A Warner Bros. exec had been smugly referring to the coming " 'Cobra' Summer," anticipating that Sly's picture would mow down the competition.
Funny thing happened on the way to the box office: Paramount Pic's "Top Gun" is the higher flyer.
Grosses: "Cobra," on 2,117 screens after 19 days of release, $35.5 million; "Gun," with 1,531 screens after 26 days, $45.4 million. "Cobra" attendance has been dropping steadily (down 52% the second weekend, down 33% the next). Even MGM's "Poltergeist II" (19 days, 1,583 screens, $27.9 million) is snaking close.
Warners has inserted a positive Joel Siegel review to its "Cobra" ad copy, but a studio spokesman said, "Our campaign is consistent and will remain intact." The flick will be pulled from some "two-week towns, a normal fall-off." The drop-off in attendance is "not extreme."
Paramount plans no changes in its campaign, except for July 4, when "we may adapt to the spirit of the day."