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'Madagascar 3' reigns in N. America

LOS ANGELES--“Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted” and “Prometheus” leapfrogged a fairy tale to take the top spots in the North American box office charts over the weekend, industry estimates showed Sunday.

The animated “Madagascar 3,” the third installment in the wildly popular franchise starring Ben Stiller about escaped New York zoo animals, opened with a bigger-than-expected US$60.4 million debut, according to Exhibitor Relations.

Ridley Scott's hotly anticipated sci-fi adventure “Prometheus” also had a huge debut, taking second place with an opening take of US$50 million, the box office tracker said.

The pair bumped “Snow White and the Huntsman,” which was fairest of them all last weekend, off the top of the charts into third place.

The film starring Charlize Theron and Kristen Stewart of “Twilight” fame, which offers a new twist on the classic fairy tale, brought in US$23 million. It has total takings of US$98.5 million so far.

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