2 May 2005 | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

What was thought by many in the industry to be a tight horse race between the two films debuting in wide release at the boxoffice this weekend turned into a rout instead. A sci-fi adventure-comedy about interplanetary hitchhiking, Buena Vista's The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, sizzled in the top spot with an estimated $21.7 million, while a high-octane action-thriller, Sony's XXX: State of the Union, fizzled in third place with an estimated $13.7 million. The opening for Hitchhiker, from Spyglass Entertainment and Touchstone Pictures, proved to be a company best in April for the Disney distribution arm and also was the highest-grossing debut for a PG-rated film for the month. Buena Vista's Holes previously held both those titles with $16.3 million. Martin Freeman stars in the Garth Jennings-directed Hitchhiker, which was based on the popular novel by Douglas Adams. The XXX sequel's dour debut -- relative to its industry-estimated $87 million cost -- was a far cry from the stellar $44.5 million opening of the original Revolution Studios picture, which starred Vin Diesel and Samuel L. Jackson. Ice Cube and Jackson star in the PG-13 sequel, which was helmed by Lee Tamahori.

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