Dave Karger says Disney's animated movie becomes the first film to reclaim the No. 1 spot since ''Die Another Day''

By Dave Karger
June 13, 2003 at 04:00 AM EDT
Finding Nemo: Disney

Those adorable fish of ”Finding Nemo” swam back up to the top spot at the box office, as three high-profile new releases couldn’t even crack the top three.

In its third week, ”Finding Nemo” slipped only 37 percent, grossing another $29.2 million, according to studio estimates. “Nemo,” which has now earned a fantastic $192.3 million, became the first film to reclaim the No. 1 perch since “Die Another Day” managed the same feat last December.

Last week’s top film, the sequel “2 Fast 2 Furious,” plummeted a hideous 62 percent from its $50 million debut to only $19.1 million. As was the case with the recent “Matrix” sequel, it seems many of the franchise’s fans rushed out to see the movie in its first weekend, leaving not much business for the rest of the film’s run. After 10 days, “2 Fast” has grossed $84 million.

Jim Carrey’s smash comedy “Bruce Almighty” fared better, dropping 37 percent to $14.2 million, bringing its total up to $193.8 million. Both “Nemo” and “Bruce” will have easily crossed $200 million by this time next week.

I had predicted a tough race for No. 3 between the weekend’s three new releases. Turns out it was a battle for No. 4. “Rugrats Gone Wild” emerged with a minor victory, opening with $12.5 million, considerably below the $20 million-plus debuts of the other two “Rugrats” flicks. Placing fifth was the cop comedy “Hollywood Homicide,” starring Harrison Ford and Josh Hartnett, with a disappointing $11.7 million. That figure is even worse than the $12.8 million earned by Ford’s 2002 flop “K-19: The Widowmaker,” which only ended up with $35.2 million. And in sixth place was the critically-reviled prequel “Dumb and Dumberer: When Harry Met Lloyd,” which could only manage an $11.1 million debut. Can you imagine if Harrison Ford had been outgrossed by Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels lookalikes? That would have been REALLY embarrassing.