Latin Hollywood Report: America & Zoe Rule the Box Office, Cantinflas Biopic Sparking Scandal

After a great start on Friday, a night it won, Jennifer Lopez’s return to big-screen comedy, The Back-Up Plan, couldn’t hold on through the weekend to top the box office. The film made $12.2 million, but was singed by America Ferrera’s How to Train your Dragon, which made $15 million in its fifth weekend, for a total of $178 million. Zoe Saldana made two appearances on the top 10 movies this weekend, with The Losers making its debut at fourth place ($9.6 million) and Death at a Funeral ($8 million) holding on to seventh place in its second week. With only one big release this week, the top 10 will likely look very similar next weekend, but look for Michael Bay’s reboot of ‘80s horror classic A Nightmare on Elm Street to tear things up at the top.

With two movies out this month and newly minted A-list status, Zoe Saldana’s been everywhere lately: On one national magazine cover after another, on celeb style blogs and on TV (did you catch her cute appearance on The Daily Show last week?). Now, she’s taking over living rooms everywhere. Avatar came out on DVD and Blu-Ray on Thursday. Fans have snapped up 6.7 million copies so far, making it the top-seller so far this year. And that’s just for the no-frills 2-D version of the sci-fi flick. Imagine all the stockings the special-features-clogged version will stuff when released later this year (3D Blu-Ray version is slated for early 2011).

Actor Oscar Jaenada may be the Spanish crossover hunk who reportedly beat out Diego Luna and John Leguizamo for the role of Cantinflas in the upcoming biopic of the same name, but apparently, the Mexican comic legend’s family is far from impressed. Nothing against Jaenada’s acting chops, you see. Just against Jaenada not being, you know, Mexican.

“My family is very disappointed by the decision this director has made about choosing a Spanish actor to play my uncle’s bio,” Cantinflas nephew Carlo Moreno told in an email. “My uncle was Mexican all the way, and many fans are starting to be very disappointed by not choosing a Mexican actor to play his part.” There is a hint in the email that the family’s disappointment may turn crusade: “We do not approve of this decision and we are pretty sure we will get the support of the Mexicans as well.”