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Box Office: ‘Alita: Battle Angel,’ ‘Lego Movie 2’ to Lead President’s Day Weekend

Alita: Battle Angel” is holding a slim lead ahead of “Lego Movie 2’s” second frame with an estimated four-day take of $29.1 million from 3,790 North American locations.

“Lego Movie 2: The Second Part,” meanwhile, is heading for about $25 million for a domestic tally of around $66 million. The two films lead the pack for a relatively sluggish President’s Day weekend, with the top 12 films totaling significantly below last year’s revenues, which were given a massive boost from the $242 million (four-day) premiere of “Black Panther.”

Robert Rodriguez’s cyberpunk action film starring Christoph Waltz and Rosa Salazar scored $7.53 million on Friday. James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis adapted the script from Yukito Kishiro’s manga series “Gunnm,” and the Fox sci-fier holds a 59% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. “Alita” marks a risk for the studio, with a costly $170 million production budget.

Warner Bros.’ “Lego Movie 2,” starring Chris Pratt and Elizabeth Banks, has taken in $64 million worldwide since its debut last weekend.

Rebel Wilson’s “Isn’t It Romantic” is opening at 3,444 theaters for a four-day estimate of $14 million. Warner Bros. and New Line’s anti-rom-com took in $4.18 million on Friday.

Liam Hemsworth also stars in the send-up, with Wilson playing a woman who finds herself trapped in a romantic comedy despite believing in their inherent sexism and lack of realism. Todd Strauss-Schulson directed from a script by Erin Cardillo, Dana Fox, and Katie Silberman. The film has a 68% positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

The second weekend of Paramount’s “What Men Want,” starring Taraji P. Henson, should land in fourth with about $11 million, though the debut of Universal-Blumhouse’s “Happy Death Day 2U” could pick up the slot with an estimated $10.54 million. The “Happy Death Day” sequel, which hit theaters Wednesday, should have pocketed $26.25 million globally through Sunday, somewhat below earlier forecasts. “What Men Want” has earned $28 million in its first eight days.

Star Jessica Rothe reprised her role for “Happy Death Day 2U,” with director Christopher Landon also returning to helm and taking over writing duties from Scott Lobdell. Israel Broussard, Phi Vu, Rachel Matthews, Suraj Sharma, and Ruby Modine also star. Though the horror pic is pacing well behind its predecessor, which opened to $26 million over three days on its way to a $125 million global tally, it has a quick route to profitability, with just a $9 million budget.

Also premiering this weekend is MGM’s “Fighting With My Family” at four locations, along with Sony Pictures Classics’ “Ruben Brandt, Collector” at two sites and IFC’s “Donnybrook” at 80 theaters.

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