Thanks to a successful viral marketing campaign, everyone wanted to know what the monster in Cloverfield looked like this weekend.
According to studio estimates, the unconventional monster flick took in $41 million, a record opening for January.
In a distant, but very respectable second place, was the Katherine Heigl romantic comedy 27 Dresses, which earned $22.4 million.
In third place, the dramedy The Bucket List showed its staying power with $15.5 million, as did fellow dramedy Juno in fourth place with $10.2 million.
Finally, at number five was the action-adventure flick National Treasure: Book of Secrets with $8.1 million, earning $198 million in five weeks.
At number seven, the buddy comedy Mad Money starring Diane Keaton and Queen Latifah took in a just-okay $7.7 million.
This Friday's wide-release openings: Rambo, Meet the Spartans, Untraceable, How She Move.
All box office figures are in U.S. dollars and are estimates provided by film studios. Generally speaking, studios earn about 55 percent of a film's gross. Final numbers are released on Monday evening.
About Robert J. Ballantyne
Robert J.Ballantyne is a senior editor at Popjournalism and Creative Director at Artsculture.ca. Previously, he was a journalist at the CBC on a number of news programs including the fifth estate, Marketplace and The National. He also worked as a staff writer at the Toronto Star.