Source: Itthemovie.com

`Kingsman' Edges Out `It' to Win Tight Box Office Race

(Bloomberg) -- “Kingsman: The Golden Circle,” a 21st Century Fox Inc. comedy about British super-spies, returned to the No. 1 spot in North American theaters, helping cinema owners clinch a record September at the box office.

“The Golden Circle,” a sequel to the surprise 2015 hit, collected $16.94 million in U.S. and Canadian theaters, researcher ComScore Inc. said Monday. A final tally rearranged the top three films, pushing the Warner Bros. horror feature “It” to second place in its fourth weekend, with $16.9 million. A new Tom Cruise movie from Universal Pictures, “American Made,” opened in third place instead of second, with $16.78 million. The other new wide release Sony Corp.’s “Flatliners” placed fifth with $6.57 million.

After the worst summer in a decade, theater and studio executives are basking in a recovery, with several big pictures on tap that may extend the rebound. September closed with record sales of $708.9 million in North America, surpassing the old mark of $616.4 million set in 2015, according to ComScore. And the credit goes largely to “It” and Time Warner Inc.’s film division, which already plans a sequel.

`Kingsman' Edges Out `It' to Win Tight Box Office Race

New and returning movies all vied for the top spot. “It” was forecast to produce $16.5 million and “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” was expected to be close behind at $16.4 million, according to analysts at BoxOfficePro.com.

The crime thriller “American Made,” featuring Cruise as a commercial airline pilot recruited by the CIA to provide intelligence on a burgeoning communist threat in Central America, was a hit with critics. The R-rated feature from Comcast Corp.’s Universal Pictures cost $50 million to make and was expected to generate $16.8 million on its North American debut, according to researcher Box Office Mojo.

`Kingsman' Edges Out `It' to Win Tight Box Office Race

Sony Pictures’ remake “Flatliners” fared less well with critics. Ellen Page and Kiefer Sutherland are among the stars featured in the tale about a group of medical students, obsessed with the afterlife, who experiment by stopping their hearts for short periods of time to trigger a near-death experience. The film cost $19 million to produce, not including marketing costs, according to Box Office Mojo, which projected $8.3 million for its opening weekend.

`Kingsman' Edges Out `It' to Win Tight Box Office Race