‘Bad Boys for Life’ victorious at North American box office

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Sony’s “Bad Boys for Life” held on to its lead in the North American box office during the weekend, again edging out Universal’s “1917” and “Dolittle,” industry watcher Exhibitor Relations said Monday.

The weekend cinema was overshadowed by Sunday’s blockbuster TV event, the National Football League’s Super Bowl, when theaters are often near-empty.

Overall weekend ticket sales of roughly $85 million were the lowest in years, another industry tracker, Comscore, reported.

Still, action-comedy “Bad Boys,” with Will Smith and Martin Lawrence reprising their roles as wise-cracking detectives, took in $17.7 million for the Friday-through-Sunday period.

“1917,” a war film which lacks big stars but has steadily racked up awards, placed second at $9.5 million. The Sam Mendes film, shot as if it were one continuous take, is an Oscar favorite.

“Dolittle,” based on the children’s book about a veterinarian who can talk to the animals, has drawn tepid reviews but, with an all-star cast headed by Robert Downey Jr and Emma Thompson, placed third at $7.6 million.

In fourth was the new horror film “Gretel and Hansel” from United Artists.

The dark reimagining of the Brothers Grimm tale earned nearly $6.2 million – not bad for a film produced with a relatively tiny budget of $5 million, according to Variety.

The fifth spot went to Sony’s “Jumanji: The Next Level” at $6 million. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Kevin Hart star in the action sequel.

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