Will Smith’s ’Pursuit of Happyness’ rules

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Washington, Dec 18: Will Smith's new film 'The Pursuit of Happyness,' the story of a struggling salesman and father, opened as the top film in the North American weekend box office.

Smith's rags-to-riches film about aless dad who climbs the corporate ladder, made 27 million dollars to claim the first place.

"Whether he's doing action, adventure or comedy, audiences love him," Eonline quoted studio distribution boss Roy Bruer as saying about Smith's star power.

The film opened ahead of two others new movies, News Corp.'s "Eragon" finishing second with 23.5 million dollars, while "Charlotte's Web," produced by Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Pictures, making 12 million dollars to bag the third place.

"Eragon" tells the story of a boy who finds a dragon egg, and stars Edward Speleers, John Malkovich, Jeremy Irons and Djimon Hounsou.

Dakota Fanning stars in 'Charlotte's Web' a classic tale of a barnyard full of talking animals. Julia Roberts voices Charlotte the spider, with co-stars Oprah Winfrey voicing a goose and John Cleese voicing a sheep.

Meanwhile 'Happy Feet' spent its fifth week in the top five, making another 8.5 million dollars for fourth place while 'The Holiday' was close behind in fifth with 8.2 million dollars, reports E! Online quoting Exhibitor Relations.

The champion filmmaker, Mel Gibson's 'Apocalypto', slid to No. 6 with 7.7 million dollars. The 10-day total for the violent saga stands at 27.9 million dollars.

The other limited opening was the Bollywood movie 'Kabul Express', an unrated Yash Raj Films release.

The movie stars John Abraham and Arshad Warsi as Indian journalists who land in Kabul in the hope of getting an interview with a top Taliban leader. It also features Pakistani actor Salman Shahid, Afghan actor Hanif Hum Ghum and American actress Linda Arsenio.

The Kabir Khan directed flick averaged just 1,644 dollars at 59 locations for a paltry 97,000 dollars.

US top 10:

1. The Pursuit of Happyness, $27 million

2. Eragon, $23.5 million

3. Charlotte's Web, $12 million

4. Happy Feet, $8.5 million

5. The Holiday, $8.2 million

6. Apocalypto, $7.7 million

7. Blood Diamond, $6.3 million

8. Casino Royale, $5.7 million

9. The Nativity Story, $4.7 million

10. Unaccompanied Minors, $3.7 million

--- ANI

Posted 19 Dec 2006

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