'Freddy Vs. Jason' Bludgeons The Box-Office Competition

Slasher flick took in $36.4 million over the weekend.

While supposedly sure-fire sequels to "Charlie's Angels," "Lara Croft: Tomb Raider" and "Legally Blonde" failed to surpass their predecessors this summer, a movie that combined two ailing franchises has surprised everyone. "Freddy Vs. Jason" topped the box office with a $36.4 million debut over the weekend, earning more in three days than the total grosses of both series' last installments combined.

Last year's "Jason X" scared up less than $13 million during its run in theaters, while 1994's "Wes Craven's New Nightmare" grossed under $18 million. The decade-in-the-making "Freddy Vs. Jason" pits the antiheroes of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" and "Friday the 13th" against each other, with Destiny's Child's Kelly Rowland thrown in the mix. (Click for photos from "Freddy Vs. Jason.")

And against the combined might of Freddy, Jason and Kelly, none of the weekend's other new releases stood a chance.

The Kevin Costner Western "Open Range" debuted at #3 with $14.1 million, according to studio estimates, while Brittany Murphy's "Uptown Girls" landed at #5 with $11.2 million. By comparison, "Just Married" — Murphy's comedy pairing with her former beau Ashton Kutcher — opened with $18 million (see " 'Just Married' Knocks Down 'Two Towers' "). The skateboard flick "Grind," which features a few cameos from former members of the "Jackass" cast, fared even worse, taking in $2.6 million and failing to crack the top 10. (Click for photos from "Grind.")

The rest of the weekend's top 10 includes the ensemble cop-caper flick "S.W.A.T.," which has made $70 million since debuting two weeks ago, at #2 with $18.6 million; "Freaky Friday" at #4 with $13.1 million ($57.9 million, two weeks); "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl" at #6 with $8.5 million ($247.9, six weeks); "American Wedding" at #7 with $8.1 million ($80 million, three weeks); "Seabiscuit" at #8 with $8.1 million ($83 million, four weeks); "Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over" at #9 with $8.1 million ($96.8 million, four weeks); and "Bad Boys II" at #10 with $3.2 million ($128.8 million, five weeks).

This week's new releases include the Ashton Kutcher comedy "My Boss's Daughter," Lisa Kudrow's "Marci X" and Jackie Chan's "The Medallion."