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'Inglourious Basterds' gives Quentin Tarantino a box office win on Friday

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The folks over at Weinstein Co. must be breathing a big sigh of relief. Friday’s box office numbers suggest their gamble on in-house auteur Quentin Tarantino has paid off: His WWII drama Inglourious Basterds took in an estimated $14.3 million, putting it on track to win the weekend with what could be an impressive $36 million.

Robert Rodriguez’s new kid flick didn’t fare nearly as well. Shorts from Warner Bros. only earned an estimated $2 million for the day, giving it a sixth slot in the derby for Friday and a probable weekend gross that won’t reach double digits. Meanwhile last weekend’s big winner District 9 suffered severely at the hands of Inglourious Basterds and its star Brad Pitt, with its Friday number at $5.5 million, down 61%  from its opening day a week ago. G.I. Joe also got knocked, though not as badly. The PG-13 actioner fell 48% from last Friday, to $3.6 million. Rounding out the top five were two of the more female-oriented movies, with The Time Traveler’s Wife taking in $3.3 million on Friday while Julie & Julia added another $2.6 million. Post Grad, the Alexis Bledel post-college comedy didn’t get high marks its first weekend in theaters. Earning just $1 million its opening day, its weekend outcome looks bleak. See Friday’s Top Five below, and check back here tomorrow for the full weekend’s Box Office Report.

1. Inglourious Basterds–$14.3 million

2. District 9–$5.5 million

3. G.I. Joe–$3.6 million

4. The Time Traveler’s Wife–$3.3 million

5. Julie & Julia–$2.6 million

UPDATE: Inglourious Basterds wins the weekend box office with $37.6 million

More on Inglourious Basterds and Quentin Tarantino from EW:

Inglourious Basterds: the EW Review

Quentin Tarantino: 20 Movies — and Posters — You’ve Got to See

Quentin Tarantino: 5 stamps he’s left on Hollywood

Inglourious Basterds: Playing ‘Spot the Reference’

Quentin Tarantino and the Original Inglorious Bastards

Quentin Tarantino: EW’s Trivia Quiz