‘The Martian’ rockets to top of N. America box office

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 The Martian

“The Martian” dominated the North American box office in its first week in theaters, taking in $55 million, industry estimates showed Sunday.

The critically-acclaimed blockbuster starring Matt Damon as an astronaut stranded on Mars was a hit with the general public as well, taking in nearly twice the average daily revenue as its closest rival from Friday to Sunday.

In a distant second was “Hotel Transylvania 2,” which scared up $33 million after leading the box office last week.

The sequel, featuring an all-star cast voicing animated ghouls, has brought in $90.5 million in its two weeks in theaters, according to box office tracker Exhibitor Relations.

The thriller “Sicario,” featuring Benicio del Toro as a brooding and shadowy agent on a counternarcotics task force, jumped from tenth to third over the weekend, taking in $12.1 million.

In its second week in theaters, “The Intern” fell from second to fourth, with $11.6 million in box office receipts.

The film stars Robert De Niro, who at 70 takes an internship at a fashion website whose founder is played by Anne Hathaway.

“Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials” fell to fifth after debuting at the top of the box office two weeks ago.

The second film in the “Maze Runner” trilogy based on popular young adult science-fiction novels earned $7.7 million over the weekend.

True crime biopic “Black Mass,” about Irish-American mobster James “Whitey” Bulger, remained in the middle of the pack in its third week, at sixth place with $5.9 million.

Thriller “Everest,” in which a group of climbers find themselves engulfed in a blizzard on the side of the iconic mountain, dropped from fourth to seventh place in its third week out, with $5.5 million.

“The Visit,” M. Night Shyamalan’s low-budget thriller about a visit to grandma’s house gone awry, slipped to eighth, bringing in $3.9 million.

In its sixth week in theaters, “War Room,” which centers on a struggling couple who finds help through prayer, held on to come in ninth with $2.8 million in sales.

“The Perfect Guy,” about a woman’s tryst with a man who isn’t what he seems, earned $2.4 million, finishing tenth.

And in its first weekend in theaters, “The Walk,” about French high-wire artist Philippe Petit, earned $1.6 million in limited release, good enough for eleventh.

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