CATEGORIES Action, Comedy, Universal, Box Office, Focus Features, UK Box Office, Cinematical, UK Box OfficeAs much as I wished, I couldn't make it to the U.K. for the domestic opening of Edgar Wright's new action spoof, Hot Fuzz. Apparently the film didn't need me, though, as it earned an amazing $11.5 million in its first five days. It didn't break any records over there, but even if we only look at the film's weekend take -- $8.5 million -- it performed remarkably better than most films, imported or homegrown. The last movie to open to more money was Casino Royale, which made $25 million in its first weekend back in November (Borat also earned a tad more than Hot Fuzz in its debut two weeks earlier).
More important for Hot Fuzz is how much better it did than Wright's Shaun of the Dead, which opened in the U.K. to about $3 million and went on to gross only $12 million there in four months. This achievement shows how popular Shaun has become since its video release. Hopefully the same will prove true for American audiences when Hot Fuzz arrives here in two months. I doubt that it will open bigger than its April 20 competition (which includes The Nanny Diaries and Rogue), especially since it is only getting a limited bow, but there should be a lot of interest, nonetheless (I'll be seeing it a few times, I'm sure). It will be interesting to see how American critics respond, too. So far, with U.K. reviews in, the film has a 75% rating at Rotten Tomatoes, despite the fact that many of the positive blurbs appear to actually be slightly negative.