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Fast & Furious 7 crosses $1 billion globally and remains on top in US

Fast & Furious 7

Story by Jack Foley

FAST & Furious 7 has remained on top of the US box office for a third straight weekend and – internationally – has sped past the $1 billion mark.

The film took $29.1 million in its third weekend, comfortably ahead of its closest rival, Kevin James’ comedy sequel Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2, which nevertheless debuted in second spot with a strong $24 million.

Globally, Fast & Furious 7 finished Sunday with $1.153 billion in world-wide ticket sales, including a massive $250.5 million in China. It has now taken $294.4 million in the US alone.

The second placed Paul Blart was also considered a success given that it was competing against Furious 7 – but its $24 million still fell some way below the $31.8 million achieved by the surprise success of its predecessor in 2009. Nevertheless, Mall Cop 2 only cost an estimated $30 million to make and, on this occasion, finds James’ character taking his family on vacation to Las Vegas where duty quickly comes calling. It was critically derided.

In third place, meanwhile, was micro-budget horror movie Unfriended, which opened to $16 million despite costing only $1 million to make.

Unfriended is the latest collaboration between Universal and and Blumhouse following The Purge franchise and Ouija and it unfolds completely over a teenager’s computer screen as she and her friends are stalked by an unseen figure seeking vengeance for a shaming video that led to another girl killing herself.

Rounding out the top five, meanwhile, were animated film Home, which came in fourth with $10.3 million, and romantic drama The Longest Ride with $6.9 million.

Further down the box office chart, Rubert Goold’s True Story, starring Jonah Hill, James Franco and Felicity Jones, just missed out on a top 10 spot with $1.9 million. The film marks another dramatic outing for Hill and is based on the true story of a weird relationship between an investigative journalist and a prisoner accused of murdering his family.

Tom Hardy thriller Child 44, a Stalin-era murder-mystery, became the weekend’s biggest casualty, taking in just $600,000 from 510 venues. Adapted from the best-selling book by Tom Rob Smith, the $50 million movie was produced by Ridley Scott and directed by Daniel Espinosa (Safe House) but suffered from a lot of poor reviews.

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