“Mortal Kombat” tops North American box office in opening weekend

This is the movie poster for "Mortal Combat." The Catholic News Service classification is O -- morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian. (CNS photo/Warner Bros.)
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LOS ANGELES, (Xinhua)

After a close race in North America, Warner Bros.’ martial arts fantasy film “Mortal Kombat” took the box office crown with 22.51 million U.S. dollars from 3,073 theaters in its opening weekend, according to studio figures collected by measurement firm Comscore.

This weekend with an estimated 54.2 million dollars overall, represents the highest grossing industry weekend of the pandemic in North America, noted senior media analyst Paul Dergarabedian at Comscore in an email to Xinhua.

Inspired by the blockbuster video game franchise of the same name, “Mortal Kombat” is helmed by Australian filmmaker Simon McQuoid in his feature directorial debut. The film features a diverse international cast, including some of Chinese descent, such as Lewis Tan, Ludi Lin and Chin Han.

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In the film, as Outworld’s threat to Earthrealm grows, some champions from Earth must team up to fight against the enemies of Outworld in a high-stakes battle for the universe.

The film holds an approval rating of 55 percent based on 179 reviews to date on review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes and a B+ on CinemaScore.

In a close second was FUNimation’s Japanese anime film “Demon Slayer: Mugen Train” which took in 19.5 million dollars in its opening weekend in 1,600 North American theaters.

It’s the top opening of all time for a foreign-language film in the United States so far, according to the Hollywood Reporter, an American entertainment industries magazine and website.

The film scored the best three-day opening weekend ever in Japanese theaters last October. It’s the highest-grossing film of all time in Japan so far.

Comscore data showed the film has grossed more than 448 million dollars worldwide to date.

Warner Bros. and Legendary’s monster film “Godzilla vs. Kong” came in third with 4.2 million dollars from 2,856 locations in its fourth weekend for a North American cume of 86.57 million dollars.

The film has earned 406.6 million dollars worldwide to date, including more than 183 million dollars from the Chinese mainland.

The monster mash-up is the fourth entry in Warner Bros. and Legendary’s MonsterVerse franchise. In the film, the two iconic silver screen behemoths meet in a spectacular battle for the ages, with the fate of the world hanging in the balance.

Directed by Adam Wingard, the film stars Alexander Skarsgard, Millie Bobby Brown, Rebecca Hall, Brian Tyree Henry, Shun Oguri, Eiza Gonzalez and Julian Dennison.

Universal’s action thriller film “Nobody” landed in fourth with 1.86 million dollars from 2,252 location in its fifth weekend, pushing its North American total to 21.67 million dollars.

Directed by Ilya Naishuller and starring Bob Odenkirk, the film follows an underestimated and overlooked dad and husband who helps a woman being harassed by several goons on a bus, only to become the target of a vengeful drug lord.

Disney’s animated action-adventure film “Raya and the Last Dragon” finished fifth with 1.68 million dollars from 1,819 locations in its eighth weekend. The film has grossed 39.84 million dollars for a global cume of 111.9 million dollars.

Directed by Don Hall and Carlos Lopez Estrada, inspired by Southeast Asian culture and set in the fantasy land of Kumandra, the film follows a young girl who sets off on a perilous journey to find the legendary last dragon to help unite her fractured land and save her divided people from an ancient evil force that threatens them all.

“Raya and the Last Dragon” features a predominantly Asian American voice cast led by Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina.