Tom Cruise whooped by Tyler Perry in drag
LOS ANGELES - The drag queen Madea and her posse of goofy grannies unexpectedly mopped the floor with Tom Cruise at the weekend box office. “Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween,” the seventh installment in a series that Hollywood had essentially left for dead three years ago, following the weak debut of Madea’s sixth adventure, took in an estimated $27.6 million. The film, from Lionsgate, cost $20 million to make; the studio spent a modest $26 million on marketing. “Tyler’s continued success on television has only made him more of a force,” Tim Palen, Lionsgate’s chief brand officer, said by phone on Sunday morning, referring to a few series Perry has recently introduced on the Oprah Winfrey Network. Perry, who directed, wrote and stars in “A Madea Halloween,” was expected to battle Cruise for the weekend’s No. 1 spot, but it ended up being no contest at all. “Jack Reacher: Never Go Back,” with Cruise in the title role, sold about $23 million in tickets, according to comScore, which compiles ticketing data. Paramount and its financing partners spent roughly $60 million to make “Never Go Back.” The film was primarily designed with the overseas box office in mind. The domestic results for the two films combined with a lackluster debut for the horror sequel “Ouija: Origin of Evil” underscore a common prediction: Americans will only turn out in big numbers for sequels that seem to have compelling creative reasons for existing.