Gnomeo & Juliet speeds to box office glory

LOS ANGELES - DISNEY'S Gnomeo & Juliet tiptoed into first place at the North American box office this weekend as Hollywood prepared for its major Oscars awards on Sunday, industry figures showed.

The family-friendly animated retelling of Shakespeare's play features the voices of James McAvoy and Emily Blunt, and Elton John's music. For its third weekend in theatres, it took in US$14.2 million (S$18.1 million) in ticket sales during another sluggish week in what has been a slow start of the year for Hollywood.

New release Hall Pass came in second with US$13.4 million. Married guys Owen Wilson and Jason Sudeikis get permission from their wives to have an affair in this latest raunchy comedy by Peter and Bobby Farrelly.

In third spot was Liam Neeson's thriller Unknown - last week's winner - with US$12.4 million. Leeson stars as a botanist who awakens after a car crash in Berlin to find his wife claiming she does not known him and that another man has taken his identity.

Just Go With It, starring Adam Sandler and Jennifer Aniston, held on to the fourth spot. The romantic comedy raked in US$11.1 million.

Dropping to fifth was sci-fi action flick I Am Number Four, netting US$11 million. The film stars British heartthrob Alex Pettyfer as a teenaged alien refugee hiding on Earth from evil invaders who killed his family. -- AFP

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