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'Entrapment' Snares Top Spot With Charismatic Stars' Help

From Associated Press

May 03, 1999

Powered by sexual chemistry, exotic locations and Sean Connery's roguish charm, the cat-burglar thriller "Entrapment" nabbed the top spot at the weekend box office with $20.7 million.

The film, also starring Catherine Zeta-Jones as an insurance investigator who seduces the high-class art thief played by Connery, knocked "The Matrix," with $8.7 million, down to No. 2, according to industry estimates Sunday.

"Entrapment" benefited from strong advertising in which a leotard-clad Zeta-Jones slinks through a web of laser beams and Connery performs stunts reminiscent of his days as James Bond, said Robert Bucksbaum, a movie analyst with Reel Source Inc.

"Sean Connery has been around forever and has a lot of star power. Adult women wanted to see him, and young men wanted to see her," he said. "It had all the elements of a hit written all over it."

The horror-comedy "Idle Hands," the only other film opening in wide release this weekend, grossed a disappointing $1.8 million, tying for sixth place with "10 Things I Hate About You."

Comedies dominated the rest of the top 10, with the Eddie Murphy-Martin Lawrence prison movie "Life" earning $6.4 million for third place. The Drew Barrymore high school comedy "Never Been Kissed" continued to do well but dropped to fourth place with $4.2 million, while the mobster-in-therapy movie "Analyze This" fell to fifth with $2.2 million.

Having already grossed $98.5 million, "Analyze This" has inched its way toward becoming the second film of 1999 to cross the $100-million mark. The first was "The Matrix," with $129.7 million.

After disappointing openings, two other comedies plummeted to the bottom of the top 10 in only their second week of release. "Pushing Tin," starring John Cusack and Billy Bob Thornton as frantic air traffic controllers, earned $1.3 million for eighth place. "Lost & Found," featuring David Spade as a smarmy dognapper, dropped to ninth place with $1.28 million. "Go" rounded out the top 10 with $1.2 million.

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