‘Cowboys & Aliens’ Just Edges ‘The Smurfs’ In Close Box Office Race

Written by Michael Lambarde on Aug. 02, 2011

Early weekend projections stated that the sci-fi/western film Cowboys & Aliens tied the animated film The Smurfs this weekend. People behind the film likely gave a sigh of relief as in the actual numbers, they were just able to edge the animated blue guys — but by just over 2% — $36.43 million to $35.61 million.

However, given the star caliber of Cowboys, more promotion, and being in more theaters, many industry analysts predicted that Cowboys was going to win the weekend outright — which it ended up doing — but not by the close margin that both ended up receiving. Cowboys reportedly had a production budget of just over $160 million while Smurfs had a budget of $110 million, which is high for an animation film in itself, but is also another win for The Smurfs this weekend that it not only nearly tied Cowboys but bagged a similar amount of dough on a smaller budget.

Elsewhere, week two of Captain America: The First Avenger brought in $25.55 million and the final installment of the Harry Potter franchise, Deathly Hallows Part 2, brought in $21.97 million for a total gross of abut $318.5 million, becoming the highest grossing Harry Potter film ever. The premiere of Crazy, Stupid, Love brought in $19.1 million to round out the top five.

(1) Cowboys & Aliens – $36.43 million
(2) The Smurfs – $35.61 million
(3) Captain America: The First Avenger (wk 2) – $25.55 million ($117.42 million overall)
(4) Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (wk 3) – $21.97 million ($318.51 million)
(5) Crazy, Stupid, Love – $19.1 million
(6) Friends with Benefits (wk 2) – $9.27 million ($38.17 million)
(7) Horrible Bosses (wk 3) – $7.18 million ($96.29 million)
(8) Transformers: Dark of the Moon (wk 4) – $6.08 million ($338 million)
(9) Zookeeper (wk 3) – $4.3 million ($68.83 million)
(10) Cars 2 (wk 5) – $2.34 ($182.11 million)