The New York Times delivers the word: This week's Hollywood box office champ is Neill Blomkamp's District 9. Produced by Peter Jackson and his Wingnut Films company and distributed by Sony, it delivered a USD 37 million payday, paying off the film's USD 30 million dollar production cost. It's gravy from here on in.
That dropped the Paramount/Hasbro–made G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra™ to second place (USD 22.5 million for the week, USD 98.8 million cumulative). Ha ha ha. (Unless Viacom and Hasbro probably are drafting yet another waste of money and non–renewable resources sometime down the line. Oy if it's true.)
How did District 9 get on top? Top–level moviemaking is one possibility (reviews have been mainly positive, and I've only seen three unfavorable ones to date). Then there's Mr. Jackson's presence at the recent Comic–Con in San Diego, California — nothing less than an Event for fanboys and fangirls. You can also throw in Sony's marketing campaign (see some of it on the movie's website), which according to the Times, "echoed the paranoia of the movie’s story line. Billboards and bus ads, for instance, encouraged people to call a toll–free number to report nonhuman activity, resulting in thousands of calls."
I hardly ever both to go to Hollywood flicks these days. This one, though, could be the big exception. Only one way to find out.