Thor hammers to top of US box office
Los Angeles - The God of Thunder reigned at the North American box office as Thor became the latest Marvel comic book superhero to leap to the big screen.
According to studio estimates issued on Sunday, Thor sold about $66m worth of tickets during its first three days of release across the United States and Canada.
Lucrative summer period
The opening was in line with industry forecasts in the $60m to $70m range, and marked a strong start for a non-sequel and for the lucrative summer moviegoing period.
But it fell far short of openings by the first instalments of other movies in the Marvel stable, such as 2002's Spider-Man ($115m) and 2008's Iron Man ($99m). Somewhat ominously, it barely exceeded the $62m start for Hulk in 2003, the first of two failed attempts to turn the angry green man into a movie franchise.
International sales data for Thor were not immediately available. The film was No 1 overseas last weekend with cumulative sales of $93m.
Thor was produced for $150m by Walt Disney's Marvel Studios and distributed by Paramount Pictures. Starring Chris Hemsworth in the title role, it was directed by British actor and filmmaker Kenneth Branagh, best known for his deft handling of Shakespearean material.