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Opening Day: `Up' flies to $21.4 million, `Hell' digs in for $6.4 million

May 30, 2009 |  8:39 am


"Up," the latest from Disney/Pixar, sailed to $21.4 million at the box office on Friday. That's just under the $23.2 million that the last Pixar flick -- "Wall-E" -- took in on its opening day last year en route to a $63 million first weekend.

The strong Friday means "Up" will definitely finish its first weekend looking more like "Wall-E" than Pixar's "Ratatouille," which opened at $47 million. There were projections that "Up" could hit as high as $65 million this weekend, but those might be a tad too optimistic. A safer bet would be between $57 million to $60 million. Hardly numbers to sneeze at, however.

The other major movie opening of the weekend, director Sam Raimi's finance-themed horror film "Drag Me to Hell" posted $6.4 million on Friday, which puts it on pace for a respectable $17.5 million, but below industry estimates that pegged it generating $20 million. Last year's horror picture "The Strangers" opened at $21 million.

-- Joe Flint