Copyright 2003

[ July 29th 2003 ]

Paramount Pictures has cited the mediocre performance of Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Angel Of Darkness as possible cause for the failure of Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life at the U.S. box office this weekend where the Angelina Jolie driven motion picture netted just 21.7 million and ranked fourth. The pic, armed with its usual armada of commercial partners to help ensure a degree of success, also came under heavy criticism although most argued the sequel faired marginally better than the original.

"The only thing we can attribute that to is that the gamers were not happy with the latest version of the 'Tomb Raider' video game, which is our core audience," Paramount distribution president Wayne Lewellen said. Eidos Interactive have made no comment on the claims by Paramount Pictures.

Of course the disappointing box office return would have nothing to do with the recent promotional dispute between Paramount Pictures and Regal Entertainment Group that resulted in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life being pulled from 47 theatre complexes across the U.S by Viacom owned Paramount Pictures. The point on contention being the placement of an actual Rubicon Wrangler Jeep parked in theatre foyers and Regal Entertainment Group lobbying for some type of financial compensation for third party advertising.

The original Simon West-helmed video-game adaptation garnered more than $230 million in revenue worldwide, coining $48 million during its domestic opening weekend and remains the highest ever box-office earner for a female-driven movie. The mediocre performance of Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life - and the subsequent icy relationship between Eidos Plc and Paramount Pictures - has done nothing but weaken the romance between the videogame and motion pic industry and underscores the fragile relationship between parties when sales disappoint, Reuters reports.

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