AceShowbiz - "Tom & Jerry" has raced to the top of the North American box office with an impressive $13.7 million (£9.85 million) debut amid the ongoing COVID crisis.
The family movie, a hybrid of live-action and animation, stars Chloe Moretz and Michael Pena alongside the beloved cartoon cat and mouse duo, and the popularity of the classic Hanna-Barbera characters has helped studio officials at Warner Bros. to secure only the second release to land an opening weekend of $10 million (£7.2 million) or more during the pandemic.
"Wonder Woman 1984" was the studio's first to crack the mark with a $16.7 million (£12 million) debut following its Christmas Day, December 25, 2020 launch, hitting limited theaters and streaming service HBO Max at the same time.
The big opening of "Tom and Jerry" easily beats its closest rivals - "The Croods: A New Age" and Denzel Washington crime thriller "The Little Things", which round out the new top three with $1.2 million (£862,500) and $925,000 (£665,000) respectively.
The movie's weekend success sent hope to the return of theatrical screenings. Warner Bros. Domestic Distribution Boss Jeff Goldstein stated, "This is evidence that people are willing to go back to the movies when there is something they want to see."
Box Office Pro's chief analyst Shawn Robbins expressed similar sentiment. " 'Tom and Jerry's' ability to exceed expectations despite a day-and-date streaming release, and without the biggest markets open, signals yet another positive step forward for the industry as a whole," he said.
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