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"Evan Almighty": Flop or Not?

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Evanbop_l_5

Evanbop_l_5

Good God! A miraculous thing happened at the box office over the weekend: This summer’s most talked-about flop, Evan Almighty, earned $294,595 in its 13th week of release — and quietly crossed the $100 million mark domestically. In doing so, it became the year’s 21st $100 million grosser. More important to Universal, the achievement added a little polish to a turd that cost a reported $175 million, plus marketing. (Hey, giraffes don’t come cheap.)

Not that hitting $100 mil was some act of divine intervention. The studio had boosted Evan‘s theater count by almost 50 percent last weekend to make sure it did just that. The irony is that barring some special deal with the 385 theaters into which Universal booked the film, the studio probably won’t be seeing much of that $294,595: Exhibitors usually take most of the box office booty at the end of a movie’s run. Moreover, $100 million just doesn’t mean what it used to. In this climate of $100 million opening weekends, can anyone honestly look at a big-budget movie that earned a-hunny smackers total and call it a hit?

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