Sunday, April 24, 2011

Tyler Perry and Madea Come In Strong at #2 In Their Opening Weekend

Easter went to the birds. Fox's animated adventure "Rio" led the box office for the second weekend in a row, earning $26.8 million according to studio estimates. That's a slim 32 percent drop for the G-rated film, which was produced for $90 million by Blue Sky Studios, of "Ice Age" fame. The tropical toon held up so well in part because most kids were out of school on Friday, giving the film a larger-than-normal start to the weekend. In just two weeks, "Rio," which features the voices of Jesse Eisenberg and Anne Hathaway as the world's last two blue macaws, has collected an impressive $81.3 million.

Trailing "Rio" by $1 million was "Madea's Big Happy Family" with $25.8 million. The PG-13 comedy marked Tyler Perry's tenth directing effort in six years, and was the multihyphenate's fourth-best debut, behind "Madea Goes to Jail" ($41 million), "Madea's Family Reunion" ($30 million), and "Why Did I Get Married Too?" ($29.3 million).

Once again, the majority of Perry's audience was older African-American women - "Big Happy Family" drew a crowd that was 81 percent African-American, 72 percent female, and 69 percent over the age of 25. And those fans turned out in big happy numbers, as the film posted the weekend's largest per-theater average ($11,254) for a wide release, and received a superb "A" rating from CinemaScore graders. The Lionsgate release was produced by Perry for only $25 million.


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