Logan claws way to top of North American box office

Hugh Jackman as Logan-Wolverine in Logan.
Hugh Jackman as Logan-Wolverine in Logan.PHOTO: TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - The X-Men spinoff Logan - starring Hugh Jackman as the metal-clawed, mutant anti-hero Wolverine - dominated North American box offices this weekend with a whopping take of US$85.3 million($120.3 million) in its debut, according to industry estimates released Sunday.

Aimed at a more adult audience, it is the first R-rated outing in the X-Men franchise, which began in 2000 and has so far clocked up US$4.4 billion in box office revenue.

It is more of a blood-spattered dystopian road movie than a traditional superhero film, and follows Wolverine/Logan as he undertakes one final mission: to protect a young girl who has powers remarkably like his own and is being pursued by dark forces.

Dropping from first to second was Jordan Peele's socially conscious horror film Get Out, with US$26.1 million, said box office tracker Exhibitor Relations.

Peele's feature directorial debut - the actor is half of the comedy duo Key and Peele - follows a young African American (Daniel Kaluuya) who is so nervous about meeting the family of his white girlfriend (Allison Williams), he fails to realise the menace lurking at their mansion.

The movie cost under $5 million to produce and has taken in $76 million in two weeks.

Debuting in third place with US$16.1 million in receipts was The Shack, based on a Christian-oriented novel by Canadian author William Young about a grieving man's spiritual journey after suffering a death in the family.

Fourth place went to CGI comedy The Lego Batman Movie, with US$11.7 million for a four-week total of US$148.6 million.

Featuring the voice of Will Arnett as the caped crusader, the Warner Bros spinoff of the The Lego Movie follows Batman as he tries to save Gotham City from being taken over by the Joker, voiced by Zach Galifianakis.

Before I Fall - think Groundhog Day getting a makeover for teens - took fifth place as it grossed US$4.9 million in the latest twist on the "time loop" as a narrative tool.

Shot over just 24 days, Before I Fall follows Samantha Kingston, a student in the "in crowd" who is about to lose her virginity to another popular kid.

Played by 22-year-old rising star Zoey Deutch, Sam finds herself trapped in a time loop, destined to repeat the day of her death in an auto accident over and over.

Rounding out the top 10 are: John Wick: Chapter 2 (US$4.7 million) Hidden Figures (US$3.8 million) The Great Wall (US$3.5 million) Fifty Shades Darker (US$3.5 million) La La Land (US$3.0 million).