May 1, 2008 / 10:11 AM / in 10 years

Moviegoers have "Sex" on the brain: poll

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Sorry “Iron Man.” But moviegoers have something else on their minds as spring gives way to summer -- like Sex.

<p>Actresses Sarah Jessica Parker (L) and Kim Cattrall hug during the filming of a scene of the "Sex and the City: The Movie" in New York September 24, 2007. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson</p>

“Sex and the City,” based on HBO’s hit television comedy about single women in New York, is the movie that fans are most excited about heading into Hollywood’s key summer season, which starts on Thursday with the debut of comic book adventure “Iron Man,” according to a new poll from online film site AOL Moviefone.

Not far behind was “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” which opens on May 22 with Harrison Ford returning as the adventure-seeking Jones.

In the poll of nearly 420,000 respondents, “Sex and the City,” which premieres on May 30, proved most exciting to 32 percent of the movie fans, compared with 31 percent for “Indiana Jones.”

“I think there were a lot of people curious about the series (”Sex and the City“) who didn’t see it on HBO,” said Scott Robson, editor-in-chief at AOL Moviefone. “It’s real fresh, and people who do know the program love the characters and love the show.”

Robson said respondents also seemed curious to see what Ford and director Steven Spielberg had cooked up to rejuvenate the “Indiana Jones” franchise, which has not been in movie theaters in nearly 20 years.

Perhaps not coincidentally, Ford and “Sex” actress Sarah Jessica Parker were the male and female stars fans most wanted to see. The late actor Heath Ledger, playing the villainous Joker in the Batman movie “The Dark Knight,” which opens on July 18, came in second behind Ford. Angelina Jolie, who appears in the action flick “Wanted,” trailed Parker.

The summer movie season runs four months from May 1 through the end of August and can account for nearly 40 percent of annual ticket sales in the United States and Canada, so the period’s movies are hugely important to Hollywood.

Ledger died last year at his home in New York of an accidental overdose of prescription medication.

Robson said Ledger’s death would likely draw curiosity seekers to the new “Dark Knight.”

“Iron Man” did not perform too poorly with about 7 percent excited to see it, and 22 percent said he was the superhero they were “most psyched” to see.

Two other big action films, “Speed Racer” (May 9) and “Hellboy 2,” (July 11) appear to be getting a rough time from moviegoers before even reaching movie screens.

Only 2 percent of fans said there were most excited to see “Speed Racer,” which is based on the popular cartoon of a boy race car driver. Worse, it topped the list of films moviegoers thought would be the biggest disappointment, with “Hellboy 2” close behind.

Among comedies, “Get Smart” (June 20) with Steve Carell proved to be the biggest drawing card, and in the family film category the top slot belonged to Disney/Pixar movie “Wall-E” (June 27).

Reuters/Nielsen

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