`Chuck and Larry' carry past Harry

by David Hinckley

New York Daily News (MCT)

23 July 2007


For reasons all the wizards at Hogwarts might not be able to explain, the dumb Adam Sandler comedy “I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry” knocked Harry Potter out of the top movie box office spot this weekend.

“Chuck and Larry,” in which Sandler and Kevin James play two firemen forced by circumstance to pretend they’re gay so they can form a domestic partnership, earned $34.8 million.

“Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,” which took in about $140 million during its five-day opening last weekend, dropped to $32.2 million.

But he’s still box-office magic. As of Sunday, his gross was $207.5 million in North America and $400.5 million worldwide.

“Chuck and Larry” got lukewarm reviews, with many critics finding its string of gay jokes either offensive or tedious. But like most Sandler movies, it proved largely critic-proof.

Also off to a strong start this weekend was “Hairspray,” with John Travolta, Queen Latifah, Amanda Bynes and Michelle Pfeiffer.

“Hairspray,” the movie version of the campy Broadway hit, earned $27.8 million, well ahead of fourth-place “Transformers,” which took in $20.5 million to run its total to $263 million.

Next weekend’s new offerings include the heavily promoted restaurant romance “No Reservations,” with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Aaron Eckhart, and the movie version of “The Simpsons.”

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