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Ben Affleck’s ‘Accountant’ No. 1 at Box Office With $25 Million Opening

Ben Affleck’s opening of action-thriller “The Accountant” is dominating moviegoing with a solid $25 million at 3,222 North American locations.

That’s about double the launch of comedy concert movie “Kevin Hart: What Now?,” which is performing respectably with about $12.4 million at 2,568 sites. But the debut of sci-fi adventure “Max Steel” is being shunned by moviegoers with less than $2 million at 2,034 screens.

Warner Bros.’ “The Accountant” looks likely to finish the frame in the same vicinity as last weekend’s winner, “The Girl on the Train,” which opened with $24.5 million. Moviegoers gave it an A CinemaScore with males comprising 58% of the audience, which was 86% over 25.

Friday results gave “The Accountant” $9.1 million while Universal’s “Kevin Hart: What Now?” took in $4.8 million and “Max Steel” was nearly invisible with less than $600,000 for Open Road. DreamWorks’ “The Girl on the Train,” distributed by Universal, took in around $3.9 million on Friday and should edge “Kevin Hart” with about $12.5 million.

“The Accountant” is over-performing recent forecasts, which placed it in the $18 million to $20 million range. The movie carries a moderate $40 million price tag and follows a small town certified public accountant who makes his living cooking the books for criminal organizations.

Gavin O’Connor directs from a script by Bill Dubuque. Anna Kendrick, J.K. Simmons, Jon Bernthal, Jeffrey Tambor and John Lithgow also star.

“Kevin Hart: What Now?” is a look at the final performance of his most recent comedy tour, filmed in August, 2015, at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field. Leslie Small and Tim Story directed.

The concert film is performing at the higher end of expectations, which ranged between $10 million and $13 million — which should make “What Now?” a profitable venture for the studio, given its production cost of under $10 million. Hart’s a proven performer in this genre with 2013’s “Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain” having grossed $32 million domestically.

Open Road is handling “Max Steel,” based on Mattel’s line of action figures and starring Ben Winchell of MTV’s “Finding Carter.” The film, produced  focuses on the teenage Max McGrath and alien companion Steel, who evolve into the superhero Max Steel.

Fox’s third frame of “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” should finish fourth at around $8.5 million, giving the Tim Burton fantasy around $65 million for its first 17 days.

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