Cop comedy Ride Along finally dethrones Star Wars: The Force Awakens

A boy hides behind a life size Stormtrooper figure as movie goers arrive for the first screening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in Beijing on Jan 9.
A boy hides behind a life size Stormtrooper figure as movie goers arrive for the first screening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in Beijing on Jan 9. PHOTO: EPA

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Star Wars: The Force Awakens was finally dethroned from its weeks-long grip atop the North American box office, shoved aside by cop comedy Ride Along 2 and Oscar favourite The Revenant.

Ride Along 2 raked in US$34 million for the three-day weekend, box office tracker Exhibitor Relations said Sunday, while revenge film The Revenant earned US$29.5 million.

The latest instalment of the popular Star Wars saga came in at US$25.1 million in its fifth week, boosting it to a worldwide total take of US$1.86 billion, third highest ever.

Ride Along 2 soared to first place in its first week of release, appearing in 3,175 North American theatres.

The film features funny man Kevin Hart as a rookie law officer who aspires to become a detective like his future brother-in-law, played by rapper and actor Ice Cube, as the two become embroiled with a murderous Miami drug ring.

The original Ride Along movie, with the same stars, set an opening-weekend record in January 2014, netting US$41.6 million.

The Revenant, in its fourth week in theatres, got a certain boost from news of its nomination for 12 Oscars, most of any film.

The movie, starring Leonardo DiCaprio as a legendary fur trapper, has already won Golden Globes for Best Picture, Best Director (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu) and Best Actor (DiCaprio).

Rounding out the week's top 10 films were: 13 Hours, in its first week in theatres (US$16 million) , Daddy's Home (US$9.3 million), Norm of the North, also in its first week (US$6.7 million), The Forest (US$5.8 million), The Big Short (US$5.2 million), Sisters (USD$4.4 million) , and The Hateful Eight (US$3.4 million).