'Apprentice' conjures $3.9 mil opening day

Pic projected to fetch more than $30 mil through Sunday

Disney's effects-filled family fantasy "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" conjured $3.9 million in its first day in release on Wednesday.

Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, "Sorcerer's" was directed by Jon Turteltaub ("National Treasure") and stars Nicolas Cage, Alfred Molina and Jay Baruchel ("She's Out of My League"). Prior to its launch, the PG-rated pic was projected to fetch more than $30 million through Sunday.
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Less than a third of that five-day haul was expected to come from the midweek performances, which a Disney exec said he considered mere "sneak peaks" to stimulate word of mouth of the film. A solid five-day bow is vital to the pic's bottom line, as "Sorcerer's" production costs totaled at least $150 million.

There is only one other wide opener set for the weekend, but it's a biggie: Warner Bros. Leonardo DiCaprio starrer "Inception" unspools on Friday amid projections of a first-frame tally of at least $50 million. Like, Sorcerer's, "Inception" is a pricey, effects-filled tentpole and totes a negative cost estimated at $160 million.
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