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"Borat" -- Bomb or Da Bomb?

11/3/2006 4:38 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

BoratWith its relentless PR campaign and endless stream of positive reviews, "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" finally opens in theaters today. Despite the good buzz, the film's box office take will be on the watch list.

The movie was originally slated to open on about 2,000 screens, but was scaled back to 837 -- low tracking numbers being the cause. In comparison, "Santa Clause 3" and "Flushed Away" are opening wide on 3,707 and 3,458 screens, respectively. Put the two together and "Borat" has virtually no chance of opening in the top slot.

How far will it fall?

Two of the leading box office tracking websites, The-Numbers.com and BoxOfficeMojo.com, are predicting less-than-stellar receipts; The-Numbers.com has "Borat" opening in sixth place with just $5 million. BoxOfficeMojo.com predicts a slightly more positive opening; fourth place and $10.5 million. The budget for the film was just $17 million.

The news isn't all bad for Kazakhstan's least favorite son. Fandango.com surveyed thousands of moviegoers planning to see "Borat" and found that 96% are planning to see it this weekend. The site also reports that through yesterday at 3PM PT, 72% of ticket sales on the site were for "Borat."

52 COMMENTS

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46.

Noel    

Borat WAS a big hit in the theaters, proving we Americans have a huge appetite for racist humor and ethnic hatred. I have no trouble with Cohen, a Jew, mocking other Jews--at least it's his own ethnicity. But he assigns the task to his "Muslim" character and spreads hate by reinforcing existing negative stereotypes about Muslims: that they are ipso facto anti-Semitic (never mind that many, if not most Muslims are Arabs, which means they are Semitic by race, which is probably not true of Cohen). I'm waiting for Cohen's appearance in shuck-and-jive blackface. Or perhaps he would care to reprise the Fritos Bandito, or a child-molesting gay? Would someone pull this reeking piece of racist cr*p off the air, please?

2884 days ago
47.

Noel    

Actually, Kazakhstan DOES exist (check your atlas), and they really dislike Cohen, so I suggest "No, you S.T.U.F." take his/her own advice, and also head to Kazakhstan is he/she is craving intelligent discourse.

2884 days ago
48.

Noel    

Yes, No. 44, African-Americans make fun of themselves all the time, and therein lies the crucial difference: They are mocking their own ethnic group, which seems to be acceptable to most Americans. Cohen is NOT a Muslim; Cohen is NOT a Kazakhstani. So what are his "creds" for mocking people from other ethnic backgrounds? The character Borat's anti-semitism is meant to show what a racist and anti-Semite he is. Prejudice may be "crap" to you, something to laugh at, but people who live with it would disagree--from the point of view of actual knowledge and experience.

2884 days ago
49.

Noel    

No. 43, the word "Kazakhstan" is a transliteration of a word written in another alphabet and using sounds that are not used in English. So literally speaking, one couldn't "misspell" the word in our language. The young lady to whom you responded simply used a form at variance with the common English-language rendering. But one notices that these postings (including mine) tend to be written in haste. Perhaps it's more realistic to confine criticisms to the substance of the message, and politely ignore grammatical and spelling errors, as we all make them on-line, isn't that so, No. 43?

2884 days ago
50.

Tom    

Noel, Cohen's mother is a Iranian Jew.

And in America, we have a little thing called the 1st Amendemnt, people can be as repulsive and hateful as they want, the only one that will pull him off the air is the free market.

2883 days ago
51.

Donna    

I found the movie disgusting and perverted!!! It should be banned in the U.S. also!

2880 days ago
52.

Sir Mildred Pierce    

Number 1 two weeks in a row! TMZ called it again!

NOT!

2872 days ago
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