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13 December 2010
The Voyage of the Mulch Spreader took in $24.5 million in the United States. Other countries will begin screening the movie at a later date, and Latin America will see a dubbed version, missing all the swear words, in 2015.
The take was disappointing, but the large number of unsuspecting foreign countries, whose citizens don't read American movie reviews, led executives to predict that it will eventually recover most of the $150 million sunk into making it. "We resurrected this franchise and rekindled the affection for the first episode," said Chris Aronson, head of distribution for Fox, by way of tiptoeing around the aimlessness of the middle episode.
The stirring movie follows some siblings on a magical voyage with their royal pal and a talking lion. It is based on the novels of C.S.Lewis. "Sarnia" is the fantasy city across the river from Port Huron, Michigan, from which residents learn how to speak English, those who don't opt for Ebonics. The movie is Hollywood's latest attempt to get the public to the cinema, long after it fired all its ushers and can't make other patrons behave, on the weak basis that they read some book when they were children. Studio executives could not explain why they didn't just cue up The Rescuers again.
The Sarnia movie had tough box-office competition. It went up against several other sequels: One that youngsters will beg to be taken to, just for the fun of being able to utter the word "Fockers" in front of their parents, and an innovative effort to turn the "Tron" superhero franchise into a story of family reunification to appeal to chicks. Original storylines have been a casualty of California's ongoing state budget problem.
Still strong at the box office is Harry Potter and the Very Last Movie (Part One), which is subtitled, Hermione Gets Her Tits Out.
- David Germain ""Narnia" cruises to No. 1 debut with modest $24.5M". Associated Press, December 12, 2010