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Joss Whedon‘s Avengers: Age of Ultron, easily crushed the competition for the second weekend in a row, while Hot Pursuit, the Reese Witherspoon and Sofia Vergara comedy, checked in a distant second place as it hit multiplexes.
Age of Ultron, from Disney and Marvel, collected an estimated $21.3 million in North America on Friday, bringing its eight-day domestic total to close to $257 million. Its 10-day total in North America is expected to cross the $300 million mark on Sunday
The superhero roundup is racing toward the $1 billion mark globally. Through Thursday, the tentpole had earned a staggering $753.3 million worldwide, already putting it ahead of every Marvel Cinematic Universe film save for The Avengers ($1.52 billion), Iron Man 3 ($1.21 billion) and Guardians of the Galaxy ($774.2 million). On Friday, Age of Ultron also crossed $500 million internationally, a feat only accomplished by Iron Man 3 and The Avengers.
Meanwhile, Hot Pursuit took in $4.2 million on Friday as it eyes an opening weekend take of about $13 million. Hoping to cater to females over Mother’s Day weekend, the movie began rolling out in North American theaters Thursday night, where it earned $450,000.
Anne Fletcher directed Witherspoon and Vergara in Hot Pursuit, an MGM and New Line comedy which is going out through Warner Bros. MGM and Witherspoon’s company, Pacific Standard, ran production on Hot Pursuit, starring Witherspoon as an inept police officer who must protect the widow of a drug dealer from criminals and corrupt cops.
So far, the $35 million movie is one of the worst-reviewed films of Witherspoon’s career. The actress was last in theaters in Wild, the Fox Searchlight title that earned her an Oscar nomination. In terms of her comedies, This Means War debuted to $17.4 million in February 2012.
The remainder of the top five, all holdovers, were bunched close together, with Lionsgate’s romantic fantasy The Age of Adaline and Universal’s Furious 7 both doing about $1.5 million for the day, while Sony’s comedy Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 rang up $1.2 million.
The weekend’s other new nationwide offering is Jack Black comedy The D Train, which IFC Films opened in more than 800 theaters, marking its widest release ever. The film, directed by Jarrad Paul, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, looks as if it will attract just a little over $1 million during the course of the weekend.
Making a limited play is Maggie, the Arnold Schwarzenegger–Abigail Breslin zombie thriller that Roadside Attractions opens in 76 theaters. And Sony Pictures Classics is opening Saint Laurent in four theaters in New York and Los Angeles.
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