Muppets” in 2nd place when viewed by “Twilight”

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The Muppets

The Mup­pets

Disney’s fam­ily film “The Mup­pets,” com­bin­ing pup­pet ani­ma­tion with live action, raised $42 mil­lion over the five-day Thanks­giv­ing week­end to open in sec­ond place at the North Amer­i­can box office.

The CG-enhanced The Mup­pets made $29.5 mil­lion over the three-day week­end in its first big-screen appear­ance in 12 years. Mean­while, the live-action The Twi­light Saga: Break­ing Dawn — Part 1 stayed at No. 1 in its sec­ond week­end, col­lect­ing $42 mil­lion in three days and $62.3 mil­lion from Wednes­day to Sunday.

I don’t know that choice is ever a bad thing, and in terms of a week­end for fam­i­lies, this is one of the best,” said Dave Hol­lis, head of dis­tri­b­u­tion for Dis­ney. “The chal­lenge is break­ing through and being rel­e­vant and mean­ing­ful and fresh enough to take the more finicky cus­tomers and have them choose you.”

Accord­ing to Dis­ney, The Mup­pets attracted a mix of fam­i­lies and child­less cou­ples who have fond mem­o­ries of Ker­mit, Miss Piggy and the rest on The Mup­pet Show. The movie has made an addi­tional $1.6 mil­lion internationally.

Wholly ani­mated fam­ily films were in third and fourth place.

In its sec­ond week­end, Warner Bros.’ Happy Feet Two had a three-day total of $13.4 mil­lion and a five-day col­lec­tion of $18.4 mil­lion for five days. Its Oscar-winning pre­de­ces­sor brought in almost $200 mil­lion domes­ti­cally. The sequel has made only $43.8 mil­lion since its Novem­ber 18 open­ing, barely equal to the opening-weekend gross of the 2006 original.

Pre­vi­ously released in Europe, Sony’s com­edy Arthur Christ­mas opened in North Amer­ica with $12.7 mil­lion over three days and $17 mil­lion over five. It was pro­duced by British ani­ma­tion unit Aard­man and has enjoyed pos­i­tive reviews. Inter­na­tion­ally, it’s made another $11.9 million.

To have the one pic­ture that really is kind of car­ry­ing the torch as a Christ­mas pic­ture really bodes well for the future,” said Rory Bruer, Sony’s head of distribution.

In eighth place was Dream­Works’ Shrek spin-off Puss In Boots with $7.5 mil­lion ($9 mil­lion internationally).

Between Wednes­day and Sun­day, domes­tic rev­enue was $234 mil­lion — far below the $273 mil­lion record set in 2009, when The Twi­light Saga: New Moon led the box office. As well, tak­ings fell below last Thanks­giv­ing, when $264 mil­lion was col­lected, thanks in part to the No. 1 per­for­mance of Harry Pot­ter and the Deathly Hal­lows: Part 1.

Ticket sales for Fri­day through Sun­day at United States and Cana­dian the­aters, were esti­mated by Hollywood.com. Final domes­tic fig­ures are set for release Monday.

[Via Asso­ci­ated Press — news.yahoo.com/twilight-keeps-shining-42m-second-weekend-174915455.html]

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