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‘The ‘burbs’ Is the Place

<i> Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press</i>

Universal’s “The ‘burbs” defied skeptics by holding onto the No. 1 position over the weekend, though ticket sales dropped 46% from the four-day count during President’s Day weekend. The studio’s wide release strategy--the film is showing in nearly 2,000 theaters--also helped keep “The ‘burbs” on top. It grossed $6 million over the weekend, an average of $3,080 per screen. Another comedy, Orion’s “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure,” grossed $4.7 million at 1,590 theaters, a per-screen average of $3,793.

* Columbia’s “True Believer,” a project left over from David Puttnam’s days as head of the studio, has been a disappointment at the box office. The film grossed $1.8 million over the weekend at 577 theaters, an average of $2,022 per screen. Since its opening three weeks ago, the film has grossed $5.4 million.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE

Weekend Gross/ Screens/ Weeks Movie (Studio) Total (millions) Average in Release 1."The’burbs” $6.0 1,956 2 Universal $18.9 $3,080 2."Rain Man” $4.7 1,590 11 MGM/UA $116.6 $2,963 3."Bill and Ted’s Adventure” $4.7 1,228 2 (Orion) $11.9 $3,793 4."Dangerous Liaisons” $2.8 762 10 (Warner) $15.5 $3,727 5."Three Fugitives” $2.7 1,354 5 (Disney/Touchstone) $29.6 $2,023 *"True Believer” $1.8 577 3 (Columbia) $5.4 $2,022

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