The comedy Flubber, in which Williams stars as the green-goo creator, held to its No. 1 position at the box office, taking in another $11.8 million. So far, in two weeks of release, this re-make of Disney's 1961 comedy The Absent Minded Professor has taken in an estimated $51 million.
Convinced that the nation is essentially engrossed with holiday shopping and football games the weekend after Thanksgiving, exhibitors and distributors shy away from wide-release openings that week, holding back the big guns, which this year include this coming week's Scream 2 and (unless legalities interfere) Steven Spielberg's Amistad, and on December 19 the long anticipated, ultra costly epic The Titanic and the new 007 caper, Tomorrow Never Dies.
Responding to the continued pull of Flubber, Phil Barlow, President of Disney's Buena Vista Distribution, took the opportunity to one up reviewers who had dissed this movie, telling the Associated Press: "Fortunately we deposit box office in the bank, and not critics. People love the movie."
Also in its second week, 20th Century Fox's sci-fi sequel Alien Resurrection remained in second place, but only sucked up $6.25 million, while the studio's animated Anastasia dropped down a position to fourth place, in spite of archrival Disney's The Little Mermaid having concluded its limited re-release engagement.
Moving up a slot to land in third with an estimated $5.7 million was John Grisham's The Rainmaker, starring Hollywood's flavor of the month Matt Damon.
In fact, Damon's Good Will Hunting, the weekend's only new release (showing in Los Angeles and New York) also proved popular. Although it opened on only seven screens, this Miramax drama drew an enormous per screen average of $37,143, totaling up $260,000.
The estimated Top 10 grosses were as follows:
1. Flubber, $11.8 million
2. Alien Resurrection, $6.25 million
3. John Grisham's The Rainmaker, $5.7 million
4. Anastasia, $4.55 million
5. The Jackal, $4 million
6. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, $3 million
7. Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, $2.25 million
8. I Know What You Did Last Summer, $1.35 million
9. Bean, $1.29 million
10. Starship Troopers, $1.25 million