Trading in his usual hero costume for that of a villainous hit man, Tom Cruise slaughtered every other film in the box-office top 10 to take the #1 spot.
Cruise's "Collateral," which also stars Jamie Foxx and Jada Pinkett Smith, raked in $24.4 million in its opening weekend, according to early estimates. The film finds Cruise in an unusually dark role, that of a contract killer who hijacks a cab to drive him around while he goes on his Los Angeles killing spree.
Despite the threat of a takeover from heavy-hitters like "The Bourne Supremacy" and "The Manchurian Candidate," which continue to nip at its heels, "The Village" managed to nab the runner-up position in the top 10. The flick drops one spot to #2, with more than $16.5 million in ticket sales.
"The Bourne Supremacy" slides another spot to #3 on sales of more than $14.1 million, bringing its three-week total to $124.3 million.
Even with the weight of stars Denzel Washington and Meryl Streep behind it, "The Manchurian Candidate" couldn't rally enough support to rise above the #3 spot, where it bowed last week. The political flick took in $10.8 million in its second week in theaters, dropping a spot to #4.
Brittany Murphy's "Little Black Book," meanwhile, opened to poor reviews and an even more disappointing spot on the top 10 — the film took in $7 million to debut at #5.
Coming in at #6 and #7, respectively, are two top-10 staples, "I, Robot" and "Spider-Man 2." "I, Robot" spends its fourth week in theaters at #6, bringing in $6.3 million. "Spider-Man 2," meanwhile, celebrates its six-week anniversary in theaters, landing at #7 with $5.5 million in ticket sales and a total pull of more than $354.5 million to date.
Rounding out the top 10 this week are "Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle," which drops a spot to #8 with $3.2 million; "A Cinderella Story," which lands at #9 with more than $3 million; and "Catwoman," which drops four notches to #10 with more than $2.9 million.
Overall, ticket sales were down sharply from the corresponding weekend last year.
Next week, look for "Alien Vs. Predator" to land in the top 10. Also hitting theaters next week is "We Don't Live Here Anymore," starring Naomi Watts, Peter Krause, Mark Ruffalo and Laura Dern.
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