Liam Neeson, Taken
Paul Blart: Mall Cop has clocked out as box office champ, ceding the No. 1 spot to Liam Neeson's Taken, which took $24.6 million in its opening weekend. Paul Blart settled into the two-spot with a $14 million haul, bringing its total-to-date to $83 mil.
Rounding out the top five were The Uninvited (the remake of a South Korean horror pic scared up $10.5 mil in its debut), Hotel for Dogs ($8.7 mil) and Gran Torino ($8.6 mil). Having now grossed north of $110 milion, Torino represents the biggest earner of Clint Eastwood's career, besting In the Line of Fire and Unforgiven.
All told, this weekend's ticket sales gave Hollywood its first billion-dollar January haul, with attendance up 16 percent over the same month a year ago. Have movies somehow proven to be a bargain in this economy?
Also of note: In wider release, Slumdog Millionaire claimed sixth place with $7.7 million - this during the same weekend that the critically acclaimed pic's director, Danny Boyle, copped the top honor at this year's Directors Guild of America awards.