Steve Carrell as Evan AlmightyEvan Almighty, the most expensive comedy film ever made—with an official reported cost of $175 million—opened less strongly than expected at the box office this weekend.

The religiously themed comedy starring popular TV actor Steve Carell was number one at the box office during its first weekend, earning an estimated $32.1 million over its first three days. The studio had reportedly expected it to bring in something in the mid-$30 million dollar range and possibly break $40 million.

A studio spokesperson said she hoped strong word of mouth would strengthen the film’s performance in the weeks to come, a not entirely implausible scenario.

I wonder whether many Christians and Jews, the film’s primary intended audience as I presume, have stayed away while waiting to find out how the film deals with the story’s apparent serious contradiction of the biblical account of the Flood: in the biblical account, God promised Noah that he would never flood the entire earth again, yet here is a movie that purports to have God telling a modern-day man to build an ark.

I should think that people who take the Bible seriously might well decide to hold off seeing Evan Almighty until finding out how the film deals with that issue. It’s certainly a possibility.

I will convey my own thoughts on the film on Monday.