WEEKEND BOXOFFICE ADVANCE: Will 'Josie' and 'Joe Dirt' Bump 'Spy Kids' and 'Spider' From the Top Spots?13 Apr, 2001 By: Ed Ochs
Easter weekend brings a yellow basket filled with a rainbow of new releases paced by the harebrained David Spade comedy Joe Dirt, teen-girl fantasy flick Josie and the Pussycats, Renee Zellweger’s com-dram Bridget Jones's Diary and the all-star family reunion saga Kingdom Come.
Standing the best chance of unseating Spy Kids and Along Came a Spider at No. 1 and No. 2 are Josieand the Pussycats and Joe Dirt, both of which opened on Wednesday to take advantage of relaxed pre-holiday schedules.
Universal’s PG-13 Josie and the Pussycats, starring Rachael Leigh Cook, Tara Reid and Rosario Dawson, has been adapted from a ‘70s cartoon series and focuses on the rise and fall of an all-girl rock band. With thepopularity of girl singers striking young teens giddy with music dreams, this trendy temptation could strike a chord with the made-for-MTV crowd, sending it to No. 1 with a bullet.
Sony’s PG-13 Joe Dirt, starring David Spade as a janitor searching for his parents who abandoned him as a child, was produced by Adam Sandler. Though its primary appeal is to male teens, Joe Dirt could attract the army of Sandler, "Saturday Night Live" and Rob Schneider fans searching for the sequel to a long line of just plain dopey movies aimed at full-time slackers.
Miramax’s Bridget Jones’s Diary, starring Renee Zellweger and Hugh Grant, has been adapted from Helen Fielding's best-selling book and enjoys a built-in audience of millions of readers. Since the main character is English, Zellweger’s accent may curl the cream of dedicated readers, but Grant’s golden presence, as her boss and love interest, should tilt the film in favor of its mainly female audience.
Fox Searchlight’s PG ensemble drama Kingdom Come stars Whoopi Goldberg,L.L. Cool J, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Toni Braxton, Vivica A. Fox and Cedric the Entertainer. Directed by Doug McHenry (House Party 2, Jason's Lyric), Kingdom Come is about a large family reunited for the funeral of its patriarch, and is aimed at African-American moviegoers. Themed for Easter and stacked with stars from film and music, Kingdom Come might surprise mainstream critics with its weekend drawing power.
It wouldn’t be a shocker if Miramax’s Spy Kids somehow survived the calculated music and fashion assault of Josie and the Pussycats and held No. 1 hostage for one more week. Paramount’s Along Came a Spider is still expected to challenge for top five turf as the only true mature adult movie in the market at the moment, and Warner Bros.’ Pokemon 3, though fading from sequelitis, will still capture the kiddies with its good reviews and lingering magic. And Johnny Depp’s Blow will continue to follow Traffic as the drug movie for history lovers of the snowbound ‘70s –- from, ironically, New Line.