Marvel’s "Captain America: The First Avenger" topped the North American box office in its first weekend, grossing an estimated $65.8 million and squeezing past "Thor" to secure the best opening this year for a superhero movie. Final figures will be available Monday.
The performance surpassed pre-release estimates, which pegged the Joe Johnston-directed film to open midway between "X-Men: First Class"’ $55.1 million and "Thor"’s $65.7 million. "Captain America" actually screened in fewer locations than the previous Marvel release, according to The Wall Street Journal, 3,715 versus 3,955.
The record-smashing "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2," which debuted last weekend at No. 1, slipped to second place with an estimated $48.1 million -- a 72-percent drop that, nonetheless, brings the film’s cumulative, two-week domestic gross to a whopping $274.2 million.
"Captain America: The First Avenger" stars Chris Evans, Hayley Atwell, Hugo Weaving, Sebastian Stan, Tommy Lee Jones, Dominic Cooper, Toby Jones, Stanley Tucci, Richard Armitage, Natalie Dormer, Neal McDonough and Samuel L. Jackson.