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First look: 'Toy Story 3' tops box office; 'Jonah Hex' plays to tumbleweeds [Updated]

TS3a Boosted by universally positive reviews and higher 3-D ticket prices, "Toy Story 3" posted the biggest opening ever for a Pixar movie and the second best of summer 2010, while Western comic-book adaptation "Jonah Hex" was a major box-office misfire.

[Update, 3:05 p.m.: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said "Toy Story 3" had the best opening of Summer 2010. In fact, "Iron Man 2" was higher.]

"Toy Story 3" sold $109 million in tickets in the U.S. and Canada this weekend, according to an estimate from distributor Walt Disney Pictures. That's the biggest opening ever for a Pixar movie, even accounting for ticket-price inflation, signifying huge interest in seeing the film.

Indeed, though its opening is behind that of 2007's "Shrek the Third," which started with $122.5 million and virtually tied with 2004's "Shrek 2," "Toy Story 3" had the biggest opening-day gross of any animated movie, collecting $41 million on Friday.

"Toy Story 3" is only the second Pixar film to play in digital 3-D, providing a big boost to its box office thanks to ticket-price surcharges. Last year's "Up" was in 3-D as well (though in 929 fewer theaters) but opened to a significantly smaller $68.1 million.

The only chink in the "Toy Story 3" opening-weekend armor: Its ticket sales declined 10% from Friday to Saturday. That's rare for animated movies, which usually get a boost from Friday to Saturday as more families come to matinees on the weekend. It's unlikely the movie suffered from negative word of mouth; the average audience grade was A, according to market research firm CinemaScore. It could mean, however, that despite the bigger opening, "Toy Story 3" won't end up with a higher final gross than past Pixar movies. The most successful, "Finding Nemo," had a total domestic gross of $339.7 million.

[Updated, 9:45 a.m.: "Toy Story 3" grossed $4 million from midnight shows early Friday morning, which accounts for the Friday-Saturday decline. It's very unusual for an animated movie to play midnight shows on its opening day.]

Overseas, "Toy Story 3" opened in several major markets that Disney said represented about 25% of its international potential and grossed a solid $44.8 million, with particularly strong showings in Latin America and China.

"Jonah Hex," meanwhile, opened to a dismal $5.1 million, the second-worst debut of any movie this year, ahead of only the "Saturday Night Live" comedy "MacGruber." But "Jonah," which stars Josh Brolin and Megan Fox, wasn't an inexpensive comedy, as Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures spent a sizable, if not huge, $47 million on production, including the cost of extensive re-shoots that apparently did little to increase the film's appeal.

Cyrus In limited release, "Cyrus" opened to a fantastic $180,289 at four theaters in Los Angeles and New York. The comedy, starring John C. Reilly, Marisa Tomei and Jonah Hill and directed by the Duplass brothers, took in an average $45,072 per location, the second-best start for a movie in limited release this year behind Roman Polanski's "The Ghost Writer." Distributor Fox Searchlight Pictures will continue to expand the number of theaters in which "Cyrus" is playing over the next several weeks.

Last weekend's new movies both held on reasonably well against "Toy Story 3," as "The A-Team" dropped 46% to $13.8 million and "The Karate Kid" declined 48% to $29 million.

-- Ben Fritz

Photos, from top: A scene from "Toy Story 3." Credit: Disney / Pixar. John C. Reilly and Jonah Hill in "Cyrus." Credit: Chuck Zlotnick / Fox Searchlight

Comments () | Archives (8)

can we stop saying "chink in the armor?" say crack or kink. the phrase is offensive. i can go off on how many other races and genders have their own offensive phrases but this is the one used in the article.

also, this wkend's box office shows that original stories - and even sequels to them - are what really excites moviegoers. not some adaptation of a fringe comic book that doesn't broaden its appeal beyond its niche audience.

saw CYRUS last night and laughed my @$$ off.
great great movie - JCR v JH demands a remake
and MT for MILF of the year

lol mike!

"chink in the armor" means a slight gap or vulnerability in a suit of armor, like Achilles' heel.
It has absolutely no reference at all to any racial group.
It is very said that "chink" -- which means a small gap or opening -- has been used derogatorily for east Asians, but it is legitimate English word in use for centuries.

So, does this mean the end of Megan Fox? I mean, if she's such a "sexy thang" for the young boys, where were they this weekend? Evidently, not in the movie houses. Can she just sit her dumb ass down now and retire from movies?

I'm surprised "Toy Story" did so well but I guess the fans of the original went to see it, along with their kiddies. It's not my favorite animated story but it is cute, so kudos to Pixar.

You would think that "Cyrus" is funny if you never saw the Jason Bateman mid-1980's t.v. show it was based on, "It's Your Move" was far funnier than this.


I'd like to know how Mike came to think "chink in the armor" is racist.

ur 2 kewl wit the inits. r u friends wit JCR & JH & MT? r u in da biz?
or r u jus a studio tool cut & pastin ur tweets?

Mike, buy a dictionary. But it could be that the phrase "chink in the armor" will go the way of the word "niggardly" which also has NOTHING to do with race.


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