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While still respectable, the film’s overall box office drop does not bode well for the movie’s soundtrack, which also witnessed a decline in its second week.

IT’S POTTER BY A MILE

Eminem’s Film Drops a Steep 58%
From Opening Weekend
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, the second installment in the fantasy franchise based on J.K. Rowling's novels, took in $87.7 million during its opening weekend—the third best debut ever.

The sequel comes in behind the record $114.8 million that Spider-Man grossed in its first three days last spring and the $90.3 million haul of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone a year ago.

Last weekend's No. 1 film, rapper Eminem's semi-autobiographical 8 Mile, dropped steeply after a huge debut. The movie came in at No. 2 with $21.3 million, down 58% from its opening weekend of $51.2 million and pushing its 10-day total to $86.4 million.

While still respectable, the film’s overall box office drop does not bode well for the movie’s soundtrack, which also witnessed a decline in its second week. Shady/Interscope/UMG Strx’s 8 Mile spent its second week at #1, topping the debut from NSYNC’s Justin Timberlake on Jive (#2) and Interscope labelmates U2’s Best of 1990-2000 (#3) but saw a drop of about 30% in sales despite the film’s enormous $50 million-plus debut. See related story.

The weekend's only other new wide release, Steven Seagal's action thriller Half Past Dead, which also star rapper Ja Rule, opened in fifth place with $8.2 million.

The overall box office rose, with the top 12 movies grossing $165.2 million, up 8.5 percent from the same weekend last year.

The year's surprise blockbuster, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, is expected to hit $200 million by Tuesday. The film was No. 6 over the weekend, grossing $4.7 million to lift its total to $199.6 million.

The Ring became the 17th movie of 2002 to top $100 million. The movie was No. 4 for the weekend with $11 million, raising its total to $101.6 million.

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