Made for just $25 million, the low-budgeted thriller movie "Cloverfield" got a monstrous start at the North American box office, according to preliminary figures Sunday. Pulling in $40 million, the J.J. Abrams produced-movie debuted at the top spot on the three-days box office ended on Sunday, January 20.
Almost doubling the counts of this week box office runner-up, the film about a giant lizard's attack on Manhattan has broken two January records. In the first place, it has surpassed the January record of $35.9 million held by "Star Wars: Special Edition" since 1997. Then, although the current tally has not included the four-day Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend tally, it has already broken the four-day Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend record set in 2002 by "Black Hawk Down" that earned as much as $33.6 million.
Bowing in the second place is the 20th Century Fox's wedding comedy "27 Dresses". The romantic comedy starring "Knocked Up" leading actress Katherine Heigl collected $22.8 million from 3,057 theaters. In the third place was last week champion "The Bucket List". Starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, the drama comedy film has earned $14 million with the four week total of $41.6 million.
Further, the fourth place belonged to the acclaimed teenage pregnancy drama comedy "Juno" which took in $9.9 million pushing an impressive total of $85 million following its seventh week screening. Dropping to the fifth position was the Screen Gems' drama comedy "First Sunday" which made $7.8 million in its second weekend.
Experiencing a drop of 32.7% from its opening frame, the Nicolas Cage-starring action film "National Treasure: Book of Secrets" grossed $7.6 million in its fifth weekend nailing the sixth place and bringing in $197.5 million for its five-week cume. Debuting with a respective earning of about $7.6 million from 2,470 theaters, Overture Films' remake of a British television movie "Mad Money" landed on the seventh place.
Box office rivals, the 20th Century Fox's "Alvin and the Chipmunks" and Warner Bros' "I Am Legend", came in the eighth and ninth position gathering another $6.9 million and $4.9 million respectively. Since its release 6 weeks ago, "Alvin" has net a total of $196.3 million, while "Legend" has pushed its blockbuster total to $247.4 million. In the last spot once again, BAFTA-nominated film "Atonement" rounded up the top ten with a three-day earning of about $4.8 million.