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Madagascar 3 and Prometheus open strong in US

Madagascar 3

Story by Jack Foley

MADAGASCAR 3: Europe’s Most Wanted has topped the US box office with a whopping $60.4 million opening but was closely followed by Ridley Scott’s Prometheus with a no-less impressive $50 million.

Madagascar 3‘s success is being put down to a lack of family friendly movies at play in cinemas at the moment, although it also has box office pedigree and will have benefited from a tireless promotional campaign, which began when the toon made its world-wide premiere at the Cannes Film Festival last month. See pictures.

The threequel performed on par with the first two movies in terms of box office opening and marked DreamWorks Animation’s best US debut since Shrek Forever After in 2010 ($70.8 million).

It returns Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, Jada Pinkett Smith and David Schwimmer in the lead voice roles, while bringing in newcomers Frances McDormand, Martin Short, Jessica Chastain and Bryan Cranston.

The $50 million opening for Prometheus, meanwhile, was described by Chris Anson, Fox president of domestic distribution, as “out of this world”.

He added: “A confluence of great reviews and solid word-of-mouth have conspired to create a global hit.”

Prometheus may have cost Fox $130 million to produce but could start a new Alien franchise and has continued to perform solidly around the globe. Its world-wide total now stands at $141.5 million after just two weeks on release.

In IMAX form it has also broken records. In North America, IMAX grosses from 294 theaters totaled $9.1 million, a June record for the exhibitor, while in the UK it has sold out its run.

Elsewhere at the US box office, Snow White & The Huntsman (starring Charlize Theron and Kristen Stewart) placed third with an estimated $23 million, taking its US total to $98.5 million.

While Sony’s Men in Black 3 continued to hold in well in its third weekend, coming in fourth with $13.5 million (and bringing its world-wide gross up to $487.5 million), and The Avengers continues to perform well, placing fifth with a further $10.8 million.

Worldwide, the Disney and Marvel Studios’ pic has now hit $1.4 billion to confirm its status as the biggest box office superhero hit of all-time.

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