News: Eminem's "Funny People" Projected To Debut No. 1 At Box Office

Sunday, Aug 2, 2009 2:00PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

The new Adam Sandler film Funny People, which features scenes with Eminem and RZA, is being projected to land atop its competition at the box office this weekend.

While total estimates will not be finalized until Sunday (August 2) evening, the comedy will likely debut at No. 1.

While Virgin bowed to $21 million with an unknown Steve Carrell at the center and Knocked Up pulled in $30 million with newcomer Seth Rogen, Funny People has giant movie star Adam Sandler leading the charge. But the comedy pro is leaving his PG comfort zone and the results when he does so are never certain. Prognosticators have this film opening at $20 million. I'm going with $35 million. Sandler and Judd Apatow could prove to be a very formidable combination, even with a close to 2 1/2 hour run time. (Entertainmen Weekly)

The film faced stiff competition from other movies already at the box office including Harry Potter and G-Force.

The family-friendly films "G-Force," "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" and "Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs" nabbed three of the top five spots last weekend, so one might think that the moms-and-kids segment is saturated. But so far this summer, parents have shown boundless enthusiasm for rounding up the tots for a couple hours of air-conditioned diversion. (Reuters)

Funny People director Judd Apatow recently spoke on Em's on-set performance in the film.

"He was a fantastic actor, and the best moments ever in my career were pitching him new jokes to say and making him laugh really hard," Apatow said in an interview. "He came early and well-prepared. I think he felt like, 'I'm entering a world of comedy here. I got to be on my game.' He was really funny, willing to say anything. I thought if I pitched him certain jokes, he'd say, 'No, no that's too far.'...Apparently, you can't shock Eminem with anything you have to say...To make him laugh super hard was really, really fun, and he's great in the movie. I'm glad that his scene kills, and so it's really exciting." (MTV)

In addition to Shady, RZA is also featured in the film.

So far, there's no more information available about what kind of role Eminem will play in the film, but a movie photo shows him sitting across from Sandler at a restaurant table, seemingly lending an ear -- perhaps in a friend role? Cast includes Adam Sandler, Seth Rogen, Leslie Mann, Eric Bana, Jonah Hill, Jason Schwartzman, Norm MacDonald, Sarah Silverman, Aziz Ansari, RZA, Dave Attell and others. (Michigan Live)

Check out the Funny People trailer below:

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