Weekend Box Office: R-rated ‘Ted’ Too Much For The Strippers Of ‘Magic Mike’

Despite the buzz surrounding the male-stripper Magic Mike, Mark Wahlberg and Seth MacFarlane’s comedy Ted topped the weekend box office.

The first movie shows a talking stuffed bear, who magically came to life when he was a kid and has been John Bennett’s buddy ever since.

Everything might have seen quite well, but his girlfriend of four years, Lori, wanted more, so the unusual friendship has to be tested.

“Ted,” shot by Seth MacFarlane known for “Family Guy”, took in an estimated $54.1 million at North American theaters, thus it’s more than 35 percent higher than it was predicted.

By the way, the first “Hangover” movie — which has brought to its creators more than $467.5 million worldwide and spawned a series — took in $48 million in its first weekend in 2009, after adjusting for inflation.

Which is more, the ‘unusual friendship’ sold more tickets in its first three days when compared to Johnny Depp (“Dark Shadows”) or Tom Cruise (“Rock of Ages”) recently did, combined, in theirs, reports The New York Times.

But “Ted” is much more important to its financier, a quiet firm Media Rights Capital which was starting to look like a tepid experiment.

“We’ve had singles and doubles, but ‘Ted’ is our first big, fat home run,” Mordecai Wiczyk, co-chairman of Media Rights, said. “What we are trying to do has been validated, especially for partners like Universal who believed in us from the early days.”

Still, the question is whether “Ted” will become a “Hangover”-style series?

“We’re still digesting this weekend,” Mr. Wiczyk responded. “Everyone’s talking about it, and certainly we would love to do it.” A spokeswoman for Mr. MacFarlane said he was traveling on Sunday and unavailable to comment.

The plot of the movie was born in 2006, after Mr. Wiczyk asked Mr. MacFarlane whether he had movie aspirations.

“Seth said, ‘Well, I have this idea that opens up like a sweet little Disney movie and then becomes about a teddy bear that snorts coke and chases hookers,’ ” Mr. Wiczyk recalled.

“And I immediately closed my office door and called my business partner and said, ‘We’re greenlighting this right now.’ ”

However, Mark Wahlberg and Seth MacFarlane’s comedy Ted isn’t the only R-rated winner. Director Steven Soderbergh’s raunchy male striptease movie Magic Mike pulled in a whopping $39.2 million, writes The Daily Mail.

Then movie, starring such stars as Channing Tatum, Matthew McConaughey and others, arosed quite intense interest mainly among females, who made up a massive 73 per cent of the audience. Women of all ages turned out, with 43 percent of the audience over the age of 35.

As far as new other new entries are concerned, Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection raked in a strong $26.4 million opening for Lionsgate, while Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, grossed $12.5 million.

Rentrak Corporation, the global leader in box office measurement, said of this weekend’s box office:

“Ice Age: Continental Drift opens to a spectacular $78 million worldwide, this is the fourth weekend in a row an animated film sits atop the worldwide box office. Ice Age was No.1 in all 34 markets it opened this weekend. Domestically, Ted opens to a stellar $54 million.”

According to Hollywood.com, which compiles box office data, ticket sales in North America totaled $202 million for the weekend, that means a 3 percent increase over the same period last year.

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