‘Last’ outdistances its rivals in 2nd weekend

Fox’s western “The Last of the Mohicans” easily outran all competition in its second adventure over the weekend, finishing far ahead of three new movies, Disney’s “The Mighty Ducks,” Columbia’s “Hero” and Universal’s “Mr. Baseball.”

In a strong session overall compared with the sluggish pace at this time a year ago, “Mohicans” had a powerful holdover, pulling in an estimated $ 9.8 million, down only about 10% from its nearly $ 11 million debut. Averaging about $ 5,445 in 1,800 prairies (entering 309), it advanced its 10-day total to a fast $ 24.5 million.

Fox exec VP Tom Sherak yesterday predicted the Daniel Day-Lewis starrer will ultimately gross $ 60 million to $ 65 million domestic. Sherak said the dominance of the market by “Mohicans” may account for “Hero” and “Mr. Baseball” performing below what tracking had indicated for those pix.

“The Mighty Ducks” had plenty to crow about, however, as the inexpensive ($ 11 million) Disney comedy about a kiddie hockey team arrived with what Buena Vista estimated was $ 5.8 million to $ 6 million. It was playing on some 500 fewer screens than either “Hero” or “Mr. Baseball.”

Averaging about $ 4,530 to $ 4,690 in 1,280 rinks, “Ducks,” which stars Emilio Estevez as the team’s coach, is showing strong word-of-mouth and also is benefiting from the relative dearth of other kidpix, aside from Buena Vista’s fading “Captain Ron.”

The comedies “Hero” and “Mr. Baseball” were in a sluggish, too-close-to-call race for third, with each pic’s distrib estimating its weekend at around $ 5.3 million.

Col’s pic about an unlikely celeb (Dustin Hoffman) and a TV reporter (Geena Davis) had been expected to do considerably better than its average of about $ 2 ,900 in 1,826 stations. U estimated its Tom Selleck-in-Japan “Mr. Baseball” at $ 2,860 in 1,854 ballparks.

U’s “Sneakers” fell from second to fifth in its fourth hacking with what the distrib estimated was $ 3.9 million (down about 30%), or about $ 1,895 per in 2, 059 computer terminals (leaving three). The estimated 26-day total is a smart $ 34.9 million for the caper pic.

New Line’s “Glengarry Glen Ross” did an OK eighth or ninth (neck-and-neck with Warner Bros.’ “Singles”) in its first weekend following Wednesday starts in seven N.Y. and L.A. showcases. MGM’s “Of Mice and Men” started moderately in 13 N.Y. and L.A. fields over the weekend.

Industry sources estimated that “Glengarry,” an ensemble piece based on David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play about a high-stakes real estate sales contest, averaged around $ 5,000 in 416 neighborhoods as it rang up $ 2.1 million in its first contract.

The John Steinbeck adaptation “Of Mice and Men,” starring John Malkovich and director Gary Sinise, averaged around $ 7,690 as it harvested an estimated $ 100 ,000.

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