Saturday 24 March 2018

Film bosses have last laugh at the box office

Edel O'Connell

FILMgoers' love of comedy had cinema bosses laughing all the way to the bank.

Comedies have topped the Irish box office so far this year with 'Bridesmaids' outshining 'Hangover 2' to become the biggest hit of the year.

Thought-provoking Oscar-winning offerings such as 'The King's Speech' and 'Black Swan' may have proved popular with the critics but the miserable weather seems to have had filmgoers looking for laughs.

'Bridesmaids' was the sleeper hit of the summer in Ireland taking in €4.2m -- easily beating the likes of blockbusters 'Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides' and 'Kung Fu Panda 2'.

Second at the box office so far this year was 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2' which took in €4.1m.

'The Hangover 2' was next, raking in €3.9m, followed closely by another surprise hit, Irish movie 'The Guard', which has taken in €3.4m to date.

The dark comedy is on course to become the most successful Irish film since 'The Wind that Shakes the Barley', which won the Palme d'Or in 2006.

Overall box-office takings for Ireland came in at €76.2m so far this year -- down €6.7pc on the same period last year when takings came in at €81.5m.

However, according to Dave Thurston, managing director of advertising analysts Nielsen EDI, it was still an "impressive" summer for the Irish box office.

"I don't think many people would have predicted 'Bridesmaids' to be as huge as it was or 'The Guard', which has done particularly well," he said.

"Overall comedies topped the poll this year -- they consistently perform well at the Irish box office," he added.

Irish Independent

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