'Hunger Games' survives at top of US box office

'Hunger Games' survives at top of US box office
Oscar-winning actress Jennifer Lawrence had considered writing an apology, but decided against it.

LOS ANGELES - The latest "Hunger Games" movie beat back competitors to survive the Thanksgiving weekend atop the North American box office, according to industry figures Monday.

"The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1," starring Jennifer Lawrence as rebellious Katniss Everdeen, grossed nearly US$57 million (S$74.4 million) on its second weekend, according to box office tracker Exhibitor Relations.

That added to US$122 million on its debut weekend, which made it the biggest grossing opener this year.

Fox's animated-animal film "The Penguins of Madagascar" meanwhile pulled in about US$25.4 million in its first weekend in theatres, earning the second box office spot.

That debut knocked animated robot flick "Big Hero 6" from second to third on the charts, after the Disney feature took in over US$18.8 million in its fourth weekend in theatres.

Space exploration epic "Interstellar," directed by Christopher Nolan grossed almost US$15.7 million to take the fourth spot.

In fifth place was "Horrible Bosses 2," the sequel to a 2011 workplace comedy starring Jennifer Aniston, which hauled in US$15.5 million in its weekend debut.

Screwball comedy sequel "Dumb and Dumber To," starring Jeff Daniels and Jim Carrey, took the sixth spot with a US$8.4 million haul after a box-office topping debut two weeks ago. The film has grossed about US$72 million overall.

The life story of theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking in "The Theory of Everything" tripled its weekend earnings, charging into the seven spot with a US$5 million take-in.

Thriller "Gone Girl" starring Ben Affleck pulled in about US$2.5 million this week for the eighth spot.

Dark comedy "Birdman" starring Michael Keaton held onto the ninth box office spot with another week of about US$1.9 million in sales.

Comedy "St Vincent," starring Bill Murray and Naomi Watts, dropped to the 10th spot with US$1.7 million in earnings.

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