Barbershop: Tracy Bennett

''Barbershop'' cuts out the box office competition. For the second week the Ice Cube comedy comes out on top

September 20, 2002 at 04:00 AM EDT

Though four new releases tried to snip away at ”Barbershop’s” audience, the hit comedy managed to stay a cut above the competition at the box office this weekend. Falling only 36 percent from its $20.6 million debut, the Ice Cube flick rode positive word of mouth to another $13.3 million, according to studio estimates. With a 10-day total of $38.9 million, ”Barbershop” appears to continue to cross over from strictly African-American moviegoers to fans of all races.

Unfortunately, none of the week’s premieres could boast the same feat. With one of the widest openings, Susan Sarandon and Goldie Hawn’s comedy “The Banger Sisters” performed the best, debuting with $10.3 million, good enough for second place — and topping Hawn’s daughter, Kate Hudson, in “The Four Feathers” (see below). Close behind was “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” which earned another $10 million in its 23rd week. Amazingly, it slipped only 7 percent from last weekend, bringing its total to $124.3 million.

Two other new entries found themselves tied for fourth place. The thriller “Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever,” starring Antonio Banderas and Lucy Liu, and the aforementioned war epic “The Four Feathers,” with Hudson and Heath Ledger, both only managed a $7.1 million debuts, disappointing considering the action-heavy components of both films. Perhaps all the competition, combined with tepid reviews and September’s typically slow moviegoing atmosphere, were to blame.

But at least “Ballistic” and “Four Feathers” performed better than “Trapped,” the Kevin Bacon/Charlize Theron thriller whose ad campaign sold the film as a woman-in-jeopardy flick rather than the kidnapping drama it actually is. The move was understandable given the rash of kidnappings in the news, but the lack of any press on behalf of the film certainly hurt, resulting in a 10th-place opening of only $3.2 million.

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