Disney sequel tops Friday with $12.2 million

Disney sequel “National Treasure: Book of Secrets” easily continued to lead the box office on Friday, while 20th Century Fox’s surprise hit “Alvin and the Chipmunks” moved up to No. 2.

Fox also reported strong success with sneak peeks Thursday night of romantic comedy “27 Dresses,” toplining Katherine Heigl and penned by “The Devil Wears Prada” scribe Aline Brosh McKenna. Sneaking the pic in 539 theaters across the country, studio said most shows were sold out, and the rest at capacity. Film opens Jan. 11.

Crossing the $100 million mark on Friday, “Book of Secrets” grossed an estimated $12.2 million from 3,832 locations for a cume of $100.6 million. That’s a decline of just 27% from the previous Friday, when the sequel opened.

Registering an impressive 23% uptick from the previous Friday, “Alvin” overtook “I Am Legend” for only the second time since both pics unspooled on Dec. 14. The first was on Thursday.

“Alvin” grossed an estimated $10.3 million Friday from 3,484 locations for a hearty cume of $122.7 million. That puts the live-action/CGI hybrid in position to possibly beat “Legend” for the weekend and take the No. 2 spot behind “Book of Secrets.”

The highest grossing pic of the fall and holiday sesh, “Legend” remains a legend in its own right, grossing $9.2 million from 3,636 theaters Friday for a cume of $176.3 million. That’s a narrow 16% decline from the previous Friday.

After the three top pics, other films looking for holiday cheer continued to find themselves in a crowded race.

Universal’s Tom Hanks-Julia Roberts starrer “Charlie Wilson’s War” stayed at No. 4 on Friday, grossing an estimated $3.9 million from 2,575 runs for a cume of $26.6 in the film’s first week of release.

Fox sequel “Aliens vs. Predators: Requiem” finished Friday No. 5, grossing an estimated $3.4 million from 2,611 runs for a cume of $20.2 million in the pic’s first four days.

Fox Searchlight’s quirky dramedy “Juno” continued to move up the B.O. chart, finishing at No. 6 for the day. Film grossed an estimated $3.3 million from only 998 runs for a cume of $18.7 million. It is the only specialty title on the top 10 list.

Coming in No. 7 on Friday, Sony and Walden Media’s kid pic “Water Horse: Legend of the Deep” grossed an estimated $3.1 million from 2,772 theaters for a cume of $10.7 million in the pic’s first four days.

Warners’ romancer “P.S. I Love You” finished Friday at No. 8, grossing an estimated $3 million from 2,464 runs for a cume of $17.3 million. Film registered an impressive 24% uptick from the previous Friday–when it opened–reflecting that female moviegoers have more leisure time available now that Christmas is over.

The No. 9 spot for the day went to DreamWorks-Paramount’s bigscreen musical adaptation “Sweeney Todd,” which grossed an estimated $2.6 million from 1,249 runs for a cume of $21.3 million. Film declined 31% from the previous Friday, when it opened.

Disney’s “Enchanted” continued to sing sweetly, coming in No. 10 on Friday. Pic, now in its sixth frame, grossed an estimated $2.2 million from 2,262 theaters for a cume of $106.3 million.

MGM and the Weinstein Co.’s “The Great Debaters” came in No. 11, grossing an estimated $2 million from 1,171 runs in its fourth day in release.

Among limited releases, Focus Features’ “Atonement” remains one of the strongest players, coming in No. 14 overall on Friday. Film grossed an estimated $930,000 from 310 runs for a cume of $9 million.

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