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Ballad of Ricky Bobby number #1 at box office...

'Talladega Nights' Hits the Gas
The NASCAR satire starring Will Ferrell opens with a surprisingly strong $47 million at the box office.

By Josh Friedman
Times Staff Writer
August 6, 2006

"Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby," the NASCAR satire starring Will Ferrell, is being advertised as "The story of a man who could only count to No. 1."

And the movie lived up to its billing, as dumb guys finished first at the box office over the weekend.

"Talladega Nights" won the weekend derby with a surprisingly strong $47 million in U.S. and Canadian ticket sales, according to studio estimates Sunday. It marked a career high for Ferrell and the eighth No. 1 opening this year for Sony Pictures.

The comedy's simple concept was its chief selling point, said Rory Bruer, president of domestic distribution at the studio. Some have likened Ferrell's character to a redneck version of the blissfully clueless TV broadcaster he played in 2004's "Anchorman."

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