UPDATE 1-'The Butler' works its way to second box office win

Sun Aug 25, 2013 2:28pm EDT
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By Lisa Richwine and Chris Michaud

LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK Aug 25 (Reuters) - Civil rights drama "Lee Daniels' The Butler" took home its second U.S. and Canadian box office title, topping a Jennifer Aniston comedy and a newly released supernatural teen film.

"The Butler," starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey, earned $17 million in ticket sales from Friday through Sunday, according to studio estimates. Jennifer Aniston comedy "We're the Millers" came in second with $13.5 million.

Among three late summer newcomers, "Mortal Instruments: City of Bones" landed in third with $9.3 million, comedy "The World's End" finished fourth with $8.9 million, while low-budget horror film "You're Next" only managed the No. 7 slot, with $7.1 million.

"The Butler," which also topped movie charts a week ago, is inspired by the real-life story of an African American man who served as a White House butler for eight U.S. presidents. Whitaker stars as the title character and Winfrey plays his chain-smoking, hard-drinking wife.

The movie distributed by The Weinstein Company has rung up sales of $52.3 million through its first two weekends, far surpassing its $25 million budget paid by 28 investors, and is drumming up buzz as an awards season contender.

"Mortal Instruments," which stars Lily Collins as a teen who works to protect the world from demons, performed best among the weekend's new entries. The movie, another bid to reach the teen audience that made "Twilight" a blockbuster, is based on a popular series of young adult novels written by Cassandra Clare.

German company Constantin Films produced "Mortal Instruments" for $60 million, and Sony paid for U.S. marketing and distribution. The movie opened Wednesday and added about $4.8 million ahead of the weekend, for a five-day total of $14.1 million.   Continued...