Super Bowl Sunday will limit movie audiences. ''Black Hawk Down'' should earn the most, but Mandy Moore's female-centric film could move up to No. 2
Sam Shepard, Black Hawk Down

It’s Super Bowl weekend. In other words, try your best to stay awake while reading this ho-hum box office preview. No studio in their right mind would release an important film over a weekend when the entire country stays home on Sunday afternoon and evening. Therefore, this week’s only wide release, ”Slackers,” likely will not hit the top spot.

Instead, expect ”Black Hawk Down” to emerge victorious for the third week in a row, dropping another 45 percent to about $9 million. Even though word of mouth on the war drama is strong, the big game will still take a big bite out of its earnings.

Perhaps the Mandy Moore love story ”A Walk to Remember” won’t plummet as much, since it’s mostly a young, female, Friday-or-Saturday-night type of draw. After an impressive $12.2 million debut, Mandy might even move up a notch to second place with another $8 million.

The week’s only major new release, the crude youth comedy ”Slackers,” starring ”Rushmore”’s Jason Schwartzman, will try to overcome mostly negative reviews to bring in all the guys who couldn’t care less about ”A Walk to Remember.” But gross-out humor seems to be less popular than it once was, so ”Slackers” should only start off with $7 million.

Rounding out the top five will likely be returning hits ”Snow Dogs” and ”A Beautiful Mind,” each of which should also gross about $7 million. Not making the first five will be Nicole Kidman’s quirky mail-order bride comedy ”Birthday Girl,” which should debut with $4 million on 1,000 screens. Maybe Kidman will get better news at Feb. 12’s Oscar nominations.

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A Beautiful Mind
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