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Hulk Smashes Competition

THE HULK came out slugging last weekend with the highest June opener ever at $62.1M, despite mixed reviews about the content of Ang Lee's heady adaptation of the Marvel comic and ILM's execution of the CG monster. Universal's latest entry in the comic book genre overtook AUSTIN POWERS: THE SPY WHO SHAGGED ME for the best June debut, and tied MONSTERS, INC. as the 17th best opener of all time. It also marks the seventh consecutive straight number one opening for Marvel. THE HULK comes in third right behind SPIDER-MAN'S $114.8M opening and X2: X-MEN UNITED's $85.6M last month.

Meanwhile, second place finisher FINDING NEMO continued its surge for Disney/Pixar, bringing in yet another $21.1M for a total of $228.5M. Universal's 2 FAST 2 FURIOUS came in third with $11M and a cume of $102.8M. Crystal Dowd served as VFX producer and Collin Fowler was VFX coordinator for Illusion Arts. Universal's BRUCE ALMIGHTY, the God-induced comedy starring Jim Carrey, dropped to number four with $9.8M. That's still good for $210.5.

Paramount's THE ITALIAN JOB actually moved up to the fifth slot, adding another $7.1M to its total take of $67.6M. RUGRATS GO WILD did not fare so well in its sophomore weekend, dropping to sixth place with $6.9M. With that 40% drop, the Paramount/Nickelodeon/Klasky Csupo animated feature now has $23.8M. Debuting lukewarmly at number seven was Warner Bros.' romantic comedy, ALEX AND EMMA with $6.1M (Jerry Spivack served as visual effects supervisor). Sony/Revolution's HOLLYWOOD HOMICIDE, starring Harrison Ford, with VFX from Sony Imageworks, also declined heavily in its second weekend, tallying only $5.9M in eighth place for a total of $21.5M. At number nine was New Line's DUMB AND DUMBERER: WHEN HARRY MET LLOYD, which fared even worse in its second weekend with $4.3M for $20M to date. Charles Belardinelli and Thomas Bellissimo served as special effects coordinators. Warner Bros.' MATRIX RELOADED just made the top 10 with $3.9M for a summer-leading tally of $264.4M. The visual effects feast included work from Amalgamated Pixels, Animal Logic, BUF, Bullet Time, CIS, CFX, ESC Entertainment, Giant Killer Robots, PLF Sony Pictures Imageworks and Tippett Studio. Box office information obtained from