Box office


LOS ANGELES - Millions of Americans went shopping for comedy this weekend, giving the star-studded Meet the Fockers the record for the best Christmas weekend opening ever.

The sequel, reuniting Ben Stiller and Robert DeNiro and adding Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand as Stiller's parents, earned $44.7 million over the holiday weekend, beating the previous record of $30 million, set in 2002 by Catch Me if You Can.

This weekend's top 12 films grossed an estimated $121.9 million, compared to last year's $165.8 million when Christmas fell on a Thursday.

Second place was taken by the live-action Fat Albert, which debuted Saturday with a two-day total of $12.7 million. Meet the Fockers opened Wednesday, bringing its five-day total to $68.5 million.

The Aviator, the epic tale of billionaire Howard Hughes, did well enough in limited release to take fourth place with $9.4 million.The small-budget horror flick Darkness went against the slew of family films on the market now and attracted $6.4 million in its opening weekend. Associated Press

Movie Distributor Wknd Total No. of

gross gross weeks

1 Meet the Fockers Universal $44.7 $68.5 1

2 Fat Albert 20th Cen. Fox $12.7 $12.7 1

3 Lemony Snicket Paramount $12.5 $42.7 2

4 The Aviator Miramax $9.4 $9.4 1

5 Ocean's Twelve Warner Bros. $8.6 $68.8 3

6 Darkness Dimension Films $6.4 $6.4 1

7 The Polar Express Warner Bros. $6.3 $87.1 7

8 Spanglish Sony $5 $14 2

9 The Life Aquatic Touchstone $4.8 $4.8 1

10 Phantom of the Opera Warner Bros. $4.2 $6.5 1

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