1. "Avatar" ($13.3 million)
2. "Daybreakers" ($5.8 million)
3. "Sherlock Holmes" ($5.1 million)
4. "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel" ($3.5 million)
5. "Leap Year" ($3.3 million)
If three times is the charm, then the fourth time is the icing on the cake for director James Cameron's "Avatar," the science fiction epic that continues to shatter box office records left and right. While the weekend is far from over, "Avatar" is well on its way towards a fourth straight weekend victory, having earned a $13.3 million first place finish on Friday night.
The result isn't quite in the same ballpark as previous "Avatar" weekend numbers, having dropped by 47% since New Year's Day. But as this is the first non-holiday weekend since the film's opening — not to mention the first time since Christmas weekend that new competitors are in the playing field — the fact that "Avatar" remains in front of the pack with $393.8 million domestically and over $1 billion worldwide is nonetheless amazing.
Second place went to "Daybreakers," Lionsgate's new thriller starring Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe and Sam Neill. The futuristic take on the vampire genre took in a respectable $5.8 million total on Friday evening, less than $1 million more than "Sherlock Holmes," the third place finisher that is now in its third week in theaters.
Fourth and fifth place was a similarly tight battle between "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel" and Universal's "Leap Year," which earned $3.5 million and $3.3 million respectively. "Leap Year," the new comedy starring Amy Adams and Matthew Goode, barely edged out last weekend's fourth place finisher "It's Complicated," also from Universal.
The weekend's other new wide release was "Youth in Revolt," the indie comedy starring a mustachioed Michael Cera. Despite receiving one heck of a makeover from the "Jersey Shore" crew, Cera's latest only landed in seventh place with $2.7 million in 1,873 theaters.
Tell us how you think the rest of the weekend will shake out in the comments section or on Twitter!