Hoodwinked Riding High at B.O.

The CG-animated Hoodwinked proved to be the little indie that could, claiming the top spot at the North American box office over the four-day holiday period, according to estimates. The flagship animated release from Kanbar Ent. and The Weinstein Co. ruled Saturday but slipped to No. 3 for the weekend. The school holiday then gave it a second wind, bringing its take to around $16.6 million, a nice start for a feature produced for less than $20 million.

Written and directed by Cory Edwards, Todd Edwards and Tony Leech, Hoodwinked Offers a comical new take on the classic Brothers Grimm fable of Little Red Riding Hood. Red (Anne Hathaway), Granny (Glenn Close), The wolf (Patrick Warburton) and the axe-wielding Woodsman (Jim Belushi) all end up under investigation as authorities examine all angles of this famous case of domestic disturbance.

Industry pundits were left hoodwinked on Saturday as the dark horse contender hit No. 1 with an estimated $5.5 million. The family pic was eventually edged out by Disney’s historical basketball account, Glory Road (est. $13.5 million), and Paramount’s Queen Latifah comedy vehicle, Last Holiday (est. $13 million). For the four-day, Glory Road currently stands at a very close second with an estimated $16.4 million, while Last Holiday weighs in at around $15.7.

Disney’s and Walden Media’s The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe continues to do well at No.4, bringing in an estimated $12.2 million in week 6. Completing the top five is the Lions Gate chiller Hostel, with around $11.6 million. The Eli Roth gore fest was No. 1 last weekend, but, like most horror entries, took a steep dive in week two. But with approximately $36.8 under its belt, the modestly budgeted flick has already made a nice return on its $4.8 million investment.

You can read all about the making Hoodwinked in the January issue of Animation Magazine, now available in Barnes and Noble stores around the country.