Asian Epic Forbidden Kingdom tops Blockbuster World Wide in it's first week release
Jackie Chan and Jet Li's anticipated joint release beat out ''Forgetting Sarah Marshall'' to finish No. 1 in a hard-fought battle, while ''88 Minutes'' underperformed and ''Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed'' was a solid top-10 contender
By Joshua Rich
Jackie Chan and Jet Li may be getting old, but they packed a lot of punch into the box office this weekend. The Forbidden Kingdom, the first movie to pair the martial arts legends, fought its way to a victory, while the R-rated romantic comedy Forgetting Sarah Marshall finished a strong second in a hotly contested race that helped boost the cumulative box office to its best result in several weeks.
The Asian action fantasy grossed a better-than-expected $20.9 mil, according to Sunday's estimates. That's Jackie Chan's best debut ever for a non-Rush Hour movie, and it's Jet Li's top premiere after 1998's Lethal Weapon 4, in which he had a supporting role. What's more, it's among the biggest openings ever for any martial-arts flick, and the highest one since Kill Bill Vol. 2 bowed with $25.1 mil in early 2004. With a kid-friendly plot and PG-13 rating (it was directed by Rob Minkoff, who also helmed movies like The Lion King and Stuart Little), The Forbidden Kingdom was able to draw in a young crowd, which accounted for fully half of its business and no doubt boosted box office. That audience gave the movie a strong A- CinemaScore grade, the best among all new releases, which suggests that the film should have more financial kick in the weeks to come.