‘The Expendables 2’ Is Top Film With Sales of $28.8 Million

“The Expendables 2,” Sylvester Stallone’s R-rated action sequel to the 2010 hit, led the U.S. and Canadian box office with sales of $28.8 million, topping three other new films this weekend.

The animated film “ParaNorman,” from Comcast Corp. (CMCSA)’s Focus Features and Laika Entertainment, took in $14 million to place third, Hollywood.com Box-Office said today in an e-mailed statement.

“The Expendables 2” follows Stallone and his team as they are enlisted by Mr. Church, a CIA agent played by Bruce Willis, for a seemingly simple job. One member is murdered, and the group’s quest for revenge puts them in enemy territory against an unexpected threat. Distributor Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. (LGF) ranks sixth in U.S. ticket sales this year at $642.2 million as of Aug. 12, according to researcher Box Office Mojo.

Stallone stars and co-wrote the film. Jason Statham, Jet Li, Chuck Norris, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Liam Hemsworth are also featured.

The first film grossed $274.5 million worldwide on an $80 million production budget, and collected $34.8 million in its first weekend, according to Box Office Mojo. Domestic weekend forecasts for “The Expendables 2” ranged from $31 million at Box Office Guru to as much as $40 million, the prediction of BoxOffice.com. The film was made for about $100 million, according to the Internet Movie Database.

‘ParaNorman’

“The Bourne Legacy,” Universal Pictures’ reboot of the “Bourne” action-film series, took in $17 million to place second in its second weekend.

The fourth movie in the Bourne saga begins a new storyline without the namesake character of the first three films or actor Matt Damon.

“The Bourne Legacy” explores the government program that gave the previous three films’ lead character, Jason Bourne, and other agents their enhanced abilities. In the new installment, Oscar nominee Jeremy Renner stars as Aaron Cross, another super soldier who learns he was genetically altered.

“ParaNorman,” a 3-D animated children’s film, follows a misunderstood boy who can speak to the dead. In the PG-rated comedy-thriller, Norman takes on ghosts, zombies and grown-ups to save his town from a centuries-old curse.

Kodi Smit-McPhee provides the voice of Norman. Anna Kendrick and Christopher Mintz-Plasse co-star.

Focus Features, part of Comcast’s NBC Universal, also collaborated with Laika Entertainment on 2009’s “Coraline,” another animated children’s film that went on to garner an Academy Award nomination. “ParaNorman” earned 86 percent positive reviews on the movie-review website Rotten Tomatoes, the average of 77 movie critics.

To contact the reporter on this story: Kelly Blessing in New York at kblessing@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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