‘Marley’ continues to gnaw at B.O.

Fox family drama nearing $100 million mark

Twentieth Century Fox’s “Marley & Me” is quickly approaching the $100 million mark as it continues to lead the crowded pack of Christmas pics.

“Marley,” starring Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson, grossed a boffo $10 million on New Year’s Day (Thursday) and another $9.7 million from 3,505 runs on Friday for a domestic cume of $92.2 million. The Fox 2000/New Regency title has far surpassed expectations since it’s bow on Christmas Day.

Elsewhere at the box office on Friday, Disney’s Adam Sandler laffer “Bedtime Stories” continued to clock in No. 2, grossing $8.6 million on Thursday and $8.3 million from 3,684 runs on Friday for a cume of $73.5 million.

Brad Pitt-Cate Blanchett topliner “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” is holding strong as well at No. 3. The Paramount release grossed $7.9 million on Thursday and another $7.1 million on Friday from 2,988 runs for a total of $67.7 million.

That’s a notable gross, considering “Button” plays older and has a running time of 2:47. The Par/Warner Bros. co-production is from director David Fincher.

Like “Marley,” “Bedtime” and “Button” opened Dec. 25, as did United Artists/MGM’s Tom Cruise Nazi thriller “Valkyrie,” which also has exceeded expectations.

On Friday, Warner Bros.’ Jim Carrey laffer “Yes Man” and “Valkyrie” switched positions, with “Yes Man” overtaking “Valkyrie” to come in No. 4 for the first time during the holiday frame.

“Yes Man” grossed $5.6 million from 3,434 theaters for a cume of 47.1. million. “Valkyrie” grossed $5.5 million on Friday from 2,778 for a cume of $52 million.

Holding at No. 6 was Sony’s Will Smith drama “Seven Pounds,” which grossed $4 million from 2,758 runs for a cume of $54 million.

Universal toon “The Tale of Despereaux” came in No. 7, grossing $2.8 million from 3,091 theaters for a cume of $39.6 million.

Fox’s “The Day the Earth Stood Still” came in No. 8 as it headed into its fourth weekend, grossing $1.9 million from 2,337 for a cume of $71.3 milion.

Miramax specialty pic “Doubt,” toplining Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman, made a strong showing in coming in No. 9, grossing $1.8 million from 1,287 runs for a cume of $15.5 million.

Summit Entertainment’s “Twilight” placed No. 10, grossing $1.8 million from 1,888 runs for a cume of $174 million.

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