Contraband sneaks to box office No 1

2012-01-16 09:39

Los Angeles - Mark Wahlberg's crime drama Contraband won the battle for weekend supremacy at North America's box office, beating out a 3D retread of a Disney classic, industry data showed on Sunday.

The gritty story starring Wahlberg as a former smuggler, who takes one last job trafficking counterfeit bills in order to save his family, earned $24m in its debut weekend, well ahead of the re-release in 3D of Disney's 1991 smash Beauty and the Beast, which pulled in $18.5m.

According to estimates published by Exhibitor Relations, Tom Cruise showed staying power with Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, which held third spot, earning $11.5m to take its total to $186.7m.

Steven Spielberg

Fourth spot belonged to Joyful Noise, a music fairytale featuring the singer-actor duet of Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah, which rang up $11.3m in ticket sales.

Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows took fifth with $8.4m, bringing its five-week running total up to $170m.

Exorcism horror film The Devil Inside, which topped the box office last weekend, slipped to sixth place with $7.9m, about $1 million ahead of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Hollywood's first take on the bestselling Millennium trilogy.

Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, the latest in the animated series, chimed in with $5.8m, followed by Steven Spielberg drama War Horse, which slipped three notches to ninth with $5.6m.

Rounding out the top 10 was Meryl Streep channelling Britain's 1980s prime minister Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady, which earned $5.4m despite showing in fewer than a quarter as many theatres as Mission: Impossible.