Moviegoers Answer Phone, Fans Find Bebop

Newcomers claimed the top three spots at the U.S. boxoffice over the weekend as director Joel Schumacher’s and Twentieth Century Fox’s thriller, Phone Booth, called in a $15 million victory. Warner Bros.’ What a Girl Wants came in second with an estimated $12 million, followed by New Line’s Vin Diesel vehicle, A Man Apart, with around $11.1 million. Meanwhile, despite an aggressive second week marketing push, Paramount’s big-budget effects extravaganza The Core slipped from No. 3 to No. 6, adding an estimated $6.3 to its cume.

In its first weekend, the action-packed, animated feature Cowboy Bebop: The Movie managed $247,000 in just 19 theaters. Anime aficionados and fans of the Cartoon Network series sought the film out to the tune of a whopping $13,000 per-theater average. By comparison, Phone Booth averaged about $6,000 per theater.

Disney’s Piglet’s Big Movie brought in around $3 million for a No. 10 finish. The big-screen adventure for the inhabitants of the Hundred Acre Wood has pulled in nearly $17 million in three weeks of release.

Disney’s release of Hayao Miyazaki’s Spirited Away added a few more theaters to its limited count and brought in just over $1 million during the weekend. The flick’s U.S. cume of nearly $9 million is chump change compared to the $234 million it has grossed in Japan, where it broke box office records.