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Last Updated: Monday, 15 January 2007, 09:08 GMT
Stomp drama dominates US cinemas
Stomp the Yard star Columbus Short
Stomp the Yard sees Columbus Short play a student who enters a dance contest
Urban dance film Stomp the Yard has topped the North American box office, ending the three-week reign of Ben Stiller's A Night At The Museum.

The film, which only cost $16m (8m) to make, took $22m (11.2m) in its opening weekend, according to studio estimates.

A Night at the Museum dropped to number two, with takings of 17.1m (8.7m) adding to its total of $185.8m (95m).

Oscar hopeful Will Smith took third place with real-life drama The Pursuit of Happyness, earning $9.1m (4.6m).

Stomp the Yard stars Columbus Short as a raw but talented dancer who tries to win a girl's affections by entering a "stepping" competition.

NORTH AMERICAN BOX OFFICE
Dreamgirls
1. Stomp the Yard ($22m)
2. Night at the Museum ($17.1m)
3. The Pursuit of Happyness ($9.1m)
4. Dreamgirls (pictured, $8.1m)
5. Freedom Writers ($7.1m)
6. Children of Men $6.4m)
7. Alpha Dog ($6.1m)
8. Primeval ($6m)
9. Arthur and the Invisibles ($4.3m)
10. The Good Shepherd ($3.9m)
Source: Media by Numbers
Stepping is a form of dance popular chiefly in African-American schools and neighbourhoods in the US, and the film - itself named after a dance move - has fared particularly well with black audiences.

Sony Pictures said around two-thirds of the audience was black, keeping the tradition whereby films with a strong African-American appeal make their debut at number one over the Martin Luther King Jr Day holiday weekend.

But Stomp the Yard was the only new film in this week's chart to make a strong debut.

Gangster movie Alpha Dog, starring pop idol Justin Timberlake, entered at number seven, while Disney's crocodile horror film, Primeval, was at eight.

Family film Arthur and the Invisibles, a mixture of live action and animation with appearances from Madonna, David Bowie and Robert De Niro, took ninth place.

Directed by French film-maker Luc Besson, the movie received a limited release in December so that it would be eligible for Oscar nominations.

Another movie considered a hot tip for the Oscars, Dreamgirls, rose one place to number four, swapping places with the Hilary Swank drama Freedom Writers.




SEE ALSO
Three weeks at the top for Museum
08 Jan 07 |  Entertainment
Museum holds top box office spot
02 Jan 07 |  Entertainment
US box office rallies after slump
29 Dec 06 |  Entertainment
Owen thriller tops UK box office
26 Sep 06 |  Entertainment
Casino tops Bonds at box office
27 Dec 06 |  Entertainment
Stiller comedy tops US film chart
26 Dec 06 |  Entertainment

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