Los Angeles: Christmas is a family festival - even at the cinema - and not very friendly to Westerns. Despite bad reviews, the comedy sequel "Little Fockers" ruled the US and Canadian holiday weekend box office with an estimated $34 million for its debut weekend.
The film, also known as "Meet the Little Fockers" or "Meet the Parents: Little Fockers" in Britain and Australia, stars Robert De Niro (father-in-law), Ben Stiller (son-in-law), Owen Wilson, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo, Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand.
The Coen brothers` "True Grit", the remake of the 1969 John Wayne movie starring Jeff Bridges, took in $25.6 million.
Both films debuted Wednesday, right before the holiday, and over the five day period, the "Fockers" sequel pulled in $48 million while "True Grit" totalled $37 million.
Nevertheless it was the best start ever for the Coen Brothers ("The Big Lebowski", "O Brother Where Art Thou?"). Jeff Bridges, 61, plays the drunk marshal who is hired by a 14-year-old girl to take revenge for the death of her parents.
"Tron: Legacy", the 3D cult film and remake of the 1982 "Tron", dropped from first to third place from last week, with $20 million.
Jeff Bridges again has top billing in a weekend success, 28 years after he created the lead role in the first film. Some of the footage from the older film is used in the new one.
The new "Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader", pulled in $10.8 million, followed by the first 3D version of "Yogi Bear" ($8.8 million).
Seventh through tenth billing were occupied by "Gulliver`s Travels" ($7.2 million), the ballet film "Black Swan" ($6.6 million), "Tangled" ($6.5 million) and "The Tourist" - starring Angelina Jolie and Johnny Depp - ($5.7 million).
"The King`s Speech" - a favourite of Hollywood`s foreign critics in the Golden Globes nominations - mopped up in 11th place with $4.6 million after making its debut in mainstream theatres Saturday.