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‘Jumanji’ bounds out of the jungle to top North American box offices

LOS ANGELES: Sony’s family-oriented movie “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” roared into first place this weekend in North American theaters as horror film “Insidious” edged into second past a slipping “Star Wars” installment, according to industry estimates. 

“Jumanji,” starring square-jawed Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and funnymen Jack Black and Kevin Hart, was headed for an impressive $36 million for the three-day weekend, bringing its domestic total to $244.4 million in its third week out, said website Exhibitor Relations.

The film, following four teens who find themselves inside the video game world of Jumanji, has grossed more than $500 million worldwide and opens in the huge Chinese market next weekend.

In second place was Universal’s newly released “Insidious: The Last Key,” with an estimated take of $29.3 million. The horror film, the fourth installment in the “Insidious” franchise, stars Lin Shaye and Angus Sampson and follows a parapsychologist investigating a haunting in her childhood home.

The news for third-place “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” was mixed: the latest in the hugely popular series has now taken in $1.2 billion worldwide, but it slowed to below warp speed in North America, totaling $23.6 million in its fourth week and taking in just $28.7 million from its opening in China, below industry predictions.

The space saga stars Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Adam Driver and two members of the series’ original cast, Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker and the late Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia.

Fourth place went to Fox’s “The Greatest Showman,” a “good old-fashioned cornball PG musical” (so says Variety.com) about larger-than-life circus impresario P.T. Barnum. With the popular Hugh Jackman in the lead role, the film logged $13.8 million in its third week, down only slightly from the previous week.

And in fifth was another musical, “Pitch Perfect 3,” a Universal sequel that took in $10.2 million in its third week. The movie’s cast, led by Anna Kendrick, follows the continuing adventures of glee singers the Bellas.

Rounding out the top 10 were:

“Ferdinand” ($7.7 million)

“Molly’s Game” ($7 million)

“Darkest Hour” ($6.4 million)

“Coco” ($5.5 million)

“All the Money in the World” ($3.6 million)

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