Spidey crawls downward

Film slides in second frame

When weekend receipts were tallied for the second frame of “Spider-Man 3,” the wallcrawler came up a little short but still socko.

Pic’s actual totals on Monday were roughly $1.9 million less than Sony had estimated, slightly dropping the webslinger’s domestic weekend take to $58.1 million from a projected $60 million.

Dip brought Spidey’s domestic cume to $240.2 million, rather than the $242 million tally that had been released on Sunday.

International weekend numbers also slid slightly, edging down $1.2 million to finish with $84.3 million for a foreign cume of $385.5 million. That left the pic’s worldwide total at $625.7 million.

Pic was still playing Stateside in 4,252 theaters, the widest ever domestic release.

Spidey dropped more than 60% domestically in its second frame, with the largest plummet, better than 70%, in Friday biz. That came about due to the first weekend’s many sellouts at midnight and later.

Saturday and Sunday numbers rebounded, however, with dips closer to 50%.

“Spider-Man” will have to face off against more fierce competish beginning next weekend when Paramount and DreamWorks’ “Shrek the Third” enters multiplexes.

On the foreign side, “Shrek the Third” won’t open until June and July in most markets, so Spidey won’t see serious competition until the following weekend, from “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.”

It remains to be seen how long Spidey’s records for biggest-ever opening day and weekend domestically will stand, since the new installment of previous record holder “Pirates of the Caribbean” launches May 25.

The third “Pirates” could also threaten the new foreign records set by “Spider-Man 3” — $177.4 million for opening weekend and $231.8 million with early launches in 15 markets. “Pirates” will open overseas on May 23 in Belgium, France, Italy, South Korea, Sweden and four other markets, two days ahead of its domestic bow.

Another contender to the throne could be “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” which opens July 13.

But the upcoming “Pirates” likely will have to settle for a less-wide opening frame domestically than Spidey, as fewer screens will be available at crowded multiplexes.

In other biz, the weekend’s “28 Weeks Later,” from Fox Atomic, was a distant No 2 with $10 million. But that finish was in line with expectations: Latest pic in the “28 Days Later” series scored about the same as the original in its bow

It’ll be difficult for any pic this month that’s not a tentpole to top $10 million during a weekend, according to distribution pros.

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