"Bucket List" kicks off weekend atop box office
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman took an early lead at the weekend box office in North America with their comedy "The Bucket List," according to preliminary estimates issued on Saturday.
The movie, in which the Oscar-winning duo play cancer patients looking to live their last days to the fullest, earned $6.4 million on Friday, said box office analysis firm Box Office Mojo.
The new Ice Cube comedy "First Sunday" followed at No. 2 with $6.15 million, and the teen-pregnancy comedy "Juno" at No. 3 with $4.6 million.
After three weekends at No. 1, "National Treasure: Book of Secrets" fell to No. 4 with $3.3 million. Another former champ, Will Smith's "I Am Legend," was No. 5 with $2.6 million.
Rankings could change when the studios issue three-day data for the Friday-to-Sunday period on Sunday.
"The Bucket List" expanded across North America after two weeks of strong sales in New York, Los Angeles and Toronto. Director Rob Reiner's comedy was released by Warner Bros. Pictures, a unit of Time Warner Inc.
"First Sunday" stars Ice Cube as a ne'er-do-well who decides to rob a church. Tracy Morgan and Katt Williams co-star. The film was released on Friday by Screen Gems, the low-budget arm of Sony Corp's Columbia Pictures.
"Juno," the most commercially successful movie among the awards-season favorites, was released by Fox Searchlight Pictures, a unit of News Corp. It has earned about $62 million to date, said Box Office Mojo.
Walt Disney Co's "National Treasure" sequel has pulled in about $179 million, while Warner Bros.' "I Am Legend" has risen to $235 million.
(Reporting by Dean Goodman; Editing by Peter Cooney)
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