Action movie "Immortals" wins weekend box office

Sun Nov 13, 2011 5:21pm EST
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By Lisa Richwine

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Action movie "Immortals" slayed its competitors at the weekend box office, taking the top spot domestically and pulling in an estimated $68 million around the world.

The 3D movie's performance surpassed expectations and beat new Adam Sandler comedy "Jack and Jill" plus another strong showing for animated film "Puss in Boots," according to studio estimates released on Sunday.

"Immortals" ruled the domestic charts with $32 million in sales at North American (U.S. and Canadian) theaters, plus an estimated $36 million from international markets.

The film attracted its core target audience of young men to watch the story of clashes between ancient Greek warriors played by Henry Cavill and Mickey Rourke. Seventy-five percent of moviegoers were under age 35, and 60 percent of the audience were male. Other films aimed at that type of audience had struggled in recent weeks.

"People were concerned action fans were staying away from the cinema. They definitely came out in force for 'Immortals,'" said Kyle Davies, president of worldwide theatrical distribution for Relativity Media, the independent studio that released the film.

"Immortals," produced at a cost of $75 million, is the most expensive film to date produced and distributed by Relativity. The studio had projected opening-weekend domestic sales around $25 million.

Audiences gave "Immortals" a B rating on average, according to exit-polling firm CinemaScore. Critics were split on the film, which earned only a 38 percent positive ranking on review aggregating website Rotten Tomatoes.