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Weekend Box Office: Rio Flys to the Top, Scream 4 Makes Only a Peep

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By Chris Kavan - 04/18/11 at 12:04 AM CT

Hollywood can finally notch a win compared to last year thanks to another animated hit. Rio opened in first place with $40 million, representing the best opening of 2011 so far and helping lift the overall box office 11% compared to last year.

While it's a good sign, Rio did benefit from hefty 3D sales, accounting for 58% of its gross and couldn't quite match the opening of How to Train Your Dragon's $43.7 million. It's attendance was also lower than other animated films such as Ice Age and Robots.

Hopes for a successful revival faded for the Scream franchise. Opening in second place with $19.4 Scream 4 was well off the pace for previous movies in the franchise. Scream 3 opened with $34.7 million and attendance was off as well. With expectations in the $25-$30 million range, it was a disappointment and means this will probably be the last we hear from the series.

With Rio dominating the weekend, Hop fell 48% to land in third with $11.2 million. Although it opened stronger, Hop now trails Rango in total gross in a week-by-week comparison. Still, the nearly $83 million total looks good compared to the $63 million budget.

Two films featuring young women in very different roles held up quite well. The inspirational Soul Surfer dropped just over 30% for a fourth place $7.4 million. Meanwhile the stone-cold assassin Hanna fell a typical 41% for a $7.3 million fifth place showing.

Call it the little horror film that could - while Scream 4 may be a bust, Insidious is certainly playing its cards right. With the lowest drop of 27%, the seventh place $6.8 million moved it up to a nearly $36 million total. Even with marketing costs, the film is a certified hit.

Comedies were woeful as Arthur and Your Highness took big hits. Arthur came in 6th place with $6.9 million, down over 43% while Your Highness took the biggest hit of the week, off 58% and taking in only $3.9 million to just manage 10th place.

The weeks other new release, The Conspirator, came in 9th with just under $4 million. Robert Redford's historical drama on the Lincoln assassination plot drew an older crowd and performed well considering it only opened in 707 theaters.

We'll see if Hollywood can continue to keep the good times rolling into next week when Tyler Perry offers up another helping of Madea and Water for Elephants works the dramatic angle.

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