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'Rush Hour' Stays in Fast Lane for Second Weekend

Box Office: The action film collects an estimated $21.1 million. 'Ronin' and 'Urban Legend' make impressive debuts.

September 28, 1998|From Associated Press

The Jackie Chan-Chris Tucker cop movie "Rush Hour" dominated an adventure-filled weekend box office that also saw strong debuts from Robert De Niro's "Ronin" and the horror film "Urban Legend."

The family drama "One True Thing" lost about a third of its audience to fall into a fourth-place tie with the resilient gross-out comedy "There's Something About Mary," which crossed the $150-million mark in its 11th week.

In its second week, "Rush Hour" collected an estimated $21.1 million in ticket sales for a total of $63.9 million. The film played well everywhere except in southern Florida and Louisiana, said New Line Cinema's distribution head, Al Shapiro.

"And that was because of the hurricane," he said, adding that the film is attracting "every age across the board, from little kids to their grandparents."

"Rush Hour" was the second unexpected hit for New Line this year. The studio's vampire film "Blade" grossed another $2 million over the weekend to land in ninth place, with a six-week total of $64.2 million.

Underscoring that action is big this fall, the car-chase thriller "Ronin" opened with $13 million for second place, providing a rare dose of good news for beleaguered MGM, which went into the weekend dead last among the studios for this year.

"Ronin's" debut was the third-biggest for a De Niro film, following the $14.5-million five-day Thanksgiving opener for "Casino" in 1995 and the $13.5-million three-day debut of "Cop Land" last year.

"Urban Legend" earned $11 million for third place, followed by $4.5 million each for "One True Thing" and "There's Something About Mary," which now has grossed $152.5 million.

"Simon Birch," about a dwarf with big ideas, was at No. 6 with $2.7 million, while Steven Spielberg's "Saving Private Ryan" remained firmly in the top 10 even after 10 weeks, collecting $2.6 million and finishing seventh.

The Matt Damon poker-playing drama "Rounders" was eighth with $2.5 million, just ahead of "Blade." "Ever After" with Drew Barrymore was No. 10 with $1.2 million.

After 13 weeks, "Armageddon" just missed the top 10, collecting $959,000 for 11th place. The year's biggest film is still shy of the $200-million mark, with a total of $197.1 million.

Opening impressively in limited release was the black comedy "Clay Pigeons" with a strong $8,724-per-theater average. It collected $165,747 in 19 locations.

Next weekend brings the much-anticipated opening of DreamWorks' animated feature "Antz" and the Robin Williams-Cuba Gooding Jr. drama, "What Dreams May Come."

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