LOS ANGELES (AP) — Weekend moviegoers chose science-fiction over slapstick.
“Ender’s Game” scored the No. 1 slot at the weekend box office, earning $28 million in its opening weekend and sending “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa” into second place, according to studio estimates Sunday.
Lionsgate’s adaptation earned an additional $2 million in five international territories.
Based on the novel by Orson Scott Card, “Ender’s Game” stars Asa Butterfield and Harrison Ford as intergalactic soldiers.
Comments made by Card expressing opposition to gay marriage led some to call for a boycott of the film. But a strong first-place opening met the studio’s pre-weekend expectations.
However, ticket sales didn’t come close to the opening weekends of other young-adult science-fiction adaptations such as “Twilight” and “The Hunger Games.” It did fare better than “Beautiful Creatures” and “The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.”
“`Ender’s Game’ is a big budget movie that could be the start of a franchise,” said box-office analyst Paul Dergarabedian of Rentrak. “This time of year is not exactly a hotbed of million-dollar openings, but once they launch worldwide, it will do well.”
A representative for Lionsgate declined to be interviewed for this story.