’s Apprentice a hit. Despite uniting the team (Bruckheimer, director Jon Turteltaub, star Nicolas Cage) behind the lucrative National Treasure adventures), this hectic repurposing of the Goethe/Fantasia classic for the Harry Potter age failed to connect with audiences, taking just $17.4 million over the weekend and $24.5 million total since its Wednesday open.
Nothing much to report on a slow weekend in limited release, though The Kids Are All Right continues to be a major arthouse hit in the making, earning another $27,000 per screen on 38 screens—almost enough to break into the Top 10.
For more detailed numbers, visit Box Office Mojo.