Batman Bows Down to the Thunder

It took Ben Stiller and Robert Downey Jr. in black face to take down the Dark Knight, but by golly they did. The racially and politically incorrect comedy, about a bunch of idiot actors who find themselves caught in a real war but are too dense to realize it, “Tropic Thunder” opened with a $26 million dollar weekend debut, good enough for first place, and knocking “The Dark Knight” down to second place with $16.8 million, according to studio estimates. That brings “Knight” to a 5-week total of $471 million in domestic box office tickets alone. Add $329 million the comic book movie has already made in overseas markets, and “The Dark Knight” is a mammoth hit with $800 million in total grosses worldwide.

Besides “Tropic Thunder”, four other films opened over the weekend in hopes of dethroning the Dark Knight. They weren’t quite as successful. George Lucas’ “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” opened in third place with $15.5 million, proving once again that Star Wars fans will pay to see just about anything with the words “Star Wars” in it.

Kiefer Sutherland’s horror movie “Mirrors”, meanwhile, opened to mixed reviews and a fourth place finish with $11.1 million in its debut. The film, about possessed mirrors, opened in about 2600 theaters, about 800 less than “Clone Wars” and “Tropic Thunder”. Meanwhile, Woody Allen’s “Vicky Cristina Barcelona” opened in limited release (just south of 700 theaters) with $3.7 million, just barely good enough to make it into the Top 10 at the U.S. box office. I guess not all that many people were curious about the film’s oft-mentioned threesome scene involving Scarlett Johansson. Go figure.

Two other films, the animated “Fly Me to the Moon” and “Henry Poole Is Here” didn’t make much of a dent at the box office, landing at #12 and #17, respectively.

Here’s how the U.S. Box Office Top 10 broke down over the weekend (via):

1 —–Tropic Thunder —–$26,000,000 —–$37,033,000
2 —–The Dark Knight —–$16,790,000 —–$471,493,000
3 —–Star Wars: The Clone Wars —–$15,505,000 —–$15,505,000
4 —–Mirrors —–$11,125,000 —–$11,125,000
5 —–Pineapple Express —–$10,000,000 —–$62,932,000
6 —–The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor —–$8,609,000 —– $86,649,000
7 —–Mamma Mia! —–$6,498,000 —–$116,415,000
8 —–The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 —–$5,930,000 —–$32,147,000
9 —–Step Brothers —–$5,000,000—–$90,888,000
10 —–Vicky Cristina Barcelona —–$3,710,000 —–$3,710,000

Scarlett Johansson