U.K. Box Office: 'Taken 3' Holds Top Spot Hostage in Opening Week

Taken 3 Liam Neeson Running - H 2014
Daniel McFadden - © 2014 EUROPACORP – M6 FILMS

Taken 3 Liam Neeson Running - H 2014

The Liam Neeson actioner follows in the footsteps of the second installment with its top-ranking debut.

The third installation in the Liam Neeson-led action franchise Taken this week showed once again that bad reviews shouldn’t hold anything back.

Despite falling foul of most U.K. critics — being described as a "tragedy that’s become boring" by The Daily Telegraph Taken 3 stormed to the top of the local box office in its opening week, snaring $10.1 million and a lion’s share of the weekend’s overall admissions.

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Into the Woods, another new entry, pipped last week’s number one and fresh Golden Globe-winner The Theory of Everything to second by just $21,000, earning $3.7 million.

Further down, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and Paddington maintained their now five-week tussle, this time over fourth and fifth chart positions. Middle-earth once again emerged victorious by a Peruvian bear’s whisker, taking $1.93 million to Paddington’s $1.92 million, although StudioCanal’s potential new family franchise starter — which opens in the U.S. this week — looks likely to pass the impressive $50-million mark in the U.K. within days (it has already topped $100 million internationally).

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Elsewhere, Foxcatcher was the top 10’s only other new entrant, pinning down the sixth spot with $1.3 million.