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Bloody epic "300" earns big numbers at box office

Category: 300 News
Article Date: March 11, 2007 | Publication: Reuters/Yahoo | Author: Editors

Posted by: admin

The blood-soaked ancient epic "300" slaughtered its foes at the weekend box office in North America, setting a new record for a March release by selling about $70 million worth of tickets, distributor Warner Bros. Pictures said on Sunday.

The grim warrior tale stars Scottish actor Gerard Butler as Leonidas, king of the Spartans, who leads 300 of his warriors to glorious death at the Battle of Thermopylae against a massive Persian army commanded by the fey king Xerxes (Brazilian actor Rodrigo Santoro).

Its achievement was all the more noteworthy given that the previous record-holder for the month, 2006's "Ice Age 2: The Meltdown," with $68 million, was a family-oriented cartoon, while "300" is an unabashedly gruesome spectacle with an "R" rating that prevents viewers under 17 attending without adult supervision.

In fact, the opening for "300" ranks as the third-highest for an R-rated movie, behind "The Matrix Reloaded" ($91 million) and "The Passion of the Christ" ($83 million), said Warner Bros., a unit of Time Warner Inc.

The film, budgeted in the mid-$60 million range, was directed by Zack Snyder ("Dawn of the Dead"), and based on the graphic novel by comic book writer Frank Miller ("Sin City").

It earned largely positive reviews, despite or because of its myriad decapitations and balletic battlefield carnage. The last few chart-toppers, incumbent champ "Wild Hogs," "Ghost Rider" and "Norbit" were slammed by the critics.


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