Lionsgate's temp rises with 'Sicko'

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Lionsgate far outpaced the competition this summer, but its biggest hit was the Weinstein Co. co-release "Sicko." Michael Moore's harsh and humorous health-care expose took in $24.1 million. Currently neck and neck with "An Inconvenient Truth," it will pass that film to become the third-highest-grossing nonmusical documentary of all time this weekend, though its purse doesn't begin to compare with the top-ranking docu, Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11" ($119.2 million.)

"Hostel: Part II's" $17.5 million gross was just more than one-third of the original's $47.3 million take, but it cost more than twice its predecessor's $4.8 million budget. The disappointing returns could signal Lionsgate's shift from its longtime cash cow in hard-core horror — with the exception of the "Saw" franchise, which will return this Halloween.

"War" was good for $18.2 million in theaters thanks to the cross-cultural action appeal of actors Jet Li and Jason Statham. Lionsgate had its action and spoofed it too with "Delta Farce" — Larry the Cable Guy roped in $8.1 million in redneck business.

"Bratz" brought popular toy dolls to life onscreen and $9.6 million to the boxoffice. On the other end of the demographic scale, the Alzheimer's drama "Away From Her" earned a respectable $4.5 million and is likely to grow with an awards-season push for star Julie Christie. But Lionsgate's future Oscar bait is more likely to come through Roadside Attractions, in which the company purchased a minority stake this summer.
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