LOS ANGELES (AFP) - For the second straight weekend, the tie-wearing toddler of The Boss Baby nosed out Disney's Beauty And The Beast at North American box offices, while the new Smurfs movie came in a distant and disappointing third, according to industry estimates.
The Boss Baby, the animated tale about a cuteness competition pitting babies against pets, took in US$26.3 million (S$37 million) for the three-day weekend, Exhibitor Relations reported, bringing its two-week total to US$89.4 million. Alec Baldwin voices the chief baby in the DreamWorks production, distributed by Fox.
Beauty And The Beast showed continuing strength, netting US$25 million in its fourth week out for an impressive North American total so far of US$432.3 million. With its intricate production and rich musical score, the Disney film, starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens, is the year's highest-grossing film so far.
But Sony, which had been banking on the cuddly appeal of the blue munchkins in Smurfs: The Lost Village, faced disappointing numbers. The film's US$14 million opening weekend was "one of the worst starts in recent memory for an animated offering from a major Hollywood studio," said the Hollywood Reporter web site.
The original film in the series, The Smurfs (2011), earned much of its US$563.7 million gross on overseas ticket sales, and Sony appears to be hoping this film will follow form.
Going In Style, a Warner Bros. comedy starring Morgan Freeman, Alan Arkin and Michael Caine as an octogenarian trio determined to rob a bank after their pension money goes up in smoke, placed fourth in its opening weekend, taking in US$12.5 million. That beat expectations for a film aimed at an older audience. It cost just US$24 million to produce.
And fifth was Paramount's Ghost In The Shell, starring Scarlett Johansson in an adaptation of a Japanese manga tale. It had weekend revenues of US$7.4 million.
Rounding out the top 10 are: Power Rangers (US$6.2 million), Kong: Skull Island (US$5.8 million), Logan (US$4.1 million), Get Out (US$4.0 million), and The Case For Christ (US$3.9 million) .