It may not have been the smash opening that Sony executives were likely hoping for, but when a film debuts with $70 million in ticket sales, it's hard for anyone to complain. That was the case with the four-day holiday debut of Men In Black 3 , which also took in $132 million overseas for a worldwide total of $202 million. That's a lot of cash by anyone's reckoning, but it still does not guarantee that the movie will wind up in the black, given its reported budget of $250 million and promotion and marketing costs of $100-150 million. Moreover, the overseas results included China, where the studio will receive just 25 percent of that country's $19.5-million weekend take. (China also reportedly censored scenes in which Chinese characters were shown unfavorably and edited the film down to 90 minutes -- something that could reduce future theater attendance for the movie in that country and encourage bootlegging.) Meanwhile, The Avengers fell to second place in its fourth week but with a solid $46.9 million over the four days, to bring its domestic total to $523.6 million. It has rapidly become the fourth-highest money maker ever, behind only Avatar, Titanic , and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2. Meanwhile, The Chernobyl Diaries, the only other film to open wide over the weekend, wound up so much toxic waste as it collected just $9.3 million over the four days -- and was pilloried by moviegoers on entertainment blogs. They also rated the movie a D+ when poll ed by research firm CinemaScore. Overall, the box office was down 32 percent from the same weekend a year ago when The Hangover Part II and Kung Fu Panda 2 debuted.

The top ten films for the four-day holiday weekend, according to studio estimates compiled by Box Office Mojo 1. Men in Black 3 , $70 million; 2. The Avengers , $46.9 million; 3. Battleship, $13.8 million; 4. The Dictator , $11.8 million; 5. Dark Shadows , $9.4 million; 6. The Chernobyl Diaries , $9.3 million; 7. What to Expect When You're Expecting , $8.9 million; 8. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel , $8.2 million; 9. The Hunger Games , $2.9 million; 10. Think Like a Man , $1.8 million.

29/05/2012