The Girl on the Train starts off big in North American box office

 Emily Blunt in The Girl on the Train.
Emily Blunt in The Girl on the Train.PHOTO: DREAMWORKS PICTURES-UNIVERSAL PI

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - The psychological thriller The Girl on the Train topped the North American box office in its opening weekend with US$24.7 million (S$33.9m) in revenue, an industry group estimated Sunday (Oct 9).

Emily Blount plays a depressed, alcoholic divorcee who witnesses something odd as she rides a commuter train and ends up launching a missing persons investigation.

The flick from Universal is based on a best-selling novel by British author Paula Hawkins.

It unseated from first place Tim Burton's new fantasy tale Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, which dropped to second at US$15 million.

Its cumulative total in its second week in theaters stands at US$51.1 million, said industry tracker Exhibitor Relations.

Burton's latest movie, from 20th Century Fox and Chernin Entertainment, tells the story of a headmistress (Eva Green) at an orphanage in Wales full of odd youngsters with magical powers.

Dropping from second to third was Mark Wahlberg's oil-rig thriller Deepwater Horizon, from Lionsgate, at US$11.8 million.

The film directed by Peter Berg and also starring Kurt Russell, John Malkovich, Kate Hudson and Gina Rodriguez follows the deadly 2010 Transocean and BP oil rig explosion and spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Sony and MGM's The Magnificent Seven, a remake of the classic 1960 Western starring Denzel Washington, came in fourth at US$9.2 million.

Fifth place with US$8.5 million went to Storks, an animated film from Warner Bros in its third week. The children's picture is about baby-delivering birds who have modernised and now deliver packages for a global internet retail giant.

In its debut week and sixth place, The Birth of a Nation, a US civil war epic, took in US$7.1 million.

Another movie in its first week - Middle School: the Worst Years of My Life - took seventh place with US$6.9 million.

Rounding out the top 10 films were: Sully (US$5.3 million), Masterminds (US$4.1 million) The Queen of Katwe (US$1.6 million).