'Clones' Controls Friday with Estimated $12.8 Million
by Brandon Gray
May 25, 2002
Despite solid debuts posted by Insomnia, Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron and Enough, Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones maintained its dominance over the box office as it raked in an estimated $12.8 million on Friday, over 75% more than its nearest competitor Spider-Man. After nine days, its total has soared to $154.1 million, moving up 18 spots from Thursday to No. 91 on the all time chart.
Clones's trajectory points to around $64 million over the four-day Memorial Day weekend, and about $50 million for Friday to Sunday alone. By Monday—its 12th day of release—it will likely have crossed the $200 million mark, making it the second fastest movie ever to do so behind Spider-Man's nine day sprint.
However, all isn't well in that galaxy far, far away. George Lucas' $115 million digital epic lagged behind its predecessor The Phantom Menace for the fifth day in a row. Menace pulled in $13,531,561 on its comparable Friday in 1999, a gross that would equal over $15 million today when ticket price inflation is taken into account. Its total at that point was $153,728,197 after 10 days, or about $173 million adjusted.
Menace went on to earn $66,902,422 over the long Memorial Day weekend, $51,399,863 of which coming from the Friday to Sunday portion. The four-day session would be the equivalent over $75 million today.
If it keeps up this pace, Clones will be trailing Menace in raw grosses by Day 15 at the latest. Add in the fact that it will be facing a much more crowded marketplace in coming weeks than Menace did, and Clones will likely come up well short of Menace's $431,088,297 total.
Some may note that The Empire Strikes Back was the lowest grossing of the original trilogy, but it actually sold more tickets than Return of the Jedi, and it took two months before its weekend grosses began to fall behind Star Wars.
Meanwhile, Spider-Man clung to second place with an estimated $7.3 million, down 38.5% from last Friday. In the process, it became the fastest movie to hit the triple century mark with $305.1 million in the till after 22 days. The Marvel Comics adaptation is on course to do around $36 million for the four-day weekend.
Bowing at No. 3, the $50 million Al Pacino-Robin Williams thriller Insomnia tracked down an estimated $6.0 million from 2,610 theaters, pointing to around $24 million over Memorial Day weekend. Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron rode into fourth place with an estimated $4.5 million from 3,317 venues. DreamWorks' $80 million traditionally animated feature could end the weekend in a photo finish with Insomnia for the show position. Rounding out the top five was the Jennifer Lopez female empowerment flick Enough, taking in an estimated $4.5 million from 2,623 sites. It looks like it will strike $19 million over the long weekend.