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Los Angeles - Ice Age: Continental Drift, the fourth film in the animated series featuring a woolly mammoth and his prehistoric friends, trampled The Amazing Spider-Man and took the top spot at US and Canadian box offices on Sunday with $46-million.
Featuring the voice of comedian Ray Romano as the warm-hearted mammoth Manny and John Leguizamo as Sid the fast-talking sloth, the 3D film's opening weekend beat forecasts and topped the debut of the most recent movie in the series, 2009's Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, which opened to $42-million.
The biggest opening in the series was 2006's Ice Age: The Meltdown, which grossed $68-million in its first weekend. Overall the animated series, which was produced for Fox by its Blue Sky Studios, has collected $1.9-billion in worldwide ticket sales, according to ticket tracking website Box Office Mojo.
Ice Age had been projected to gross around $40-million for the weekend, according to Paul Dergarabedian, president of Hollywood.com's box office division.
Spider-Man, the reboot of the blockbuster series that starred Andrew Garfield as the superhero's alter ego Peter Parker, collected $35-million over the weekend, after selling $140-million in ticket sales during a six-day run that began with midnight shows the day before the July 4th holiday.
Its cumulative domestic ticket sales after roughly two weeks in theatres now stand at $201-million. Add another $320-million overseas, and worldwide ticket sales total $521-million, easily making it among the year's top movies.
Ted, a comedy about a man and his foul-mouthed, pot-smoking teddy bear, slipped to third place with domestic sales of $22.1-million from Friday through Sunday. Directed by Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane, the Universal Pictures release has earned $159-million domestically since its June 29 debut and has become a Hollywood summer season surprise.
Disney's animated fairy tale Brave weathered the entrance of the edgier Ice Age and landed in the No. 4 spot. The movie about a rebellious, red-haired Scottish princess, produced by Disney's Pixar unit, grabbed $10.6-million at US and Canadian theatres and has collected $196-million after four weeks.
Another surprise hit, Warner Bros male stripper film Magic Mike, edged out Oliver Stone's gritty drug drama, Savages, to claim the No. 5 spot. Mike rang up $9-million in ticket sales to boost its domestic total to $92-million.
Savages, produced by Universal Pictures, totalled $8.7-million over the weekend, bringing its cumulative sales to $31.5-million after two weeks in theatres. - Reuters