The cyborgs of ‘Alita’ vanquish rivals in N.American box office

Fox’s new sci-fi spectacle “Alita: Battle Angel” is dominating North American box offices with an estimated $33 million take this four-day holiday weekend, industry trackers said Sunday.

The film, with Rosa Salazar voicing “Alita,” a cyborg almost more human than machine, was set to make $27.8 million for the Friday-to-Sunday period and an additional $5.2 million for Monday’s President’s Day holiday, Exhibitor Relations reported.

The computer-animated adaptation of a Japanese cyberpunk manga story has big names behind it, directed by Robert Rodriguez and produced by James Cameron. The project, 20 years in the making, also has a sizable budget: $170 million.

The Fox film beat out last weekend’s leader, “The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part,” which earned Warner Bros an estimated $21.2 million in ticket sales for the first three days of the weekend and $27.3 million when Monday is included.

This fourth “Lego” movie again features the voices of Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Banks and Will Arnett — joined this time by Tiffany Haddish and Maya Rudolph — in a story of love and chaos in a post-apocalyptic toyland.

In third was another Warner Bros. film, “Isn’t It Romantic?”, at $14.2 million for three days and $16.5 million for four. Rebel Wilson stars as a rom-com hating New Yorker who, after a blow to the head, finds herself in her own romantic comedy. Liam Hemsworth also stars.

Fourth place went to Paramount’s “What Men Want.” The gender-switching remake of 2000’s “What Women Want” stars Taraji P. Henson. It had three-day ticket sales of $10.9 million and a four-day total of $12.6 million.

And in fifth was “Happy Death Day 2U” from Universal, at $9.8 million for three days and $11.5 million for four — already recouping the mere $9 million it cost to make. Jessica Rothe again plays the role of a young woman living and reliving the day of her murder.

Rounding out the weekend’s top 10 were:

“Cold Pursuit” ($6 million for three days; $7.1 million for four)

“The Upside” ($5.6 million; $6.7 million)

“Glass” ($3.9 million; $4.8 million)

“The Prodigy” ($3.2 million; $3.8 million)

“Green Book” ($2.8 million; $3.5 million)

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