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Avast Ye Matey! Man the Mizzan Mast. Pirates Ho!

July 9th, 2003

One movie is getting the jump on the weekend by opening today. And if my bad Pirate talk didn't give it away, it's Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. This movie is the second from Disney based on rides from their Theme Parks. The first, The Country Bears, did very poorly at the box office and that led many analysts, me included, to be very pessimistic about Pirates' chances. And the early ads did very little to sway those feelings.

However, later stages of the campaign showcased a good mix of action, FX and the most over-the-top performance from Johnny Depp I've ever seen. It was then that Pirates of the Caribbean started to look like it might be good. And the reviews are definitely agreeing with the latter sentiments. Currently it has an amazing 86% positive on Rotten Tomatoes. It is the best-reviewed major release since Finding Nemo. And the fourth best wide release of the year after 28 Days Later and X-Men 2, (Note: 28 Days later was a wide release at 1258 theatres, but not a major release.)

But what does this mean for Pirates of the Caribbean's chances at the box office? I have a hard time believing it could beat Terminator 3's performance last week, even with the stronger reviews. But it could come very close, $11 million for the day and $35 million for the weekend.

But the biggest impact could be on the International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Now off to the theatres! And handsomely now, ye scurvy dogs. Or ye'll meet the rope's end.

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Filed under: Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, X2, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, 28 Days Later…