Clapboard: Star Trek Boldly Goes to No. 1

LOS ANGELES ~ The latest Star Trek movie put a Vulcan death-grip on its rivals at the North American box office at the weekend, beaming up US$75.2 million to take top spot, final figures showed.

The critically acclaimed blockbuster’s haul easily surpassed the best opening weekend of any of the sci-fi franchise’s 10 other Trek movies, box office tracker Exhibitor Relations said.

The Star Trek reboot also nearly tripled the $26.4-million take of superhero spinoff X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which claimed the best debut of the year one weekend earlier with $87 million.

Exhibitor Relations analyst Jeff Bock said the stellar opening for Star Trek would be a cause for celebration for fans of the franchise.

An opening of that size almost guarantees that you’re going to see one, maybe two sequels, down the line, Bock said. I think if you’re a Star Trek fan at the moment you’re going to be ecstatic.

Trailing a distant third was romantic comedy Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, starring Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner, which earned $10.2 million in its second week.

Superstar singer Beyonce’s taut thriller Obsessed slipped one spot to fourth with $6.6 million, for a total of $56.2 million over three weeks.

Youthful fantasy 17 Again, starring US teen idol Zac Efron, also fell one spot, to fifth, taking in $4.2 million for a $53.9-million total over four weeks.

Debuting at number six was comic caper Next Day Air, about a bungled cocaine delivery and the efforts to retrieve it. As the only R-rated film in the top 12, it took in $4.1 million.

In seventh spot was The Soloist, an inspiring musical tale based on a true story and starring Robert Downey Jr and Jamie Foxx, which scored $3.9 million in ticket sales on its third weekend.

Monsters vs Aliens, an animated tale of a rag-tag group of monsters who save the world from destruction, dropped three spots to eighth, earning $3.2 million but basking in its seven-week haul of $186.7 million over seven weeks.

Disney’s Earth documentary, in ninth place, culls extraordinary nature footage from the BBC’s landmark series Planet Earth. It brought in $2.7 million in its third weekend.

Miley Cyrus’ Hannah Montana: The Movie slipped two places to 10th. The film version of the popular Disney TV series took in $2.2 million for a total of $73.8 million in five weeks.

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