'Hansel and Gretel' tops US box office

WITCH-HUNTING SIBLINGS. Jeremy Renner as Hansel and Gemma Arterton as Gretel. Photo from the 'Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters' Facebook page

WITCH-HUNTING SIBLINGS. Jeremy Renner as Hansel and Gemma Arterton as Gretel.

Photo from the 'Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters' Facebook page

LOS ANGELES, USA - A horror-movie twist on the classic "Hansel and Gretel" fairy tale shot straight to the top slot at the North American weekend box office, industry figures showed Monday.

"Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters," in which the once lost brother and sister have grown up to become grim-faced bounty hunters, debuted in first place with US$19.7-M, according to box office tracker Exhibitor Relations.

Watch the trailer here:

The supernatural thriller screamed past fellow horror flick "Mama," which fell into the second slot in its second weekend in theaters.

"Mama," in which a shadowy being trails two young children rescued after being lost in the woods when their parents died, took in US$13.1-M.

Oscar-tipped bin Laden manhunt movie "Zero Dark Thirty" slipped to 3rd place with US$9.7-M, followed by romantic comedy "Silver Linings Playbook," boosted by its Golden Globes success in mid-January, on US$9.4-M.

Another new release, "Parker," starring Jason Statham and Jennifer Lopez as an unlikely pair working together on a heist, opened in 5th place, with US$7-M in its opening weekend.

Meanwhile, Quentin Tarantino's blood-soaked spaghetti Western tribute "Django Unchained," which took home two Globes and four Oscar nominations, rose to 6th place, earning slightly more than US$4.9-M at the box office.

That put it just barely ahead of the 3rd new release to open in the top 10 this week. Star-studded "Movie 43," a comedy featuring interconnected short films that follow three kids' search for the most banned movie in the world, earned US$4.8-M in ticket sales for 7th place.

Trailing just behind was Sean Penn action flick "Gangster Squad," with US$4.3-M, and musical adaptation "Les Miserables," which took in US$4.2-M, in 8th and 9th spot respectively.

Rounding out the top 10 was crime drama "Broken City," earning just over US$4-M in its second week in theaters. - Rappler.com