Sony's The Smurfs grossed $4.09 million on Thursday to lead the daily box office for a fourth consecutive day. The break-out family film was down 15 percent from Wednesday. While it had to settle for a close second place finish over the weekend, The Smurfs was able to take first place for the week as a whole with a seven-day start of $55.20 million. That placed the film $3.58 million and 7 percent ahead of Universal's heavily favored Cowboys & Aliens for the frame. The Smurfs is currently running 12 percent ahead of the pace of 2009's G-Force. Look for the film to hold up well going forward, especially with a limited amount of family options on the schedule for August.
Cowboys & Aliens held steady in second on Thursday with $3.15 million. The sci-fi western starring Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford fell 10 percent from Wednesday, which represented a solid hold for the day given the types of daily declines experienced by wide releases in general on Thursday. Cowboys & Aliens took second place for the week with $51.62 million. That was on the lower end of expectations and underwhelming when taking into account the film's expensive price tag. Cowboys & Aliens is currently running 6 percent behind the pace of 2009's District 9, but going forward is unlikely to hold up as well as District 9 did.
Turning to this weekend's box office, Fox's Rise of the Planet of the Apes was off to a $1.25 million start at midnight, which will be counted towards today's opening day gross. That was stronger than the $700,000 midnight start of Cowboys & Aliens last week, but weaker than the respective midnight starts of this summer's four superhero films (which all registered midnight starts between $3.3 million and $4.0 million).
Paramount's Captain America: The First Avenger and Warner's Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II remained close in the daily rankings on Thursday. Captain America took third place with $2.71 million, while Deathly Hallows: Part II finished in fourth with $2.62 million. For the week, Captain America finished in third with $38.31 million and Deathly Hallows: Part II landed in fourth with $34.11 million. Captain America has grossed $130.18 million in 14 days. Deathly Hallows: Part II has grossed a massive $330.64 million in 21 days and now trails Paramount's Transformers Dark of the Moon by just $10.52 million in the race for first place at the domestic box office for 2011.
Warner's Crazy, Stupid, Love rounded out the day's top five with $2.41 million, which was down 13 percent from Wednesday. Crazy, Stupid, Love finished in fifth for the week with $30.09 million. That was on the higher end of pre-release expectations. Thursday also saw fellow Warner Bros. comedy Horrible Bosses reach the $100 million milestone. The four-week total for Horrible Bosses stands at a better than expected $100.54 million.
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