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Box office update: 'The Hangover Part II' adds another $30 mil on Friday

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The Hangover Part 2
Melinda Sue Gordon

Now this is one stubborn Hangover. After scoring the third-best Thursday debut ever with $31.6 million, The Hangover Part II showed no signs of retreating and posted another $30 million on Friday, according to early estimates. That’s the largest Friday figure ever for a live-action comedy, giving the R-rated sequel a massive $61.6 million in just two days. By comparison, the first Hangover movie — the top-grossing R-rated comedy ever — had accumulated $31.8 million its first two days. The Hangover Part II is now on track for all sorts of gargantuan weekend tallies. It’s on pace for a three-day (Friday-to-Sunday) take of about $87 million, which would beat 2002’s Austin Powers in Goldmember for the biggest three-day weekend for a live-action comedy. And for the four-day weekend (including Memorial Day), the Wolf Pack is looking to snatch almost $110 million. CinemaScore audiences handed the film an “A-” grade, so word of mouth is likely positive.

Kung Fu Panda 2, however, has so far had trouble living up to its predecessor. The animated martial-arts comedy picked up $13.2 million on Friday, bringing its two-day total to $19 million. The first Kung Fu Panda, by comparison, made $20.3 million on its first day alone. Still, expect the PG-rated sequel to bounce back the rest of the weekend, as most kids were still in school on Thursday and Friday. Panda is heading for a four-day weekend gross of around $65 million, and earned a solid “A” rating from CinemaScore moviegoers.

In third, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides plummeted 69 percent from last Friday for $10.9 million. The last two Pirates films, Dead Man’s Chest and At World’s End, suffered roughly the same Friday-to-Friday drops (67 and 70 percent, respectively). On Stranger Tides should finish the four-day weekend with about $48 million, pushing its two-week tally past $160 million. In fourth place, Bridesmaids held up especially well considering its Hangover competition, dropping only 27 percent for $4.6 million. And in fifth, the mighty Thor fell 45 percent for $2.4 million.

In limited release, Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life, starring Brad Pitt and Sean Penn, earned $115,000 from only four locations. The eons-spanning drama posted a per-theater average of $28,750. If the estimate holds, that’ll be the year’s largest opening-day average, barely beating last week’s Midnight in Paris. Check back here on Sunday for another update, and on Monday for the complete box office report.

1. The Hangover Part II — $30.0 mil

2. Kung Fu Panda 2 — $13.2 mil

3. Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides — $10.9 mil

4. Bridesmaids — $4.6 mil

5. Thor — $2.4 mil