"Titans" shows muscle but can't slay "Dragon"

Fri Apr 2, 2010 7:35pm EDT
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By Carl DiOrio

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Warner Bros.' 3D action fantasy "Clash of the Titans" fetched an estimated $4.2 million from Thursday evening and midnight performances in about 3,000 domestic theaters.

The solid but unspectacular start gave it only a share of second place in the daily box-office rankings. DreamWorks Animation's "How to Train Your Dragon" registered more than $5 million on Thursday to top the daily box-office pecking order and push the Paramount-distributed animated film's cumulative gross to $63 million through its first seven days.

Disney's Miley Cyrus-starring "The Last Song" also collected $4.2 million in its second day of release. "Song" has rung up $9.3 million since its Wednesday launch, marking a lustier debut than expected for the PG romantic drama.

In most locations, "Titans" played only in 2D because of the unavailability of 3D screens in many theaters before the weekend. But starting Friday, at least half of its 3,700 weekend engagements will feature the Sam Worthington-starring film in 3D on at least one multiplex screen.

Warners plans to list most receipts from Thursday night screenings separately from the picture's weekend grosses, though coin from midnight Thursday performances will be included in its Friday tally.

"Titans" had been expected to ring up more than $60 million through Sunday, and Warners executives said the Thursday tally bodes well for the weekend. According to Warners distribution chief Dan Fellman, the Thursday take represents "an excellent start" to the weekend.

Fellman noted that "Titans" registered a record $31,000 in Guam, a traditional bellwether market for film releases.

Early reviews have not been kind to the movie, but action features often shrug off critics' brickbats for at least the first session in release.