'Boss Baby,' 'Beauty' outshine 'Smurfs 3' at box office

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Sony Corp.'s "Smurfs: The Lost Village" landed in third place with an estimated 14 million debut weekend, one of the worst starts in recent memory for an animated offering from a major Hollywood studio.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Smurfs are feeling a little blue this weekend.

In a tight battle, animated comedy "The Boss Baby" is again edging "Beauty and the Beast" with about $26.6 million at the pre-Easter weekend box office in North America, estimates showed Saturday.

Despite the release of a slew of new movies in wide and limited release, The Boss Baby, featuring the voices of Alec Baldwin, Miles Bakshi, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, and Tobey Maguire, remained in the #1 spot for a second weekend in a row. On average, DreamWorks Animation films cost as much as $135 million to make and $65 million to market, according to Bloomberg Intelligence. "Beauty and the Beast" added 25 million dollars and continues to climb up the all-time charts, in terms of worldwide gross.

It's passed both "The Jungle Book" and "Alice in Wonderland" in domestic ticket sales - making it the most successful Disney live-action remake yet.

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While the family films dominated, moviegoers had other options on a relatively quiet weekend.

Directed by Zach Braff, the $25 million movie is a remake of the 1979 heist film and stars Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine and Alan Arkin as three retirees who decide to rob a bank when their pensions go belly-up. The faith-based drama, from Pure Flix Films, tells the real-life story of a self-avowed atheist and journalist who sets out to disprove his wife's newfound Christian faith.

In limited release, the Chris Evans drama "Gifted" took in $476,000 from 56 theaters, while the World War II drama "Their Finest" grossed $77,000 from four screens in NY and Los Angeles. "The Fate of the Furious", the eighth installment in "The Fast and the Furious" franchise, speeds into theaters next weekend, followed by "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" a few weeks later. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

In a surprise twist, Village Roadshow and Warner Bros.' Going in Style - catering to the elderly set - came in well ahead of expectations with $12.5 million.

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