Disney's Wild Hogs brought home the bacon at the box office over the weekend as the film defied negative critical reviews and analysts' predictions to earn an estimated $38 million. It was the most ever earned by a Disney film in March and the third-highest March opening in history. The film, which stars John Travolta, Martin Lawrence, Tim Allen and William H. Macy, had been expected to take in about $23-28 million. Particularly impressive was the fact that the biker movie attracted more women than men (The audience was split 54 percent female; 46 percent male, according to Nielsen EDI.) It "demonstrated Travolta's steadfast appeal to female audiences," USA Today commented. Paramount's Zodiac, which generally received solid reviews, opened in second place with $13.1 million -- at the low end of expectations. But Paramount distribution chief Jim Tharp told USA Today: "We think the strong reviews and word of mouth will give us a pretty good run." The only other new film to open this weekend, Black Snake Moan, starring Samuel L. Jackson, placed eighth with $4.0 million. Sony's Ghost Rider, which had held on to first place over the previous two weekends, slipped to third with $11.5 million, putting it within striking distance of the $100-million mark. The film, which also opened to poor reviews, has taken in an additional $60.7 million overseas.
The top ten films for the weekend, according to studio estimates compiled by Media by Numbers:
1. Wild Hogs, $38 million; 2. Zodiac, $13.1 million; 3. Ghost Rider, $11.5 million; 4. Bridge to Terabithia, $8.6 million; 5. The Number 23, $7.1 million; 6. Norbit, $6.4 million; 7. Music & Lyrics, $4.9 million; 8. Black Snake Moan, $4 million; 9. Reno 911!: Miami $3.8 million; 10. Breach, $3.5 million.