By Ryan Parsons | Image property of Walt Disney Pictures, Variety
Beverly Hills Chihuahua
Though I don't want to believe it, Disney's family pic, Beverly Hills Chihuahua, proved to have a loud bark no, yap as it took the top spot at the box office over the weekend.
Box Office Winner: Beverly Hills Chihuahua
Like a highly anticipated film, Beverly Hills Chihuahua bowed to $29 million. How could a film with rodent-like dogs do so well? Well, parents are rarely given the opportunity to take their kids to the theaters in a month that is normally invaded by horrors such as the Saw franchise. Thanks to the film's strong numbers, Chihuahua has quickly become Disney's biggest pet to open in October.
"In a market with seven new pictures, it’s terrific to be the No. 1 movie. It’s not easy to compete when there is that much distraction and people are being pulled in every direction," said Disney prexy of distribution Chuck Viane.
Fortunately there was a couple indies to pick up the slack.
Both Religulous and Rachel Getting Married showed strength on the specialty market. Bill Maher's documentary earned $3.5 million for a per-location average of $6,972; the second best average (in the top 10) over the weekend.
Though not in the top ten, Rachel Getting Married saw a per-screen average of $33,659.
Thanks most in part to Beverly Hills Chihuahua's shocking numbers, the weekend box office was up a whopping 40% over the same frame last year.