‘Midnight’s’ high on B.O. exclusives

'Friends,' 'Evil' round out top three

Artisan’s “Permanent Midnight” topped the exclusives roster in its first outing.

The Ben Stiller starrer about an entertainment exec’s descent into drug addiction shot up $85,136 in five crash pads in New York and L.A.

The second most popular limited-release pic was Gramercy’s “Your Friends and Neighbors.” Neil LaBute’s dark look at modern relationships took home $64,633 in nine playdates on both coasts.

Universal/October’s re-edited version of the Orson Welles classic “Touch of Evil” moved into third place with $44,675 on two screens.

Newcomers included October’s “A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries,” which defended $36,292 on four battlefields on both coasts.

NEW YORK

“Permanent Midnight” (Artisan) bowed to $24,914 at the Loews Cineplex Lincoln Square and $19,916 at the City Cine-mas Angelika.

“Your Friends and Neighbors” (Gramercy) declined 15% to $17,052 in its fifth at the Loews Cineplex 19th Street East, 24% to $15,098 in its fifth at Lincoln Plaza, 26% to $7,075 in its fifth at the Loews Cineplex First and 62nd Street, and 10% to $5,268 in its third at the United Artists East 85th Street.

“Touch of Evil” (Universal/October re-issue) was virtually unchanged at $31,953 in its second week at the Film Forum.

“Next Stop Wonderland” (Miramax) fell 2% to $10,143 in its fifth at the Loews Cineplex Lincoln Square, 8% to $9,190 in its fifth at the City Cinemas 1, 2 and Third Avenue and 32% to $6,544 in its fifth at the City Cinemas Angelika.

“The Slums of Beverly Hills” (Fox Searchlight) declined 27% to $10,648 in its sixth at the City Cinemas Angelika, 16% to $7,359 in its third at the Loews Cineplex Chelsea and 20% to $6,708 in its sixth at the Loews Cineplex 62nd Street and Broadway.

“Without Limits” (Warner Bros.) dropped 16% to $12,527 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Lincoln Square and 2% to $8,179 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Village Sevenplex.

“A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries” (October) bowed to $19,304 in its first at the Paris.

“The Opposite of Sex” (Sony Classics) gained 25% to $6,109 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Art Greenwich Twin and lost 10% to $5,929 in its 17th at the Loews Cineplex Regency. It rang up $2,059 in its first at the Loews Cineplex 59th Street East.

“The Eel” (New Yorker) was virtually unchanged at $8,952 in its fifth at Lincoln Plaza. It fell 15% to $5,140 in its fifth at the Quad.

“Pi” (Artisan) dropped 11% to $12,879 in its 11th at the City Cinemas Angelika.

“Cube” (Trimark) lost 45% to $4,966 in its second at the Loews Cineplex 19th Street East, 50% to $3,511 in its second at the Loews Cineplex 84th Street and 15% to $3,001 in its second at the United Artists Criterion Center.

“The Governess” (Sony Classics) climbed 8% to $4,868 in its third at the Loews Cineplex Art Greenwich Twin. It rang up $5,584 in its first at the Loews Cineplex First and 62nd Street.

“Let’s Talk About Sex” (Fine Line) gained 13% to $4,285 in its second at the Loews Village Sevenplex and 3% to $3,874 in its second at the United Artists Criterion. It rang up $382 in its first at the City Cinemas Murray Hill.

“Firelight” (Miramax) fell 49% to $7,827 in its third at the City Cinemas Angelika.

“A Merry War” (First Look) gave up 61% to $5,153 in its fourth at Lincoln Plaza and 36% to $2,550 in its fourth at the Loews Cineplex First and 62nd Street.

“Like It Is” (First Run) declined 29% to $7,216 in its third at the Quad.

“Somewhere in the City” (Artistic License) bowed to $7,016 at the Quad.

“Unmade Beds” (Chelsea) rose 3% to $6,812 in its seventh at the Screening Room.

“Buffalo 66” (Lions Gate) dropped 25% to $5,538 in its 13th at the City Cinemas Angelika.

“The Thief” (Stratosphere) declined 60% to $2,852 in its 10th at Lincoln Plaza.

“Chicago Cab” (GFT Entertainment) rang up $2,428 in its first at the Quad.

“Modulations” (Strand) dropped 41% to $2,292 in its third at the Quad.

“Nights of Cabiria” (Rialto re-issue) rang up $1,978 in its first at the Loews Cineplex First and 62nd Street.

“Deja Vu” (Rainbow) rang up $1,842 in its first at the United Artists 64th Street and Second Avenue.

“The Beyond” (Rolling Thunder/Cowboy) fell 35% to $550 in its fourth week of midnight screenings at the City Cinemas Angelika.

LOS ANGELES

“Permanent Midnight” bowed to $19,348 at the Laemmle Sunset 5, $12,667 at the Laemmle Monica and $82,91 at the AMC Century 14.

“Your Friends and Neighbors” declined 28% to $6,545 in its fifth at the Laemmle Sunset 5, 36% to $4,265 in its fifth at the Laemmle Monica, 14% to $3,519 in its second at the Mann National, 36% to $3,307 in its fifth at the AMC Century 14 and 18% to $2,504 in its third at the Loews Cineplex Marketplace. It rang up $716 in its first at the Mann Fourplex.

“Without Limits” fell 41% to $7,627 in its second at the AMC Century 14, 45% to $7,058 in its second at the Mann Criterion 6 and 36% to $4,436 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Beverly Center.

“A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries” bowed to $5,772 at the Loews Cineplex Broadway, $5,680 at the Landmark Westside Pavilion and $5,536 at the Laemmle Sunset 5.

“The Slums of Beverly Hills” deteriorated 23% to $5,365 in its sixth at the Laemmle Sunset 5, 27% to $4,438 in its sixth at the Laemmle Monica and 23% to $4,368 in its sixth at the AMC Century 14.

“Touch of Evil” rang up $12,722 in its first at the Landmark NuWilshire Twin.

“Next Stop Wonderland” declined 16% to $5,150 in its fifth at the Laemmle Monica, 3% to $3,897 in its fifth at the Landmark Westside Pavilion and 42% to $3,622 in its fifth at the Laemmle Sunset 5.

“The Eel” rang up $10,364 in its first at the Landmark Nuart.

“Cube” rang up $2,765 in its first at the Mann Criterion. It fell 59% to $2,325 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Beverly Center, 55% to $2,075 in its second at the Mann Plaza Westwood and 67% to $1,556 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Century Plaza.

“Six-String Samurai” (Palm Pictures) bowed to $4,922 at the Laemmle Sunset 5, $2,403 at the AMC Santa Monica and $1,186 at the Mann Fourplex.

“Firelight” faded 56% to $4,461 in its third at the Landmark Fine Arts.

“Pi” declined 30% to $2,445 in its seventh at the Landmark NuWilshire Twin and rang up $1,023 in its first at the Mann Plaza Westwood.

“The Chambermaid on the Titanic” (Samuel Goldwyn) dropped 48% to $3,117 in its second at the Laemmle Music Hall.

“Esmeralda Comes by Night” (Fine Line) debuted with $3,059 at the Landmark Westside Pavilion.

“The Young Girls of Rochefort” (Miramax) fell 41% to $2,362 in its second at the Laemmle Royal.

“Let’s Talk About Sex” fell 48% to $753 in its second at the United Artists Westwood, 81% to $653 in its second at the AMC Century 14, 69% to $660 in its second at the GCC Galaxy and 90% to $106 in its second at the Loews Cineplex Beverly Center.

“The Governess” descended 32% to $2,088 in its second at the Laemmle Music Hall.

“Free Tibet” (TSG Pictures) bowed to $2,148 at the Loews Cineplex Showcase.

“Ill-Gotten Gains” (Spats) debuted with $1,642 at the Laemmle Music Hall.

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