'Airplane!' director revives 'Scary Movie 3'

Film tops box office

Monday, October 27, 2003

— The "Scary Movie" franchise has risen from the grave, with part three of the horror-spoof series opening as the top weekend flick with $49.7 million, the best October debut ever.

"Scary Movie 3" bumped the previous weekend's No. 1 movie, "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre," to second place with $14.7 million, according to studio estimates Sunday.

Premiering in third place with $14 million was the feel-good drama "Radio," starring Cuba Gooding Jr.

Angelina Jolie -- whose career had been on the skids with the flops "Original Sin" and "Life or Something Like It," delivered another turkey with "Beyond Borders." It netted $2 million, coming in at No. 11.

"Scary Movie 3" was a lesson in resurrecting a declining franchise. Created by the Wayans brothers, "Scary Movie" was a surprise hit in summer 2000, with a total gross of $157 million. Their "Scary Movie 2" the next spring smacked of a rush job and did less than half the business of its predecessor.

Miramax, whose Dimension banner releases the "Scary Movie" flicks, tapped David Zucker, part of the team behind the disaster-film spoof "Airplane!" to direct "Scary Movie 3."

"David Zucker almost semi-invented this genre," Weinstein said. "You have those people who loved 'Airplane!' but said, 'ah, "Scary Movie," that's not for me,' then going, 'oh, Zucker's doing it?'"

Other estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at North American theaters, according to Exhibitor Relations Co. Inc.:

4. "Runaway Jury," $8.4 million.

5. "Mystic River," $7.6 million.

6. "The School of Rock," $6.5 million.

7. "Kill Bill -- Vol. 1," $6 million.

8. "Good Boy!", $4.85 million.

9. "Intolerable Cruelty," $3.6 million.

10. "Under the Tuscan Sun," $2.2 million.