Box Office Preview

'Almighty' Dollar

Will Keanu outdraw a godlike Jim Carrey? The comedian returns with divine new powers, but beating ''The Matrix Reloaded'' isn't one of them

Jim Carrey, Bruce Almighty | YOU GOTTA HAND IT TO 'IM Carrey's ''Almighty'' won't beat ''Matrix'' -- but it'll make a strong debut at No. 2
YOU GOTTA HAND IT TO 'IM Carrey's ''Almighty'' won't beat ''Matrix'' -- but it'll make a strong debut at No. 2

Is ''The Matrix Reloaded'' bigger than God? We'll find out as the mega-sequel takes on Jim Carrey's ''Bruce Almighty'' at the box office this Memorial Day weekend.

After premiering with an unheard-of $134.3 million over its first four days, ''Reloaded'' will need a strong second weekend if it's to become a ''Spider-Man''-type blockbuster. But word of mouth on ''Reloaded'' doesn't seem to be as strong as it was for last year's Tobey Maguire smash. ''Reloaded'' should see drop similar to last year's ''Star Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones,'' which fell 25 percent in its second weekend (which was also Memorial Day). Over the four-day holiday, expect ''Reloaded'' to slip 30 percent to $64 million, bringing its total to about $230 million after only 11 days and two hours.

Jim Carrey, meanwhile, will add some levity to the weekend with ''Bruce Almighty,'' in which he plays a grumpy TV reporter who finds himself with godlike talents. Carrey has smartly reteamed with Tom Shadyac, who directed the hits ''Liar Liar'' and ''Ace Ventura: Pet Detective.'' Plus, he's added Jennifer Aniston to the mix as his girlfriend. In other words, this ain't ''The Majestic.'' In fact, ''Bruce'' will easily make more in its opening weekend than ''The Majestic'' did in its entire run (the 2001 drama, Carrey's last film, petered out at only $27.8 million). This time, Carrey will rack up a mighty $45 million for the No. 2 spot.

The week's other new release is the remake of ''The In-Laws,'' starring Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks. Whereas ''Bruce Almighty'' will pull in younger laugh-seekers, the combination of Douglas and Brooks will appeal to an older, largely female crowd. Translation: a pretty small opening. The surprisingly funny remake should debut at No 3 with about $15 million.

Rounding out the top five will be ''Daddy Day Care'' with about $13 million and ''X2: X-Men United'' with around $11 million, bringing its total to $190 million. Those mutants are already no match for Neo and Trinity.

Originally posted May 23, 2003
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