''Alamo'' should win the weekend's box office battle -- Despite its troubles on the way to the big screen, the historical epic will likely ward off ''The Whole Ten Yards'' and ''The Passion''

By Dave Karger
Updated April 09, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT

This weekend it’s not ”Remember the Alamo.” It’s ”Remember to go see ‘The Alamo.”’

After seeing its release date delayed from last December, the latest film version of the historical Texas battle — this time starring Dennis Quaid and Billy Bob Thornton — finally arrives in theaters. Though it faces plenty of competition, it could end up the No. 1 film with a debut in the $17 million range.

Also opening this weekend is ”The Whole Ten Yards,” featuring Bruce Willis and Matthew Perry. The comic duo have worked overtime promoting their ”Whole Nine Yards” sequel, which should pay off with a $14 million opening.

”The Passion of the Christ” should see an Easter-weekend surge to $13 million, while last week’s top film, ”Hellboy,” will see a drop of 50 percent to $12 million. Another new entry, the adolescent comedy ”The Girl Next Door,” could bring in curious teenage boys to the tune of $9 million. And The Rock’s remake ”Walking Tall” should complete the top five, falling 50 percent to $8 million.

Two other new releases, the romantic fantasy ”Ella Enchanted” (with ”Princess Diaries” star Anne Hathaway) and the silly comedy ”Johnson Family Vacation” (starring Cedric the Entertainer) will only play in around 1,200 theaters each, so a top-five debut seems unlikely. Still, both films have fan bases in the $7 million range.

Walking Tall (Movie - 2004)

  • Movie
  • PG-13
  • 87 minutes
  • Kevin Bray