The Washington Post

‘TED’ FOR THE WIN: Seth MacFarlane comedy wins weekend with $54.1M debut [UPDATED]

“FAMILY GUY” CREATOR Seth MacFarlane has conquered another medium. The crooning animator behind a slew of snark-spewing TV cartoon characters has now hit it big with a potty-mouthed CGI teddy bear dominating the big screen.

“Ted,” directed and co-written by MacFarlane (American Dad,” “Cleveland Show”), won the weekend with a $54.1-million domestic debut, according to studio estimates — besting “The Hangover” as the biggest debut ever for an original R-rated comedy. Final numbers are expected Monday.

The Universal film’s titular character is a beer-swigging, couch-lounging teddy bear who has grown up — though not matured — alongside his manchild of a human “owner,” played by Mark Wahlberg, whose love interest is played by MacFarlane regular Mila Kunis.

(Any similarity to Lucas Turnbloom’s syndicated webcomic “Imagine This,” about a 30-year-old manchild’s beer-swigging, couch-lounging pottymouth of a grown-up toy teddy bear is apparently purely coincidental.)

[MILA KUNIS: The Comic Riffs Interview]


COUCH BRO’TATOES: Mark Wahlberg trades retorts with the CGI’d slacker Ted (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) in a scene from the box office-topping "Ted." (Universal Pictures/Tippett Studio/AP)


More moviegoers chose to watch Wahlberg bear it than Channing Tatum bare it, though the latter’s film also performed well above expectations: “Magic Mike,” directed by Steven Soderbergh, debuted with $39.2-million to finish second in what — according to — is the biggest aggregated weekend ever in June.

Last weekend’s champ, Disney/Pixar’s “Brave,” was third with $34-million, as its second-weekend dropoff was nearly 50 percent.

Next up to challenge them all, of course: Marc Webb’s “The Amazing Spider-Man,” which opens July 3 in North America. The fourth Spidey film — a reboot that now stars Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone — has already grossed $50.2-million overseas.


■■“Ted” had the fifth-biggest domestic opening ever for a film starring a CGI character — though if Monday’s final numbers bump it up, “Ted “ could pass the fourth-place “Scooby-Doo” ($54.15-million) and perhaps even the third-place “The Incredible Hulk” ($55.4-mill). (The champ easily remains “Avatar” at $77-mill).

■“Ted” had the seventh-biggest domestic opening ever for an R-rated film, slotting in right behind “Watchmen” ($55.2-million). The film also skewed 56-percent male, and 52-percent of the audience was 30-and-younger, according to BoxOfficeMojo.

■“Ted” is Wahlberg’s second-biggest opening ever, trailing only 2001’s ”Planet of the Apes” ($68.4-mill).

■“Brave” is holding up fairly well, topping $131-million domestically after 10 days.

■“Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted” (DreamWorks Animation) is holding strong, having grossed $180-million domestically and nearly $425-mill overall.

Writer/artist/visual storyteller Michael Cavna is creator of the "Comic Riffs" column and graphic-novel reviewer for The Post's Book World. He relishes sharp-eyed satire in most any form.


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